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  • Writer's pictureJen Haken

A-Z of Copywriting – K is for Keywords

Updated: Feb 16, 2022

Humans have communicated in one form or another since the year dot. These days, when talking with others, our tone of voice and facial expressions help impart our messages clearly (unless you stumble over your words like me! And that is why I write for a living…) Anyway, back to the point.

But when we write to one another, we’re only using words. There are no visual or vocal clues. So it can be tricky expressing exactly what we mean for people to truly understand us.

Luckily, some of us can write quite well while others struggle. You only need to scroll through your social media feeds to find prime examples of both! Even business emails can be misunderstood if the writer isn’t careful enough with their choice of words.

Providing a clearly expressed message in your marketing is equally important. And that’s where organic keywords can help. Because keywords are more than ‘just’ SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) functions.

Keywords are more than ‘just’ SEO

Before you start writing your content, make a list of keywords and phrases (more on that below). When you’ve figured out what your primary keywords are, you’ll magically find that they are the words that help to clearly describe your product’s benefits and features. They’re also the words that your customers tend to use when searching for a product or service like yours.

Then, as you begin to write, you’ll find yourself almost effortlessly weaving those words into your content because they relate so closely to your product.

As well as helping search engines and your customers to find you, your keywords and phrases should also help to add more clarity to your marketing content. Just ensure your sentences are interesting and engaging, too.

And remember the cardinal rule – don’t cram in too many keywords!

Content is King

If you rely on your website being found in the virtually infinite world wide web, your keywords and phrases are essential. The web can only capture your target audience if you use the right words – your organic keywords.

Thus the expression ‘content is king’. So, writing engaging content that attracts people to your website, shop or wherever you sell from is essential.

Your content should be factual, honest, interesting and engaging. It must be easy for people to understand what you’re selling, making them really want it, and then know what to do to get it (see my post on CTAs about that).

Unless your business is unique (and let’s face it, very few are), you need to be both creative and savvy with your words.

Facts about keywords and phrases

First, a disclaimer. I’m not an SEO expert, only a humble copywriter! But I do know that keywords are an essential aspect of digital marketing. So when you’re considering what and how to use your keywords, this information should help:

  • Include your primary keywords in your H1 page titles. A really fun, catchy headline is great. But without any keywords, it won’t work as effectively. Just recently, on being asked to review a new website, I advised the business owner to change his headline into something that included his primary keywords. It was a wrench for him as his headline was descriptive and sounded good. But without those crucial keywords, he wouldn’t be found so easily. Now, when people search for drone photography services, he should rank higher in Google search results (eventually! It takes time). I then suggested that he used his beautiful headline as a subhead elsewhere.

  • Your first couple of paragraphs should also include your most important keywords, adding others throughout the rest of the text as naturally as possible.

  • The geographic area you cover can be included in your keyword list. Be careful about writing too many town names in your content, though.

  • Meta descriptions should include keywords, too.

  • Organic keywords are necessary if you don’t wish to pay for Google Ads or PPC (Pay Per Click). In fact, keywords are just one strand of a good SEO strategy, which also includes backlinks and page speed. If you want the full package, get in touch with SEO agencies like The Evergreen Agency or Milk It Digital.

  • There are two main types of organic keywords: ‘informational’ and ‘transactional’. Informational words are more generic, providing additional information that you’d use on a home page or in a blog. Whereas transactional, as the name implies, are more targeted for use on your service and product pages, helping to actually sell your products. The lines can blur between the two, of course.

  • The more specific your organic keywords and phrases are the better – fewer people will be trying to rank on them. For instance, if you’re selling ‘handcrafted kitchen units in Oxfordshire’, that’s a good informational keyword phrase that could be used on your Home page, which could generate a number of enquiries. But to make it more specific, you could use a ‘transactional’ keyword phrase, like ‘handcrafted units with black granite worktops’, to attract buying customers to your product pages.

  • Ideally, assign one keyword phrase per product page. That helps you attract more quality traffic to your site, being the people who are more likely to buy from you.

  • Be as conversational as possible in your content writing as you weave in your keywords and phrases. It needs to sound natural. Read it out loud – that helps you hear if the content is a bit clunky. Then you can refine it.

  • Patience is a virtue! It can take months for your keywords to help your website rank higher.

How to find your primary and organic keywords

  • What are your product benefits? Those words will be the keywords that your customers are searching with.

  • Carry out some market research – ask your customers questions like:

o What are their pain points?

o Why did they need your product?

o How are they using your products?

  • Test out your keywords in Google. As you type in the words and phrases, a dropdown list appears with alternatives that you could also include.

  • Use keyword tools such as SEMRush and to discover what keywords your competition are using.

  • Finding your primary or focus keywords is often a case of using common sense. The findings from your research should help too. For more help with finding your best primary keywords, click here.

There you have it! Have fun compiling your list and creating your content. And remember – keywords are more about semantics than density. Use them wisely!

Don't have time for any of this? Then drop me an email or give me a call on 07799 648321.

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