March 31, 2009
Keyword research is like getting into the minds of your prospects. If you use an analytic tool to find out exactly what people are searching for in your niche, you can use those keywords to create content that answers all of their questions and relates to their interests. By satisfying the needs of your website visitors with informative content, you improve your credibility and thus boost your online business. Here are the 5 most important factors you should consider when conducting keyword research.
1. Find a Good Research Tool
There are numerous free keyword research tools out there and many people will argue that the free tools are all you need. Some examples of free tools include Google’s Adwords tool and the free search term suggestion tool by Keyword Discovery. However, these tools are limited in nature. If you’re willing to shell out around $40 per month, you can get your hands on a keyword tool that provides you with more information such as how many competing sites are targeting certain keywords in your niche.
2. Set Realistic Goals
If you are in a competitive niche, don’t aim for the keywords that have both high search volume and high competition. Those keywords will be incredibly difficult to rank for in the beginning. Instead, focus on ranking for keywords with lower search volume and less competition. When combined, these so-called long tail keywords can bring you decent traffic. The best keywords however are the keywords that have high traffic and little competition but they are obviously harder to find. Don’t ignore misspelled keywords either. There are some popular keywords that people commonly misspell when conducting searches. Incorporate those misspelled keywords into your content to give your site an edge over the competition.
3. Be Specific
If you are an accountant in Tucson, Arizona, don’t aim to rank for the keyword, “accountant.” Get specific so people who need exactly what you offer can find you with ease. For example, if you are an accountant who provides litigation support in Tucson, make sure the keyword phrases you use include those terms so you reach your target market.
4. Test Your Keywords with a PPC Campaign
Once you do your initial keyword research, create a landing page with those keywords and set up a PPC campaign. Use an analytic tool to find out how many people land on your page and with what search terms. You can also determine how much time they spent on your landing page and if you achieved any conversions. Using a PPC campaign prior to launching your complete SEO campaign will help you narrow down your keyword list to only the most effective ones.
5. Use LSI Keywords
Instead of just targeting the obvious keywords in your niche, it’s important to find keyword phrases that are associated with your topic. LSI stands for “latent semantic indexing.” It might sound like confusing jargon but it’s quite simple. All you have to do is use an LSI keyword tool, which will help you generate relevant keywords. Sprinkling LSI keywords in your content allows you to enhance your opportunities to receive search engine traffic. Search engines value websites that provide informational content and the more related keywords your content focuses on, the more value and depth it is perceived to have.
Utilize these keyword research strategies and you’ll be well on your way to increasing traffic to your site. When you’re starting out, it’s a good idea to target long tail keywords and very specific keywords. This will help you establish your website in the beginning. From there you can move on to the more competitive keywords in your niche to ultimately build a SEO online presence.
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