Titles, keywords, descriptions and content… the importance of consistency!

- June 7, 2007

While I often hear people talking about keyword density and writing original and relevant content, I don’t hear people speak about how important it is to be consistent. How many times have you come across a site where the content is targeted well for a particular key phrase, but there is little or no use of it in the title, description or keyword tags? How about sites that are using entirely different keywords in the Meta data?

The search engines are beginning to look at keyword and description Meta tags again thus making it very important to use them in a way that is going help improve the rankings for a particular site. Title tags have always been important. We have all seen people abuse these tags by keyword stuffing and other spamming techniques. This may have worked years ago, but as the algorithms continue to improve, these techniques are no longer effective. There are however, ways to use these tags to help surpass your competition in the rankings.

The best way to make use of your keywords is to use them consistently (use the same key phrases), not only with your on-page content, but in the Meta tags as well. Pick 1-2 primary key phrases for any particular page and use them in the following ways…

  • In the body of your content.
  • In the Keyword Meta tag- Pick only 1-2 keywords that are consistent with the text on the page (sometimes you can use more than 2 but never more than 5).
  • In the Title tag — a good practice is placing your keywords in the beginning of the title. The title should never be more than 70 characters (including spaces).
  • In the Description Tag — Again, you should place your key phrases in the beginning of the description, make sure that the description is less than 180 characters (including spaces) and never repeat the keywords more than twice.

In addition, it is good to use h1 and strong tags to highlight some of your keywords, but be careful not to abuse this by using it too often. Another place to use your keywords is in the anchor text of your incoming links.

Separately, these are all good ways to use your key phrases. Together the practice can become synergistic. In other words using any of these techniques is helpful, using them all in tandem increases your chances of ranking well exponentially.

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