Keyword Research – the basics!

April 2, 2014  |   SEO, Website Development

Whether you are building a new website, or looking how to optimize your current site, keyword research becomes the most important component.  It can effectively make or break your website!  If you plan to rank well for keywords that have low volume then no one will be searching for those terms.  Choose a keyword that has extremely high competition and you may find it impossible to get on the first page of Google.

So today I want to take you through the simple steps of keyword research so that you can start to look at this yourself.


Is your keyword Valuable?

Determining the right keyword is important for your overall online success; consider your end goal.  We are not just trying to get visitors to our site, we are trying to get the right visitors to the site that will convert. There is no point in having visitors that just don’t want to be there.

The first thing to ask yourself is whether the keyword is relevant to the page you are promoting.  If my keyword is Social Media Services then I would not expect to be using that to push a page about Search Engine Optimization.  Makes sense?

If people come to my page by using this keyword, will they get what they want?  Will they be happy to land on that page?  Our aim is to satisfy our customers needs so the correct selection of keywords will help achieve that goal.

Ask yourself if you are going to make a financial gain, or some other gain, from people coming to that page via that keyword.  Is it going to help your business?

If you can answer yes to all of these questions then you can be confident that your keyword research was good.


Keyword research within the search engines

The next step is to have a look for your chose keyword in Google.  You can determine alot about your chosen keyword by simpling typing it in the Google search box.  Remember it is best if you do this when you are logged our of your Google account otherwise your history and settings can affect the results you see.

When you search for your keyword:

1. Are there many adverts around the side of the organic search results? If yes, then the chances are that this is a high value keyword.

2. Are there multiple ads above the organic search results? If yes then this is most likely a highly lucrative keyword that is prone to excellent rates of direct conversion.


Long Tail Keywords are important!

More and more these days Google is looking to get more accurate results when people put in long tail keywords.  That means long tail keywords are much more important and tend to convert a lot better than a short keyword.

A person searching for “hotel” is probably browsing, and not ready to buy yet. On the other hand, someone searching for “cheapest five star hotels in Seminyak, Bali” are virtually ready to get their credit card out!

The competition on long tail keywords will generally be a lot less and so they offer a great opportunity.


Google Ads

When we think about the tools out there for Keyword research then there are a few that come to mind:

Google Ads’ Keyword Tool – Keyword Planner is a tool that helps you find keyword ideas. Google Insights for Search – Google has dozens upon dozens of valuable tools marketers can use every day. Google Trends Keyword Demand Prediction – Explore Google trending search topics with Google Trends.

Keyword research can be easier when you use a tool like Google Ads keyword planner

Once you have an idea of the keywords you are looking for you can use these tools to check thinks like the monthly volume and competition for those keywords.

To determine volume for a particular keyword, be sure to set the Match Type to [Exact] and look under Local Monthly Searches.

In order to know which keywords to target, it is very important that you look at both monthly volume and competition.  Targeting a keyword that has a very high competition means you might be competing against a top 10 branded company.  That could be almost impossible to compete against.

Try to pick long tail keywords that have decent volume with low competition.

I personally build a spreadsheet to store all of my keywords that link to specific pages on my site.  I will also be comparing how my competitors compare for those keywords as that will also influence the direction that I take.

At the end of the day, you must continually assess how those keywords perform and change as necessary.


If you found this blog useful then you may also like – Wondered why your SEO efforts aren’t working? Did you check Duplicate content?


Get in touch with us

    This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.