Keywords were an essential part of SEO when it was emerging. At first, people used to go through extensive keyword research and find competitive brands that used those keywords. Then they used to evaluate how they can bring in traffic by using relevant keywords. Most sites would be based on such a strategy.
People would identify the best target keywords and use that in their campaign. These keywords had the highest search volume with the lowest rate of competition. They would then stuff those keywords in their metadata, external links, and body content.
With the introduction of Google’s semantic search capabilities, the keyword game has drastically changed. People need to choose topics instead of keywords to avoid over-optimization or stuff keywords. People now go after niche opportunities to answer consumer inquiries and not produce spammy content.
How does Google rank content now?
Here, we will help you understand the importance of topics and keywords, and what is more important when you aim search engine visibility.
- Google doesn’t rely on keyword
Many times we type a long question on Google and expect dozens of results. However, the highest ranked site that pops up in front is usually the link you needed. We need to thank Google Hummingbird to give us this feature. It is a semantic search algorithm that evaluates what the user is looking for based on the query and not the keywords. Google now estimates your intention and give you the closest relevant link to get there.
- Focus on writing for readers
Earlier, the focus on keywords used to make people offer inferior content that didn’t live up the user’s expectations. Stuffing keywords in pages, body content, blogs, turned out unnatural and wasn’t reader-centric after a point in time. This led to the downfall of the degree of their utility.
Now, people focus on the topics that add value to the reader. It does come with a set of pros and cons, but people agree that user experience is most important now. You cannot think about high ranking or maintain top rankings on a blog if you can’t offer user experience.
- Topic-based optimization
When we choose a topic, we usually come up with a long phrase in mind. These may include common keywords that improve higher relevance and a quicker path to top with items. However, these have deficient search volume but can grow gradually with the right SEO techniques.
- Hummingbird isn’t always perfect
Although Hummingbird was created to understand what people exactly want, doesn’t mean they’re still accurate. For example, you can type on Google to find ‘banana recipes,’ you will get relevant videos and dessert recipes for it. However, if you’re looking to make home remedies or what to know why bananas are active ingredients, you won’t get through the answer at once.
You might also be looking for green banana recipes, and the results will be about the yellow ones. This goes to show that we need to be more specific about what we’re looking for, and can’t expect Hummingbird always to answer that once.
- You shouldn’t rely on guesswork
Most people take the smart decision of hiring YEAH Local SEO services because they don’t want to do guesswork. Keyword-based strategies are always rooted in data. It takes an expert agency to evaluate the search volume, analyze competition, calculate the cost-to-benefit ratio, and these determine the final decision
Selecting a topic offers a qualitative approach. It helps you conduct surveys and evaluate past performance of content. However, there isn’t comprehensive data to back up the assumptions. Until you have hard data to help you choose topics, you can lose significant potential if assumptions go wrong.
- Ongoing content is important
Until now, we have only talked about keywords. It is essential to consider constant material as well when you consider site pages, Meta description, title tags, and the anchor texts you link. You need to be careful to not over-optimize anchor text, and for that, keywords play an essential role. Moreover, these applications offer less user experience detraction than the demand in content. This is why keywords are better than choosing random topics for some applications.
The points above show that we need a particular mixture of keywords with good topics to make content SEO-friendly. This ensures that the content gets relevant traffic and the readers find it engaging too.
Facts to consider when writing online content
If you think the above points and want to conclude on how to write, you’d need the best of both. It is hard to choose either topics or keywords because they go hand in hand. The takeaways from the points above are:
- It is bad to focus on keywords and stuff them. User experience suffers due to this, and you don’t get the advantage of ranking or make use of Hummingbird.
- That you need to focus on risky topics. It will make you rely on subjective data and not objective data. Google doesn’t always connect the dots from content to high-volume queries.
Keywords continue to be important, but they should be used to uplift the quality of the content and not make it look spammy. If you come up with great topics, anchor points, relevant tags, you automatically make your topic SEO optimized. It not only generates traffic, but adds value to your brand, and converts readers to buyers.
Apart from topics and keywords, you need to consider the format, the tags, the length of content, and other aspects. Adding relevant inbound and outbound links improve the quality of content and make a huge difference.
There are many more aspects that make quality content, and that’s not limited to writing. Supporting content with relevant images or info graphics can make it more engaging and relatable. Turn to the best SEO Company near you to give you services that draw in traffic. They will curate proper content by using relevant keywords and exciting topics.