Are your website pages being found? Do people see your PPC campaigns, or is that low quality score bringing you down? How do you know if you’re targeting the right things… the search terms and phrases that people actually search?
While trusting your gut may lead you to the right result for certain things in life, many things require a more scientific approach.
Like keyword research.
Why Do Keyword Research
If you want to rank well in the search engines results pages (SERPs), keyword research should be a step on your checklist. In order to target the right phrases, you need to know what words are searched most and which have the most competition.
How to Do Keyword Research
So how do you know what keyword phrases are searched most often? Use a keyword research tool. Google AdWords has a great one, and it’s free.
Let’s say you’re deciding between two keyword phrases that are similar, yet different enough to make a difference. For example, when we were redesigning our website, we considered using both “online marketing services” and “internet market services” as a keyword phrase in our URLs and page content. So, we did a search to see the results.
You’ll notice competition is high for both phrases, yet global and local monthly search volume is significantly higher for “internet marketing services.” Hence, you’ll see this is the chosen keyword phrase used in our URL name, navigation and website copy for our marketing services section:
When to Do Keyword Research
There are many ways you can use and places you can implement your keyword research results, such as:
- URL Names
- Website Page Content: Body copy, Anchor text links, Heading tags and Image alt attributes
- Pay-Per-Click Ads (text and PLA)
- Meta Data: Title tags, Meta descriptions, Meta keywords
- Content Marketing: such as Articles, Press Releases, Guest Posts and more
Results of Good Keyword Research
While SEO work and keyword research alone cannot guarantee you’ll achieve page one, position one, you’re more likely to see an improvement in your rankings than not.
Implementing your keyword research across the board will help you. Keyword focused title tags, URL names and page content will help your organic rankings, which will in turn help your PPC quality score and profit margin.
As an example, after optimizing the marketing services pages of our website around the term “internet marketing services,” we went from not ranking at all to ranking number two in organic search results on Google. Interestingly enough, Google views “internet marketing services” and “online marketing services” very similarly, so we are ranking for the search query of “online marketing services.” It sure doesn’t hurt that the keyword “online” is positioned right off the root of our domain name to assist in similar keyword variation rankings.
*Google search results as of January 23, 2013.
TIP: As with any changes you make to your website or online marketing efforts, be sure to measure! Keep a record of your rankings over time to see what SEO keyword phrase strategies are working best.
Knowing the right mix of which areas to use your keyword phrases and how aggressive you should be takes a professional who is well versed in internet marketing areas such as search engine optimization and search engine marketing.