What are keywords?

What are keywords?
07th December 2019

What are keywords?

Google is the first place most of us turn to whenever we have a question which needs answering. Seriously, how many people still actually use the Yellow Pages or own a hard copy of an encyclopedia?

15%% of Google searches have never been searched before pie chart graphic.

We’re not even sorry we turned our 15% pie chart graphic into Packman ūüôā

As a result, there are now over 63,000 searches conducted through Google every single second, which equates to 5.6 billion searches per day. Can you even get your head around that!?!

Even more incredibly, Google claims that approximately 15% of these searches use words or phrases which have never even been searched for in the history of Google!

*immediately tries to think of something super random to search*

So what the devil is a keyword?

A keyword is effectively a word or phrase that’s input by someone conducting a search on Google (or any other search engine for that matter).

Everyone loves an example so… If you are in the market for a brand new gaming system, and you type ‚ÄúPlaystation 4‚ÄĚ into the Google search bar, then ‚ÄúPlaystation 4‚ÄĚ is the keyword you have searched for.

The ultimate goal is to optimise your website, or a specific landing page, around keywords relevant to your industry and brand to ensure that you appear as prominently as possible in a search. Appearing top of the results means Google thinks your site is most relevant, resulting in greater traffic.

Types of Keywords

So it turns out there are nine types of keywords! So as to not overload you, we’ll focus on the main two.

Short-tail or head keywords – These are usually 2-3 words and, depending on your offering, usually more competitive. For instance, a page featuring Playstation 4‚Äôs would ideally be optimised around the word ‚ÄúPlaystation 4‚ÄĚ, if it is to have any chance of appearing to a potential customer who is searching for this. In our example, the keyword is likely to be used by so many sites that someone looking to penetrate this market would have a tough time competing with more established competitors. Other strategies would be required.

Long-tail keyword or tail term – These are longer and more specific, so, sticking with our Playstation example, ‚ÄúPlaystation 4 controller‚ÄĚ. These can be optimised along side short-tails or, depending on your offering, can have a specific product or landing page.

The thing is, we are all completely different and how we go about searching can vary greatly. It can therefore prove tricky to predict how customers will find your company. You can gain a better understanding of this by conducting Keyword Research to create a list of recommended keywords. Armed with this information, you’ll have a better understanding of what you need to rank for in Google. If implemented correctly, keywords will maximise your chances of generating new customers via organic (i.e. not paid) Google searches.