Making Sense of SEO Keywords

You know keywords are essential to your site’s SEO. Knowing which keywords to select can be an undertaking you’re not ready to attempt. If this wasn’t frustrating enough, you may have heard that traditional SEO practices are done, and keywords don’t matter. Keywords matter, and how you use them also matters, but SEO-related practices change and evolve like all things. Let’s go over how to make sense of SEO keywords and why you should still use them.

SEO keywords

Understanding How to Select SEO Keywords

When most people hear the term SEO, they immediately think about keywords. Keywords are certainly a large part of SEO, but there’s a lot more to it. Also, SEO keyword optimization is only effective if you select the right keywords and use them correctly. Here’s what to look for when choosing keywords for your SEO campaign.

  • Relevance
  • Search Volume
  • Conversion value
  • Competition


Relevance is an easy one. Good SEO keywords will make sense concerning your site. There should be a direct tie-in, and everything should just make sense. Your keywords should describe the products or services your site provides.

Search Volume

Search volume measures how many people type given keywords into a search engine over a given period. The ideal SEO keywords will have a high search volume. Think of search volume as demand and your product offerings as supply. You need to find the right demand for your supply to be useful. You want to select keywords to fill any voids, but at the same time, you don’t want to provide answers to questions no one is asking.

Conversion Value

Keywords with a substantial conversion value can be more tricky. Essentially, you want SEO keywords that make sense to use. You don’t want to spend your time reeling in people who are casually browsing. The casual browser could end up making a purchase, but statistically, you will fare better when serious and motivated buyers find your site. Aim for keywords geared towards motivated buyers, but consider using keywords and creating content that will help convince semi-serious consumers to learn more and make a purchase.


Also, consider the competition or the difficulty of each keyword. Many keyword research tools provide a difficulty rating. The higher the rating, the more effort and time are needed to rank for a term. While it is possible to rank very well for a keyword with a difficulty rating of 95, it may take a substantial budget and significant time (e.g., a year or more). It may be worth going after a lower search volume if that means a more realistic difficulty rating.

Look to see who else is using those same keywords and what other keywords they are using. It’s good to know what other sites are doing, but how you use this information can make or break your efforts. You have a choice: select the popular keywords and go head-to-head against major sites or the lesser-used keywords and dominate in those areas.

Where to Feature SEO Keywords

There’s still a place for more traditional keyword optimization. This method is not going away. Selecting the proper keywords matters, but how you use those keywords is vital. When utilizing traditional keyword optimization, keywords should appear in the following locations:

  • URL
  • Meta description
  • Title
  • Early in the first paragraph
  • Headings
  • Image tags
  • Concluding paragraph

Changing With the Times

Algorithms are more intelligent now and can handle concepts involving multiple keywords and phrases. Now it is possible to create one strong piece of content that can rank for various SEO keywords, whereas years ago, you would have needed a separate page for each keyword you wanted to rank. The right keywords and how and where they are used are still important. Good content has always been pivotal to a good SEO campaign, and that’s true now more than ever.

Rank Your Site

Determining the right SEO keywords and creating content can be time-consuming, especially if writing isn’t your thing. Writing is my thing, so let me know if you have questions or need help creating SEO-optimized content for your site. I’ve helped create website content for major corporations and spent time working with businesses of all sizes as part of an SEO agency. I can help your site perform and land on the search engine results page. Get in touch, and we can make this happen.

Let me know what you think!


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