Keywords are a fundamental part of SEO and online marketing. These are the terms and phrases that your target audience is actively looking for on the search engines. So building your content around these words can help boost engagement, increase traffic and ultimately lead to more sales.
However, there are instances in which marketers go too far with the keywords they use. Instead of using them naturally and in a conversational tone, they use as many as they can and as often as they can. They assume that the more they use, the more visibility they will achieve.
Unfortunately for these marketers, this is the furthest thing from the truth. Instead of gaining visibility, they are participating in a practice called black hat SEO. Not only are black hat tricks unethical, but they can also lead to penalisation. Let’s talk about the ins and outs of keyword stuffing and why you should do everything within your power to avoid it.
What is Keyword Stuffing?
Keyword stuffing occurs when a marketer or brand stuffs or fills a webpage with the same phrase or word in an attempt to rank for the term. Essentially, it involves an attempt to manipulate the search engines into assuming that the page is more relevant to the keyword due to the number of times it has mentioned it. Though keyword stuffing is not as popular as it once was years ago, it’s still a problem today.
Types of Keyword Stuffing
There are several ways in which a brand or marketer can stuff their website with keywords. One technique involves hiding them. For instance, the website owner may place the words at the very bottom of the page. They may place them off to the far left or right of the page. They may also make them the same colour as the background so that visitors cannot see them, but the search engines can.
Another type of keyword stuffing is working the words into the content. For example, they may include the words or phrases in every other sentence. This is often done to the point where the words have little to no meaning or context. While these tactics used to work, Google eventually caught on and found a way to discourage them.
How to Create Better SEO Optimised Content for Your Website
Writing original, high-quality articles is essential for your online marketing strategy. Optimised content is crucial because it gives you a chance to show off your skills as a writer and allows you to build up your readership. Readers will want to come back again, whether it’s to find out about the latest trends in your niche or for more advanced content, such as case studies or how-to.
However, writing content promoting engagement and SEO is often easy to write if following system guidelines. In this post, we will discuss helpful ways to write optimised content that converts.
Choose your Keywords Wisely
Keywords determine what content you should have on your website. And, they help your website to rank in search engines like Google. So, how can you select the right keywords?
Keyword research is more than guessing which words and phrases will bring you the most traffic. If the audience you want to attract is using those words and phrases when searching for information, products, or services like yours, they match.
Here are five steps to guide you through the keyword research process:
- Create a keyword list.
- Expand your keyword list with related terms to better understand users’ search engines.
- Filter and prioritise your keywords by assigning each one a value based on search volume and intent.
- Turn your list into an action plan.
- Evaluate your results overtime to make sure your keywords are working for you.
Be Creative with your H1 Title
Search engine optimization is the process of optimizing a website for search engines. It’s not just about keywords; there are many other ways to improve your search engine ranking and optimize your content for better SEO results when you automate your H1 title.
Here are a few tips that will help you create better SEO-optimised content for your website when automating H1 title:
- Be creative with your H1 title. Search engines love titles with some unique info. If you’re writing a guide to something and it’s all been done, don’t be afraid to put your twist on it.
- Break up your text with H2 subheadings. The easier it is for users to read and skim through your post, the higher the chances that they’ll stick around and engage with your content.
Create Original and Relevant Content
Content is the heart of a successful website. It’s what draws people to your site, keeps them there, and encourages them to return. Without content, no one will find your site in search engines. For this reason, you must create unique and relevant content that people want to read.
The growth of social media has emphasised the importance of good content, as users increasingly share articles they find interesting or valuable. Well-written content can also make your business achieve higher rankings in search engines like Google, resulting in more traffic to your website.
Use your Keyword in the URL
One of the essential SEO tips is that if you are not using your keyword in the URL (web address), you miss out on boosting your ranking.
There are two aspects to this: firstly, it helps search engines see the topic on your site. But more importantly, it also means your readers can tell at a glance what they will be reading before they click through.
For example, which of these URLs makes you more likely to click on one rather than the other?
URL 1: https://www.example.com/article/post-about-seo
URL 2: https://www.example.com/blog/234532
You could argue that URL 1 might be more manageable for users to remember. Hopefully, nobody would pick such a long number as that, but in reality, this is unlikely given how many sites and posts we visit each day. If someone has bookmarked a page for later or perhaps shared it with others, you want them to know what it was about without looking it up again.
Include Long-Tail Keywords
A long-tail keyword is a more specific phrase consisting of 3 to 4+ words. For example, instead of using the keyword “marketing,” a long-tail version of this term might be something like “marketing for authors publishing books.”
