Primary vs. Secondary Keywords - Why are They Important?
Updated December 30, 2022
Keywords are without a doubt one of the most fundamental parts of SEO (Search Engine Optimization). If you aren’t familiar with Keywords or want to learn more about keywords in general you can check out our article: What are keywords?
You may have heard the terms Primary Keyword and Secondary Keyword, if so that’s a great start! If not, no worries! We’ll tell you all about them.
Like the name implies, Primary and Secondary Keywords provide primary and secondary functions in SEO. However, both are important and should be taken seriously when developing your SEO strategy.
About Primary Keywords
What are Primary Keywords?
Primary Keywords are simple words and phrases that your target audience would search for to find your product or service. For example, some Primary Keywords for a pet grooming company might include “dog groomer near me” and “pet grooming.”
These keywords are typically very broad, and can often reach a broader audience than your specific target audience. Ranking high for these primary keywords drives immense traffic to your site, but is extremely difficult.
These keywords have extremely high search volume,but they are also extremely competitive and sought after by many companies. However, that doesn’t mean you should abandon them! Just don’t expect to see results right away.
Why are Primary Keywords Important in SEO?
SEO is built around the optimization of keywords. Having Primary Keywords enhances your Content Marketing Strategy and provides more focus for content creation.
Your Primary Keyword (or Keywords) allows you to target specific search queries and track your rankings for those searches using SEO software and Keyword trackers.
It is difficult to rank high for many Primary Keywords because they are so competitive. However, if you work towards it and achieve a high search rank, you will see a substantial increase in site visits from your target audience, as well as more people from outside your audience.
Picking the Right Primary Keywords for your Business
The first thing you should do when considering what your Primary Keyword (or Keywords) should be for a webpage, is review your services/products, remember your target audience, and check your competitors’ keywords. Some questions you can ask yourself are:
What service or product is this page focused on?
What do most people search when looking for my service/product?
What are my competitors' keywords?
Having the right Primary Keyword is important for achieving good rankings, but Google has over 200 ranking signals, so other aspects of SEO are also necessary for success.
How to Use Primary Keywords in Your SEO Practices
Primary Keywords are important to use throughout your SEO practices. They should be included in the page’s meta title and meta description, as well as throughout the content on the page and in alt tags (when it makes sense).
Try to include the keyword in the title of your webpage, and in the first couple of sentences of the page’s content. However, make sure not to overwhelm the reader with too many keywords, and don’t use it too many times.
The user’s experience when reading through the content should always be prioritized. You can also use Secondary Keywords and LSI keywords throughout the content to help it flow better without spamming the same word or phrase over and over again.
About Secondary Keywords
What are Secondary Keywords?
Secondary Keywords refine and add context to Primary Keywords. Secondary Keywords narrow in more closely to your target audience, and specific searches they might have.
These keywords often include a location, or some aspect of your service or product. Some examples of Secondary Keywords for a pet grooming company might include “Pet Groomer in San Diego” and “golden retriever grooming.”
While Secondary Keywords won’t get as many hits, it’s much easier to rank higher for secondary keywords since there is less competition. Secondary Keywords provide great opportunities for less well known businesses to get started and gain traffic.
Why are Secondary Keywords Important in SEO?
Having a variety of keywords is important in building your site’s SEO campaign, which is where Secondary Keywords come in handy.
Secondary Keywords help you narrow in on your target audience, allowing you to reach the people who want what you are offering.
Finally, compared with Primary Keywords, you can see results from Secondary Keywords much quicker. The changes still won’t happen overnight, and they won’t be as substantial, but they are a great place to start for a smaller or less well known business.
Picking the Right Secondary Keywords for your Business
There are several ways to come up with Secondary Keywords for your business. Three of the most common ways to create Secondary Keywords are:
Using your Primary Keyword as a base and adding on a location or quality of your business
Checking what your competitors Secondary Keywords are
Qualities of your service or business that more closely reflect searcher intent
Secondary keywords are the perfect chance to narrow on closer on what your target audience wants and will be searching for. There are also several good Keyword Analysis tools you can use to track certain keywords that you are using or plan to use in the future.
How to Use Secondary Keywords in Your SEO Practices
Secondary Keywords are ideal to use throughout your detail pages and landing pages. These pages usually have more room for long form content and can fit more keywords without seeming overly keyword heavy.
You can also include some of these Secondary Keywords in your meta descriptions, however just like with the page content, it is crucial that the descriptions are written primarily with readers in mind. No one likes being spammed with keywords.
To optimize your use of Secondary Keywords, we recommend using an SEO software that allows you to track keywords and gather data on them.
So Which is More Important?
Primary Keywords are simple words and phrases that your target audience would search for to find your product or service. Having Primary Keywords enhances your Content Marketing Strategy and provides more focus for content creation.
Because Primary Keywords are more general and likely to be searched, it is possible to reach many more people with them if you rank high in the search results. However, this is very difficult to do because there is so much competition with these keywords.
Secondary Keywords narrow in more closely to your target audience, and specific searches they might have. While Secondary Keywords won’t get as many hits as Primary Keywords, it’s much easier to rank higher for Secondary Keywords since there is less competition.
Secondary Keywords provide a great opportunity to narrow closer in on what your target audience wants and will be searching for. Because of this, it’s possible to see results a lot quicker when focusing on Secondary Keywords.
Verdict (Both are Important!)
Primary Keywords and Secondary Keywords both have positives and negatives about them. While Primary Keywords have the potential to reach many more people, they are harder to rank for. Secondary Keywords on the other hand are easier to rank for, but don’t reach as many people.
It’s important to incorporate both Primary and Secondary Keywords in your SEO practices. Together, these two kinds of keywords build off of each other, helping to cover the negatives about the other.
Regardless of your SEO strategy, it takes time to see results when working with keywords, so have patience and keep working hard!
If you’re looking for SEO services for your website, contact Dog and Rooster today! Our company was founded in 2000, and we have an excellent team of SEO professionals who are ready to help you. We pride ourselves on the results we’ve been able to produce for all of our clients.
Ready to get started? Call us at (858) 677-9931 or fill out our contact form!