Using Single Core Terms To Optimize A Webpage

They say it can’t be done. I’m told it’s impossible. Ridiculous! Scandalous!

In SEO school* we are taught that you can’t optimize a single web page for more than two or maybe three keywords at a time. Many say you can’t truly be effective optimizing for more than one. It just doesn’t work!

But what if there was a way that it could work? What if you could successfully optimize a single web page for 15 or more keyword phrases at a time and get rankings for all of them? What would that kind of information be worth to you?

Send your paypal donation to [email protected] and I’ll share this secret. 🙂

Every Page Has a Core Keyword

Each page of your site should have a very particular focus. In most cases that can be summarized in two or three words. These would be your core terms.

What’s your page about?

Page topics: Ski Clothes, Motorcycle Battery Chargers, Luggage Tags, Electronic Health Records

The start of the keyword research process is uncovering all the core terms that fit your site and your audience, then mapping each core term to a specific page of your site.

For the one-keyword-only enthusiasts… this is your one keyword.

Every Core Term has Qualifier

Once you’ve got all your core terms established you can now do some more in-depth keyword research to find the qualifiers that go along with each core term.

Your qualifiers may be:

Keyword Qualifiers: Ski Clothes (kids, teen, toddler, Spyder, winter), Motorcycle Battery Chargers (12 volt, gel, trickle, 6 volt, solar), Luggage Tags (plastic, airline, business, customized, personalized), Electronic Health Records (advantages, benefits, definition, software, systems

This is just a fraction of the qualifiers that you can find for any one core term. Your keyword research tool will help you uncover these qualifiers and any other searchable phrases using these core terms. As you put them together you might get phrases such as:

Page topics: Ski Clothes (kids ski clothes, toddler ski clothes), Motorcycle Battery Chargers (12 volt motorcycle battery charger, motorcycle battery trickle charger), Luggage Tags (personalized luggage tag, plastic luggage tags), Electronic Health Records (advantages of electronic health records, electronic health record system)

Your keyword research tools will tell you the viability of the combinations you create. Or better, let the tools create the combinations so you can see what’s most viable.

Not Every Qualifier is a Fit

Not all qualifiers work together and can (or should) be optimized on the same page. You want to separate your qualifiers and group them together. All your “software” or “system” related terms can be grouped together, while your “advantages” and “benefits” phrases go together.

There are a lot of factors involved and how you ultimately group your keyword core terms and qualifiers and a lot depends on the layout of your site, how many similar core terms you have and how easily different qualifier groups can be optimized on another page. The goal isn’t to throw as many keywords at a page as possible and hope for the best. What you want to do is group your keywords in a way so that every keyword in a single group is a perfect fit for any given page you are optimizing, and a perfect fit with the other keywords in the group.

So where do the 15 phrases come in?

For any one core term I research I’ll often find anywhere from a dozen to a couple hundred of searched qualifier variations. Many of those are irrelevant to any site I’m working on, but a good number will be relevant and valuable. Plurals and singulars or changing word order will often create more variations that you can add, provided they are legitimately searched phrases.

By targeting only a single core term and using a dozen or so tightly grouped qualifiers you create a single page that can be optimized for all those phrases effectively. Done right, your content won’t feel keyword stuffed and you’ll find your page ranking for more than one phrase at a time.

*There is really no such thing


By Stoney De Geyter

Stoney deGeyter is CEO of Pole Position Marketing (, a leading web presence optimization firm helping businesses grow since 1998. He is also the author of The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period! A prolific blogger, he is the main contributor to Pole Position Marketing's E-Marketing Performance Blog ( and writes regularly for well-regarded industry blogs such as Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Land and Marketing Land.

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