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Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

What is keyword research and why is it so important?

Think of your Web site as a fishing line and your keywords as bait. If you use the wrong bait, you'll catch the wrong type of fish.Keywords, as they pertain to search engines, are words or phrases that describe the content of your website and are used by potential customers when they are searching for a website just like yours.

Keyword research
—sometimes referred to as keyword discovery—is the process of discovering the actual words and phrases people enter into the search engines when they're searching online. Keyword research is important because it reveals the words you must use if you want Google and Yahoo to deliver your Web pages to pre-qualified audience of potential customers.

When we talk to our clients about optimizing their website or driving traffic to certain pages of their site, the term keyword research crops up again and again. That's because without comprehensive research results at our fingertips
we're working in the dark.

Look at at the connection between the keywords potential customers use when searching the Internet, and the keywords used on a website:

Keyword Usage Graphic

Why is it so easy to get your keywords wrong?

This is how organizations end up using the wrong keywords on their website:

  • They make assumptions about their keywords.
  • They use a product's name as the keyword for the product.
  • They believe the words they use and the words their customers use are one and the same.
  • They choose their keywords without considering their target market's needs.
  • They use only the broadest version of each keyword.
  • They fail to analyze the competition they're up against for each keyword.

Keywords can be divided into types, and the types that will work best for you will be determined—among other things—by the nature of your business, and the amount of competition your have.

Here are some common types of keywords:

  • The Broad keyword – a word that describes an entire industry or concept: dog supplies, pet products.
  • The Modified keyword – a broad keyword with another word, or two, added to it to make it more specific: organic dog supplies, natural pet products.
  • The Long-tail keyword – a keyword with multiple modifiers: chicken flavored organic dog food.
  • Popular keyword – a highly competitive keyword that many people search for on the Internet: dog care.
  • Niche keyword – a keyword that is relevant to a narrowly defined group of potential customers: dog psychic.
  • Seldom-searched keyword – a keyword that is not commonly searched, but is very relevant to some businesses: holistic dog care.

This is the process we use to determine the correct keywords for SEO projects:

  • We interview you to establish a list of starter keywords.
  • We determine which keywords, if any, are already driving targeted traffic to your website.
  • We use keyword discovery tools to find keywords your customers are using.
  • We assess your competitors' websites to see which keywords they are using.
  • We look at their pay-per-click campaigns to see which keywords they are buying.
  • We analyze each page of your site in order to allocate appropriate keywords.
  • We calculate how popular each keyword is and how much competition it attracts.
  • We eliminate the words that are unlikely to attract qualified customers to your site.

With relevant keywords used appropriately on your website, you can look forward to attracting more of the kind of Web visitors you want—the kind who become customers.

Any questions?
Please feel free to contact us for more info on search engine optimization.




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