Not sure whether this question belongs in this forum or one of the SE ones. Feel free to set me straight if it's misplaced.
I am doing some writing for a client. He will be posting the copy on the company Web site. His tech guy advised that the copy should be optimized for one particular search term, which for the purposes of this post I will identify as "City, State, widgetology." It is a particularly unwieldy term that doesn't drop in easily as my former clients' keyword terms have.
Now here's what I'm not sure about. I managed to work in that term, exactly that way, only once in the 450 words of copy. It does not flow nicely without screaming "key words." I mean, how often does a person refer not to his city but his city, state? I did, however, get it in once more in a two-sentence combination, where the words follow each other exactly if you ignore the punctuation, kind of like this:
Content content content content City. State widgetology content content content content....
And I also got it twice more as part of whole paragraphs, where the individual words of the term are in the correct order but are separated by other words, kind of like this:
Content content content content City content content. Content State content content content. Content widgetology content content......
So that's a total of four times in the copy itself--not a bad saturation level. I also advised the client to use the whole term in an <h1> header and incorporate the whole term into the page title.
In my experience as a search engine user
, I have observed that the two examples above do appear in SE results. They just don't list as high as whole-phrase results or header/title results. However, this term is uncommon enough that when I ran it in Google and Yahoo, both SEs returned that type of result starting with the sixth and seventh listing, so it seems even more reasonable to me to go ahead and use those methods. I'm just not sure my observations are entirely accurate. I'm by no means an expert on this SEO stuff--I'm just the hack who cranks out the writing.
So, let's hear it from all of you: am I on the right track, or would I be better off sacrificing a little natural readability to get the client better results?