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Keyphrases Trump Keywords

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By now you've probably noticed that searches can be made for a keyword or for several keywords. Where more than one word is included in the query - the words are known as a keyphrase.

Typically the number of results for a single word will exceed the returns for a keyphrase including that word. That is because the request is more exacting, more restrictive, more precise.

Let's take a look at a keyword search for - cat.

The current google SERPs returned 386,000,000 web pages - quite a few to sort through. In glancing down the page there is information about the Caterpillar Corporation, felines, the Cat Ferry in Nova Scotia, the Center for Alternative Technology, Cat pumps and the Central Arkansas Transit authority on the first page alone. And they didn't even get to the real context of the search - CAT Scans.

So let's enter cat scan.

That's better - only 6,080,000 web pages. Quite an improvement over cat, but still too large.

Let's say you know the type of cat scan equipment - a specialized CT called an Electron Beam Tomography Cat Scan. Just 213,000 returns for this highly focused key phrase. Still quite a few, but there's a better chance you'll locate what you need in much less time. Add focus - save time.

Search for Exact Terms

In the previous example, if you wanted to pare back the pages to only those with the EXACT phrase in the EXACT word order there is a way to do it. In addition, the pages selected will be restricted to those which contain these words - only if they are adjacent to each other.

Place quotation marks around the phrase so it reads - "Electron Beam Tomography Cat Scan". Click search. Oops! Too much focus. There are zero pages out there with those exact words.

So select a slightly different version of the term such as "Electron Beam Tomography CT" which is the same equipment. This returns just 23 webpages - within reason to scan through.

This exact term concept is great for finding things. Let's say you hear a song on the radio and remember the words but did not hear the title. You could enter the words with quotation marks around them - hit search - and see if the song title comes up. Or you might remember a famous quotation but not who said it. Do an exact search and find out instead of being distracted all day with the name on the tip of your tongue.

Search Efficiently and Save Time

In the next sections - more on keyphrases.

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