Focus keyword optimization is vital for your blog post to rank in Google’s search results. Here, I will be talking about some executable focus keyword tips. These focus keyword tips will help you towards on-page SEO optimization.
At the onset, before I begin to share some tips on focus keywords, let me explain the term focus keyword. As per Yoast.com, focus keyword is the keyword you want your post to rank for. If one is to judge the role of the focus keyword, then it can rightly be called the subject matter of your content or blog post. This is because Focus Keyword is the keyword or a set of keywords around which you build your content.
CHOOSING A FOCUS KEYWORD – A VITAL FOCUS KEYWORD TIPS
A focus keyword can either be a short tail keyword or a long tail keyword. That usually depends on what keyword you want your post to rank for – short tail or long tail keyword. Gurus across the blogosphere opine that a new blog with a domain authority of 1 should go for long tail keywords with a search history, as low as 10 queries per month.
Here it is pertinent to mention that it does not make any sense to rank for a keyword with a very high search history. Established blogs with high domain authority should target those keywords and can easily get ranked for such short tail keywords as well.
But when your blog has a very low domain authority, you should be focussing on long tail keywords with 10 to 20 search queries per month. Such keywords will be easy to rank for as there is not much search popularity. Also, not many sites will be competing for those keywords.
Moreover, this sort of keywords can drive targeted traffic into sites and conversion rate is high.
FOCUS KEYWORD DENSITY
The list of focus keyword tips remains incomplete if I don’t shed some light on the keyword density
As told earlier, that focus keyword is the keyword or a set of keywords you want your posts to rank for in the SERP. You, therefore, have to mandatorily maintain a minimum level of KEYWORD density throughout your content to help Google understand which keyword you want to rank for.
And that involves strategic insertion of the keyword in the following:-
- It should be present in the title of the post preferably at the beginning. Search Engines give more weightage to titles having the focus keyword. Blog titles having the keyword in the beginning, have the likelihood of getting noticed by Googles more than those titles having focus keywords in the middle or at the end.
- You should use the keyword in the first paragraph of your content. Make it a point to repeat the keyword in the first few sentences.
- Evenly scatter throughout the text as much as naturally possible. The keyword should be repeated as and when you feel that its requirement is natural. Don’t try to forcibly insert it into the body text. Write for the audience and not for the search engines.
- In the concluding paragraphs(is a must).
- You may include the keyword in the H2, H3 heading. Though not mandatory and a major ranking factor, but still it could be beneficial. Though I have mentioned it here, it isn’t that important focus keyword tip.
- You should include the keyword in the meta description so as to give Google proper indications regarding its content. If you don’t insert the keyword in the meta description section, Google will skip that part and reflect the portions of post introduction in the SERP. So, to reflect the relevancy of your content, you should use it here.
- Use them in the Alt Text of your images.
Using your focus keyword in different parts of your content will let search engines know that your content is in sync with the title.
WHAT NOT TO DO WITH YOUR FOCUS KEYWORD
FOCUS KEYWORD DENSITY While maintaining the density of keyword, you must see to it that it does not lead to keyword stuffing. These problems usually appear when you are using a long tail keyword as a focus keyword.
You then run the risk of being penalized by Google. Try to maintain your overall keyword density between 0.6 % to 1.5% of your total word count. A combination of some synonyms sourced from various keyword generators like Google Keyword Planner, Ubersuggest, Answerthepublic.com or the Latent Semantics Indexing Keywords Generator with the keyword you are focussing on will work great for your content.
There are many unreliable sources in the blogosphere advising us to keep a maximum keyword density of 3%. They vouch for their statements on the pretext that this is based on their personal research.
However, in confirmation of what I am stating here, let me quote the density range the Yoast team prefers, that is 0.6% to 2.5%.
What they fail to realize is that today’s algorithmic changes (read Humming Bird) have brought about the rise in the demand of long tail keywords. Search engines have changed the ways of parsing search queries word by word. They parse the whole search phrases instead.
Therefore, using those four or more words search phrases as long tail keyword(focus keyword) in your content is not easy. And repeatedly using them in your content just for maintaining the keyword density may not sound OK.
In that case, it will be better for us to hinge on authority sources. My recommendations on ideal keyword density are based on the findings and research of my mentor Harsh Agarwal.
DON’T USE TWO IRRELEVANT FOCUS KEYWORDS You can focus on more than one keywords in your content. This is permissible provided you are using one of its synonyms.
If your 2nd keyword differs in meaning, its irrelevancy will only hit your rankings. As you are likely to confuse Googles.
So, you should take care to ensure that your focus keyword is targeting your user audience. For more Focus keyword tips read here.
When I want to rank for keywords “focus keyword tip”, I will be targeting two keywords at a time. “Focus Keyword” is itself a short tail keyword within the broad term “focus keyword tips”. Here both the keywords are relevant to the content and are targeting the same user audience.
Both are having a density of 2.5% and 0.6% respectively. They are present in almost all the strategic parts of the content as mentioned above.
USING FOCUS KEYWORDS IN ORIGINAL FORM NOT A MUST
It is not mandatory to use a keyword in the form as sourced from various keyword generators. The focus keyword for this post is “focus keyword tips” and alternatively, I can write “some tips on focus keyword“. Likewise, I can use “Wedding planner from Kolkata” instead of its original form “Kolkata Wedding Planner“.
Also, if I use the singular form – Tip instead of Tips, the search engines can easily identify the keyword I am targeting.
CHANGING OF FOCUS KEYWORD AFTER PUBLISHING THE POST
Inexperienced bloggers often think of changing their keyword after publishing their posts. I have often stumbled upon such questions in forums. They should strictly avoid doing that.
Why? To answer this, let me reiterate the definition of focus keyword. It is the keyword which you want your post to rank for. That is, it is the subject or the topic of your blog post. Therefore, changing your keyword may be indicative of a change in the subject or topic unless you are replacing it with an LSI keyword.
You will have to make necessary changes in different parts of your post where you have used the previous keyword. This will ensure the required keyword density. You will also have to modify the whole content to keep your post in sync with the keyword.
Changing keyword will require you to change your post slug. And getting it redirected to the previous URL with 301 redirects will adversely affect SEO.
USING SAME FOCUS KEYWORD IN MULTIPLE POSTS
Some of you are intent on using the same focus keyword in more than one posts. You will then have multiple pages competing for the same keyword. This leads to keyword cannibalization. I advise against this practice as Search Engines will be confused with which post to rank. It finally selects only one such post.
And that is bad for SEO. Also, if you don’t focus your attention on other keywords, you won’t be getting traffic for those keywords. Besides, using the same keyword in multiple posts is not easy. Content quality suffers as churning out unique post is not possible with the same focus keyword.
That it is difficult to insert the same keyword in two URLs will only add to your list of problems.
So, instead of focusing your keyword on multiple posts, try to write as many well researched in depth post as possible with different keywords.
If you have some more tips to offer and add value to the post, then please go ahead and add to this list of aforesaid focus keyword tips.