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How To Appropriately Use Your Keywords In Your Article Titles
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Originally uploaded by Farl

Recently we've talked about what keywords are and how to do keyword research, but when you've finally decided what keywords you'll be using on your website, how do you use that knowledge in your article marketing campaign?

Great question!

Keywords are useful to Google and the other search engines because they help categorize what your web page (or the web page that your article appears on) is about. There are a few areas that Google pays extra attention to when trying to establish what your web page is about, and your title is one of them.

I would suggest trying to naturally work your keywords into your titles, if possible. 

Notice I said "naturally"–as we've discussed before, your title is like curb appeal for your article.

First and foremost you want to craft an attention grabbing title that will draw readers in, but I think you'll find that you can also use your keywords most or some of the time when you're crafting titles. 

Here's what NOT to do…

Some folks create titles that are all almost the same. It's like they have latched on to the idea of using keywords in their article submissions, and they are bound and determined to insert those keywords in every one of their titles with no regard to how the title will appeal to a reader.

I'm just making this up as an example, but here's the sorts of titles that I'm talking about:

Article 1: Sailing Boats–Morocco

Article 2: Morocco–Sailing Boats

Article 3: Sailing Boats in Morocco

Article 4: Morocco's Sailing Boats

You get the idea–These titles are BO-RING!

Yes, the keywords are in there, but are these effective, attention grabbing titles that make a reader stop and say "Whoa–I need to read this!"?

No, they aren't. People who use titles like this thinking that they're helping their article marketing campaign by inserting their keywords in their titles are missing out!

If you are planning on integrating your keywords into your article titles, please remember that creating article titles is a craft.

We have to balance 3 things:

  1. The title must be interesting, something that would catch a reader's attention and make them want to read more.
  2. The title should give some indication of what the article is about. Duh, right? Having a title that indicates what the article is about serves your readers and Google.
  3. If possible, you can include your keywords in your title, if you can also meet the first two criteria. Since your keywords are what your site is about, and since you should be writing articles on the topic of your website, there is a very good chance that you can craft an interesting, attention grabbing title that incorporates your keywords.

If trying to balance all of these things makes your brain hurt, then don't worry about purposefully including your keywords in your titles–just make attention grabbing titles that will lure in your target readers.

If you take this reader-focused approach when crafting your titles, you'll notice that you're sometimes including your keywords in your titles without even trying–sometimes it helps not to try too hard when it comes to keywords!

Related resources you may find helpful:

What Are Keywords? 

How Do I Get Started With Keyword Research? 

NOTE: Please be aware this content may now be outdated. For the latest quality content on how to build massive publicity for your website, please go to The vWriter Blog - Helping Businesses Grow Traffic, Build Engagement, and "Be Everywhere"

18 Responses to “How To Appropriately Use Your Keywords In Your Article Titles”

  1. Steve says:

    I’ve found that my most successful articles have used a keyword in the title. E.g., “Tips for Selecting a Blue Widget” where “Blue Widget” is what you want to promote and your resource box links point to your website or landing page on “Blue Widgets.”

    Obviously, if you get the article on a site that covers widgets in general, they really nice things start to happen IMHO…

  2. Steve Shaw says:

    Hi Steve,

    Thanks so much for reporting your success with using keywords in your title.

    And that title “Tips for Selecting A Blue Widget” is actually something that a searcher might type into Google, so that’s a good tip in itself. As best you can (if appropriate) make your title be what searchers would type in to Google to find your article.

    Thanks for chiming in! :-)

  3. [...] How To Appropriately Use Your Keywords In Your Article Titles  [...]

  4. [...] How To Appropriately Use Your Keywords In Your Article Titles  [...]

  5. Thanks for useful tips. I always read your articles. Keep sending.

  6. Great advice! that we can sometimes forget

  7. Delords says:

    Great Post
    Thanks for the info, many people have been making those mistakes on titles not knowing that the title is the main thing that attracts people to read articles.

