SEO Tactics: Keyword Diversification = Happiness
Ian Lurie Oct 26 2007
But Google generates 75% of your traffic, right? So you can’t exactly pooh-pooh them.
As a compromise: Don’t depend on a few keywords. Diversify. Make sure that your site is positioned to rank well for lots and lots of keywords. Here’s how:
- Don’t game the system: Stuffing your title tags with a single keyword at the expense of all others is a bad idea. You might get the top spot for that one keyword, for a while, but what happens when (not if!) you lose that spot?
- Remember, search engines think structurally. Make sure your site’s structure makes sense, and that each page uses good, semantic markup. That’ll insure that search engines can easily, correctly classify your content, and insure that you get the most stable rankings possible.
- Write good copy. Seriously. Hire a good writer. Quality copy that makes sense to people will also make sense to search engines. I’ve seen this time and again. Crappy, keyword-stuffed copy gets you a temporary shot in the arm, but in the long run you’ll drop out of the rankings.
- Have an SEO review the copy. After the great copywriter delivers, have a search specialist who can write review it. They can make little tweaks, like changing ‘wedding invites’ to ‘wedding invitations’, and get you a boost for those semantically identical but higher-traffic phrases.
Does diversification work? Yes.
Last year at this time, one of our clients was receiving traffic from 4800 different phrases. We helped them clean up their site, make their title tags more relevant to each page, and revised their copy to be less keyword-stuffed. This October, they’re receiving traffic from 11,000 different phrases, and their revenue is up 57%.
Another of our clients lost ranking for the best phrase in their industry. It makes us grind our teeth, but while we’re working on boosting them again, the hundreds of other phrases for which they have top rankings are keeping revenue within 90% of last year’s. And since last year was a record year (by a long shot), they can do just fine. No one’s happy, trust me. But it’s not the end of the world, either.
Diversify. It works.
Ian Lurie is CEO and founder of Portent Inc. He's recorded training for Lynda.com, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Forbes.com and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, SIC and ad:Tech. Follow him on Twitter at portentint. He also just published a book about strategy for services businesses: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle. Read More