Integrating Your Keywords into Your Content

Once you have done your keyword research and you determine the keywords you want to target, integrating keywords into your content is probably the most important part of the entire content optimization process. It’s silly to think that you would do all of this research and then not properly use the keywords in your web site. So let’s make sure that doesn’t happen.

You can invent many ways to implement and write your content for your web site so that it will do well with both your readers and the search engines. Let me discuss some ideas that I use when writing content; hopefully it will help you when you go to write your web site content.

The two most common questions I am asked are:

  • What is the most important tag in which to place your keywords?
  • Where or in what position should my keyword appear in my tags?

The answer I always give is the same. Throw all of that malarkey out the window.

The real way to ensure that you pages are written so that the search engines index your site for your target keywords is to write targeted, keyword-rich content.  You want to have at least 300 to 400 words of keyword-rich content on every page.  This will give you enough copy to define each page while allowing you to target specific keywords.

So when I write for the search engines, I focus on two to three keywords or key phrases per page, and I focus my writing based upon proven copy writing techniques that have been used by marketers for decades. It includes the basics of starting off with a headline, followed by a bolded statement, and then a paragraph of keyword-rich copy. 

{mospagebreak title=A Colorado Example}

As an example, let’s say I run a Ski & Snowboard helicopter adventure service in Colorado and the keywords I want to target are snowboard helicopter service, Colorado snowboard adventure, and Colorado back country snowboarding.

Again, your keyword rich content should be targeted and should not go off on a tangent about some other topic, detracting focus from your targeted keywords.

After you write your first paragraph you should then write another sub heading followed by more keyword rich content.  You entire page can look something like this:


The idea is to have at least 300 to 400 words on a page.  You can insert even more words, but make sure that you maintain your focus on your target keyword throughout the page.

As I said before, when your write from an authority position or as an expert it can be easy to write or speak in general terms because you have such a high level of understanding or it’s "your world."  Go back and ensure that you make your general terms more specific.  For instance, it’s easy to put a link on your site or say to your visitors "our products" or "our service."  Use specific terms, such as "our home improvement products" or "our helicopter snowboard service." Generic terms do not tell the search engines anything and visitors will not find you if you are not specific.

{mospagebreak title=Using CMS, WYSIWYG Editors, Flash, and Images}

It is important to understand that using technologies such as Flash, image files, and video do not have much of an impact on rankings because these files can not be indexed by search engines. The content embedded in these files may provide a better user experience. However, it means nothing to the search engines.  Using ALT tags can help the search engines understand what it is the file is displaying, but nothing can compare to the use of pure text on your web site.

Another common issue that arises often enough that it’s worth mentioning here is the use of content management systems and "What you see is what you get" (WYSIWYG) editors. These tools are becoming more common because they can be used immediately by novices to update their web sites. While these tools definitely do make the web site publishing process more efficient, there can be some pitfalls.

First, you need to ensure that the tool you use produces your content as pure text.  I have seen a number of sites that use a CMS tool and the system changes the content that is displayed to the public into a Flash file or an image file.

The use of these tools can also produce poorly written HTML code, which can cause search engine spiders not to index your web site.  So it is important to make sure if you use a content management system that the HTML code validates. It’s even better if you can work with your developers and programmers to ensure your web management system produces search engine friendly content.

Secondly, the "abuse" of CMS tools can hurt your search engine rankings because it’s so easy to change the content on your web site.  Changing your content a lot does not give the search engines a good idea of what your site is about.  Your pages need to be published and remain constant if you want to perform well.

I always recommend a tool that allows you to add pages to your web site and build your content. Avoid CMS tools that only let you change the information on a set number of pages. Your web site needs to be able to grow and expand. A system that only allows changes will force you to consistently remove content.  The result will be diminished rankings.

{mospagebreak title=Your Readers are Your Top Priority}

You need to develop your content for your readers.  That’s the bottom line.  I am sure you have seen web sites out there with a ton of unrelated keywords slapped somewhere on the page just for the sake of rankings.  Not only are those pages horrible, they are an insult to every visitor coming to the site.

Those pages are not published for human consumption but for a "dumb" robot.  Yes, there is an obvious reason that those keyword rich sites rank well but they will never gain any popularity or momentum with web users.  Guess what?  It is possible to write great content for humans and also get the same results as the sites built for the robots.  The difference is that when your site makes sense to humans, it follows that it makes sense to the search engines, but it doesn’t work the other way around.

If your keywords are true to your site and your business then putting together your keyword rich content so it makes sense to your visitor should not be a problem.  It will take some creativity but here are some ideas to help you think more like a copywriter.

As I stated before, writing content as an expert for a broad audience can have its pitfalls. It’s important to be descriptive.  Always ask — and answer — the questions of who, what, and where when you go about writing or re-writing your content.

For example, many web sites have a frequently asked questions (FAQ) page.  On many sites you’ll see FAQs or at the top of the pages you’ll see Frequently Asked Questions.  Frequently Asked Questions about what?

A creative SEO will use every opportunity to place their targeted keyword in their content.  By simply adding "about Colorado skiing adventures" to the end of FAQ, I am adding more descriptive text to my content which will both please my visitors and the search engines.

You now have a better understanding of how to choose your keywords and then think creatively and weave those keywords into your content.  The most important point I can leave you with is to make sure you truly invest in your content for your readers and not invest your time and money into ranking well with content that doesn’t appeal to humans.  Your visitors are your key to success.

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