Latent semantic indexing and new SEO strategies

The next big step for search engine optimizers has come according to Google. In recent months, Google has increased the weight of keywords related to a search query. In the old days, when searching for a specific keyword on Google, only specific instances of that keyword counted for a website’s ranking in search results. This brought with it ideals such as keyword density percentages, where on the page keywords appear, and in what types of elements on the page they appear. It seems that the way marketers approach search engine optimization is changing.

Weight in keyword density is the obvious first thing to lose value when talking about latent semantic indexing. If you limit yourself to a single keyword and target a specific keyword density like you used to in the old days, then you probably won’t get the same results that you used to. This is because the weight of related keywords on a page has increased and this affects the ranking of all related keywords on the page. It may seem confusing at first, but it is a heroic effort to clean up search results and return pages more relevant to the search query.

To better understand what’s going on here, let’s say you’re looking for shoes. You go to Google and type in the word “running shoes” and you start clicking on the results. In the old days, you could get more articles and pages that focused on the words “running” and “shoes,” but you wouldn’t see many results for running, tennis, basketball, or training shoes. The search results would weigh heavily on the actual words “jogging” and “shoes”, which would yield very limited results. When you consider words related to “running shoes,” it opens the door for pages to appear in search results that have “running shoes” in the content, as well as many other types of shoes. The end result tends to be more end-user friendly, as the results produce higher quality pages and better query options.

If you look at this from a marketing perspective, your job will be a bit more difficult if you’ve just been putting keywords on the pages to get rankings. Now the proverbial tables have changed, and search engines are forcing websites to not only include the keyword they are trying to rank for, but also to include content around related keywords. You also can’t just use a thesaurus and try to manipulate the results, because one of the factors of latent semantic indexing is how closely related the keywords are in the context of the search query.

So what does this all mean? It means that quality content is king. Not just happy anymore. If you want to have a successful marketing campaign for your website, you should ditch the old keyword density tool and start looking for the related keywords. You can find latently related keywords on Google by placing the “~” symbol in front of the desired keyword. Google will highlight latently related keywords so you know which ones to use. But be careful and don’t fall into a numbers game again. Write good content and the search engines will reward your effort.

Search engine optimization has changed, but those of us who have focused on quality content from the beginning should see an increase in the ranking of search results. It is always better to stay ahead when it comes to search engine marketing. Remember, some things will always be true when it comes to search engines: quality content written around multiple keywords is best, best is to vary the anchor text for inbound links, links from authority are the best and the more you contribute to the web, the more you will receive. It really is better to give than to receive.

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