What Are Those Keyword phrases Doing in Your Blog Post?

It’s essential to differentiate keyword stuffing from general keyword usage, explains fellow blog writer Megan Marrs. It’s still important to use keywords, she hastens to add, but it needs to be done with finesse.

I thought of Megan the other day while reading the following Reader’s Digest anecdote: A call center had trained its customer service employees to use a customer’s name five times on each call.  One employee did it this way:

Customer:  Do you provide such-and-such a service?
Rep: Can I get your name?
Customer:  It’s John.
Rep: John, John, John, John, John.  No we don’t.  Thanks for asking.

Search engines penalize sites that stuff pages full of keywords simply to increase their rankings through keyword searches and some sites are even banned from inclusion in search engine results because of keyword stuffing, explains Susan Gunelius in “Top 10 Search Engine Optimization Tips”.

Still, as I emphasize in corporate blogging training, keywords can be very important to the success of a business blog. The thing is, the writing has to flow naturally. In the title, of course, the keyword phrases help signal – to both “spiders” and readers – that this post is promising to deliver information on the topic typed into the search bar.

But even if you do that, and then fail to include that keyword phrase in your main content, says Jeremy of Modest Money, “that relevance looks faked”.

So just what ARE those keyword phrases doing in our blog posts?  As content writers, we need to be able to answer that question.

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