Does anyone have any definitive information on this as the SEO advice is rather mixed.
Some say that googlebot looks for keywords in the first sentence. It also relates to the text displayed on the SERP. Of course there may be negatives in terms of keyword stuffing and 'gaming'. I have noticed that it appears to give the page an extra nudge in the SERP position.
It is my humble opinion that Google is moving away from all of the fancy techniques and towards writing that flows normally. Keywords will automatically show up with this kind of writing. However, it's a good idea to put them in the first 100 words and again towards the end. At least that's my own understanding, for what my two cents are worth!
if your content/page is structured a certain way, the first 140 characters of text will be considered the description -which appears in SERP. It is not a good idea to Keyword Stuff the first paragraph. Best is to spread your main Keywords evenly throughout the article, without being redundant, then apply several folksonomy elements -long tail phrases, tags and synonyms as well. This way when the spider crawls the page, it will pick up more textual power and use it for Instant previews. An SEO standard Rule Of Thumb is one keyword per 200 relevant article words. So if your article is 3000 words, 15 Keywords maximum. The meta tag will realistically only hold upwards of 20 Keys in total anyway. A 4000 word article is about 500 lines, not including photos, videos, quizzes, polls, adverts and commentary.
Gaming is what Wordpress plugins, like Yoast, do. They try to override the bot and stuff the first 140 like a Thanksgiving turkey with keywords, tags even the Title. Again, content is King. More content, more crowns. More precise content, even nicer crowns. Make the URL unique, content as organic as possible and sprinkle the fairy-folks all over the article.
Wrong approach, IMO.
Hp provides a place to write a custom summary that google will usually show in the search results. That summary has two tasks; to "hook" the reader in and to provide a better indication (to both google and the searcher) of what the hub is about. Put a keyword in there along with a good indication of what the hub is about. You don't want readers that aren't finding what they want - tell them exactly what you are offering.
To simply repeat that summary in the first paragraph doesn't give the reader anything. Instead, use that first paragraph in the hub to again give google the keywords while convincing the reader that your hub is worth reading. Give them a partial answer to their question, show them that you can write and will provide a complete answer further down. Use the first paragraph to keep the readers interest now that he has seen the summary and come to your hub.
Yes, both of these areas of your hub needs to tell google what the hub is about, but it is at least as important to convince the searcher to visit and then convince that searcher, now a visitor, to stick around for more than a few seconds.
On Hubs, there is a specific tool called Summary, that is best used instead of the 1st Paragraph.
You could use the 1st Paragraph to reinforce the Summary, but not duplicate the contents of it. The Hub Summary acts as the Description given to the engine. So, yes, one or two Keys with the summary makes sense. More so, it should reflect the Title.
As example, a hub titled PHP Captcha Script Tutorial would have a summary specifying the particulars of those four words in relation to the article content. Note in the image below, how the Title/Link reflects the Hub Taxonomy and then the Summary, highlighting the corresponding query text (if any)
Then, throughout the article, sprinkle additional Keys and Folksonomy, in relation to that portion of the article (the paragraph). You could even split up the article by Key describing PHP, then Captcha, then Scripting and then the full Tutorial. This not only presents a very well structured article, it allows the reader to flow through the text with interest and provides the engine with textual power cells.
I write for another site and they have us use keyword in the first 140 characters. I try to do the same on HubPages because of that.
My article with first sentence used ended up on page 5 Google. I do always have keywords in first and last sentence.
I write my articles naturally and seem to always end up on page 1 or 2, position 1 - 5 on these pages. Usually I see good page results within 24 hours of publishing as well.
Google is moving away from the in content keywords tactics.
My articles are rarely on page 5. Do you think it is because they did not use my attention getting summary but my first sentence and a half of my article? There is no hook to get the readers interested. Oh well, maybe it will do better later. Cardisa, would you explain further about in content keyword change.
I only meant that Google isn't paying much mind to content that strategically places keywords in there. As someone pointed out, your keywords will eventually show up in the article anyway and Google seem to be doing more than just picking up first a last paragraphs, that's why they are able to spot some duplicate content. So long as you have a strong keyword title and your content is relevant, just write away
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