April 20th, 2010

4 Quick Tips for Keyword Search

posted by: Shelly Wolfe

4 Quick Tips for Keyword Search

A popular question we receive in our SEO course is, “When I’m performing keyword search, how do I know what phrases work best for my website?” Choosing keywords can be somewhat of an art, but, if you use the right tools and do a little digging during keyword search, you’ll be surprised how many words and phrases you can use to properly optimize your site.

Preparing for Keyword Search

Let’s talk about a few things to consider before you begin the keyword search process.

  1. What is the business model for your company and what goals do you have for the year? Often, this will determine what direction your keyword search should take.
  2. Take time to think about how people search for your business, products and/or services on the Internet. Do they use “industry speak” or other words and phrases. For example, if you are a dentist, how many different words and phrases can be used to say dentist? And, what words and phrases do your patients, or prospective patients use to find you if they don’t know your name or the name of your practice? Use the keyword suggestion tools throughout keyword search to help you think outside the box. You may be surprised at the words you find.
  3. Now, let’s look at the SEO tools that you can use for choosing keywords. There are free sites, like Google AdWords Keyword Tool. Because this particular tool is really set up better for creating an Adwords campaign, I like to use it at the beginning of the keyword search process. Some other resources that should be considered are Wordtracker and Market Samurai, which are subscription-based. These keyword tools allow for saving researched information and give great comparison data for deeper keyword search.
  4. Once you find the tool you like (you can use more than one), choose keywords based on how relevant they are to your business, products and services. Keep in mind, relevance is key. Make sure to not only pay attention to competition, but also the potential for conversion. What is the likelihood that someone will click on that keyword phrase? Then, look for the keywords and keyword phrases that have high traffic and low competition. Often, these will give you have the best opportunity to rank for in the search engines.

Keyword search can be a fun and enlightening process. If performed in the right way, choosing great keywords can drive qualified traffic to your site. Stayed tuned for our next post that will describe the best practices for keyword placement within your content.

Buzzhound talks about keyword search and demonstrates how to use keyword search tools during each of our SEO classes. If you’re interested in really learning more, be sure to view our schedule online!