The process of optimizing a website for search engine success is both time-consuming and complex. As the algorithms used by popular search engines change, the strategy you use to attract online attention for your business will also need to be altered. Perhaps one of the most important parts of search engine optimization is keyword research.
Newcomers to the world of digital marketing tend to take keyword research for granted, which can have a negative impact on their placement on search engine results pages. Studies show that the first five websites on an organic search engine results page receive nearly 67% of the clicks. Landing in these highly-coveted spots will require the use of great content and the right keywords.
The higher your website ranks on search engine results pages, the easier it will be to increase website traffic and online sales. The first step in achieving this goal is implementing sound keyword research tactics. The following is information about keyword research and why this online marketing practice is so important.
What is Keyword Research?
Keyword research is a practice that involves looking for terms that people in your target audience are searching for online. The more you know about what terms your target audience is searching for, the easier it will be to implement these words/phrases in the content on your website. If these words/phrases are featured in your content, it will help drive organic traffic to your website.
The Importance of Keyword Research
If you want to have success with your online marketing efforts, then you have to realize the importance of keyword research. Inexperienced business owners fail to realize just how many entrepreneurs are competing for the same online sales leads. Without the competitive edge the great keyword research and implementation can provide, you will struggle to expand the online reach your business has. Keyword research is important for a number of reasons like:
- Keyword research gives you information about potential audience size
- Without this research, you risk using the wrong keywords on your website
- Know which keywords you have an opportunity to rank for
- Keyword research provides you with a better understanding of your industry
- A comprehensive keyword list allows you to monitor SEO performance
Rather than taking on the keyword research process on your own, you should reach out to professionals for help. With this professional assistance, you can get a comprehensive list of keywords to use in your website content.
Understanding the Different Types of Keywords
As you start the process of researching keywords, you will come across a number of terms you might be unfamiliar with. Learning the lingo used in the keyword research world can help you get a better understanding of how to use these terms to achieve your search engine optimization goals.
If a search phrase consists of three or more words, it is referred to as a long-tail keyword. While these keywords typically have less search volume, they come with more specific user intent. In most cases, consumers that know exactly what they want will use long-tail keywords in their search queries. Utilizing these keywords can help you attract attention from consumers that are ready to make a purchase.
Search phrases that feature two words or less and have a high search volume are known as seed keywords. These keywords are also known by other names like main, focus or head keywords. You need to realize that these shorter, more popular keywords are used by thousands and possibly millions of competitors.
Closely Related Keywords
Keywords that have the same meaning but might be written differently are referred to as closely related or synonym keywords. Using synonym keywords is a great way to rank for terms that are highly competitive. Implementing a variety of synonym keywords in a piece of content can help you attract attention from a wider variety of consumers.
Educating yourself about the various types of keywords can help you devise a winning search engine optimization strategy.
Keyword Research Best Practices
Creating a keyword strategy for your website can be hard work. Rather than cutting corners and paying for this mistake in the future, you need to learn more about keyword research best practices.
Start By Identifying Your Niche
Before you start researching keywords to use on your website, you need to identify your niche. The more you know about the industry you operate in and the companies you are competing against, the easier it will be to identify the right keywords.
Google is probably the best place to start the keyword research process. By going to Google and typing in search terms related to your industry, you can get a look at which companies you are actually competing with. As you visit the websites that feature the keywords you want to rank for, pay attention to things like:
- The type of content being used
- Posting frequency
- The structure of their website
- Assess their social media presence
With this information, you can start to fill in the details of your own keyword strategy.
Find Out About Search Intent
Coming up with a list of blog topics and choosing the seed keywords for each one is a great idea. As you develop a list of topics and seed keywords to use on your website, you need to dig a bit deeper to see how powerful these topics/keywords will be. The best way to assess this is by diving into the world of user intent.
Popular search engines like Google are extremely concerned with user intent. The understanding of a user’s intent allows Google to place the right information on the first page of search results. If your main goal is to sell more products/services, then you need to choose keywords that are geared towards consumers with the intent of performing these actions.
Why Is Keyword Research Important?
You may be wondering why investing time and effort into in-depth keyword research is important. The answer to this question is multi-faceted. Below we will cover some of the reasons why keyword research is something you should view as a priority.
A Great Way To Find Relevant Topics
Having well-written blogs on your website is a great way to attract attention from modern consumers. However, if you aren’t doing your homework before choosing blog topics, it is easy to miss your mark when it comes to how engaging and informative your blogs are. This is why you need to perform keyword research to uncover information about the topics your target audience is interested in.
With this research, you can develop blog content that will actually get read and shared by people in your target audience. During this keyword research process, you can also get a feel for blog topics that have been covered ad nauseum. You need to avoid these topics at all costs if you want to attract attention from potential customers.
Better Search Placement
Google uses a number of different factors when deciding where to place a website on the search engine results page. One of the first things the Google algorithm will assess when crawling a website is what keywords they have in place. The keywords used and how frequently they are used can make or break where your website gets placed on a search engine results page.
Without extensive keyword research, you will have a hard time figuring out which phrases to target in your content. Instead of putting your marketing investment in jeopardy, you need to realize the importance of keyword research. With this research, you can get a better return on your marketing investment and drive more organic traffic to your website.
Keep an Eye on the Competition
One of the main components of a successful keyword research strategy is assessing who your competition is. During this process, you will need to see who is using similar keywords and how successful they have been. Having this information provides you with a big-picture view of who your audience is. With this information, you can structure marketing campaigns designed to beat your competition and gain the lion’s share of online leads in your industry.
Stay On Top of Industry Trends
If you want to drive traffic to your website, you need the right mix of popular keywords and trending topics on your domain. Writing blogs about the same old topics can lead to lower traffic over time. This is why you need to view shaking up your content marketing strategy as a priority.
As you start to research keywords related to your industry, you will be able to uncover current online trends. Using these trends to develop content that consumers will find interesting can help you improve the lead generation power your website has. You need to embrace trends and use them to showcase your knowledge of your chosen industry. If you are perceived as an industry leader, it will be much easier to garner trust from potential customers.
With the tips in this article, you can optimize your approach to keyword research.