Keyword Research | SEO For Busy People: Easy Ways To Use Keywords To Hook Search Engines
Keyword Research | It all starts with words typed into a search box. When people use a search engine, they type in one or more words describing what they are searching for: “New Orleans photographer” or “cheap holidays Greece,” for example. These words, or phrases are known as keywords. Choosing the right target keywords is the foundation for the entire SEO campaign. If you don’t select the right keywords with the greatest potential for return, the foundation of your marketing campaign will be weak and, therefore, success is nearly impossible.
Ranking for the right keywords can make, or break your website. So, if you are building a business website, you want to make sure that, when your potential clients search for relevant keywords, your website appears as early as possible in the list of results. That is what search engine optimization is all about.
Make a list of important topics based on what you know about your business | Keyword Research
Keywords are not just about SEO. They at the heart of a company’s marketing campaign at its most granular level. To kick this process off, think about the topics you want to rank for in terms of generic buckets. These topics buckets will turn into lists of about 5-10 keywords that you think are related to your business.
Fill in those topic buckets with keywords | Keyword Research
Now that you have a few topic buckets that you want to focus on, it’s time to identify some phrases that fall into those buckets. These are keyword phrases that you think are important to rank for in the search engine results pages, because your target client is probably searching for those phrases.
As far as useful keywords are concerned, you need to think in the same way as your potential clients. If your keywords are too general, then they’ll likely be too competitive, and even if you rank well on them, searches might not convert well into traffic to your website, since searchers are usually looking for something specific. Keep in mind that since the engines rank pages, not sites, you can, and should, target different keywords on different pages, covering every topic related to your business or industry. You might go for a more general term on your home page, and more specific terms on your inside pages.
Check for a mix of short- and long-tail keywords in each bucket | Keyword Research
Short-tail keywords, sometimes referred to as head terms, are short keywords phrases. They’re usually just one or two words in length, while long-tail keywords generally contain three or more words in the phrase. Basically, long-tail keywords are less popular keywords because they have less search volume, and less competition to rank for. Consider the following two examples: “home remedies for bed bugs” or “how to get rid of depression.” These are each considered long-tail keywords, as compared to trying to rank for the much more competitive search terms “bed bugs” or “depression.”
Single-word terms are usually a poor choice for optimizing. That’s because they’re too broad, and they’re too competitive. Two- and three-word phrases are not only easier to rank for, they send you much higher quality traffic.
Beating the competition | Keyword Research
All your competitors are using SEO on their websites too – and some may have bigger budgets than you. You might have found a term that’s both popular and highly relevant to what you actually do. But if too many other websites are targeting that same term, you might not be able to rank well for it, or you might rank lower than you’d like. Trying to compete for single keywords is less likely to deliver customers who are interested in what you specifically have to offer.
Just because your competitor is doing something, it doesn’t mean you have to. The same goes for keywords. Instead, try and look for longer phrases that closely match what your target client wants, in an area where you have a competitive edge. If your competitor is ranking for certain keywords that are on your list too, it definitely makes sense to work on improving your ranking for those. However, don’t ignore the ones that your competitors don’t seem to care about.