In SEO, just like finding the right keywords is an essential task, optimizing those keywords properly is equally important.
While finding the right keywords (which we call keyword research) comes in the first place, properly putting those keywords in the content comes in second place.
The process of strategically using the chosen keywords in the website’s content is called Keyword Optimization.
In keyword research, we identify the best words and phrases beneficial for our website based on different keyword metrics. In keyword optimization, we strategically use these keywords in our website content. For example, In the title, heading, meta, etc. This way we signal the search engines that our website is relevant to the search intent.
By incorporating the right keywords in a strategic manner in your content, you can improve your website’s visibility in the search engine.
In this article, I am explaining to you about 7 Essential Keyword Optimization Techniques. Learning these techniques and implementing them correctly on your website can skyrocket your SEO journey.
Keyword Optimization Techniques
In SEO, Co-occurrence refers to the relationship between different keywords and phrases that naturally appear together on a webpage.
For example, if a web page has content about “dog food”, then the webpage may contain some other related words like “dog health”, “pet nutrition”, “healthy diet” etc.
Do note that these keywords are different but help search engines better understand the topic of the webpage.
By analyzing the co-occurrence of keywords, search engines identify the patterns and relationships between different keywords and then use this information to give more relevant results to the searchers.
Many experts claim that co-occurrence is a ranking signal as it helps search engines understand relationships between different terms and concepts.
Co-occurrence helps your website to not just rank for keywords but for a concept.
Important: One can influence the Co-occurrence by searching similar or related phrases consecutively. In that case, search engines associate those terms together and rank them accordingly. For example, if someone searches for “keyword research” and then looks up for “search intent”. If these two searches successively happen enough, then search engines associate these two keywords and assume that when people are searching for “keyword research”, they also want to look for “search intent”.
Keyword cannibalization is a situation that occurs when two or more web pages target the same keyword.
For example, let’s say a website has two pages: one page talks about “best running shoes for women” while another page discusses “top athletic shoes for women”. Now, if both these pages target the same keyword i.e. “women’s running shoes”, then keyword cannibalization occurs.
Once the keyword cannibalization occurs, search engines confuse which webpage is more valuable and to rank on the SERP. In this situation, none of these pages rank higher as instead of complementing, they are competing with each other.
To avoid keyword cannibalization, make sure to use a unique set of keywords for each webpage. If multiple webpages are targeting the same keyword then grouping them under one page is a nice idea.
It is an SEO technique to group related keywords together so as to create targeted content around them.
For example, let’s say you are creating a webpage about “digital marketing” Then, you might create a cluster of keywords such as “search engine optimization”, “Pay-Per Click”, and “Content Marketing”, etc to create a targeted series of pages on your website to provide valuable content related to “digital marketing”.
Clustering keywords properly on your website helps you to create a niche in the eyes of search engines which in turn helps you to gather targeted audiences.
Keyword density refers to the percentage of times a target keyword appears on a webpage with respect to the total number of words appearing on the webpage.
This metric helps to determine the relevance of a webpage for a particular keyword.
Let’s say, you have a web page about “best running shoes for women ”. This webpage contains a total of 1000 words and in this webpage, your target keyword, say, “women’s running shoes” appears 10 times. Then, the keyword density of your target keyword i.e. “women’s running shoes” is 1%.
Here is the mathematical formula to calculate keyword density:
Keyword Density = ( No. of times the target keyword appears on the webpage divided by the Total number of words on the webpage ) multiplied by 100
Keyword density is an important metric to consider as it helps search engines to determine the relevance of a webpage for a particular keyword.
Well, although keyword density is an important metric, it shouldn’t be overused because it makes the content less appealing to the users and therefore hurts the webpage ranking.
Overusing a particular keyword in a webpage to manipulate its search engine ranking is called keyword stuffing. By manipulating I mean, adding keywords that don’t make sense or add value to the content. Earlier, when search engines decided the web page ranking based on the number of keywords, people hide the keywords on the webpage by making their color the same as the webpage’s background, using tiny fonts, etc. To counter the same, search engines smarten their algorithm to capture stuffed content.
Keyword stemming is the process of identifying the root form of a keyword to expand its reach.
Here, we use different variations of a keyword, for example, its different tenses, plurals, or singular form to capture a wide range of audiences.
Let’s say, your target keyword is “run”, then identifying different variations of this keyword, for example, “running”, “runner”, and “runs” is called keyword stemming.
Keyword stemming helps to improve your website’s visibility as using this technique you are targeting a wide range of keywords. However, make sure to use stemmed keywords naturally in your content as overusing it triggers search engines to penalize your website for spam promotion.
Keyword frequency is the number of times a keyword appears with respect to the number of words on the webpage.
The mathematical formula to calculate keyword frequency is:
Keyword Frequency = (Number of times a keyword appears on a page) ÷ (Total number of words on the page) x 100
For example, if a web page has 1000 words and the target keyword appears 20 times in it, then, the frequency of the target keyword in that webpage is 2%.
It is a useful metric as it helps to figure out a web page’s relevance for a particular keyword.
Keyword prominence refers to the degree to which a keyword prominently appears on a webpage.
The prominence of a keyword is determined by its position on the webpage and how it is visually appealing to the users.
The closer is the keyword to the beginning of a webpage, the more it is prominent.
For example, if a keyword appears in the page title, headings, paragraphs, etc, then such keywords are more prominent.
Well, although keyword prominence is an important factor to consider, make sure to balance it with relevance, readability, and user experience.
Don’t stuff or overuse it as it harms the user experience and ultimately search engine rankings.
So, keyword optimization is a crucial aspect of SEO as it involves strategically using the chosen keywords using different techniques which I have explained to you in this article. By correctly implementing these techniques webmasters can boost their website’s ranking and traffic.