What is a key phrase?

The words that we use on web pages to help customers find a website are known as keywords. So what is a key phrase?

Keywords make up key phrases, also known as key terms. A key phrase consists of more than two keywords – certainly 50% of online searches use more than four in a query.

What is a key phrase? Keywords make up key phrases, also know as key terms.

Longer terms are known as long-tail key phrases and will contain up to 10 keywords.

Website owners give a page or post intention using a key phrase – by doing this they target a search query.

The key phrase is used in the URL, the title and throughout the content. This practicse is a fraction of organic search engine optimisation.

On a website, the use of short, high competition key phrases like ‘biking’  are quite unlikely to improve the ranking position on a search engine. Simply because there are so many other websites battling for that same word.

Using a key phrase on a web page

These days our search queries are quite specific, especially considering the use of voice search. So an effective key phrase is longer and less ambiguous.

For example:

Guided mountain biking holiday French Alps

Build pages and posts around longer key phrases to increase the chance of being ranked highly.

Consider a key phrase that would be used to find a website like yours, research the term and write around that topic. Incorporate the phrase into the copy, title and meta description.

Use the key phrase on your image alt tags, within links, headers and paragraphs to create a well-optimised article.

Be sure not to take part in keyword stuffing which is the act of repeating a keyword or phrase to do well on search.

This is commonly seen on black hat websites, so the offending website runs the risk of penalisation by Google.

Share and Enjoy !

9 thoughts on “What is a key phrase?”

  1. Exactly what I was looking for, but I do have one question. When creating a key phrase for the overall site, is there a limit to how many words you use?

    1. Hi Gerry, it is much better to use key phrases on each page (or post). You can rank for 3 or 4 phrases per article. So don’t use a general one for the whole site. Be specific on each page/post to rank well.

      When it comes to the number of words within a phrase, just be sensible really. Four or more words to create a long-tail key phrase that people would actually search for. Remember people also search using voice search much more now so those phrases would be longer, up to 10 words.

  2. So, if a key phrase is clunky, can you seperate it with other words? using your example, do I say There is nothing more exciting than a Guided mountain biking holiday French Alps. or can I say “Consider taking a guided mountain biking trip on your next holiday in a beautiful place like the French Alps.”
    I am writing SEO articles and am not sure whether or not to stick to the clunky word clusters that are given as key phrases.

    1. Hi Cookie, the most important thing is not to write for search engines. Write for humans. It used to be that we avoided joining words (such as the, a), but that just makes web pages read really badly. Search engines have caught onto that. If you have researched the term you’ll know which is searched most frequently. Does ‘trip’ need to be in there at all?

      Out of the two I would suspect that “guided mountain biking holiday in the French Alps” is more highly searched, so I would use that throughout the content. I’d be happy using the second phrase too as it is still relevant and sounds nice. Just take out ‘trip on your next’. Don’t repeat one phrase throughout the page, you have to be clever and interesting about it. Make it sound human and to the point. Use the key phrase in the title, the first paragraph and the last paragraph to sum things up – but only if it sounds good.

      Search engines now understand a lot more about the intent that people have when they make a search. When it comes to the slug, leave out joining words and keep it short.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *