What are keywords? The guide to keyword types and importance

7 min read
Ahmed Sheta

We often hear the term keywords, and the simplified definition for it is that they are the main words that an article is built around. In this article, I’ll explain all what you need to know about keywords, how to choose them, and their importance for your website or blog.
Keywords are one of the most important things in writing articles or when you think about ranking in search engines. Without keywords, you won't have a clear path to write an article or develop an SEO plan and strategy for your website.

Related: Importance of SEO: 8 reasons to start optimizing your website

Why are these keywords one of the most important elements?

When you want to write articles in a particular field, you will choose a topic and a headline, such as the topic you are reading now under the heading "What are the keywords? What are their types? Why are they important?". In this article, I have already selected one topic that I will write about "keyword’' so that my target audience is specific and the ranking in the search results will be increased when a user uses the search engine to search for information related to that topic.
It certainly does not make sense to write one article that discusses different topics, imagine that there is one article on how to buy a domain name, blogging skills, the basics of SEO and the best hosting for small and medium websites !!

Does it make sense to group all these topics into one article?

Absolutely no!

So the keyword here makes the article more specific and explains to the visitor which article to read, meaning that each keyword will create its own article or page.

Related: 5 Search Engine Optimization (SEO) elements that you need to keep a close eye on in 2019

So, what are keywords?

Keywords are words and phrases that better describe the topic. They are also searching words that users search for in search engines, and are used in articles to appear in the search results when visitors search for them. We can say that keywords are short and straightforward words that summarize the subject of the article.

But do keywords have only one format? Are they randomly selected?

The answer is no. Because in the field of blogging and search engine optimization, keywords have several variations and are chosen based on many other factors, such as average monthly searches, how difficult it is to compete for that word in search results, etc. This process is called a keyword research study.
There are several different keyword variations, the difficulty in competition and the average searches for each of these types varies. The use of each type has a specific reason, and you will know the reason during the next lines.

Types of keywords

There are two forms of keywords that are used consistently:

  • Short-tail Keywords.
  • Long-tail Keywords.

There are other types, but not agreed upon, and therefore can be said to be the jurisprudence of some, but the two types mentioned above are agreed on types.

Short-tail keywords are words consisting of one to three general words, and the rate of monthly searches on them is very high, and competition for these words is challenging. Always huge sites are the top and occupied the first results, for example, you can search for the word "cooking," thus being targeted a public domain.

Long-tail keywords are more specific words and consist of more than three words. The average monthly searches for these words is less than short-tail words. Still, the competition is much easier than short general words, and you will find many tips that tell you to start competing for long-tail words First, to enhance your chance to compete for short-tail words in the future. For example, you can search for "home cooking education for beginners" or "how to cook rice with chicken," so you will be targeting a more specialized field.

How can you use them?

If you investigated targeted ones and you have already defined them, there are several methods and strategies to help you use those keywords. Still, in general, every part of your site should be targeting a unique keyword; in other words, do not use the same keyword in more than one place or page on your website.

Keywords are used in many places within the page as follows:

  • Title of the article.
  • Description of the article.
  • Link to article.
  • The body of the article, introduction, conclusion, headings, or subheadings of the topic.
  • The title and alt text of the article's main image, as well as the linked images used within the article.

How can you choose the right keywords for your website

In fact, the topic of studying keywords cannot be summarized in several lines, but let me help you quickly in the following points:

  • Using the Google Adwords Keyword Planner Tool will help you get new words, as well as average monthly search rates for each word.
  • Using Webmaster Tools Google Search Console, through the Performance tab, will help you find the words that visitors used in Google search through which your site appeared in search results, and you will find many new words and ideas that you can build new articles about.
  • Use search engine autocomplete, a list of suggestions that appear when you type in the search box, and users of those search engines frequently use these words.
  • When you search on Google for any word, scroll down the page, and you will find a small list titled "Searches related to" and you will find several words and phrases related to what you searched for, which are also words and phrases searched by search engine users.

Indeed, the above points are not as detailed as they should be, but they are enough to put you in the first step on the road. You can get keywords using one or more of them. You can then use the Keyword Planner tool to get the average monthly searches for those words.

Tips to use keywords

  • Use one for each topic.
  • Use ones derived from the topic’s keyword.
  • Use synonyms for the keyword of the topic.
  • Stay away from annoying keyword stuffing inside the page. Write normally so as not to disturb the user.
  • Keyword stuffing might expose you to a manual action application from search engines or delete your site from the results, and in the best of cases, your website will not appear in the first results.
  • Use synonyms for the keyword in the subtitles within the topic.
  • Search yourself for your targeted words, see results, and find out which other keywords are related to your search.
  • Study and analyze your competitors and learn which ones they use.
  • Don't target the same one in more than one place on your site.
  • You can update your old articles and add more new keywords to them.

Related: Keyword research tools to boost your SEO

This was a quick tour to learn about the keywords, their types, and their importance. In conclusion, always remember without them, you will not have a clear SEO plan and a specific way to appear in search engine results. So if you study and choose them well, you are already halfway ahead!