Long-tail keywords are precious because they tend to have a lower level of competition and can drive targeted traffic to your site.
Including a mix of long-tail keywords on your website and blog is the easiest way to increase organic traffic. If you add long-tail keywords to your articles, then you’ll have a better chance of ranking in Google and other search engines for those terms.
Here are some tips for optimizing your articles with long-tail keywords:
- Make sure the article’s central theme matches the long tail keyword that you want to rank on search engines.
- Use naturally in your content, and don’t try to stuff an unnatural amount of keywords into an article.
- Include synonyms and variations of the keyword phrase in your article too. For example, try using “marketing strategy” instead of “marketing tips.”
Write an Exciting Meta Description
There are many ways to make your content stand out, but one surefire way is to write an exciting meta description. A meta description is the brief snippet of text that appears below your page title in search engine results pages. It tells potential visitors what your page is about and gives them a reason to view it.
Here are some tips for writing an exciting meta description that’s both informative and compelling:
- Remember that your meta description is not the same as your H1 headline. A well-written H1 headline will be enough to persuade visitors to click through on its own, so unless you have a specific reason not to, you don’t need to repeat yourself in your meta description.
- Keep it short and sweet. With only 155 characters on desktops or 920 pixels on mobile devices available to you, keep it concise. Don’t write a novel — make every word count!
- Don’t be afraid to include a call to action if it makes sense for your product or service. Think carefully about what might persuade someone to click through. For example, if you’re running a sale or special offer, why not mention it here?
Add Internal Links to your Content
Internal links are significant for Search Engine Optimization. They not only help Google to understand your site structure, but they also pass authority from one page to another. If you want to get more traffic from Google and other search engines, you need to start paying attention to internal links.
Every piece of content you create should be a gateway to other valuable resources on your website. When creating your content, make it a habit to link to other pages on your site relevant to the topic.
Let’s say you’re working on a blog post about credit monitoring. You could include a link to a page about credit scores. Or, if you’re writing about the benefits of secured credit cards for people with bad credit, you could include links to specific card offers in your post.
This practice has several benefits: it allows readers to learn more by visiting another page on your site, and it helps search engines understand the context of your content better since they follow those internal links when crawling the web.
Focus on Longer-Form Content
Google’s algorithm isn’t a set of rules. It’s a complex system designed to adapt to new information and change user behaviours. But some fundamental principles have remained the same since Google first started indexing web pages that are writing content on the website. Focus on longer-form content writing to rank high on Google.
For example, search queries are getting longer, with users entering more specific information into search boxes. This means that short blog posts might not rank as well as longer content when searching for specific information. Instead, focus on creating longer blog posts and articles to cover a topic thoroughly.
If you produce short-form content for a blog post, for example, your visitors are much more likely to bounce than to stick around for more perusing. Short-form content is crap for SEO.
This is why we include long-form content in our search engine optimization strategy. We know that people who come to us from search engines take longer to read our content, which means we have a better chance of keeping them engaged. The payoff is a higher click-through rate and lower bounce rate.
The secret sauce is to give people plenty of time to consume the information you’re presenting so that when they get close to the end of your piece, they’re primed to make a decision.”
Make Sure you Use Heading Tags Correctly
When writing SEO content, it is about making sure your site appears higher in the search engine results pages than your competitors. That means creating “quality content” that’s on-topic and useful to people who are looking for it. It also means making sure the words you use in your content match those that appear when you search for them.
Heading tags are letters and numbers that appear at the beginning of a webpage’s HTML code, near the URL address. For example, if you wrote an article titled “How to Paint Your Kitchen,” this heading tag would appear right above the title of your page: How to Paint Your Kitchen. This tells Googlebot and other search engine crawlers what topic your article is about 0n your site.
As you can see, there are several heading options. The simplest ones like h1s, and they consist of just one letter. But there are also more complex headings like h2s which have multiple letters or numbers, and even h3s, which start with three letters or numbers. There’s also a heading called an h group (or Heading Level 1), with five or six letters or numbers after the colon.
Add Images or other Visual Content
When creating content for your website, it’s essential to include photos, videos, graphs, or other visual content. The visual content makes your pages easier on the eyes and helps visitors understand what you’re trying to convey. But if you don’t optimise these elements for SEO and user experience, you might be missing out on even more traffic.
How to Optimise Your Images?
The first thing to do when adding an image is to make sure it has a descriptive filename and alt tag. The filename is what Google uses as the title of your image in its search results. The alt tag shows up if the image fails to load correctly for any reason and helps people using screen readers understand the content of the images.
