The introduction of practical online marketing tools makes today’s business landscape very exciting for brands and marketers. Every business owner wants to make a mark and succeed online. The internet provides an excellent opportunity to reach a broader audience that no brand can reach using traditional marketing strategies.
At the top of these online marketing tools that bring the most traffic is search. If you need to purchase or find more details about a product, most people rely on search engine results pages (SERPs). However, the majority of people do not go beyond the first page of SERPs and only click on websites that rank high on these search results. As a business owner, your chances of surviving in the online marketplace are linked to ranking as highly as you can on search engines. Ranking highly begins by finding the right keywords for your content and keyword research is vital for any search engine optimisation campaign.
What is Keyword Research?
Keyword research in SEO is as important as the food we eat or the oxygen we breathe. This is the first step towards succeeding in SEO for your website. Keywords could be one or more words and they help get a targeted audience for your website through search engines. Keyword research means researching and choosing words or terms that users search for in search engines when finding answers for their queries. This helps them to get relevant results from search queries.
Imagine you are a plumber in Adelaide. People who need a plumber in Adelaide will probably search terms like “plumber in Adelaide”, and Google will display your website. Choosing a keyword may sound easy, but it is challenging since multiple companies offer similar products to the same target audience. As such, you have to focus on each search term that users will search and choose relevant keywords for their search.
The chosen keyword must be relevant to your page so that both people and Google can understand your topic and search engine can serve better results.
What is the Importance of Keyword Research?
Here is the simple logic…
If you cannot find the search terms you wish to rank for, you will probably not be able to optimise your images, pages and content to draw traffic to your website. If you choose keywords that are not relevant to your website and you place them on your blog post, you may rank highly in SERPs for a short time. Your user will not stick to your website since the wrong keywords will miss-guide them. Eventually, Google crawlers will catch this behaviour and you will lose traffic and potential users. This scenario will increase your website’s bounce rate and you will lose your ranking. As such, keyword research is essential in establishing the right keywords to use for your content. Your keywords should target the correct traffic. This web traffic then converts into paying customers. The wrong keywords will only contribute to the downfall of your website. This is why keyword research is the heart of a successful online marketing campaign.
How to Perform Keyword Research
Here is a guide you can follow to perform keyword research. It will help you identify a list of terms you should be targeting to enable users and Google to find you.
- Make a List of Relevant Topics
Think about the vital topics you would wish to talk about in your blog posts based on what you know about your business. Create about ten topics and then use them to come up with specific keywords. If you are a blogger, these will be topics that you blog about frequently. If you are a business owner, put yourself in the shoes of your customers. What topics would your target audience search for that you would want your business to get found for? Think about the how, what, where, why and other potential queries your targeted audience may be using.
- Fill the Topics With Keywords
Now that you have a few topics you wish to focus on, it is time to find keywords that fit these topics. These are phrases you think are essential to rank in the SERPs because your targeted audience will probably conduct searches for these terms. Come up with as many keywords as you can because we will narrow the list down later in the process. Another way to identify keyword ideas is to determine which ones your website is already getting found for. You will need website analytics tools like Google Analytics to drill down into your website’s traffic source and identify keywords that people use to find your website.
- Understand How Intent Affects Keyword Research
User intent is a primary factor that determines whether you rank well on search engines. Today, user intent is even more important than your web page address. How does this affect your keyword research? You may pick a keyword for its face value. However, keywords can have several meanings. As such, the intent behind a keyword is essential to your ranking and you need to be careful about how you interpret the keywords you target. To verify a user’s intent in a keyword, type it into a search engine and see what results come up. Ensure that the type of content Google displays is closely related to what you intend to create for that content.
- Research Related Search Terms
Sometimes you may struggle to find terms that people use when searching for information related to your business. When this happens, look at the related search terms that appear when you plug in a keyword into Google. After typing in your phrase, scroll to the bottom of Google’s results. You will find some suggestions for searches related to your original input. These phrases can spark new ideas for other keywords that you could not have considered.
- Use Keyword Research Tools
Keyword research tools like Ahrefs and SEMrush can help you create more keywords based on the ideas you have generated so far. This exercise may also give you options you may not have considered. Use these tools to sort through your initial list of keywords and identify which phrases are a good combination in terms of demand and relevance to search results.
- Refine Your List Using Keyword Suggestion
After narrowing down your initial list with keyword research tools, you can refine the list even more by using the keyword suggestion tool. This tool will provide you with a better insight into how your targeted users arrange, add, or subtract words from keyword phrases during actual searches. However, always ensure that the final list is related to your website and accurately describes what your content is all about.
Other Factors to Consider During Keyword Research
If you wish to make a mark on the online marketplace, the following keyword research considerations will also put you on the proper track.
Be Careful When Using Broad Keywords
Most online users use broad keywords like “new home constructors” during searches. However, using broad keywords in your online marketing campaign will put you in a lot of competition. You will also attract visitors that may not be as targeted as you think and they will not bring you any business. Broad keywords are essential for websites that target global customers.
If your business is located in a particular city, adding the name of that city to your keyword, like “new home constructors Adelaide” will bring you better and more targeted traffic. These keywords may attract a lower search volume, but these are the type of searches that would convert to paying customers.
If you offer products or services under different categories. Ensure you perform separate keyword research for each category and target a particular product or service. This may sound tedious, but this will give you a higher chance of attracting targeted deals.
Maximise Long Tail Keywords
Lastly, consider the use of long-tail keywords in your keyword research. Long-tail keywords do not have many searches, but the person performing a search using a long tail keyword has a specific problem that needs to be solved. The secret is to target as many relevant long-tail keywords as possible to get a steady stream of highly targeted visitors to your website. Long term keywords provide a specific intent to search visitors.
To identify long-tail keywords in your industry, you need to add more words to your root keywords. For instance, in the keyword “new home constructors Adelaide,” you can add something like “the best new home constructors in Adelaide” to make it a long-tail keyword. These types of keywords will also help your website to rank highly in the SERPs.
When conducting your keyword research, always put yourself in the shoes of your target audience. Look through their eyes, especially in how they choose their words when searching for products and services online. Keyword research plays a crucial role in streamlining your Search Engine Optimisation campaign to attract targeted visits that bring in profitable results. An SEO professional can assist you in cementing your keyword research to ensure maximum potential for results.