Keywords: Long Tail | Short Tail | Why Do They Matter for SEO?

Using keywords is the first step in the SEO strategy for your Toronto business. If you use keywords correctly, they will drive highly qualified traffic to your site, making a huge impact on your online success.  However, before you can start reaping the benefits of SEO in any Toronto business, you need to have a sound understanding of what keywords are and how to use them effectively.

What Are Keywords?

Keywords are the words and phrases prospects use to seek out content or information on search engines like Google. Some keywords are highly competitive and receive thousands of searches a day — if you chose only these keywords for your Toronto business SEO strategy, you would probably struggle to receive a high ranking on the search results page.

Photo courtesy of Craig Key(CC Attribution)

If you are looking to target specific demographics rather than your audience as a whole, consider turning to long tail keywords. By most standards, these are phrases of three words or more, although some authorities define them as phrases of at least two words, according to HubSpot - A software marketing platform.  These long tail keywords are more precise, they often less competitive than single keywords and can help businesses find customers at an exact time in the purchase cycle.

How to Maximize Keywords

Optimal SEO for Toronto websites needs to include your business specific keywords everywhere including your web copy, blog posts, social strategy, and meta tags. Here are a few SEO tips to bear in mind:

  • Use keywords in headlines, subheadings, URLs, titles, file names, and alt text as well as in the body of your content.
  • Whenever possible, use the main keyword in the first sentence or first paragraph of articles.
  • Ensure keywords appear on all your social media profiles.
  • Add meta tags with all your keywords to every piece of content you publish.
  • Include a short meta description with content featuring your main keyword or a variation.

 Keyword Density for SEO in Toronto

Keyword density within your content can make a big difference to your SEO in Toronto. Too few keywords can obviously be ineffective, but too high a density is also problematic if achieved through keyword stuffing — when marketers fill webpages with keywords in list form or out of context simply to receive higher search engine rankings. Since the introduction of the Google Panda algorithm, sites with low-quality content like this are penalized.

Although there is no one-size-fits-all solution for keyword density, if you are just starting out with SEO in Toronto, you should try to use your most important keyword around three to four times for every 500 words, recommends Top Producer Campus. However, it is fine to use slightly more if they fit naturally within your content or copy.

A Final Note About SEO in Toronto

If your SEO for your Toronto website is to be successful, it is essential that you properly research your keywords, both short and long tail, to find out what will have the greatest effect on your business. You cannot rely on your intuition alone to know what prospects are searching for.

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