Keywords are the foundation of SEO and basic search marketing. Many business owners know a bit about SEO and keywords, but most people know that getting to the top of Google’s first page is challenging and awesome at the same time.
But how does that happen? SEO is a long, complicated process, but it starts with a less-complicated point: Keywords. At the high risk of oversimplifying the idea, keywords act as tags for search engines to pull up when someone is looking for something online. If Google sees your keyword, chances are better that your website will come up.
Here are some tricks you can use to help choose the best keywords for your website:
#1 – Do Your Homework First
It all starts with your audience. If you know who your customers are, you’ll have a better idea of what is it they’re searching for online. Get in their heads a bit and begin to build out some keywords that way.
Also research costs associated with keywords for Google AdWords search campaigns. Some keywords cost a fortune, and others, pennies. A bit of research can make a huge difference in your digital campaigns.
The more time you spend with it, the more you’ll discover, and the more you’ll likely end up saving in the long run.
Where Do I Start?
One of our favourite places is Google’s autofill suggestions. When you type “car” into Google, you might notice that suggestions pop up. “Car [types]”, “car [colours]”, or “car [insurance]” might come up for you, so you know those are popular searches related to cars.
As always, there are lots of tools—some are even free—to help with keyword research, too. SEMrush is another favourite, as well as Moz.
#2 – Use Long-tail Keywords
Let’s say you sell car insurance, and you want to rank for the “car insurance” keyword. Well, you aren’t the only one—according to Google, there are over 83 million results for “car insurance”.
I guess it’s hopeless then, right? Not at all—we have a card up our sleeve called long-tail keywords. Elegant, we know. Long-tail keywords are simply longer keyword phrases.
So How Do These Work?
Long-tail keywords are more specific and relevant to your business—if chosen correctly. They’re very similar to regular keywords, but they’re more like “keyphrases”.
Going back to the earlier example for car insurance, maybe your business only sells premium car insurance in Toronto. There you go—”luxury car insurance Toronto” is your first long-tail keyword.
#3 – Build A List (Or Two)
Now that you know more about long-tail keywords, you can begin building a list of keywords you want to rank for. But first, it’s helpful to know what you don’t want to rank for.
Negative keywords are an easy way of helping you filter out irrelevant clicks. If your business is all about premium car insurance, then “cheap car insurance” doesn’t help you much. Neither will “luxury trailer insurance” or “motorcycle insurance”.
How Many Keywords Do I Need?
The best answer: As many as you can. The realistic answer: At least 10 solid ones. But aim for more. C’mon, you can do it. Try to get 25 if you can. Make it worth your time.
Also, make a list for both negative keywords and positive ones. That’ll also come in handy down the road.
#4 – Test Your Keywords
—and retest, too. You’ll need to know how they’re performing, and if they’re worth ranking for. Sometimes, a few of your keywords hit it big, and sometimes, zero in 50 keywords make it to Google’s front page. That’s why testing is crucial.
Not sure what to look for? Check out Moz or SEMrush for keyword help. This is something you can spend time with yourself, or simply use a tool to save you the trouble.
How Long Does It Take Before I’m On The Front Page?
Remember to give it time—you don’t wind up in that number one spot overnight. Let a month go by before you even consider checking back. Review once per month, and then, if you need to, you can take action after the first 3 months.
#5 – Seriously, Don’t Be Spammy
It’s one of the golden rules of advertising, and it could make or break your website.
Google is always cracking down on spam and “black-hat” SEO tricks. That means keyword stuffing hasn’t worked since 2005, pasting dozens of copies of your web address around the Internet won’t accomplish anything without approval, and duplicating your webpages and unlinking the duplicates actually does more damage than good.
Okay, So What Isn’t Spammy?
Create good content. Write naturally, be interesting, and think about your audience first. Be relevant in every action. SEO will give you a boost, but an awesome website with awesome content is the best way to get people to visit your website.
One last thing: if you think you’re outsmarting Google, you’re not. They’ve thought of, like, 99% of every SEO tactic out there. And even if you were right, Google will fix it quickly, so don’t put too much effort into it.
Source: Hello BLOG