I've been doing SEO along time and keywords have been around since the first boolean searches. The premise is simple. You add a word to a page and the Boolean search comes along finds those words and returns the answer. Though the years, keywords were that one talking point that SEO companies used as a metric of success. After all to some degree SEO in the old days centered around the more keywords the more traffic and therefore more success. And although I can say that the more keywords 'may' cause more traffic the reality is that it does not always mean more success. The layers are much more these days.
So about a week ago I got a lead from our website (and the Houston West Chamber of Commerce). The call went like this. We are having our web site designed (by someone else) and well someone said I needed to find keywords and I really don't know what they mean. So it got me to thinking that I haven't really talked about keywords in a really long time. The core reason why is that the complexity of keywords now and how they are used to be effective seemed to be something that a rookie was going to get. And, I didn't want to promote this idea that keywords should be a metric for success for SEO. Simply that is not correct. Yes, some will argue that it measures success but honestly my web hosting site ranks on 1000s of keywords but there is only one that will ever net me money, web hosting (seems kinda obvious doesn't it). It has been that way for 20 some years and counting.
What is that the the fuss about keywords for SEO?
I can make the argument that keywords are the single most important element of a website and without them you site is destined to a life of mediocrity. I'm sure that there will be some SEO people that want to come and talk about the death of SEO and why keywords are not as important as they used to be, all the while making sure they put keywords in their title tags (because of course if they aren't there the page won't rank). What they may argue is that the contextual words on the page may null and void the need for the keyword. And while that is true in come niches (ie, movers), in most cases, if they are looking at all the pages on the website a keyword there is a set of keywords that will prevail and be thought a site, almost like a thread that that holds everything together.
Now my friends that'll will also argue about the importance of links my also feel links are singularly the most important ranking factor. That is a case that can be made but, naked links and links devoid or keywords have far less impact that just simply having a link. Often you make a link containing a keyword in it. So although we can argue one for the other, one is far more effective with a keyword in it rather than not.
In this episode we talk some on keyword history and how we got here. We also talk though how to properly identify keywords and why they are important. But, I also make the point that you should pick about 20 money terms and build around that. Just like this site. I want to rank on SEO and Web Design. Anything past that is gravy to me and my posts usually include some allusion to one of those two words each and every post I make. Additionally you will see me link them to other pages inside my website.