So instead of naming your image “image-1.jpg,” use something like “top-10-best-kettles-of-2022.jpg.” For alt tags, try something like “Best Guitar Brands in 2022 – Top Ten List from Top 100 Guitars Magazine.” That way, if someone searches for guitar brands or best guitars of 2022, your article and photo will come up in their search results.
Backlinks are a significant part of Google’s ranking algorithm. If you want to improve your search engine rankings, you need to earn more backlinks from other websites.
Here are some strategies for getting more backlinks:
- Guest post on another website. Reach out to other blogs in your niche and see if you can write a guest post for them. You’ll be able to include a link back to your site in your author bio, which will drive new traffic to your site.
- Do interviews on podcasts or YouTube shows. Podcasts and YouTube show often embed the most recent episodes on their homepage, which means they get lots of visitors and new listeners every day. Make sure you have an embeddable version of your site.
- Create shareable resources that link back to you (e.g., infographics). Infographics are viral on Pinterest, a visual social media platform where people share their infographics on Pinterest and other places.
Writing well-optimized content is more than just compiling keywords together to make a sentence. If you do this, Google will likely pick it up, and it could become your worst nightmare. Good content optimization requires effort and puts quality over quantity. But, the right amount of work can increase engagement and bring much-needed long-term traffic to your website.
Keyword Stuffing Leads to Penalties
If you’re keyword stuffing, then there is always a chance that you could rank highly in the search engines. However, there is just as much of a chance that you could completely ruin your current rankings. Google has made it a point to stress the fact that it values quality over quantity.
They have even worked to make their search engine more intuitive and intelligent so that it can provide users with the ultimate experience. This is why Google and other search engines are against practices like keyword stuffing. It is perceived as spam that can ruin the user experience. If your keyword density is over 5% then you could be in danger of being penalised.
Keyword Stuffing Makes Visitors Leave
One of the best ways to annoy your visitors or tell them that your site is of low quality is to keyword stuff. People aren’t willing to read more than a paragraph of keyword-stuffed text. Not only do they become aggravated, but they will quickly push the back button. This means that they don’t read your text, but more importantly, they don’t convert.
Keyword Stuffing Does Away With Your Authority
Everyone wants to be thought of as an expert in their industry. And the best way to earn this reputation is to research your topic well and produce content that is well-written and valuable. The more knowledgeable and helpful you are, the more people will trust you and the easier it is to convert them. Also, you will create a loyal following. Keyword stuffing results in the exact opposite scenario. You won’t gain any respect or credibility by repeating the same words and phrases.
How to Optimise Your Content Without Keyword Stuffing
While keyword stuffing may seem tempting, it can lead to significant penalties. So it’s a good idea to avoid it altogether. However, this does not mean that there aren’t other white hat digital marketing alternatives that you can use in order to secure a higher ranking.
- Step 1: Assign a Primary Keyword
First, try assigning one primary keyword to each webpage. Make sure that the phrase you choose is relevant to the topic and ties in seamlessly with the rest of your content. Ideally, this term or phrase should be popular and there should be low competition for the keywords. In this way, you will get a better shot at ranking.
Also, it’s important that you don’t assign this keyword to any other page on your website. Each page should ideally have its own target phrase. This ensures that none of your pages will compete against each other in the search engines. It also clearly communicates to the search engines what your page is all about.
- Step 2: Add Synonyms
You need to make sure that your copy contains synonyms and long-tail keyword variations. This is a great way to tell the search engine that your page is relevant. These secondary words will help to give the content a little more context and will help the search engine crawlers rank your page.
- Step 3: Use Keywords In the Correct Page Elements
When crafting your copy, you need to be very strategic about where you place your keywords. For instance, you need to include the keyword in your page title. It should be included in at least one subheading. You should place it in your title tag and meta description. Include the keyword in at least one of your image alt tags. Also, make sure to place your keyword in the first paragraph and then in the conclusion of your post. Unlike keyword stuffing, these types of optimisation techniques will actually send positive signals to the search engines and you have a better chance of ranking for the word you want.
To many Singapore business owners, keyword stuffing seems like the ideal SEO strategy. However, the seasoned professional can tell you that this black hat practice can do more harm than good. Google will view it as spam and will lower your ranking. It will cause your visitors to hit the back button. It will also ruin your chances of becoming a trusted authority in your niche.
If you notice that you have a high keyword density, then work to lower it. If you want to increase your rankings, then you need to speak naturally to your visitors. Assign a primary keyword to each page. Use synonyms and long-tail variations of the keyword. Also, make sure that you place your keywords in your tags, descriptions, and are key points in your content. Above all else, keep the user experience in mind.