How to Use Keywords to Write Better Web Pages
Award-winning writer Kathy Widenhouse has helped hundreds of nonprofits and writers produce successful content and has gained 600K+ views for her writing tutorials. She is the author of 9 books. See more of Kathy’s content here.
When you know how to use keywords, you can write better web pages, blogs, and social media posts.
Keywords are terms and phrases that define a piece of content. (How keywords work.)
They help drive search engine page results rankings, so the keywords you choose can drive readers to your website, blog, or social media platform for free. (Yay!)
But how do you know which keywords to use?
How to Identify Keywords to Use on Your Pages
You can use a free tool like Google Keyword Planner to find relevant keywords for your topic. These tools return data that show you how many pages already use that term (supply) and how many users are searching for those terms (demand) – in other words, what kind of competition your page may have in search results.
Thoughtful keyword research will give you a list of keywords to use which you can divide into two kinds.
Broad keywords: generalized one word terms or short phrases that can apply to others both in your niche and outside of it, but are good choices for your website concept and its foundation content.
Long-tail keywords: two- to five-word phrases (hence the “long tail”) that are very topic-specific. These are your heavy lifters as you write individual pages or posts.
Use this step-by-step guide to identify the seed keywords for your blog or website.
6 Places to Use Keywords as You Write Web Pages or Blog Posts
As you write your content and load your page or post, use keywords in these on-page components.
- URL: the web
address of the page. For example, this page’s URL is www.nonprofitcopywriter.com/use-keywords.
- Meta title tag:
text that appears as the page title in the web browser. You add the title tag
in the back end or header of your site (depending on your website platform) as
you write the page. The best titles are 50-60 characters Longer than that will be
cut off by the browser. Shorter may not be descriptive enough to differentiate
from other pages.
- Meta description:
a summary of the page’s content, added in the back end or header of your site. The
meta description is the snippet of content that appears below a page link in
your search results. Keep it to 160 characters or less, if possible, because
search engines like brevity.
- Image alt text:
Include your keyword so that search engines can understand what the image shows
and to give readers an explanation when images cannot be found.
- Page content: Of
these, the most important is page content. Use your page’s main keyword in the
first 90 characters of the page and then sprinkled throughout the page. A word
of warning: don’t use your page or post’s principal keyword in excess … the
search engines penalize for what they call “keyword stuffing.” About once per
every 150-300 words should do it nicely.
- Links to and from other
pages on your site. You’ll give readers the opportunity to get more
information on another page, plus you’ll repeat your keyword(s) and boost your
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