For years now, SEO experts have been advising people about the many things that you can do to improve your position in the search engine result pages. They have and still do preach the doctrine of incoming links, of using H1, H2, Etc. tags. They encourage people to use images with keywords in the alt tags, page titles, blog post titles, urls, filenames, image names, in the anchor text of links and of course, in the text of your web page or blog post.
There have been countless articles and blog posts written about the subject of keyword research, the fine art of finding out which keywords are the best ones to focus on to be seen by search engines as more relevant and thus score higher in the results pages.
There are dozens of tools you can use to find keywords related to any niche you happen to be working in. Many of them are even good.
However I’m here today to tell you that the best thing you can do about keyword research is to forget about it.
That’s right, FORGET ABOUT KEYWORD RESEARCH!
You see, in today’s post panda, post penguin world things have changed. Yes, it’s still valuable to do keyword research. It can help you a lot however the recent changes to the algorithms used by Google (and other search engines, Google isn’t *quite* the only game in town, just mostly) mean that when you’re doing SEO on your sites and articles you have to be careful not to go too far.
What am I talking about?
“Over Optimization”. A page that has been optimized to the n’th degree is no longer something you should strive for. Since the Panda and Penguin updates one of the signals that Google is using in their effort to spot and devalue webspam is overly optimized pages. It’s a sign that more effort was put into making the site look good to search engines than in making the site useful to human visitors.
Instead of spending so much time and money on SEO and keyword research it is much more important to make sure that your site provides something that real human visitors are looking for.
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again; “focus first on the people who come to your site and exactly what it is they’re looking for. Give them that and the SEO will pretty much take care of itself.”
Yes, keyword research is still important. Just remember that your customers, the human visitors to your site, the ones that are the reason it’s there, must come first.