The more you do SEO, the more you discover your own style of doing things, even keyword research. A lot of people, especially first timers, just take keyword search for granted. Mostly, they just pick words in random, anything they could think of in thin air and when they think a word sounds good or if a word fits their whim, they immediately include it. However, choosing the right keyword is just as important as any of the things done in SEO. The words you choose to include act like your fishnet for those people you would want to visit your site. Good keywords get a lot of clicks and bad keywords get minimal clicks. Here are some of the best keyword research strategies you could use. This works well for the pro and for amateurs.
Broaden up bare keywords
When you think of what keywords to look for, always put yourself in the shoes of your targeted audience. Ask yourself, “What would be the words that they would most likely use?” List down all of these words and also include their synonyms and words that are closely related to the list that you have come up with.
For example, you are doing something for ESL. Your list may include English, learn English, ESL, English Language. Synonyms would be study English and related words may be learn English online or how to learn English. Synonyms and related words are somehow tricky. There are a lot of paid tools that could do the searching for you. However, if you are on a tight budget and would opt for free tools, there is always Google’s Adwords Keyword Tool.
Geographical location is also a key factor for people whose businesses are specific to certain places. For these cases, do not forget to include the location. So, let’s say you have that ESL and your market is in Korea. Then, in your keywords, be sure to ALWAYS include your target location. The more specific your location is, the more specific you should also be in the location that you include with your keywords.
Determine keyword search volume statistics
Now that you have your list with you, it’s time for you to see which ones can be helpful and which ones are not. In most cases you can get a hundred or so keywords but only a handful of them would become very useful. To know which ones you should make use of, you need to know which ones have good standing when it comes to search volume statistics – which ones are searched a lot, the actual variations of the search, among others. You can choose among many tools to help you with this feat, such tools include Adwords Keywords Tool, Overture Keyword Suggestion Tool, Wordtracker and Keyword Discovery. Whatever you use, you need to watch for (1) the units used in the data, (2) put keywords that are recurrent in all tools top of your list, (3) make sure that you get to familiarize the pattern of results in each tool, like in Overture, it usually gets the highest results, and the sources where they come from.
Know your competition
No matter how high the search volume is for each keyword, if it has a lot of competition, then it doesn’t really do much for your goal. However, if you see in your search of a keyword that there are around a million or so sites that make use of the keyword you are searching, it does not readily mean that you have to compete for a million or so sites. In some cases, the keyword might just have been used unconsciously and may not be the targeted keyword. So, when analyzing how many competition you have you need to redo the way you search for them.
Along with the keywords, also include the commands intitle, inurl, inanchor, and the likes plus putting open and close quotes to the specific keyword you are looking for. This narrows down the searching to those sites that targets the keyword you are searching and intending to use. So, instead of just searching using intitle: ESL online tutorial, for example, you need to use intitle: “ ESL online tutorial”.
Narrow down keywords list
You have your list and you know your competition. So, what’s next? Choose those keywords that get a lot of searches but do not show much a lot in search engines. Come up with your own formula in determining how fair the number of occurrences and the number of searches relate to each other. Just always remember the basic idea: the demand should be high and the number of people who give the supply is less, and that is the key to magic of business, always and has and always will be.
To be more specific, what some people is they try to add up all of the top listing keywords they have in all of the keyword research tools they use. Then they divide it with the intitle results in top search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN and they multiply it with a hundred to get the percentage of how competitive the keyword is.
The Question of Quantity
Let say for example you already have the quality keywords you need, then you ask, “Should I target all of them?” For goodness’ sake, NO! Just choose two to three best keywords that you have and that are appropriate for the page that you have made (articles, etc.) and then just distribute the others in the other pages where the contents are much more related to the keywords. Yet, if you can find a way to get a lot of keywords in one page without creating inconsistencies in the message or the content, then you may do so.
The longer the better
The longer your keywords are the more advantages you get. Short keywords mean being very general. Being general gives you two disadvantages. One, you get to have a LOT of competition and second, people who search using general keywords are just there fishing for some unspecific information. Thus, the less likely you get to be clicked by these people and they really do not have specific objectives because they will just be clicking in random. On the other hand, longer keywords answer two of your greatest problems: they lessen the competition but you still get to use all of the highly searched keywords, and they also bring home really interested people who have specific purpose as to why they are searching things in the Internet. These people have the higher possibilities of purchasing your product or making use of your website frequently.
To put things simply, keyword research requires strategies and techniques. And all of these are founded on the simple idea of getting the best keywords that gets a lot of customers without the hassle of many competitors. If you just follow these simple ideas, you are already on your way to doing the best SEO experience you will ever get.