Maybe, at one point, something will happen and render keywords irrelevant. Until then, they will determine the rankings and SEO strategy of every business that tries to establish a successful online presence.
The misleading obsession with keywords and high rankings has become very unhealthy, especially in the recent years when it is common knowledge that the term “Search Engine Optimization” is currently the exact opposite of what it was in the beginning.
Keywords certainly give a relatively accurate measure of progress when it comes to how our website is doing in terms of SEO. However, the real problem is that apart from localized rankings for business listings, keyword ranking is practically useless.
Let’s explain why.
Are you stuck with your keyword strategy from 2005? Wake up because it’s 2015.
SEO was a very straightforward process back when search engines were mostly one dimensional because you would get basically the same results for a given search, wherever you were in the world. Under these conditions, rankings for keywords were quite simple as a metric, even transparent.
The most important thing is that you could easily see which keywords lead visitors to your site. By matching them with the rankings, it was child’s play to pick out the money bringing keywords.
Nowadays, things are completely different and not at all that simple. That means we have to work even harder.
SERP Personalization Matters
Your physical location, social media connections, and browsing history all determine the rankings you are seeing on each search, unlike when they were universal for everyone.
This is not necessarily a bad thing because for us, it is just another thing to use and take advantage of! The SERP that we see after the last Google update is filled with a variety of results, mainly focusing on AdWords and local listings. That is why counting on Google alone will not do the trick anymore. Yelp and AdWords are currently among the most influential factors that determine search results.
So what do keywords actually do?
When referral data from your analytics is used to see where your visitors are coming from, you can get a pretty good idea of how they are searching the web and how they found you. You can use this information to optimize your keywords and the overall optimization efforts that go into your website.
When keyword rankings are using value, this is a great way to find out why and how this is happening. Referral data is very helpful for giving clues which the more influential search phrases and trending topics are that dominate the user’s search habits.
In order to be completely honest, we cannot ignore how important keywords and phrases are. The only problem is that with the newest policies for secure searching and privacy, we can only assume what the most popular phrases are, which is a huge gap in the data we have at our disposal.
What can we do about this?
The easiest way to get over this issue is to focus on the factors that we can actually control and not use our gut feeling by simply assuming. This requires a completely new strategy when it comes to our keywords and SEO.
Shifting from that, we can turn to our landing pages and the content that users see when they visit our site. By turning to Google Analytics, we can see what the most popular pages and posts are, thus determining how our content ranks by search and customer interest. When we have an idea what parts of our site are performing better, we can easily determine the parts that need tweaking and improvement.
As you can probably guess, this is not even remotely connected to keywords and phrases.
For further details on keyword search and SEO strategies, please contact the team at our Internet advertising agency. 411 Locals is always ready to assist anyone looking for suggestions and solutions on how to boost their business rankings and online presence!