What is Keyword Prominence?

What is Keyword Prominence?
03 Jan 2013

Bad lead, No read: Keyword prominence

Implementing this one strategy – keyword prominence – can mean the difference of whether or not your website is found over the millions of others being searched. It’s not a massive factor in search engine rankings, but it’s vital.

And the concept is one you’re already familiar with; it’s much like reading the newspaper.

Imagine it this way: You get up in the morning and grab your daily newspaper. You sit down to breakfast, coffee in hand, and what’s the first thing you do? You read the headlines. What are you looking for? Simply put, you’re looking for the ones that immediately grab your attention. Out of the numerous articles that you could read, you scan through quickly to decipher what are the most interesting, compelling, and relevant articles to you. And you do it in seconds.

That’s exactly what keyword prominence is to search engines like Google: it’s strategically placing the words or word phrases in your website where search engines will look for them.

Keyword prominence is defined as the location (or placement) of a particular word in the HTML source code of a web page. The rule is: the higher up a given word is on the web page, the more weight is assigned to it by a search engine when a user is searching for that word. Here are some general rules where keywords should be placed:

  1. Title
  2. Headings
  3. Top of paragraph
  4. Beginning of a sentence
  5. Start of a web page

Let’s look more closely at why keyword prominence is important to your website SEO strategy. Think back to our previous analogy. Imagine you heard about a major fire that just happened in your town and you want to find that article in the local newspaper. Instinctively, you know where to look first – the front page. Apart from photos, you would scan the headlines. If it wasn’t on the front page, you would then turn the page and check on page 2, then 3, and so on. You would never jump from the first page, then the last page, and back to the middle of the newspaper.

Also, you always know that the word “fire” would appear somewhere near the top: in the headline or first few sentences. It’s because you know the rules of how to search through a newspaper that you can find the article you’re looking for. Very similar rules apply to the search engine optimization of your website.

If you typed the word “fire” into a search engine like Google, the rule of keyword prominence will scan the HTML code from the top of the website down, locating the keyword “fire” and place your website page in search engine rankings accordingly. If your website strategy uses keyword prominence, placing keywords in the right locations, you have a greater probability of your website being found.

Using strategies like this can determine whether or not internet users will find your website in their search. Contact us to implement strategies like this to help optimize your website.

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