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Keyword Research – a How to guide

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One of the core aspects of a Search Engine Optimized website is a good keyword research. Without this research, a website owner cannot know which keywords will help him/her connect better with the audience and draw them to their website. You can look at keyword research as customer research – it is based on understanding what your customers are looking for, and what keywords they would type on Google or other search engines that can lead them directly to your website.

A good keyword research is based on a few things we will discuss below:

Picking relevant initial keywords:

Keyword Research   a How to guideBefore you start you research, you need to start with basic keywords that are most relevant to your website. These are words that you, your customers and even your competitors will use when they refer to your business. Valid keywords would ideally be synonyms of the name of your company and words that best describe your products or services.

Getting many sources to pick the right keywords:

To make sure your keyword research is thorough, use the following sources.

  • Your knowledge based on your understanding of your products and services offered
  • The knowledge of your customers by constantly asking them what words they associate with your business
  • The knowledge and experience of your competitors, by browsing their website and getting a better understanding of the keywords they have targeted.
  • Keyword research tools like Overture, Google Keyword Suggestion Tool and Keyword Discovery

Don’t forget keyword phrases:

Once you have narrowed down the essential keywords, now think of keyword phrases. Many web users will enter a combination of keywords in the search engine browser to find a website. You have to understand what those combinations will be, or in other words, you have to understand long tail keywords phrases.

Stick to most relevant target keywords:

There are keywords that will drive more traffic to your website, and then there are keywords that will drive only quality traffic to your website. While more traffic is good, it is better if your keyword research is targeted only towards customers who are trying to find you. Overstuffing Keywords is never a good idea. Quality traffic is that traffic which has more potential to be not only readers but also buyers.

Find out more competitive keywords:

Every keyword will have a different impact on the popularity of your website. To know which keywords are more competitive and drive more customers through your doors, you need to use tracking methods to understand which words are pulling in more customers and which ones don’t. This will take time and more research, but is a very fruitful exercise as you understand which keywords should be given more importance and which ones can be deleted from your list.

What after keyword research?

Once you have the right keywords, long tail keyword phrases and more competitive keywords, the real work begins. Now you need to weave these keywords naturally in to relevant content on your website, so that readers can be reeled in and turned in to potential customers.

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