What is a Keyword Phrase and How do I Get One?

November 15th, 2012how to build a website Manage a Wordpress Website SEO and ConversionComments Off on What is a Keyword Phrase and How do I Get One?

If you are going to start writing your own blog posts, or have started but are still fairly new to the process, this may be one of the most important posts you can read.

Each and every post and page on your website should be optimized for it’s own keyword phrase.

If you want to maximize the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) of your website – meaning, the relavance of your web site to certain KEYWORDs OR KEY PHRASES where search engines like Google are concerned, I’m going to try to help a bit. However, if you want to be a “real pro” with SEO, I highly recommend you search the web for the latest and greatest information. Do a search on your favorite search engine for “SEO best practices” — theoretically, the sites with the best SEO techniques will come up at the top of the search, right? Do your research, and you can improve your SEO as well.

If you are an SEO pro, you’re probably going to go crazy with about 1,000 other ideas I’m missing here, but this is where I started, and this is what is improving my site’s rankings.

Here are some very fundamental basics.

What is  a Focus Keyword Phrase?

It is the search phrase you want to optimize – meaning you want to make it a common tag and content phrase throughout a specific page (or post — in this article, I’ll use the word “page” to also mean “post”).

How do I do I Get the Right Keyword Phrase?

1. Start with a Basic Search Term

Write your post. Look at it, then ask yourself, “Who is this for? What are the benefits that person is going to get?” Then ask the most important question, “What might that person enter into Google as a search term and be thrilled to see this article when they click on the link?”

Write down 1-5 very broad, generic terms to get started.

2. Getting Started with the Google Keyword Tool

There are several, but this is the one I use, so this is the one I’ll tell you about.

Google Adwords is where Google sells businesses the opportunity to advertise their websites on a “Pay Per Click” basis. This is a great thing, considering as a business, we pay nothing to Google unless our advertising is actually acted upon.

Through Adwords, Google provides a Keywords Tool to help advertisers determine which keywords might be best for them. It provides concrete data for search terms used within Google. It is up to the business owner to determine whether the search term is appropriate for the page they are linking.

Here, we are going to use the Keywords Tool to find a good Focus Keyword Phrase. You may want to sign up for a Google Adwords Account, if you don’t already have one, so you can save your searches and favorite keywords for future posts.

Focus Keyword Phrases


As you can see above, you can adjust the devices (find only those searches by people using desktops, mobile phones, etc), by language, and by geography (U.S., specific countries, or everywhere).

I usually first enter the most broad term I have on my list. It is typically one word, and is not the “focus keyword phrase” I will use, but it is a great way to get an idea of what is being searched on Google.

I am going to use this blog post as an example, so I will start with the search term, “keyword,” because it broadly describes this post you are reading right now (but not specifically).

Focus Keyword Phrase - Google Adwords Tool

#1: The “Download” selection is a drop down. You can select keywords and download them to your computer, or you can save them as favorites if you have a Google Adwords Account.

#2: Statistics for the Keyword Entered: This shows the keyword I typed in and the statistics for that word. If I enter more than one word in the search (one per line – meaning I type a word, hit “return” or “enter”, then type another, and so on before clicking “search”).

#3: Related Terms: Google gives you a list of related keywords and keyword terms (or phrases).  You can sort the entire list (usually multiple pages worth) by any of the headings shown.

#4: Competition: This shows how much competition for purchasing advertising through Adwords is for each term, which is helpful because professional SEO experts and internet marketing gurus often tell and/or teach businesses how to research and purchase their keywords. Usually if the competition is low, it is not a very good keyword for some reason. If competition is high, you’re going to have a tough time getting to the top of the list. Medium to high is where I stick to, depending on traffic and relevance.

#5: Global Monthly Searches: It is just as it says: how many people around the world have used that search term in the past month. If your site is relavent globally, use this column. If not, or if it is only available in English, you may want to consider using the Local Monthly Searches data.

#6: Local Monthly Searches: This shows the monthly searches in the U.S., and is the column I use most often. This is the column heading I click on to narrow down my search. By clicking on the column heading, it will sort the keywords based on number of Local Monthly Searches in the past month.

3. Narrow Down the Search for Your Focus Keyword Phrase

  1. Find 5 of the most relevant keywords with 500 – 5,000 local monthly searches (I like 800 – 2,000).
  2. Enter the Top 5 into the Google Adwords Keyword Tools search (remember – one per line)
  3. Check the “Advanced Search Options” to make sure they are as you’d like them to be.
  4. Hit “Search”
  5. Look through the results, including the new related search terms Google gives you.
  6. Repeat the process until you have your FINAL 5 TOP CHOICES.

4. Pick Your Focus Keyword Phrase

Take your FINAL 5 TOP CHOICES and do a search on Google to see if articles similar to yours come up. Often, our first instinct is to select keywords that reflect what we WANT people to think about when they read it, not the QUESTION they are asking when they sit down to search for a post just like yours.

If you missed the mark at this point, go back and start again. The process might take some time — especially at first — but you’ll get better at guessing in the beginning, and this process will take less time the more you do it.

Again, don’t be afraid to read other articles about why and how to choose keywords and focus keyword phrases.

From those that remain, select the keyword phrase that is used often in your post, makes sense as a heading of a paragraph or section.

Congratulations – you just found your keyword phrase!

Next: Now you have your Keyword Phrase, Here’s How to Use it….

How to Use a Keyword Phrase in Your Website


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About Tiffany

The wife of an amazing, supportive man, Duane, and mother of 3 fantastic young adults, Tiffany lives an active life in Columbus, Montana, just west of Billings. She and Duane lived most of their lives in the magnificent Skagit Valley of Northwest Washington State, where they and their kids were born and raised. Twitter @TiffanyYoungren

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