Derivative vs. Semantic Keywords

If you’re actively lacing your blog or site with keywords, then good news- you’re on the right track. But did you know there are more than one type of keywords? There are! And today we’re going to look at two different kinds of keywords that can help improve your site or blog’s SEO.

derivative vs semanticKeywords can be cut and dissected and sorted dozens of different ways, but one important differentiation to make in your writing is between derivative and semantic keywords.

As we already know, keywords are what makes our site searchable for the Google spiders. They’re crawling over every character you type, carefully analyzing it to discern between relevant content and not. And by lacing your blog with the right type of keywords, you can push your content into the realms of relevance.

Chances are you’re already using derivative keywords– keywords that are derived from the main category of your page. For example, if I’m writing about cameras, my derivative keywords might include things like camera, camera body, camera lens, dslr camera, etc. The keywords demonstrate literal ties to the word camera, and that’s what the Google machine will pull from it.

But semantic keywords lack the literal- in this example, they’re any keywords that might be associated with the word camera without actually being derived from the word camera. They might include things like photography, lighting, flash, backdrop, exposure, lens or more. All these words are associated with the category camera, but none of them explicitly say camera.

Writing with a good balance of derivative and semantic keywords will usually improve the searchability of your site and improve your page rank. So the next time you’re creating a blog post, consider the language you’re using and try incorporating words that help paint a fuller picture of your category.

What’s worked best for you? Let us know in the comments below.

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