Today I’d like to discuss what is keyword research and how to make this an important part of your SEO strategy.
With all the talk about algorithm changes, one practice has remained and continues to be an essential part of every SEO practitioner’s arsenal – keyword research.
Keywords are still and will continue to be an essential component in optimizing your site. Learn how keyword research fits into an effective SEO strategy and see your rankings rise.
First off, what are keywords?
Keywords are words or phrases that users type into Google to find answers to what they are looking for or to express a need or a problem that they need answers or solutions for.
The search result returned is composed of several websites that search engines deem as appropriate answers to the user’s query.
On the part of website owners, keywords are words or phrases used by these owners, that aptly describe the content of a page, a post or their site as a whole.
Keywords are at the start of every SEO campaign and are its foremost component.
Since keywords are instrumental in making users understand what your site is all about, they are one of the main components that make it possible for your potential customers to find your site.
Keywords are what you use to build your content around.
Keywords are also essential in making search engines understand what your site is all about and are instrumental in your site indexing.
And since search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing use them in understanding your site, keywords also enable your pages to get rankings in the search engines and consequently get traffic to your site.
What is keyword research and how do you leverage this for your SEO strategy?
Keyword research is simply finding the right keywords that that will attract a targeted audience.
Since each content that you create will be targeting a keyword, it is important that you do keyword research to find the right terms and phrases that will give your posts and pages an opportunity to rank.
You do keyword research to determine which keywords are entered by users into search queries so that you can use these keywords to create content that will rank in the search engines.
Through keyword research you can learn which words and phrases you need to target for search engine optimization and understand what needs your target market has.
Keyword research is one of the most important SEO activities that help you project target user demands, enable you to respond to those demands and create products that will satisfy your users requirements.
In other words keyword research is the modern term for market research.
Keywords are the backbone of your SEO campaign. Thus, your SEO strategy hinges greatly on the keywords that you target for.
Simply put, when you master keyword research they become the foundation for your success.
Keywords and its use are an essential part of and is a key component of on page SEO. See my previous post on How Is On Page SEO Done: 15 Powerful Ways
How to do keyword research
In order to benefit from keywords you must know how to find the right keywords that can give your pages a bigger chance at ranking and getting traffic.
Considering the competition that online marketers must deal with, it is often a challenge to find the right keyword that will help boost our chances for getting on Google’s page one. This is specially true for new online marketers with newly build websites.
The chances of competing with established websites that are at the top of search results is almost nil.
The problem with most online marketers is that, when searching for keywords, they tend to go after the high traffic keywords that have a lot of competitors vying for them.
This type of keyword is usually very difficult to rank for and makes it harder for your site to get traffic for.
The Long Tail Keywords
Long tail keywords are keywords that are three or more words long and are more specific to what the use is searching for. Statistics show that 70% of all searches are for long tail keywords.
The great thing about long tail keywords is that they effectively show you the user intent.
It takes the guesswork out of it as you can almost be sure what the user is looking for. And understanding user intent is a big factor for conversion.
When a user has a problem or a need he or she normally uses short tail or mid tail keywords to get more information.
When a user has a potential solution in mind, he or she usually enters long tail keywords to search for that solution. And with this comes an intent to buy that solution.
Long tail keywords are ordinarily used by users who are close to making their buying decision.
And you as an online marketer can leverage those long tail keywords that will denote that the user is ready to buy and increase your chances for making that sale.
This example will show this more clearly:
- Furniture – short tail keyword
- Toddler furniture – mid tail keywords
- Toddler furniture sizes for small bedrooms – long tail keywords
With long tail keywords you zero in on the specific needs of the user and because the search is specific you are able to target those that are ready to buy. Which gives you better chances to convert. The more specific the search terms, the better the chances for conversion.
The Wonderful Low Hanging Fruit
One strategy that I highly recommend is to go for the low hanging fruit or keywords with very little or no competition at all.
These are called low hanging fruit because its easier to grab the low hanging fruit that it is to climb the tree to get the fruit at the top. The fruit is usually smaller meaning it gets less traffic but they get much, much less competition.
We all know that ranking is one of the most challenging things to achieve specially for new websites and blogs.
By using low-hanging fruit keywords you get at chance at getting to the top of the search results. In fact the use of low hanging fruits can be used as a strategy not only by new sites but even by established sites wanting to get an unlimited amount of traffic.
Keywords with very little competition are much easier to rank for than those with a lot of competitors. When you focus on the low hanging fruits then you tremendously increase your chances of ending in the first page of Google rankings in any niche.
Brand new sites find it specially difficult to get rankings particularly if these use very competitive keywords.
Thus it is better to focus on low competition keywords to boost your chances to rank. Remember rankings are what get your site found in search engines and no rankings means no traffic.
Choose A Powerful Keyword Research Tool
Keyword research is a tedious and time consuming effort. Although the rewards for the effort are great finding those perfect keywords for your posts and pages need not be that difficult if you use the right keyword tool.
I recommend that you use a powerful tool that will immensely help you in your keyword research efforts.
A good keyword research tool should give you, at the least, critical information like number of searches, traffic volume and competition data in order for it to be usable and useful for you.
It should be easy to understand, easy to use and should provide data relevant to your needs as an online marketer.
It should also make your keyword research efforts less taxing and less demanding.
A good understanding of what is keyword research and how to leverage this for your SEO strategy is key to your site rankings, traffic and conversion.
In doing keyword research, first and foremost on your mind should be to create content that will provide value to your audience.
Post content that will answer the questions of your potential customers and give solutions to their problems.
When you are able to give them that then you maximize your chances to convert those potential customers into actual sales.
Keyword research lets you know what users are looking for and effective use of this enables you to understand what their problems are.
When you have a better understanding of their problems and needs you are able to use the right keywords to drive them to your site to give them the solution they seek.
Please leave your comments or questions below. I would love to know your thoughts about this.