How keywords work
Keywords are words or phrases that people type into a search engine to look for your products or services.
Keywords aren’t things you can get right or wrong. There’s no central well of keywords that you can draw from.
They are just a way for search engines like Google to work out (and index) the page on your website.
Every page on your website should be targeting some keywords. But which keywords you target are less important than how you structure them on the page.
If you use those keywords, you are describing the content of the page to readers and search engines. You should use them in your page title, your headline, once or twice in your copy and as the name of any photos on the page.
You want to target a different keyword (or keyword phrase) on every page on your site. If you target the same keyword on every page, you are competing with yourself for that keyword.
To get the best possible search engine results, target a wide range of keywords across many pages.
How keywords impact your Google results
Search engines have software which looks at the content of your website. It then stores the information it finds in an index.
The computers storing that index also have some pretty clever software on them. They notice clusters of related words and can index your site based on factors like the amount of time people spend there.
So don’t stress too much on choosing the exactly right keyword. When it comes to keywords, quantity is better than quality.
Variety is also better. The more keywords you have on your site, the more times a searcher will find you.
You don’t need to win the Google search if someone searched ‘vet’ and your suburb.
Because search engines are so smart, they’ll know where your surgery is.
The real challenge today is making you their first choice BEFORE they ever start looking for a local vet.
Choosing the right keywords
According to Google, 80 per cent of consumers use the web to research their problems. That’s before they even start to think about buying a product or service. Help them with their problems. Then you are far more likely to be their service-of-choice when they’re ready to book an appointment.
Those searchers are not going to be Googling your services yet, because they don’t know the answer to their problem; they are going to be Googling their problem. That problem should be the keyword phrase you target on one page on your site. An easy way to do that is write about that topic in a blog post.
We’ve used Google Trends to work out the keywords we suggest in our book 100+ Keywords for Vets (and how to use them). Google Trends is a free service that shows you the popularity of particular searches over time. The phrases it identifies are not always the most searched-for ones. Keywords that are very popular are often the subject of fierce competition. So it’s harder for your website to get attention among all the other websites targeting the same phrases.
If you use a keyword that has a decent search volume, but fewer direct results, you have a better chance of ranking.
We’ve noticed in our research that there are lots of pages online that deal with symptoms of illness in pets. But there is very little search volume for those keywords. Perhaps that’s because when a pet falls sick, people go straight to their local vet.
You can still blog about that topic if you want. But don’t expect to end up on page one of a Google search for those phrases. Instead, promote those blog posts in a different way (through social media, or in
Download our free e-book with 100 keywords and a guide to blogging here.
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