Q and A: Is a 3 word search phrase counted as 1, 2 or 3 keywords?

Dear Kalena…

Just read your fine feature article at Site Pro news in the Nov 28th issue. In your part 2, would it be possible to include the max character length, max# of keywords that you would recommend be used. Also I was wondering if a three word term such as “widgets in FL” would be counted as one keyword or two or three?

Ed

Dear Ed

Thanks so much for your feedback on my article. That article is actually half of a larger one I wrote a few weeks ago and you can expect to see the other half in SiteProNews shortly. I think Part 2 will answer your questions, but this recent piece by Danny Sullivan about the keywords tag might also help.

As for “widgets in Florida”, there is no official standard in terms of how many keywords you should target on each page or in each tag, but it is generally very difficult to optimize a single page for more than 3 or 4 keywords or phrases. “Widgets in Florida” can be considered a single search term but also covers the individual keywords “widgets” and “Florida” and the phrase “widgets Florida” (search engines consider “in” to be a stop word) so I would describe that phrase as covering 3 or 4 search terms and I would probably stick with optimizing your page for that single phrase and concentrating on other search queries for your other pages.

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