How to Pick Effective Focus Keywords

A focus keyword for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is critical to ensuring the success of any digital marketing strategy.

Not only does it attract visitors to a website, but it also provides search engines clarity on what topics to associate with your post. But what exactly are focus keywords? And do you really need to use one?

In this article, we’ll answer all these questions along with some examples of focus keywords.

Read on to understand what focus keywords are and how your marketing strategy can benefit from using them. We’ll also guide you through the steps in choosing the most effective focus keywords to ensure your site’s success. 

What Is a Focus Keyword?

A focus keyword in SEO is a word or phrase that best represents the content of your web page, post, or article. It is used to help search engine algorithms determine what your website is about and rank it accordingly in their search results. Choosing an appropriate focus keyword can greatly improve your chances of appearing higher on SERPs (search engine result pages).

Focus keywords should be specific, relevant to your subject matter, and have enough volume, so you don’t get lost among the competition. Additionally, they should appear organically throughout your content for maximum effect and be featured prominently within title tags, meta descriptions, and headings.

Why You Should Use a Focus Keyword

Using a focus keyword when creating content is key to optimizing online visibility. Doing so can help you rank higher in search engine results and increase the likelihood of attracting more viewers to your website or blog. Here are just a few of the many reasons why using a focus keyword should be part of your writing strategy: 

  • Increased Visibility – Targeting one specific keyword related to your content can help you attract more potential readers searching for this term on search engines. This helps increase traffic to your website, making it easier for people to find what they’re looking for quickly and easily.
  • Improved Rankings – Search engines use keywords to determine how high or low websites appear in their rankings. Including a focus keyword throughout your content gives you an edge over other websites that may not be as strategic with their keywords.
  • Higher Quality Content – Using a focus keyword forces you to think about how best to craft your content. Since you are attempting to target a particular phrase or word, this encourages you to create quality content that has value for readers. And this, in turn, will make them want to stay longer and explore more pages on your site. 

These are just a few benefits of using a focus keyword when crafting your content. It can make all the difference in helping you reach your desired audience. And this is why taking the time to choose the right one is important.

A person using their laptop to search on Google.
Photo by on Unsplash

How to Pick Effective Focus Keywords

Define Your Goal

Before choosing a focus keyword, it is important to have a clear idea of what your content is intended to achieve. This will help you narrow down which keywords are relevant and guide you when making decisions throughout the writing process.

Research Keywords

Once you know what the article should focus on, do some research into the best words and phrases related to the topic. Many online tools can help with this, such as Google Keyword Planner or the INK Content Planner Pro.

If you want a post or page to rank, you can maximize your chances of success by targeting long tail keywords. These keywords typically contain more words and are less searched for than popular “head” keywords. But less popularity can also mean less competition and a higher conversion rate.

Once you find a long tail search term you want to rank for, check if there are any searches for that keyword or phrase. You can find data on this through keyword research tools.

Check Posts That Already Rank.

If you already have (blog) posts that rank well for good terms, you will know how many visitors these articles attract. But if you don’t consider using Google Trends to compare the key phrases of older posts with the focus phrase for your new post. 

Make sure to choose older posts that are most similar to the post you plan to make. In case you want to choose a long tail keyword, compare it against long-term keywords as well.

Google Your Prospective Focus Keyword

Aside from knowing which search terms people actually use, you also need to know whether your post or page idea fits their search intent. Googling your proposed keywords yourself can be an effective way to find out.

Look at the SERPs. How similar are the articles in Google results to your articles? Does your article have the same theme as the results shown on these search pages? You are aiming to get your post among these results, which is why it makes sense to check them out.

Monitor Performance Metrics

After implementing your chosen focus keyword in the article, keep an eye on its performance metrics – specifically click-through rate (CTR), impressions, and conversions. If these numbers don’t reflect the desired result, try switching up the focus keyword until the desired outcomes are achieved.

Examples of Focus Keywords

To better understand what focus keywords are, it helps to look at examples.

Let’s say you are a Chiropractor who has an office in Boston. For your focus keywords, you want them to be location-specific. This will help you attract local patients and expand your network within that neighborhood. 

Here are some examples of focus keywords that you might want to consider.

Primary Keyword Examples:

  • The Best Chiropractor in Boston
  • Chiropractor in Boston
  • Boston Chiropractors

Long tail Keyword Examples:

Compared to primary keywords, long tail keywords are much longer. It’s usually five or more words. They also tend to be more specific.

  • List of chiropractors in Boston
  • Best Boston chiropractors
  • Best Boston chiropractors near me 
  • Top-rated chiropractors in Boston near me


When selecting your focus keyword, ensure that it accurately reflects the content on your page and its potential appeal to readers. Follow the steps in this article and refer to these examples of focus keywords to get started on the right track.

Understanding the importance of focus keywords and strategically applying them can pay off when it comes to optimizing your web pages. It won’t only help drive more organic traffic to your site. It can also improve your ranking and create a more positive user experience.

Co-Founder of INK, Alexander crafts magical tools for web marketing. SEO and AI expert. He is a smart creative, a builder of amazing things. He loves to study “how” and “why” humans and AI make decisions.

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