Using KeywordsUsing keywords in your blog post is a necessity. I know there is a lot of confusion about keywords (and many people who will charge you a lot of money to research them for you). Quite simply, keywords are just the words that people type into a search engine such as Google, Yahoo, Bing  or any of the many others.

Before you start using keywords check out my video called A Quick Guide to Google’s Keyword Planner. (This tool changes a lot, so if the buttons don’t look the same don’t panic. Listen for the strategy in the video.) Another great way to find keywords is to join forums and Facebook groups with your ideal clients — take note of the words they use to describe their problems (the exact words). Those are likely to be excellent keywords for you.

When I speak about using keywords in this post I am talking about single keywords such as “Blogging” or keyword phrases such as “Start Blogging” both of which would be great keywords.

The search engines choose the sites to bring up based on the words that are on the site, in the headlines, attached to images, etc. It used to be that you could get a good search engine ranking just by using keywords. The search engines have gotten more sophisticated, so there is a lot more involved. Still, there is absolutely nothing to lose by making sure that your content is very relevant to your target audience.

Here are five tricks for using keywords in your blog posts:

1. Use Keywords in Your Blog Post Title

One of the best ways to incorporate keywords into your blog posts is to use them in your blog post titles.  The key is not to go overboard. It is much more important your title entices people to read your post. For this post, my keyword or keyword phrase in this instance is “using keywords“. Thus the title. The advanced strategy is to use keywords as the first words in the title. Maybe I should have titled this post “Using Keywords: 5 Tricks for Your Blog”.

2. Use Only One or Two Keyword Phrases in Each Blog Post

Writing for keywords is much more effective if you choose one or two keywords to focus on in each post.  If you write blog posts about your keywords this comes naturally.  Trying to use too many keywords at once dilutes the effectiveness and makes your post hard to read. I always write with a main keyword in mind, but if I can sneak in a secondary that’s sweet too.

3. Spread the Keywords Out in the Post

Using keywords (without keyword stuffing) multiple times in your blog post is important. (Notice the use of my keyword phrase at the beginning of this sentence.)  Using your keywords in the first paragraph, several times throughout your post, at least once in a sub-head, and near the end of the post will get you the best results with the search engines.  Keyword stuffing is going overboard with the keyword use so that it seems unnatural.  You should aim for your keyword use to seem natural in the context of your content.

4. Using Keywords in Links

Many SEO experts think that Google and other search engines give more credit for linked text. Again, this is one of those strategies where a little goes a long way. Too many links make your post hard to read and can have negative SEO consequences. Check out the link I used in the second paragraph to another blog post that I have written with a video in it.

5. Using Keywords to Describe Images

When you use images in your blog posts, you are usually asked for an alternate description (called Alt. Text or Alt. Attributes) for people who can’t see the image.  In addition to helping more people access your material, the alt text is included in the source code (or html) for the site.  Google and other search engines crawl that code and use alt tags as keywords.  I’ve also found that sometimes my images will show up on a Google image search and bring a few new visitors to my site. The image for this page has the keyword phrase as an alt attribute.

Oh one last thing, I use a WordPress Pluggin called Yoast SEO to make sure that I am doing the best I can with my keywords. Check it out.

Now you are ready to start using keywords in your blog posts. If you are looking for ideas on what to blog about check out this post => 5 Ways to Get Blog Post Ideas

**Original Post July 2012 – Updated July 2018