  8. Great article, but doesn’t this just boil down to really understanding the market you’re writing for? If you write with the end user in mind and spell things out for them in literal terms, you’ll naturally word things in a way that is a match with what they’re searching for.

  9. Steve Shaw says:

    Hi Hannah,

    Yes, that’s often the case–I would always recommend writing for your target market first and then after that optimizing your language to suit what people are searching for.

    The funny thing is that unless we do keyword research and find out for sure what our target market is searching for (the exact types of wording they use), then we can be using language that makes sense to us but doesn’t even pop into the minds of our readers.

    So, as a Step 1–write a useful article for your target market, using easy to understand terms and such.

    Then, if you wanted to take things up a notch, you could implement a Step 2 where you targeted certain keywords in your articles (writing specifically on those topics) to capitalize on specific search terms that your target market is using.

    As you said, though–that Step 1 is a crucial part that you can’t do away with and just following Step 1 will take you a long way.

  10. [...] How To Appropriately Use Your Keywords In Your Article Titles Article Distribution Service ( [...]

  11. So titles like: How to properly wash cookware that have non-stick coating…

    Sounds like a great way to introduce keywords, at the same time providing REAL info that can also be entertaining…


  12. Steve Shaw says:

    Hi Jerry–Exactly!

  13. ewealths says:

    But you might simply be writing to express your thought and not necessarily for marketing purpose, just expressing yourself on what you think on a subject, do you think doing keyword research is still necessary, just finding your blog too full of information for a newbie like me…

  14. Steve Shaw says:

    Hi ewealths,

    It is perfectly fine if you’d just like to write articles on particular topic and not do keyword research–you can still see excellent results with Article Marketing.

    By far the most important aspect of article marketing is consistency–submitting articles every month for an extended period of time (preferably the lifetime of your website). If all this keyword and SEO stuff is making your brain hurt (and it makes mine hurt sometimes too! :-) ), then please don’t focus on it. Just write articles on the topic of your website, and submit them regularly.

    You might find this post reassuring: The #1 Reason Why Article Marketing Fails (and I’ll tell you right now it is not a lack of knowledge of SEO!)

    You can do this–as a newbie by just reading that one post I just linked to above, you will have everything you need to make a strong start with Article Marketing.

    Best wishes,

  15. [...] How To Appropriately Use Keywords In Your Article Titles – covers how NOT to write a title, and also 3 key elements that your titles should include. [...]

  16. Irenne says:

    Hello, Steve,
    I’ve been poring over your fantastic teaching tools and have learned so very, very much!

    I have a question that I have not yet seen on any of the threads on keywords used in titles:

    Is it advisable to research words that are not related to one’s website but are the topic of the article?

    For instance, if my article is about a toy (my Web-based business) that can double as exercise equipment for couch-potato kids, would I want to know that the words I’m using in reference to how it could be used would be good keywords were my business exercise equipment (such as: child obesity, exercise equipment, overweight teens, etc.)?

    It seems to me that I could then double-up my target market. Am I off base here? A lot of my planned articles would be about my products’ usefulness in various contexts.

    Thanks for all the great, useable advice.

    One of your new students,

  17. Steve Shaw says:

    Hi Irenne,

    Glad to hear you’re finding the resources here helpful. In regards to your question–yes, what you suggest is a good idea. You may have a group of general keywords for your website and you can write on those topics, but there are also other more specialized keywords that you can target as well depending on the type of article you’re writing.

    You may have one main target market (people with kids who want to buy toys), but with that article you mentioned, you can get much more specific (people with kids who want to buy toys that will help children exercise). You could do a few articles on that one topic, all geared with different target markets in mind (those who are interested in toys, those interested in exercise equipment toys, and those who are trying to increase the activity of their children).

    If you wanted to take the childhood obesity angle, you could write an article about toys that help prevent obesity in children, and included in the list would be one of your toys.

    That’s a great approach and something I encourage because it allows you to get more coverage for your topic. Yes, do the keyword research on exercise equipment. As long as you’re writing an article on that topic, you might as well be using keywords that are popular.

    I hope that helps!

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