SEO Secret 3: Keyword Variation & Relation – Because ‘Other’ Keywords Matter, Too!

[Part 4 of a 6 part series called SEO Basics: 5 SEO Secrets for Creating Content that Drives Traffic]

This tip is more of an above and beyond, super-user kind of tip.  So, if you feel like you’ve already spent more than enough time with your keyword analysis, feel free to skip this.  BUT, if you want to be part of the SEO elite, this can bring your content over the top.  

You see, all keyword terms are not created equal.  Some keywords have variations and other related terms that you can tap into when creating your content to take your content yet another level of optimization.  

Keyword Variation

Let’s start with keyword variation.

In the previous example ( SEO Secret 2 ), we were able to use variations of the term iPhone release in the title.  We referred to both the iPhone 5 release and the iPhone 5 release date in the same title.   Now, although these seem very similar, they allow you to include your keywords multiple times in one title because they are referring to different elements of a similar word (the actual date and the release itself).  

Because this is not a perfect example, let me point you to a great article on Keyword Variation that Rand Fishkin from SEOmoz wrote many years ago.  In his article, he uses the following example.

Title: Buy Electric Scooters at Scootermoz - 1000s of (In Stock) Electric Scooters for Sale

As you can see, the term Electric Scooters was used multiple times in the same title, but referring to the fact that you can actually ‘buy’ electric scooters at Scootermoz and that they have many of them ‘for sale’.  By using keyword variation in this manner, not only are you able to repeat the same core keyword ‘electric scooters’ in the title multiple times, but also hit more niche terms like ‘buy electric scooters’ and ‘electric scooters for sale’.  

And better yet, this isn’t just used in your titles and headers, this strategy should also be used throughout your content body whenever possible.  Back to the iPhone example.  If you are trying to rank for a term like ‘iPhone 5 release’, you can use the terms ‘iPhone’, ‘iPhone 5’, ‘release’, ‘release date’, etc throughout your document in various combinations in order to not repeat the full term ‘iPhone 5 release date’.  

Key Point: Use keyword variation to target multiple keyword phrases and repeat your core keywords

Related Keywords

Another equally excellent way to pump up the optimization of your content is to use hyper-related keywords throughout your content.  Now, I say hyper-related because these words need to be so related that Google sees them as almost always related to the core keywords you are trying to rank for.  

A good example of this for iPhones would be ‘iOS’, as this is the operating system for iPhones, iPads and iPods only.  As such, Google sees a very high connection between ‘iOS’ and ‘iPhone’, so using iOS throughout your content as well will also help Google understand that the page is probably about one of those products.  When you combine its use with the use of the ‘iPhone’ keyword, you solidify that relationship and strengthen your relevance for the term ‘iPhone’.

Another great example of this is Microsoft Excel and terms like ‘workbook’, ‘spreadsheet’ and ‘spreadsheet software’. Because Google sees such a high correlation with these terms and ‘Excel’, you can use them and create increased relevance without having to stuff your primary keyword everywhere.

Key Point: Use highly related terms to increase the relevance of your content to your main keyword

Oh, and if you’re wondering how the heck you can determine which related keywords and variations of your primary keyword you should use, just go back to the Google Adwords Keyword Tool.  It will almost do your job for you!

NEXT CHAPTER: Making it a Resource – Going Above and Beyond

All Chapters

Introduction: SEO Basics: 5 SEO Secrets for Creating Content that Drives Traffic
Secret #1: Tools for Success – In-Depth Analysis Made Easy(er)
Secret #2: Keyword Placement – Positioning is Everything
Secret #3: Keyword Variation & Relation – Because ‘Other’ Keywords Matter, Too!
Secret #4: Making Your Content a Resource – Going Above and Beyond
Secret #5: Sharing your Content – Because Links are SEO Gold!

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