Research SEO keywords that your target audience wants to find
The key is to do SEO keyword research for your target market and how they are searching for your products or service. From there you would be able to craft contents worth strategic keywords to input into your website to satisfy both your customers and search engines like Google. The pertinent question you have to ask yourself are:
How Do SEO Consultants help you in keyword research?
They ask questions. A lot of questions.
An important process of search engine optimization (SEO) is to help business owners ponder on questions that would uncover their goals in relation to their target audience. It is not as simple as taking the clients words at face value and then run with it. For example, “anime stickery” perfectly describes a client’s core product. But in reality, the man in the street would not use such a keyword term and as expected there is no search volume for this keyword. “ Anime stickers” would be much more apt. It is evidently clear that the keywords a client want ranked and how his target might actually search can totally two different things.
Another example: Mingo Ice Cream is a regional manufacturer of ice cream and assorted dairy products. The question we would ask them would be along these lines:
Once the above questions, among others, are satisfactorily addressed, only then can the correct keywords be settled on and followed through with suitable supporting contents.
High Value Keywords
To get keywords to rank is not the ultimate test of success. Far from it actually. A well ranked keyword with no search volume is a Pyrrhic victory. You have to start with seed keywords that have search volume. From there, you will want to have variations of these seed keywords because not everyone search for a product our service in exactly the same way. Search volume do vary from keyword to keyword. In SEO reality, because of the intense competitiveness of keywords, sometimes you have to settle for keywords with lesser search volume because they have less competition.
A good strategy is to have a healthy mix of seed keywords with as many accompanying variations as possible to attract a large pool of targeted traffic.
Mix it up
Entire websites do not rank for keywords. Pages do. Unlike big brand websites which tend to see their homepage ranking, most websites derive organic traffic to pages than the homepage. It is thus imperative that each and every page of your website be optimized for its attendant and unique keywords contained therein.
What determines search volume?
The more a keyword is searched for the higher the search volume would be, makes sense. However, a lot more effort has to be put in to get good rankings for high volume search keywords. This especially so when a search engine results page (SERP) is clogged up with SERP features like featured snippets, carousels etc. Also, big brands, because of their inherent advantage of high traffic, website authority etc often occupy the best ranking spots. That makes ranking for these high value keywords for newer websites even more arduous. It would definitely take a much longer time to achieve rankling parity with the big boys. A different tack should then be used. Go for a specific longer tailed keywords strategy. Longer tail keywords do have lesser volume but that are no less potent because a searcher who searches in this fashion is more often than not in the buying phase. It is a case of quality traffic versus quantity.
Long tail keywords. What does it mean?
Single or short keywords may carry very high search volumes but it is necessarily a good thing. For example, a keyword like “car” may have a crazy amount of search volume but the intent behind this search is ill defined and loose. The search intent behind this manner of search is very ambiguous. The targeting where your product segment (within cars) would be very hit or miss. It would be a miss most of the time. The probability for successful conversion would be correspondingly low. These days, the savvy user would not search in this manner because he does not want to waste time filtering through the mass of results to find what he really wants. A person in the market looking for a particular make and class of car would state his intent on his search query. Hence a long tail keyword search used and if the contents of your website answers to this query, then you are in play.
Know your competitors and their keywords
There are high volume keywords that your competitors, for whatever reasons, are not ranking for. This is an area for you to exploit. Get your SEO to prioritise those keywords to stake ranking grounds over your competitors. What is your competitors are already ranked for those high volume keywords? Fear not. Keep motivated with good SEO practices, and in time, you would level the ranking playing ground.
What about seasonal keywords?
Some keywords see in spike in search volume for seasonal reasons. For example, Christmas related keywords would surge come around December. It is therefore critical that you prepare your seasonal centric contents months ahead to catch the surge when the time comes.
Terminology changes from region to region in additional to language quirks and nuances. A car here is called an automobile elsewhere. In some place a truck is a jeep and vice versa. So, know you audiences and plan your keywords and contents to address these nuances accordingly.
Keywords to suit a searcher's intent?
Google, essentially, display search results that speak to intent and each query has an unique intent. In their Quality Rater Guidelines, Google explains search intent as basically to 1) to find information; 2) to do as in to accomplish a goal; 3) to find a specific website; 4) to find a local business
The five major categories of search intent
- Informational search queries:
As the name suggests, the searcher is looking for information such as the number of continents or how best to take care of pets etc.
- Navigational search queries:
The searcher wants to go to a particular website or to a social media platform like YouTube.
- Transactional search queries:
The searcher wants to book a plane ticket or buy tickets to a concert.
- Commercial investigation search queries:
The searcher is looking for product reviews and comparisons etc.
- Local search queries:
The searcher wants to find something locally, such as a nearby book store or dentist office.
Tip: Survey the SERP page for the keyword you have in mind to understand search intent better. The SERP would reveal the type of contents your audience wants. Google has evaluated the trillions of searches to arrive at the determination of what’s the most desired contents for each specific keyword. For example, the search for clothes, Google has determined that many people whom search for clothes want to shop for clothes online. This is evident if you look at the shopping carousel in the SERP.
By the shopping carousel, you can infer that Google has determined many people who search for “dresses” want to shop for dresses online.
Furthermore thereis a Local Pack feature pertaining to this keyword which indicates Google wanting to help searchers locate local clothes retailers.
There are many tools that SEO professionals use to determine the value of a keyword, its competitiveness and search volume etc. Still these are just tools to aid in your keyword research. Nothing beats local knowledge, the keyword variations that your target audience would likely use, the seasonal nature of your business, the cultural and language nuances that relates to your products and services, changing trends and consumer habits, the evolution of your business direction among many other factors.
It is best that your keywords be reviewed periodically to best meet the expectations of your customers.
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