Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is primarily known as the practice of using keywords and search terms to rank higher in search engine results. What most people may not know is the different techniques marketing professionals use with keywords or targeting keywords. Keywords are simply phrases you and I would type into a search engine to describe what we’re looking for. It could be something like “healthy apple pie recipe” or “dentist Arizona”. These keywords help search engines sort through websites and content to give you the most helpful answer.
Well, what’s the difference between using keywords and keyword targeting?
As search engines keep self-learning, their algorithms are much better at understanding conversational phrases and matching that content to what a website has to offer. In the past, you could fill a single page with a keyword over and over to rank well. That approach doesn’t work anymore.
These days, relevancy matters. As the changes in Google’s RankBrain are becoming smarter, they can find links between search terms. For example, if you have a single webpage, and if you’re targeting terms like crowns and braces on the same page, that doesn’t make a lot of sense. Your practice might provide both of these services and might want to rank for both of them, but it doesn’t make sense from the perspective of a patient searching for only one of those services. Someone who is looking for crowns has different needs and wants very different content than someone looking for braces. It’s extremely hard to serve both of those searcher’s needs well on a single page which is why it’s important to break those pages up into two different pages.
So how do I rank well for multiple keywords?
Here are some of the ways you can set up your pages to successfully rank for multiple keywords.
1. Headline Tags
Make the title and headline relevant, conversational, and creative. What you shouldn’t do is do something like “teeth, toothbrush, toothpaste.” That doesn’t work. But if you say, “the very best toothbrush and toothpaste, selected from manufacturers we trust,” now you’re targeting both the keywords and you have an attention-grabbing headline. Think of your title and the headline as really being your advertisement to try and earn that click.
2. Repetition Doesn’t Matter
Keyword use, it matters, but search engines aren’t looking for that same keyword over and over again on a page. If you are an orthodontist, make sure that the words orthodontics and braces are on the page, in the title, the headline, and possibly once or twice throughout the content. But even if you don’t get that and you only get them in the title and the headline, and you still have compelling content quality, great user and usage data metrics, and topic relevance — meaning the page is really about orthodontics or braces — you’re doing it right.
3. Dynamic Content
Making sure your content is unique and one of the best and easiest ways to help rank for multiple keywords. Make sure you have relevant and optimized copy on your pages that visitors will find useful and that they won’t find elsewhere. And as you continue to design content, keep your audience in mind: you are writing for people first but search engines also need to understand the message you’re trying to convey, not vice versa.
Your keywords are one of the oldest and most essential parts of an SEO campaign for higher rankings. Optimizing for individual keywords isn’t bad; however, optimizing multiple keywords is one of the most efficient ways you can meet that goal. .
The pursuit of high rankings will definitely be filled with learning experiences, and being able to learn something new and helpful is an important experience.
—John Lee, SEO Specialist, Sesame Communications