Using Keywords

How to use keywords in your website

Now that you have determined your keywords, what should you do with them? Ensure that the keywords are used correctly in:

  1. Page titles
  2. Navigation
  3. Page URLs
  4. Headings
  5. Body content
  6. Alt-tags for images
  7. Filenames (images, PDFs etc)
  8. Meta-descriptions

The order of these items denotes an approximate importance. For example using a keyword in a page title is more powerful than using it in the body content.

Title & URLs

The page title does not have to just be the name of the organisation and the page name. Page titles should be individualised per page, and should use the strongest keywords identified for that page. Page titles should be human-readable too as Google will display approximately the first 66 characters of the title in the search results as the hyperlink back to the site.

For example: "Website developer & mobile app developer - Turtle Technology, Sydney"

If technology allows, URLs that are 'friendly' to search engine should be used. These URLs should correlate with the page title and with keywords.

Page titles and URLs are unlikely to be the same as page names in the navigation. Where possible, those should also utilise keywords and correlate with the page titles.

Body Content

Use keywords early in the body content - ideally in the first 100 words (there should be at least 250 words on each page).

Place keywords in headings, preferably at the beginning of the heading. Keywords in the body may be emphasised in some way (e.g. bold or italics). Don't use images in place of headings - they might look nice but all a search engine can do is read the ALT tag and it will have no idea that it is a heading.

Links should have descriptive text relating to what it being linked to e.g. use "View our product catalogue" rather than "Our product catalogue is here". Links can contain keywords where possible.

Link between pages - either in the content or in a related links side-box. This provides a further opportunity to connect keywords to a page at a high-level.

Use keywords as often as is practical - remember you are writing for humans too so content must be perfectly readable. Do not overdo the keywords - if it looks like you are "keyword stuffing", the search engines will punish the page/site. Always use keywords in natural sentences, and don't artificially repeat them - use synonyms or related phrases when there is too much repetition. Avoid technical language and acronyms where possible as these may be difficult for both humans and search engines to understand.

Don't use 'doorway pages' which are separate pages, stuffed with keywords that redirect to the real website.

Search engines like to see unique content on each page so in the case of an online shop ensure that product descriptions vary for each product.

ALT tags and Filenames

ALT tags are displayed in place of images when the browser does not display the image. This may be because the image is not available or a non-graphical browser is being used. Search engines will consider ALT tags as in theory if an image is displayed then it should be relevant to the content. So use keywords.

It also helps if image file are named consistently with the ALT tag. This also applies for other sorts of files such as PDF files that are linked to.


Description is the only important metatag, as it will be displayed in search result listings along with the link to your site. Limit it to 150 characters. It should be written in a way that will sell the site to the target audience and encourage them to click your link in the search results.

Previous - Define Keywords

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