Niche Keywords

How narrow should your niche keywords be? Let’s step back a minute and unpack the question. Keywords are the terms people use to look for the goods and services you have to offer. For example, people with rotator cuff pain are likely to start looking for help with the term “shoulder pain.” If your practice wants to reach out to people suffering from rotator cuff pain, you should be using “shoulder pain” as a keyword.

How to use keywords

When you use paid search ads like Google’s Adwords, you’ll specify the keywords for your ad. You’re essentially saying,”When someone types in ‘shoulder pain’ at Google, please show my ad.” If your ad is high enough in quality and your landing page is relevant enough, your ad will be shown to people looking for information about shoulder pain.

Organic search — unpaid search — is similar, except that you are not paying for the keyword. If your page about shoulder pain is high enough quality and relevant enough to the needs of people making this search, it will be shown in organic search results to people looking for this information.

You should make a list of keywords people who want your services may usein search. It makes sense to build a page or a blog post for each keyword on that list. Your basic goal should be to provide the best possible answer to any questions your potential clients or patients are asking.

Niche keywords

“Shoulder pain” is just the broadest, most common keyword people with rotator cuff tears use to look for help online. Once they begin to gather more information and get a clear idea of what kind of help they need, they’re likely to move on to more specific searches.

For example, they’re likely to search for terms like these:

  • pain in rotator cuff
  • rotator cuff tear pain
  • torn rotator cuff
  • rotator cuff injury symptoms
  • rotator cuff surgery
  • rotator cuff exercises

Does it make sense to create a page or post for each of these niche keywords? Some may be so similar that you would essentially be competing with yourself. Having multiple pages for specific long tail keywords can also cause your website to show up more often for people doing the relevant research.

When is niche too niche?

The first issue to consider is this: do you have something to say about each possible niche keyword? We could write an informative page about rotator cuff exercises, another about mistakes people make when doing these exercises, and a third about deciding between physical therapy and surgery.

Each of these pages should provide valuable information for people suffering from this kind of injury. In fact, a visitor to the website should be able to read all three and get useful information.

A page about shoulder pain comparing rotator cuff tendonitis with subacromial bursitis probably won’t be one of our most popular pages, but it could be useful to the right reader — and helpful to people using those niche keywords.

But writing a page about rotator cuff tear pain and another about pain from rotator cuff tears? Those two pages could be repetitive. They probably won’t both provide plenty of value to our readers. Similarly, writing up articles on rotator cuff pain, rotor cuff pain, and rotary cup pain is not likely to increase the value of our website.

It’s all about the reader.

Taking a mechanistic view of SEO is usually a mistake. In this case, your decisions about how small a niche your niche keywords should occupy should be decided on the basis of what will be most useful to your website’s visitors — the people you want to help.

Writing with the human visitors and the search engines in mind at the same time is the key. We’d be happy to help you with that — it’s our specialty. Contact us to start the conversation.

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