3 Downsides of Using Really Popular Keywords

A good digital marketing program will most likely make use of search engine optimization (or SEO) to reach its goals. SEO refers to the whole range of tasks that are aimed at making pages search-engine-friendly. Among the most important SEO functions are content creation (can be an article, picture, infographic, or video) and link-building.

At the foundation of any SEO campaign are keywords, which are the terms that users type in when they search for information on Google and other search engines. The appropriate keywords must be used in the articles so that it’s easier for the search engine crawlers to index and eventually rank content pages.

Keywords to be used should be gathered through thorough keyword research. Tools such as Google Ads and Ahrefs can be of big help in this task. Most of the time, keywords are assessed according to the number of people searching for them in a given period. The more people using the keyword or longtail keyword, the more valuable it becomes. This is the rule of thumb. Hence, many content creators insert target keywords with high search volumes into their content.

However, targeting high-volume keywords is not a perfect strategy. It has its downsides, and we discuss three of the most important ones here.

There’s a lot of (fierce) competition!

As said, the rule of thumb is to consider high-volume keywords valuable. When something becomes the rule, many are inclined to follow. So, you can reasonably expect that there will be a lot of content online that is using a popular keyword. You have to rise above them all in order to be noticed and eventually ranked by Google on its top pages.

Fine, we’ll just do our best to create the most relevant content. But as are many things in this world, this is a lot easier said than done. Being the best when there is a lot of competition is quite a feat. More on this on the next point.

It’s costly–in terms of money or time or both–to produce outstanding content.

When you compete with a lot of equally capable or even more competent businesses and their content creation strategies, you need content that offers unique value. Of course, this is possible, but the process can be costly. You may have to shell out more money to hire an expert who comes up with your content. You have to put in more time and effort in doing your research.

If your company or business is liquid enough for these types of investments, then by all means, stop reading now and ignore this article altogether. But if you are a startup trying to make your mark, then you should be more mindful. You can first target more specific but less specific keywords. There are a lot of firms that can help you with this at a reasonable cost. Timmermann Group is a digital marketing firm offering this sort of help.

High-volume generic keywords do not convert well.

Most of the time, high-volume keywords are generic keywords. “Athletic shoes,” “veterinarian,” “restaurants,” and “nike” are examples of such keywords.


When we say generic, we mean that it’s difficult to ascertain what the intent of the user is when they are searching for those terms. Are they doing research so they’d want informative content? Are they looking to buy? So, even if your page gets ranked well and actually gets a lot of visits, it’s difficult to make actual conversions because you are attracting too many wrong targets.


Being present online is a business necessity. People now navigate their world semi-digitally, that is, they look things up first online before they visit a store in person or make a purchase. To stay relevant, we don’t have any other choice but to sway where the market wind is blowing and that is online.

High-volume keywords are still useful; don’t get us wrong. Business owners simply need to understand that there is risk in targeting them.

Written by CrazyLeaf Editorial

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