When you create content for your website you have to use the main primary keyword in it. Keywords are the words and phrases that the people enter in their search queries. Search engines look for keywords in your content to know how the content is relevant to the keywords used in the search queries.
How many times should the primary keyword be used in the content? There is no fixed percentage of keywords that can be used defined by the search engines. Keyword density is the number of times the primary keyword appears in the content.
Keyword density is defined as the percentage of times your primary keyword appears in your content compared to the total number of words. SEO experts have suggested a keyword density of 1% to 3%. When the keywords are used within this range it is called ‘Optimal keyword density’.
Understanding keyword density
Keyword density is the total number of words of content divided by the number of times the primary keyword is used in it and multiplied by 100.
While calculating the keyword density you should ignore the HTML tags and other embedded tags which do not appear on the published page.
For example, if your article is of 500 words then you should use the keywords (1%) 5 to (3%) 15 number of times in your content.
Importance Of Keyword Density
Google tries to find the best pages that fit the user query and for this you should use your primary keywords in content. Primary keyword is the keyword you want to rank for in the search results. A good keyword density can help you get a higher ranking in the search results.
Importance of keyword density in SEO
Keyword density is essential for SEO because Google needs to understand what your page is about. Therefore you should use keywords you want to rank for in your copy. You should use your keywords naturally.
Using less or more keyword density can affect SEO. SEO is done to improve the ranking of a web page in the search engine result pages and get traffic. These are the benefits of using a good keyword density:
- You should target long tail keywords along with using a good keyword density to get ranked in the higher positions quickly.
- Once your page starts ranking your website will start getting organic search traffic which in turn will affect the website authority.
- It is more important to create helpful content for the readers so that they can get the information they are looking for. Creating the right content and using a good keyword density will help you to reach out to more audiences through the SERPs.
- When you use optimal keyword density it tells the crawlers how relevant the web page’s content is to the targeted keyword.
- You should not repeat your keyword in the content too many times. The page may rank for a few days but it will not rank higher for a long time. To maintain your position you should use a good keyword density.
- If in your content you use the keyword many times thinking it may be the right way to rank then it is not so. Your content will not appear natural to read or look at. This is called keyword stuffing. Google does not like keyword stuffing and may penalise you. Your writing should not be unnatural but the keyword should have a strong presence in your content.
- You can analyse the keyword density in the content using online tools. Try free tools like webconfs.com or sitecheckerpro.com. This way you will be able to provide good content to your readers and the search engines.
If your keyword density score is low then you should use more keywords. In your content you should use more primary keywords.
If your keyword density score is high then you are using too many keywords and your content will look spammy. You can use synonyms instead of the primary keyword to make the content pleasant to read. Synonyms will not count in the total score for the primary keyword.
Best practices for keyword density
- There is no such thing as optimal keyword density and you should not aim for one. Adding keywords artificially to a page can go against Google’s Webmaster's guidelines. You should write naturally and mention your keywords in the text.
- Google looks at topic coverage therefore you should focus on covering a topic rather than keyword density. You should try to cover important subtopics in the content.
- You should add the keyword in important places like H1, title tag, URL and meta description. You should use your keyword naturally.
- Quality is king as far as content is concerned and therefore you should focus on creating quality content and add keywords naturally. You can place yourself in the reader’s position and read your article. You should write for readers and use keywords naturally.
- One of the ways is to increase the word count of your content to add keywords naturally. If your content is longer you can add more keywords to it.
To optimise your website you can approach White hat SEO services providers.
Tools and techniques for keyword density analysis
SEO Review tools
You can copy and paste your content into the tool and then get the number of times your keyword appears in it. The tool automatically calculates the frequency.
This tool can give you the percentage of time your keyword appears as compared to the total number of words. It also helps you to find an optimal keyword density.
Some of the other tools are CheckSERP, Copywritely and more.
Beyond keyword density
It is important to look at the other factors that go beyond keyword density. First is the relevance of your content, your content should provide the right information for a search query. You should provide content that matches the user intent.
Semantic SEO is the process of building topical depth and more meaning to your content. Google uses semantic analysis to provide more relevant search results. You should use semantic SEO strategies to build topical authority in your industry.
Latent semantic indexing (LSI) is the method used to find words that appear together to give insight into the topics. For example, the word ‘Jaguar’ may mean animal or automobile.
LSI solves the problems of synonyms and polysemy.
Site engagement is an indication of the success of a website. Some of the user engagement metrics are time spent on a page, pageviews, average session duration, bounce rate, pages per session and more. To improve user engagement you should create valuable content, provide a good user experience and promote your website.
Backlinks are an important ranking signal and you should build quality backlinks from high-authority websites. The more high-quality backlinks point to your website the higher it will be in the eyes of Google and will be ranked higher.
Keyword density is not a ranking factor anymore. You can create long-form content and add your keyword naturally. You can use synonyms to avoid using the word repeatedly and it is a good way to get the reader’s attention.