A keyword, in information extraction, is a short term label, subject matter term, topic name, or description, in reference to a document. Keyword-based indexes create a controlled vocabulary for future use by users in bibliographic databases. It may be noted that the term was first used by Herb Singer in his linguistic analysis of technical publications.
The theory of creating keyword lists predates the birth of the Internet and remains to this day a fundamental principle of searching. Online searchers type in a subject-related term or phrase into a search engine’s multiple keyword search box, hoping for an extensive list of results comprising all the applicable keywords. If that happens, a user is then directed to a page containing that single word or phrase. For instance, if someone types the following phrase into the search engine’s multiple keyword search box: “all plants grow”, he is directed to a web page that displays the definition of the word “all” as well as the associated notion of “grow” (in the context of this example, “all plants”).
It is worth noting at this point that there are several nuances of this approach. The goal of keyword density (the percentage of times that a keyword appears in search volume) is not the same for all search engines. Yahoo!, Google, and Ask are among the most successful in this regard. Likewise, word count limits may apply to some search engines and not to others. As with any other aspect of online research, it is prudent to consult with a professional before experimenting with keyword density.
While keywords are important, they need not be the only component of an SEO campaign. Other elements include meta tags (a dictionary of keywords, used in conjunction with SEO and PPC), meta description (a summary of the purpose and details of the keyword, typically included in the html coding), and incoming links (a list of web links that point to a specific page on the website, with a description of the link and what it is about). These elements form a core of an SEO strategy and can be used effectively in conjunction with one another to augment keyword usage. A well-optimized website will garner positive rankings for all or most of its keywords and keyword phrases. Google’s free tools, like Google Analytics, provide useful data on these matters.
When a site receives targeted traffic, it becomes in charge of directing that traffic to the content on the site. If a visitor arrives on a site without being driven there by keyword-rich content, then it is likely that visitor would have been better served by a different web page (or, if it is a blog, the home page). This is the reason that search engine optimization (SEO) and PPC are complementary enterprises. An SEO campaign can fail for many reasons, but if the main issue behind the failure is keyword-less content, it is likely that keyword optimization was the cause of that failure. To prevent failing SEO campaigns, there are a few simple tips that webmasters should follow.
Webmasters should make sure that when they use a keyword as the primary keyword in a marketing strategy, it is used in the majority of other sentences that comprise that sentence. It is also important that the selected keywords are scattered throughout the text, rather than concentrated in the title or the lead sentence. Web users do not want to read text that does not have anything to do with the specific keywords that the page is optimized around. The final tip for effectively optimizing a web site involves testing different keyword combinations. Compiling a marketing strategy should involve considering multiple combinations of keywords, and evaluating which ones convert better.