Keyword Research & Optimization

How Many Keywords Do You Get When You Hire An SEO Company?

When you hire an SEO company, the number of keywords you get can vary greatly based on several factors such as the size of your business, the breadth of your market, the SEO package you choose, and the strategy the SEO company employs. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer, but typically, an SEO campaign might target anywhere from 10 to 100+ keywords. However, an effective SEO strategy focuses less on the sheer number of keywords and more on their relevance and the potential they hold for your business growth.

Understanding Keywords and Their Role in SEO

Before delving into numbers, let’s first understand what keywords are and why they’re crucial for your online success. Keywords are phrases that users enter into search engines to find information, products, or services. In the realm of SEO, they’re the cornerstone that links user queries to your website. If you target the right keywords, you can attract a torrent of targeted visitors who are interested in what you’re offering.

Why Quality Trumps Quantity

The old-school approach to SEO was to cram as many keywords as possible into a webpage, a practice known as keyword stuffing. Today, this tactic is not only ineffective but can also incur penalties from search engines like Google that continuously refine their algorithms to prioritize valuable, user-centric content.

Modern SEO strategies hinge on keyword quality, relevance, and intent. Focusing on a smaller set of highly pertinent keywords can be more advantageous than a scattergun approach, which dilutes the ability to connect with your target audience.

The Role of an SEO Company in Keyword Strategy

An SEO company brings expertise, tools, and experience to the table when developing a keyword strategy tailored to your business goals. SEO professionals perform extensive research to identify a mix of short-tail and long-tail keywords that strike a balance between search volume, competition, and user intent.

Conducting Thorough Keyword Research

Keyword research is the first significant step an SEO company takes after understanding your business objectives. This involves identifying the primary “seed” keywords related to your products or services and exploring variations, long-tail phrases, and related terms that can capture a broader audience.

Tools like Google’s Keyword Planner, Ahrefs, SEMrush, and others assist SEO experts in dissecting keyword data, trends, and competitive insights. This data-driven approach ensures that the chosen keywords are targeted to your specific market and customer base.

Matching Keywords to Business Goals and User Intent

An experienced SEO company will align keywords with your business goals, whether driving sales, generating leads, or boosting brand awareness. Additionally, they delve into user intent—understanding whether a searcher wants to buy, learn, or find a particular page—and cater to these intents across different stages of the customer journey.

Different Types of Keyword Strategies

The number of keywords targeted can also depend on the type of SEO strategy implemented. Let’s explore a few common approaches:

Hybrid SEO Strategies

A hybrid approach combines local and organic SEO strategies to target location-specific and broader terms. A local business may have a handful of focused local keywords augmented with broader industry-specific phrases.

Content Marketing Focus

A content-heavy SEO strategy might involve a significant number of long-tail keywords designed to answer specific user queries through blog posts, articles, and other content forms. This can lead to targeting hundreds of keywords in the long term through various pieces of content.

E-commerce SEO

For e-commerce sites, SEO strategies may include product-specific keywords, category keywords, and other transactional phrases that potential customers might use. This can result in a very extensive list of keywords to cover the multitude of products.

Factors Influencing the Number of Keywords

Several factors come into play when determining how many keywords an SEO company will target for your business. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Business Scale: Smaller businesses may require a more focused set of keywords, while larger enterprises might need to target a broader range to encompass all their product lines and services.
  • Market Competition: Highly competitive markets often require a more robust keyword strategy to break through the noise.
  • Budget and Resources: The size of your budget can dictate the breadth and depth of your keyword targeting. More resources generally means a more extensive campaign.
  • SEO Package: SEO companies offer a range of packages, from basic to premium, which can specify the number of target keywords.

Setting Realistic Expectations with SEO Companies

When partnering with an SEO company, clear communication about expectations, goals, and budget is key. Discuss the rationale behind the selected keywords and understand how they map to your business objectives. An open dialogue ensures that the keyword strategy is fine-tuned to your needs.

Keep in mind that SEO is a long-term endeavor. While it’s natural to want a definitive number of keywords from the get-go, flexibility is important as data, results, and market conditions can shift, prompting a change in strategy.

Finishing Thoughts

Ultimately, the number of keywords targeted in an SEO campaign is less about hitting a specific figure and more about strategic alignment with your business vision and market dynamics. An effective SEO company will take a holistic view, merging in-depth keyword research with ongoing analysis and refinement to connect you with the right audience. Remember, a successful SEO strategy is a balanced blend of science and art; it’s not just the numbers that count, but how effectively those numbers turn into tangible results for your business.


Frequently Asked Questions

What are keywords in SEO context?

Keywords in SEO refer to words or phrases that internet users type into search engines when looking for information, products, or services. These are crucial elements in optimizing a website, as they help search engines understand the content and relevance of a page to a user’s search query.

How many keywords will an SEO company target for my website?

The number of keywords an SEO company will target can vary broadly depending on the size of your website, the complexity of your industry, and the scope of your SEO package. Some companies may focus on as few as 5-10 primary keywords, while larger campaigns might target hundreds or even thousands of long-tail keywords.

Can I choose the keywords that the SEO company targets?

Yes, you can generally suggest keywords that you believe are important to your business. An experienced SEO company will also conduct comprehensive keyword research to find additional keywords that are relevant and valuable to target for your SEO campaign.

How does an SEO company determine the best keywords to target?

An SEO company uses various tools and methodologies to determine the best keywords to target. This includes analyzing search volume, keyword difficulty, relevance to the business, and the search intent behind the keywords. The aim is to select keywords that will drive qualified traffic to your site and align with your business goals.

Does the number of keywords affect the cost of SEO services?

Yes, the number of keywords can affect the cost of SEO services. Campaigns targeting a larger number of keywords often require more extensive research, content creation, and optimization, which can influence the overall cost of the service.

Is there a limit to how many keywords I can rank for?

There is no strict limit to how many keywords your website can rank for. The potential is influenced by numerous factors, including the size of your website, the quality of your content, and your industry’s competitiveness. A well-structured SEO strategy can help your site rank for a broad range of keywords over time.

How long does it take to see results from keyword targeting in SEO?

Results from keyword targeting in SEO can vary, typically requiring several months to be noticeable. The timeline depends on factors like the competitiveness of the keywords, the current standing of your website, and how aggressive your SEO strategy is. Patience and consistent efforts are key in the SEO process.

Will focusing on more keywords dilute my SEO efforts?

Focusing on a large number of keywords without a strategic plan can dilute your SEO efforts. It is crucial to maintain a balance and ensure that each targeted keyword receives the necessary attention and optimization to maximize its potential for ranking improvements.

What happens if the SEO company cannot rank my website for the target keywords?

If an SEO company cannot rank your website for the target keywords, it may suggest reevaluating the strategy. This might include targeting different keywords, making further on-site optimizations, or enhancing the content strategy to improve relevance and authority.

Are long-tail keywords part of the keyword targeting strategy with an SEO company?

Yes, long-tail keywords are typically part of the targeting strategy. These keywords are longer, more specific phrases that often have lower search volumes but can lead to higher conversion rates due to their specific nature and clearer user intent.


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Joe Fares

Founder of UltraSEOSolutions and a Digital Marketing Consultant, a great advocate of educating beginners on the competency of SEO, and helping small businesses dominate their niche. Joe is known for public speaking on SEO and online entrepreneurship, and has been awarded by Payoneer in 2017/2018, for being the most successful entrepreneur in the MENA region.