Content and Copywriting

How to Add Keywords to Articles without Looking Spammy

I recently got an urgent sounding email from a writer named Steven. He read my post about How to Make Google AdWords Work for Your Writing Niche and said he was confused about my advice to put a SEO keyword six times in a 400-500 word article.
Well, I figured other people may be confused, too, so here is a simple method for adding keywords without spammy side affects.

Use your SEO keyword in the title 
Add it to the first line of your article
Work it into two of your sub headings
Always use your keyword once in your closing paragraph
Plop that keyword into your article summary
That’s six times and it won’t look spammy if it’s done where it makes sense. It’s actually very easy once you are practiced at it.

Now in some of my articles I break the six rule. For example, in my article Tips for Sketching with Watercolor Paints I use the word sketching, well, way too much.

In most of my articles I use keyword phrases, not singular keywords. In that article the keyword phrases are Sketching with Watercolor and Watercolor Sketching. Of course, if you don’t count the phrases, then, yes, I used the keywords you listed way too many times. 
Sometimes, though, you just can’t get around using the same words over and over. In this case, clarity is more important than SEO in my opinion. Usually when I find that I’m using one word way too often I find another keyword that has the same meaning.
For example, instead of saying Mr. Rolls, say the car’s designer or the car maker or the car’s innovator. With an article about depression you could say this condition, this issue and this problem. This is great for adding more value to your article in Google’s eyes because you’re using more keywords. Also, using it, he or she is always an option.
Sometimes you just can’t get around using one word over and over. There’s just no way around it. As long as your article is useful, then it will rise above the seemingly keyword stuffed prose. 

In this case I really wasn’t able to get around repeating myself. Sketching doesn’t have a synonym. Rules are made to be broken and often I don’t follow them for various reasons, BUT 6 is a good rule of thumb. Using a keyword too few times will keep your article off Google’s radar.

I've been a DIY, lifestyle, tech and health writer for two decades. Dang, that makes me sound old...Anywhoo, feel free to follow me on Twitter. I'm @alinabradford. Real original handle, huh?


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