When I learned SEO Keywords were King, now we don’t use them. Now we use titles, descriptions and headings.
Back in the day, we learned that the keywords meta tag was the most important thing to fix on a site.
This made it easy. A single set of keywords on every page and your SEO was covered.
Sadly this is no longer the case:
So what do we do? As a starter, concentrate on the following meta tags:
Title should be:
- Unique across your site
- Accurate reflection of the page content
- Avoiding Keyword Stuffing
This means that with a single piece of content you are really only optimising it for one or two keywords.
Your content will help rank for other keywords, but you optimise for the titles.
Then reinforce these keywords in the description. The description again should be unique for the page and allows you to provide some context around the keywords. But it should be sales copy it shouldn’t be keyword stuffing.
What makes Tile and Description hard for SEO?
Using a unique title and description is harder because:
- it requires more time to optimise your site
- you have to write even more sales copy than just content
- retrofitting it onto existing content is slow and painful
- web frameworks and tools do not support this
Optimise your site
Sometimes we have to write content so support SEO, and change the way that we write it.
We might need to find plugins to support us.
But we can not have a single set of keywords spanning the entire site. Each page must be carefully optimised.
More sales copy
As well as the titles and descriptions being used for SEO, they are also sales copy shown on the search engines.
This requires careful thought and will take extra time after writing all your content.
When writing copy to boost your site’s SEO you might consider starting with the title and description and considering the search keywords you are targetting.
Retrofitting is slow
I have found Scrutiny to be a useful tool.
The SEO view shows me the Title, Description and headings for each page so I can see - duplicates, blanks and can prioritise my retrofitting and rework around the Scrutiny report.
Keywords died for Google around 2009 (although Microsoft were still pushing them back in 2009)
Most web frameworks and tools still encourage the keyword meta tag.
I’ve had to amend my Hugo templates to support SEO.
Be careful about your tool use and find templates or plugins to help you perform SEO effectively.
What if I want to use Keywords?
But if the search engines don’t use them, who does?
Answer? Your competitors.
I do view the keyword meta data on other sites to see what they think they are targetting.
I also see if they have taken the time to optimise their site for SEO.
If they haven’t then with effective strategies you may be able to displace them from the search positions if you create effective content.
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