Search engine optimization comes with many steps and efforts but at the end of the day it all start with your website. Before you think about generating links and other search engine marketing efforts it is important to take a deep breath and jump into the pool of keyword research. The key is to research highly targeted keyword phrases that directly relate to the content you have written for each page of your website. Remember the search engines rank individual pages for specific keywords, not entire websites, so it is important to spend the time conducting keyword research properly.
Here are some areas to look at when starting your keyword research:
1. Google Analytics: If you have Google analytics set up on your website it already has a list of existing keywords that are attracting visitors to your website. This is a great starting point. Punching in each word into your keyword research tool will generate a nice list you can than dwindle down.
2. Competition: Do you currently have competitors that have well optimized websites? It is not a bad idea to take a look at their website and eyeball the meta information and content to see what types of keywords they are using. I don’t recommend copying content or meta information because that is just wrong but getting a feel for how they use the same types of keywords is ok.
3. Long Tail Keywords are Okay: When conducting keyword research don’t be scared to use long tail keywords that don’t necessarily have a tremendous amount of search volume. We are conditioned to want to go after the short high search volume keywords but neglecting the long tail is not the right approach. You have to remember that everyone in your industry is targeting those already. It is ok to go after them because naturally your website will target those types of keywords already but the long tail keywords can generate some good quality traffic fairly quickly.
4. Industry Buzz Terms: Don’t forget about searching for industry buzz terms to target on your website as well. Depending on your industry you could generate a very decent amount of traffic for your website if your business is in an industry that uses a lot of industry type terms.
5. Singular and Plural: Make sure to conduct research for terms using singular and plural forms of certain keywords. Sometimes the difference in search volume can be very drastic so don’t forget to keep this in mind when conducting your keyword research.
6. SEO Keyword Research Tools: There are several great keyword research tools to consider when conducing keyword research. Keyword Discovery is the best keyword research tool that I would recommend on the market…it is the tool that I personally use. I do not recommend using free keyword research tools as many of them tend to not show accurate and search data.
In addition to my keyword research tips, I located a video that show some great advice for basic keyword research:
Keyword research is probably the most important aspect of all your search engine optimization efforts (besides the content on your site of course!). These keywords will dictate what type of visitors you will target for your website so it is important to not only get them right but really not miss out on any that might generate a really targeted visitor for your website. So spend some time developing the relevant keyword list for each page of your site…all of your hard work will pay off if you give it the proper time!