Your soldiers are your keywords. Choose them wisely. You want a highly disciplined bunch. Your army needs to march and move as one. Grow and curate a good keyword list, choose a few good keywords, you could end up with a 1000 or more. Then all you need do now is shepherd your content towards these keywords and objectives. Easy huh? Nope. You might want to let us help you with your keyword research…
What is a keyword?
Keywords are the terms you decide you want to rank for in the search engines. A keyword can be, and usually is in SEO, more than one word. Long tail keywords are much more specific. They are often a good choice to start with. As your website becomes more popular, by being found by long tail keywords, you could then start trying to rank for shorter, more generic keywords, which will usually have much more competition. You might want to offer “web design” for example. But this is a very competitive term. However if you focused on say “Ringwood Web Design” then you stand a much better chance ranking well.
The Keyword Research Process
There are three basic steps to take in the keyword research process:
- What is your mission/project definition?
What do you do and what is your website about? What makes it special? A good project definition is essential. What is your unique selling point?
- Make a keyword list
Collect and curate a good list of search terms.
- Create Landing Pages for these keywords
Just building a huge list of keywords is one thing, now you need to create content to match.
You may even think you know the right keywords. It may be your business, you probably live and breathe them. But are these the same keywords your customers use? Forgot all you know. Take a step back or even better step into your customers shoes. What is she trying to achieve? What does she call that problem which I solve for her? How will she ask Google?
Good keyword research makes sure that you use the words your target audience uses, and therefore makes the whole effort of optimising your website worthwhile.
~ Content SEO, Marieke van de Rakt and Joost de Valk.
You may be a heating and ventilation engineer, you even have a certificate to prove it. But that’s useless when your customer needs a ‘plumber’. You may sell bespoke handmade shoes but your client wants heels to die for.
It’s never about what YOU want
~ Roger Vergé
Be your customer
Be your customer. Borrow her eyes. See what she sees. Describe your business as she does. Not how you might do on the golf course. Rewrite your elevator pitch for the web.
Be a good shepherd
You don’t need to lay down your life for your flock of keywords. It is your life. Make your bed carefully. You will lie in it. Choose to dream. Don’t worry about looking under the bed for monsters. You should have by now squeezed the wrong word demons into the closet and thrown the key. There is no stopping you now. Well there is one thing, forget about the monsters. Don’t ignore that elephant in your room: content. For creating good content, you need focus on your content strategy.
Keyword Research Tools
- Google Adwords Keyword Planner: Find new and related keywords
- Yoast Suggest: Find keyword expansions
- Google Trends: Compare traffic for keyword sets
- Spyfu: Analyse your competition.