Keyword Density vs Conversion Oriented Content
- Keyword density as a measure of relevancy is at best limited. If pages have too high of a keyword density and are too focused they may have suppressed rankings or may get filtered out of the search results, plus dense copy does not read well, does not convert well, and nobody will link at it.
- If your content is emotionally charged then it does not need to be as optimized to rank well. If people respond to your content by linking at your site then you gain authority and will rank better.
- Conversion rates and value per customer are far more important than keyword density. If your content converts you can always afford to buy traffic and/or sign up affiliates.
- Great usability is a key to converting. Read Steve Krug's Don't Make Me Think if you are new to the concept of usability. Make sure your pages are structured with headers, subheaders, and bulleted lists.
- You should actively drive people toward conversion using text links in your content. Cleanly segment the page into small easy to read chunks using headings, subheadings, and bulleted lists to make the page easy to scan. Use textual formatting and other visual cues to call out the different audiences or the different reasons people would buy your product or service. Dan Thies does a great job of this on his SEO Research Labs website.
Setting a Baseline
- Use web analytics tools to track your traffic sources AND what keywords are converting.
- Work on improving on page optimization and conversion rates of your most important pages first.
- Ensure you have some trusted quality inbound links. Start with a few trusted directories if you are starting from scratch. No matter how much on page SEO you do, you are not going to get much exposure or rank for competitive terms until AFTER you have some trusted inbound links.
Mixing Things Up
- Search for your keywords on Google and look at the text from top ranking pages. They are defining the local language set. Make sure you include some of the words and phrases that are common in those pages.
- Use tools like Quintura and Wordtracker to find modifiers to include in your page. After you are done optimizing the page, you can enter your URL in the Google AdWords keyword tool to see what they think your page is about. If they do not select the right topics that means they might not be certain what your page is about.
- Mix up the order of words and phrases in your page. If your page title uses farm insurance in it, then include something like insurance for farmers in your h1 heading. Also mix up how you use phrases throughout your page where it makes sense, but stay clear of using language that doesn't make sense, like butter peanut.
- Instead of paginating, it typically makes more sense to keep some pages longer in nature. Glossary pages and other text heavy pages rank for a wide array of keyword phrases. Using various word counts depending on sales needs, content requirements, and topic selection is a better strategy than writing every page to match a specific arbitrary length.
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