Keywords, keywords, keywords.

If you’ve never heard of Whiteboard Friday, repent of your sins and go check it out on moz.com. They know everything you need to know about SEO and more.

On another edition of Whiteboard Friday, Rand Fishkin teaches us about the best ways to optimize your sites keywords and how to avoid bad keyword use. He breaks it up into two major sections; targeting and cannibalization. Here’s a brief summary of the dos and don’ts of keyword optimization.

 Targeting

The first thing Rand mentions is that keyword repetition is a big no-no. Stuffing your content with your set of keywords can make your site look spammy and can even lower your Google ranking. However, it is a good idea to make sure that your keyword is somewhere present on the page at least once and sometimes twice. This is good optimization.

Second, don’t ever use a density metric. Ever. Keyword density is no longer as useful as once was. In this modern world with the internet changing every day, density is not a big concern, and as Rand states, it’s incredibly useless.

Third, titles are important. However, it’s not always important to have keywords within your title. Creating a title that is “click-worthy” is going to bring in a lot more viewers than your main stream, perfect keyword, title. So make your title compelling and interesting and then add your keyword within the content and especially in your headlines.

Cannibalization

People sometimes worry about linking to pages that don’t have their specific keywords. They seem to think that Google won’t rank them as high if they do this. No need to fear! Google is now capable of differentiating the two and making sure the one you want will get ranked higher.

Not this kind of cannibal.

As far as linking to other pages, anchor text is your best friend. It’s easier for the users to see where they are going and to know when they have arrived.

Lastly, Rand talks about retiring old pages and switching them for new content. If you know that your page is ranking well but you want to post new content there are a couple of things you can do. First, you can use a 301 from the old URL to a new one. Second, you could simply erase the old content and add new content using the same URL. Third, you could move the old content to a new URL and put the new content on the old URL. Very confusing I know, but hopefully you got all that.

In short, Rand Fishkin is the man and if you have any questions about anything related to SEO, look no further than moz.com and especially check out the Whiteboard Fridays. For more information on how to effectively use keywords, check out Getting More Traffic with Site and Keyword Optimization by yours truly. If you think you need even more SEO advice, Big Leap is here to help.

Photo Credit: Semrush, Softpedia

Jamie Bates