Keywords are an integral component of search engine optimisation (SEO). They help to guide everything from blog content creation to on-page strategy and often play a substantial role in the link building process.
But although keywords are undoubtedly one of the core foundational elements of every healthy SEO strategy, they can also be deceptive.
Keyword research might sound like a relatively easy task, but the process of understanding every word or phrase requires in-depth knowledge of audiences and search results, as well as a large investment of time.
It is also important to note that keywords don’t always necessarily mean what you think they should, and it is sometimes difficult to identify this quickly.
Engaging in a process of consistent keyword re-evaluation is therefore essential, because as you become more familiar with the landscape you’re operating within, you will build a much more comprehensive understanding of search engine results pages (SERPs), your competition and your unique target audience.
Keywords and content
A similar process of keyword re-evaluation should be applied to your content strategy. You need to know that you are using the right keywords for the right audiences, and within the right pieces of content.
Have you ever written a considered, well researched, and engaging piece of content, only to have it fail to perform as well as it should have? If you were left questioning where it all went wrong, the answers you’re seeking might be found in your choice of target keywords.
High bounce rate
High bounce rates aren’t always indicative of a poor webpage. For example, pages containing contact information are likely to have high bounce rates, but are also likely to have performed their role well.
If, however, you have created a piece of content with an intent to inform audiences and prompt them to respond to a call-to-action (CTA), learning that users are exiting shortly after arriving should be a clear indicator that something has gone wrong somewhere.
Incorporating keywords that people are already searching for is a relatively simple process, but if those searchers don’t fall into your target audience, you need to understand precisely how to switch your focus to begin utilising terms that will attract the right people to your website. Slight adjustments to CTAs and headlines might be all it takes.
Poor organic visibility
From an SEO perspective, content marketing can drive hugely positive results. If your goal is to create discoverable content, you must carefully consider how that content is written and select keywords that align with what SERPs are already displaying.
If your content fails to match SERP intent, you should re-evaluate your choice of keywords or perhaps even the focus of the piece itself.
Disappointing click-through rates
So, you’ve created a piece of content that is ranking well for your target keywords and securing impressions. Great! If your traffic just isn’t budging though, you’re probably targeting the wrong keywords.
Avoiding the high impression/low-click through combination in the SEO space can be a long process because it might take several months to accrue enough data to help you decide whether adjustments need to be made. Consistent evaluation will help you to identify these opportunities efficiently, ensuring you’re doing everything possible to put your business in the best position.
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