August 20, 2014
Posted by: Grant Owens
Search engine optimization--SEO--is a super scary term that really just means you’re building your website so that search engines can find you. Do it well, and customers will come to your site without any other marketing efforts on your part.
Do it poorly (or not at all) and you may never show up in search rankings at all.
So, where do busy entrepreneurs start when it comes to SEO? The simple answer is keyword research.
For the always-on-the-go entrepreneur, nothing sounds worse that the word “research.” Yet, taking the time to find just the right keywords for your website will take you farther in your SEO efforts than any other step.
And with the right process, it won’t take as long as you think.
The number one tool for keyword researchers is the Google Adwords Keyword Planner. This tool helps you see how popular a keyword is, as well as offering suggestions for similar searches. It will also show you how much it will cost to run a Google ad using those keywords.
1. Uncovering Just the Right Keywords
So how do you know which keywords are the right ones for you? Well, like everything in Internet marketing, it will probably require some testing and adjusting. But, here are a few tips to get you started:
Keywords should have a relatively high search volume. This means people are actually interested in them.
But, that should be balanced with low competition. Keywords with slightly lower results mean that you have a better chance of ranking highly for them.
The keywords are relevant to your product. You don’t want to just find words that will bring traffic; you want keywords that will bring convertible traffic.
2. The Importance of the Long Tail
You might think you want to find the one or two keywords that will drive thousands of visitors a day to your site. The reality is, however, that searches for such in demand words are only about 30% of searches. And, because they’re so general, they actually drive lower convertible traffic.
Instead, try to find several “long tail keywords.” These are search terms that are more unique, searched for just a few times a day. But, taken together, they can drive more leads to your site than all of the more popular words for your niche.
The other benefit to long tail search terms is that you often catch the buyer later in the cycle. They’re much more likely to buy than the general browsing search.
Utilized well, long tail search terms should drive 80% of your traffic. So, make note of the popular terms, but then pick out a few less popular terms to experiment with. You’ll probably be surprised at the amount of qualified leads you get.
3. Test and Iterate
While keyword research is one of the most important things you can do for your SEO, don’t let it paralyze you. You can always test your options and iterate based on the results. Nothing is permanent.