Don't Stress Out About Keywords
By now, just about everyone who has ever visited a website is aware of the existence and importance of keywords. These phrases are one of the main ways that people will use to find your site. It should then go without saying that you need to find the 'right' keywords to use in order to attract the type of interested people that will turn into leads and sales. But, that being said, most website and business owners make this sort of thing way too hard. Don't stress out over creating your keyword plan.
Too Much Emphasis On Keywords:
In the past everyone thought that spending hours upon hours to find those perfect keywords was the only way to achieve results in the search engines like Google. This meant doing crazy things like building single pages focused on just one or two keywords; this was ultimately a huge mess of disjointed content that ended up being confusing to the end user.
This also led to a type of keyword tunnel vision. Many sites ignored developing other forms of traffics or channels like video and social media. It also meant that many times the audience engagement really was treated as a secondary factor.
Using The Right Keywords:
Today there are numerous tools that can help in finding the proper keywords. Much of this work can even be done using software, or outsourced to SEO agencies. There is no reason to really stress over finding these keywords and developing your plan. It should also be said, you need to do this research before creating any content, so that everything is congruent.
By the way, make sure these are keywords people are actually searching for. In other words, don't just pick and choose ones that you like or 'think' are relevant. Actually use some sort of tool that gives search interest data.
Focus On Topics & People:
Yes, you still want to use keywords, but the primary focus of SEO efforts today should be on topics and people. This is why social media sites and video sharing sites have exploded in popularity and it is still difficult to rank a website that only focuses on keywords. The simple reason is that without topics and people, you will have very little audience engagement.
With this in mind, think of your keywords in groups. These groups should all relate to a particular topic and be well served by the same type of content (text, video, etc...). Then, go ahead and optimize for those keywords and keywords groups.
Some Traditional Optimization Methods Still Work:
As you are going about building your site using the new realities of today, you will discover there are still a few traditional tactics that work. For example, place the targeted keywords in the title tage of every post or page.
Publish content with as little HTML code as possible. Actual content, that people can really consume, is the order of the day and the search engines understand this. This is another point in favor of doing everything possible to engage your audience through your content rather than simply stuffing it full of keywords.
There is no longer any need to stress out over creating your keyword plan. The focus of SEO has really changed during the last year or so, and you need to change with it. The key point is that your keyword research and plan must be more integrated with your plans to develop an engaged and interested audience.