“How many keywords should you focus on per page?” This question keeps popping up, so I decided to write a blog post to answer it.
And if you’re wondering things like:
How many SEO keywords should you target per page? Should you stick to a certain keyword density? Or do you need to create new pages for each version of a keyword?
Then this post is for you.
When deciding how many SEO keywords to target per page, there are some standard rules that you must follow to achieve high rankings. Which I will share with you below.
How many keywords per page for SEO?
You should focus on one main keyword per page, including two or three SEO keyword variations. Each of your pages should be focused on a single topic that includes the most important keywords for SEO purposes. So choose one to three keywords for each page.
The basic answer to how many keywords you should focus on per page is this. But there are some additional things that you should keep in mind to get the highest ranking.
Next, you’ll find the most common questions that relate to how many SEO keywords you should be targeting per page, which can help guide you in the right direction for success.
How many keywords can a page rank for?
A page can rank for hundreds of keywords, if not thousands of questions. The number of keywords ranked for a page depends on how well it is optimized for SEO as well as the total search volume for related queries.
Ahrefs did a keyword ranking study Further reported on this exact topic, “It looks like the average #1 ranking page would also rank in the top 10″ [search results] For about 1,000 other relevant keywords (while the average value is more than twice as small – about 400 keywords). And lower-ranking pages rank for fewer keywords.”
The reason this happens is that a page can rank for hundreds to thousands of related keywords, called “long-tail” keywords.
Long-tail keywords are basically longer forms of root keywords. For example, a page that ranks for “Best SEO Keyword Tool” may also rank for “Best SEO Keyword Tool for Bloggers” or “Best SEO Keyword Tool for Small Businesses”, etc. It all just depends on how the content was written and how optimized the page is for other relevant keywords.
Check out my post on the benefits of using long-tail keywords to learn why it’s a good idea to incorporate these phrases into your SEO strategy.
You can also learn here how to check keyword position in Google. I have written a complete guide on this process.
How many keywords should you focus on?
You should focus on at least two to three keywords for each page. It consists of a main keyword and two closely related queries. If you can focus on more keywords while keeping the content natural, try optimizing for more SEO keyword variations.
Now, the answer to how many keywords you should be focusing on per page will depend on the length of the content.
For example, a 500-word blog post can easily be optimized for two or three keywords, but trying to fit five or six keywords into a short article will probably feel unnatural. However, it is common practice to focus on five or six keywords in a 2,000-word blog post and you can spread the use of those phrases so that the content feels natural.
Just remember that the more keywords you can focus on, the more likely your pages are to rank in search engines. For example, Shane Barker was able to Rank your site for 3,461 keywords On the first page of Google by using two to three related keywords on each page.
That’s why keyword research is important for SEO and why I wrote a specific blog post about the topic. I have also written a complete guide on how to add keywords to a website for SEO purposes.
Good keyword research and placement on the page is one of the best ways to quickly improve your SEO on any site.
Should I use the same keywords on every page?
You should not use the same keywords on every page. Each page should target its own set of keywords. If you use the same keywords on every page, those pages will compete for each other in search engines. It’s best to never repeat a keyword on another page.
There is a concept called “keyword cannibalism” that can harm your SEO and ranking efforts.
As Yoast describes it, “If you optimize posts or articles for similar search queries, they are eliminating each other’s chances to rank.” Yoast adds, “In that case, Google cannot distinguish which article should rank highest for a certain query.”
An easy way to prevent keyword cannibalism is to keep track of which keywords you are targeting on each page of your site. I do this in a simple excel spreadsheet. I list the URL in column A and related keywords in column B. That way, I know what keywords I’ve already focused on so that I don’t write another article on the same topic or use those keywords in other blog posts.
How many keywords should a homepage have?
There should be at least three to four keywords on the homepage. The homepage is just like any other page on your site and should be treated the same way for SEO keyword purposes. So target three to four keywords on the homepage to get the most SEO benefits.
The easiest way to add more keywords to your homepage is to write longer content. As I have written before, content is important for SEO.
Many people view their homepage as a visual selling piece and don’t include many words on the page. While this may sound good from a design standpoint, it can hurt your SEO and keyword ranking for your homepage because search engines may not find many words to link to the content.
Therefore, increase the number of words on your homepage as a way to improve SEO keyword ranking and generate more traffic.
Can you have too many keywords?
It is possible that you can have multiple keywords on one page. First, repeating too many keywords over and over again is called “keyword stuffing”, which can penalize your content. And second, jamming too many keywords into a single post can make it unreadable.
Google doesn’t like keyword stuffing and refers to this practice As in “attempts to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results”. Repeating the same word or phrase so many times that it sounds unnatural, for example:
We sell custom cigar humidifiers. Our custom cigar humidifiers are handmade. If you are looking to purchase a custom cigar humidifier, please contact our Custom Cigar Humidor Experts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If Google detects keyword stuffing on a page, it can penalize that content and cause it to drop in ranking or never rank higher. So stay away from that failed strategy.
What is the ideal keyword density?
According to SEO experts the ideal keyword density is around 1-2%. This means that the keyword appears one to two times per 100 words. Generally, the longer the content, the lower the keyword density should be. You want the keyword to appear enough times for good SEO without keyword stuffing.
But keep in mind that there is no strict rule for keyword density in search engines like Google. Every page and keywords are different, and therefore, will require a different set of parameters for keyword density. Even Page One Power SEO Agency considers keyword density”Worst Metric Ever for SEO,
The best advice here is to write naturally and use keywords as often as necessary to get the point across the page.
You can calculate the keyword density for the top-ranking pages in Google for your target keywords to get a good idea of the density you should be aiming for. You can also reference keyword density for your own top-ranking content for similar topics to get a good starting point.
Now having said all that, you still want to put your keywords in the right places on the page to send the right signal to Google that your content should be ranked for them.
The truth is that many people get their on-page SEO wrong and it can hurt their keyword rankings. That’s why I created the Mastering On-Page SEO Course: To take all the guesswork out of how to optimize any web page for the most important keywords.
Check it out if you are looking for expert guidance on SEO and keyword placement on your website. What you learn in that course are the same strategies that are being applied to SEO Chatter.
Summary of how many keywords per page for SEO
I hope you enjoyed this article on how many keywords you should focus on per page.
As you found, the answer to how many keywords you should target will depend on the length of that content. However, it is best to focus on at least two to three keywords per page.
If you have a long piece of content, the answer to how many SEO keywords per page can be five or six or more.
As long as you keep reading the material naturally, you should be fine. Just keep in mind that you must use your keywords in the right places on the page to get the maximum SEO value out of them.
I am the creator of SEO Chatter. I have been fascinated by SEO since 2005 and have spent most of my waking hours consuming SEO content from top professionals in this field. My goal is to share the best tips and news about search engine optimization so that you can drive more traffic to your website.