Keyword optimisation for 2019 – What’s the latest best practice?

Keyword optimisation for 2019 – What’s the latest best practice?

Keyword optimisation for 2019 – What’s the latest best practice?

What worked before doesn’t mean it will keep working today.

 Google’s algorithms are constantly changing. Sometimes more than 1-2 times a day they update their filter settings. This means marketeers are looking for tricks and tips for a perfect keyword strategy. Today we’ll share with you best practices based on what the industry is doing for keyword optimisation.
Long-tail keywords are gaining in popularity because of voice search inquiries from the likes of siri and alexa. These days almost everyone has the virtual assistants on their devices. More than half of teenagers and roughly half of adults use Google’s ‘hey google’ voice search app every single day. 

Now Google’s Hummingbird program is designed to assess the overall meaning of a search inquiry as opposed to just the typed words. Marketeers now have to adjust their keyword strategy to work with these new algorithm filters that use voice search technology. This means long-tail keywords are used to rank with voice search or conversational speech. Long tail keywords will do a better job matching ‘verbal/spoken searcher inquiries’ understanding the intended meaning of an inquiry. In other words long-tail keywords will help with conversational style search words (from voice search). For instance typed words compared with spoken  words search:
Typed search
Where is the closest Chinese restaurant?”
Spoken search
“Hey google where can i eat Chinese food around here?”

Finding a process or tool to help get you started with your keyword list 

There are hundreds of tools and services to help you create keywords we have listed 4 popular ones:
SEMrush
Google Keyword Planner Tool
Moz Keyword Explorer 

Google’s algorithms update ‘Hummingbird’ is like a search engine within itself and is becoming more and more intuitive. It recognizes the intent of voice searches even when the words used are not exactly accurate due to conversational speech. It then identifies correctly the ‘meaning’ behind the search on the first inquiry attempt. The future of virtual Assistant Apps in all devices home or office is increasing day by day. So it won’t be long before people behave like scenes in Sc-fi movies talking to their devices who respond with accurate results.

Does embedding keywords into headings still make sense? 

Is it still necessary to place keywords in titles? Well gone are the days, where every post and blog has to have a keyword embedded in the heading or subhead. That said embedding a keyword on-page SEO still makes sense as part of your SEO strategy just knowing where to place is the next step.
Top, bottom, middle – where to place keywords on a page.

1. Headline (Title) Tags  should have keyword if  possible, providing its natural and doesn’t ruin a sentence. In fact it’s better to leave out a keyword than to force just to get the benefits of SEO.

2. Same applies to Subheads tags try to embed your keyword into the subheads on page your only if it sounds natural. Use common sense if it doesn’t sound good wait and try again lower down in another subhead further down your page.

3. First sentence or paragraph. Content writers or marketers will sometimes shoe horn a keyword into the first 100 words of every single blog. It’s still good practice to embed your main keywords early on and try to reach your point quickly without too much unnecessary prelude. Get to the point of your topic and have your main keyword appear early in the article. Remember best practice is make sure it sounds natural and not forced.  

4. Placing primary keywords into URLs benefits SEO provided it doesn’t add too much additional text. 

5. Labelling images and photos with keywords is good practice for posts and blogs as it’s a discrete way to get SEO benefits. Copy and paste your keyword into the image file name and image alt tag.

E.g. ‘Sandpaper-SEO_Keyword-Optimization_-5.jpg’

When not to place keywords

 

Common sense should be applied when deciding when not to place keywords in a sentence/paragraph/heading/subhead etc. Your content should sound natural and flow easily. It’s better to write quality text that’s easy to read than poor text that’s written just for SEO. Common sense should prevail for best results. 

Getting the right keywords for you. 

How do you gather, shortlist and prioritise your keywords into primary and secondary keywords. 

If you put time and effort into strategically placing keywords you must also think about researching the right keywords for your business goals.
Start with reviewing existing communications and draft a list of keywords (common phrases or terms) that relate to you and your business activities. Then think about your strategic goals and create a list of words that best describe the areas of new business you wish to associated with. 

Now copy and paste them into Google’s search bar and it will list recommendations for similar search inquiries.  It may seem a bit simplistic but Google’s search engines are highly sophisticated and it provides relevant, instant results that are a good start and will save you time and money using other research software tools.

Popular Keyword Research Software tools.

Ahrefs Keyword Explorer –If you have the time and are looking for many keyword suggestions try Ahrefs Keyword Explorer it will generate thousands of keyword suggestions for each single word search. As their database is updated regularly it will provide latest terms and trends to give you a better choice of words.

SEMrush’s – Is another keyword research tool that is good for ‘competitor analysis’. Their software reveals which keywords perform best with your competitors. 

KWFinder- A simpler research tool this software is a leader in terms of simplicity and accurate results. Everything about it’s interface is easy and user-friendly. It’s great for newbies and give accurate results are well laid out. 

Moz keyword Explorer– research tool has a keyword difficulty analysis, data filtering feature and CTR feature is rated high amongst it’s competitors.

Google’s  Keyword Planner tool
Arguably the most popular keyword tool designed for Keyword research but nowadays it’s focused more on Pay Per Click PPC rather than organic search. 

Using any of the software platforms listed above, you’ll get the results you need. However you could also enter your draft list into some of these other software tools to compare results. It might just serve to confirm what you have is okay to use. By trying another online tool might reveal some other  ‘competitive search terms you missed.

Try place targeted keywords throughout your content (post, blog etc) but don’t worry too much about density of keywords focus more on the quality of the content. Quality and relevance will pack more benefit than over saturating your content with keywords. If the content’s well-written, relevant, informative easy to read, people will find it, like it, share it and so will search engines.  

In summary the best approach to keyword optimization?
Spend time researching keywords to establish you list and repeat the exercise every 3-6 months. Follow the keyword guidelines. But remember the quality of content you post is more important in your search ranking. The best keyword strategy won’t help anything if your content isn’t up to scratch- content is king, keyword placement only benefits quality content.

Peter Caush

Peter Caush

Director Sandpaper

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