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Is Keyword Density Still Important For SEO?

Keyword density is incredibly important for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). Over the years the importance and effect of keyword density have changed drastically. In the Pre Panda era, you could essentially ‘spam’ your webpage with your keyword and your page stood a chance of ranking.

However, that all changed in 2011, the panda update took effect. Search engines in 2021 are now much more intelligent and are not as easy to fool. There is a chance that your content may be regarded as spam if Google perceives the keyword density to be too high.

In this GrowTraffic blog, we’re going to discuss keyword density, which is still important for SEO and the best practices we’d recommend for improving your rankings.

What Is Keyword Density?

Keyword density is an element of keyword optimisation that refers to the number of times a target keyword is used on a webpage. It is a percentage that represents how frequently the target keyword appears relative to the number of words on the page.

For example, 10 words in 1,000 are 1% and so on…

Keyword density is one signal search engines can use to determine whether a piece of content is relevant to a particular keyword or phrase. We used to call it keyword density, but nowadays, there is more of a focus on a phrase – key phrase density.

Does Keyword Density affect SEO?

Within search engine optimisation, keyword/keyphrase density is incredibly important. However, it isn’t as simple as having a specific percentage of keyword appearances within the text which will help ensure that content performs well. There is no perfect percentage of keyword propensity which is known to have a direct benefit to ranks as a result.

What’s important and Yoast elaborates on it, is readability. And you might be sat there thinking what’s readability got to do with keyword density. It has a lot let me tell you.

It is very important to make your content appear as genuine as possible. Content that doesn’t appear natural may be flagged up by Google. Pages can be penalised by Google for having too high a quantity of a specific keyword within the text – also known as over-optimising.

How To Improve Your Keyword Density

Effective Keyword Research

The first step is always the most important. You should still use keyword research to determine your most valuable search targets and find the best topics to write about.

What’s the point in adding low-value keywords to your content and getting penalised for it. You can easily include the top-ranked keywords and make your content SEO friendly?

Increase the Word Count

It might sound simple, but let me tell you, it is an effective way to stop yourself from keyword stuffing. If you are writing content for SEO purposes, your aim should be between 700-1000 words. If you’re currently writing underneath that, your percentage of keyword density could be classed as spam.

This way, you don’t have to force a keyword in every 20 words or so. At the same time, you should make sure you aren’t only adding fluff to the content to add to the word count. Research beforehand so that the article or blog post remains informative and provides value to the readers.

Have The Correct Focus

Natural language and quality are priorities. You should be using natural language and producing high-quality content that your readers find valuable; keyword density shouldn’t be the focus.

If your focus is to write an informative piece of writing, you’re more likely to add the keywords naturally to your content. You will add value by adding the words/phrases and not just for the purpose and focus of SEO.

Final Tips For Keyword Density In Your Content

  • Placement is significant. Where you place your keywords matters; keywords in titles, and high in the body of your content are more important than keywords buried at the end.
  • High-volume keywords are more important. Pages ranking for high-volume queries have more keywords than those ranking for low-volume queries. That means head keywords are more important to include than long-tail keywords.
  • Having a conversation: blog writing formula. Make sure that your target keyword is incorporated throughout the different aspects of your webpage and use synonyms and related keywords to make the content stronger. Instead of being keyword dense, your web pages should be content dense and full of value for your users – this way keywords become natural and conversational based.

Get In Touch

GrowTraffic is a digital marketing agency that specialises in SEO. If you would like professional help with your keyword density get in touch with our friendly team. You can call us on 0161 706 0012 or email us at

Alternatively, head to our blog for expert SEO tips and digital marketing help.

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