Keywords are the words that search engines look for on your website. They help search engines relate your content to the terms people type into their search bar, which results in you being found by the right audience and getting more quality traffic. Choosing the right keywords can feel tricky and time consuming, but it’s essential for any digital marketing strategy.
For research papers, keywords are used to categorize and tag your manuscript for online databases and search engines. This allows them to quickly identify and display your manuscript in relevant searches. It’s a great way to help readers find your work!
When choosing keywords, consider the purpose of your paper. It’s important to include synonyms and antonyms, as well as a few phrases with semantic relevance (meaning that the word has different meanings). Journals often ask for a certain number of keywords, but be sure to not overdo it. Too many keywords can be confusing to readers, and may make your manuscript seem unfocused or irrelevant.
Another factor to consider is the search intent of the keyword. Search intent is the intention of the user to make a query; for example, “best organic dog food” or “cheapest dog walkers Seattle.” Long-tail keywords are becoming more popular for voice searches because people tend to use natural language and search for things they need rather than simply a term.
Once you have a list of keywords, plug them into a tool like Ahrefs Site Explorer to see what your competitors are ranking for. From there, you can narrow down the list to the keywords that are most relevant for your own website.