Keyword Density: What is it and How Important?

If you are concentrating on a minimum keyword density, you might be doing more harm than good. The lure of free clicks from¬†Google¬†is huge. Many copywriters are putting keyword density at the top of their importance lists when creating Web content. The problem is, if you don’t write for the visitor first, getting them to the site can be wasted effort.

Keyword density is expressed as a percentage or decimal number that represents the number of times a key word or phrase is used on a web page divided by the total number of words. If your page is targeting the key phrase round red gadgets, then the keyword density for that phrase would be the number of times it is used on the page divided by the totql words.

Yes, keyword density should be considered. However, there are many opinions about the optimal keyword density for different search engines. With Google being the big boy on the block, most writers want to hit the magic mark for that search engine. A common opinion is that any number between about 1.5 and 5.0 is a good keyword density for Google.

That’s actually a pretty wide spread. Taking a 600 word page for instance, 1.5 would be nine uses of the phrase, while 5.0 would be 30 uses. If you think about it, using the phrase round red gadgets 30 times on a 600 word page is really quite a lot. And this is where the problem can result.

If you try to maximize the keyword density on a page, you risk writing content that is confusing or very uninteresting to the site visitor. If you’re wanting some action from that visitor, such as a purchase, having them leave the page because of difficulty in reading the text doesn’t get the result you want.

By all means, plan your page around one or a couple of keywords or phrases, but don’t get carried away. Write for your site visitor. They need to find the information they came for as quickly and easily as possible. Give them what they want in a friendly and very readable manner. Usually, the higher the keyword density, the tougher it is to appeal to the reader.

I consistently find that my best pages end up around 2.0% to 2.5% for density. I just let it ride if the page reads well. If the keyword density is less than 1.5%, I will usually do some re-write and shoot for some improvement. There is an excellent site where you can paste in the text of your page or article and get immediate keyword density analysis. You can even modify the text live on the site and watch the numbers change until you get what you want. Here is the link to the site: http://live-keyword-analysis.com/. By the way, that site gives the keyword density of the phrase keyword density as 3.4% for everything before this sentence in this article.

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