Regardless of whether you are looking to grow your online presence organically or through paid search, keyword research is an important step in the process. With the correct keywords put in place following careful research, targeted traffic can be directed through to your website and ( if the website is goal focused ) lead to higher conversion rates.
Keyword research doesn’t need to be difficult if a structured approach is followed. There are also a number of benefits from having keyword lists to hand as they can help identify areas where content can be written and developed for clients which will also offer added SEO benefits to your website.
Important Keyword Research Metrics
One of the main tools used in keyword research is the Google Keyword Planner. It helps you distinguish which keywords are appropriate for your strategy, and also gives helpful alternative suggestions. There are a few metrics featured on the Google Keyword Planner which may appear confusing if you are not already aware of them:
Competition: This metric identifies how saturated the market is for that specific search term. Although it may seem like a negative metric considering if a keyword search time is quite high, it can help identify areas where a keyword could be developed into a long-tail keyword to help you rank higher for more specific, niche search terms.
Search Volume: This is hugely important in your keyword research, as if no one is searching for your specific keyword, you will not receive a great deal of traffic from it. Ideally, you want to be using keywords with low competition and high-volume if you can identify them. It is not easy to find these keywords as in general, the most searched for terms will be the ones everyone wants to include on their website, thus making the competition high.
Relevance: There is no point including a keyword in your SEO strategy if it isn’t relevant to your website and its audience. Although you might have identified a keyword that is high in search volume and low in competition, if it isn’t relevant you will end up directing traffic to your website, only for the users to leave straight away (known as bounce rate). This is often an indicator to Google and can in fact end up pushing your website down the search engine rankings.
How to develop your keyword lists
There are a few simple ways that keyword research can be completed in order to identify the best keywords to use on your website.
Solution Focused Keyword Searches
If your website is offering a specific product or service, then try to identify some of the questions your ideal consumer would type into a search engine. Think about the problems your product or service helps to solve, and how that could be worded to create a keyword relevant to your website.
Branded Keyword Searches
If you think about how a consumer will search for your specific brand/product/service in Google, they will often use your company name in the search term. Therefore once you have identified the broader keyword terms, it is a good idea to duplicate those keywords but add the brand to them. This will be particularly beneficial for those looking to develop their PPC keywords.
As part of any marketing research, it is important that you take a look at your competitors and analyse what they are doing. You can do this by looking at the types of content they have produced on their blog and the pages they rank for in Google. Try studying their positions in the search engines for some of the keyword phrases you are looking to rank for, and see what adaptations of the phrase they are using.
When you are looking to change the SEO strategy for a set of pages it is a good idea to see how much traffic each page has received and also take a look at some of the search terms people have used to arrive on that page. Each of these factors will play a part in whether or not to change the SEO strategy on the page.