From hot dog stands to multi-national tech companies, all businesses nowadays should have an online presence. Whether it’s a blog, page, or website, you need to advertise your products to the right audience. A good way to extend your outreach is through search engine optimization (SEO). It is basically tweaking your content to what your potential customers want by analyzing the keyword search density. In short, this means that all your content has to revolve around keywords that are popular with the public. Does this mean all we have to do is check which keywords have the highest traffic and use them? No, far from it. What you need is to master the art of choosing the right keywords that are both suitable for your business and have high traffic potential. This art is called keyword analysis. So what exactly is keyword analysis? And how do you do it?
What Is Keyword Analysis?
If you’re reading this, then you probably know SEO (If you don’t you should Get to Know SEO.) Search engine optimization is everything when it comes to online marketing. It’s basically building your content around a keyword that have a lot of search traffic. But how do you know which words to choose? This is where keyword analysis comes in. If we assume that the readers are our market, then that makes keyword analysis market research. The SEO game is about predicting what your potential readers would type in the search engines to get to your content. So unless you hired a witch part time, you’ll need a lot of keyword research.
Before learning how to analyze keywords, it’s important to know the parameters that make a keyword great:
- Search volume: This means the amount of times a keyword is searched in a given period. This is the best indicator to how popular a keyword is. The higher the volume the more traffic to expect.
- Competition: Obviously you won’t be the only one using the keywords you choose. Competition is a double edged sword; high competition means the keyword is good, but at the same time it means it’s much harder to rank first page with it.
- Cost per click: This is used in Google AdWords campaigns, but it holds meaning in keyword analysis. A higher cost means that the conversion to profit from this particular keyword is high.
There is no way to fully anticipate which keywords will work for your business the most. However, these parameters are valuable indicators to which ones are potentially profitable for your business.
Why Is Keyword Analysis Important?
There’s more to keyword research than numbers and figures. In the process of searching for keywords you can learn a lot about your customers and what they like. This knowledge can be helpful in every aspect of your business:
- Content marketing: The point of keyword analysis is to figure out which keywords to use in your content in order to increase the search engine rank and increase traffic.
- Conversions: In online stores for example, increasing traffic isn’t the main focus. It’s very important to convert these clicks into purchases. The more your keywords are specific to customer needs, the more customers that will be included in your everyday traffic.
- Learning trends: Search volume, for example, is a direct indicator to what the public is interested in. This is an invaluable market research tool that can help tailor all your marketing strategies.
- Improving products: What does product development have to do with keywords? Keywords are a product of people’s interest. Once you have an idea on what your readers like you can make some product changes or introduce new ones even. In the end your page’s readers are all potential customers.
SEO Keyword Research Strategies
Now it’s down to the analysis part of keyword analysis. There are many approaches from using tools to pure grunt work. The best strategy however, is a combined effort in every direction to single out the best possible keywords.
Establishing Your Niche
This is more of an essential step than a strategy. When analyzing keywords, it’s important to know where to focus your efforts. For example, if you own a bakery you shouldn’t be looking at keywords about business and finance. A good way to do so is to write down all your operations, services and products. Any word that isn’t mentioned in there probably shouldn’t be bothered with. Take it a step further and find even more specific keywords by figuring out what you offer that is different from everyone else.
Having niche is beneficial because when someone searches for something that specific they are definitely looking for what you have. Also the competition is probably less than using general keywords. For example: “Best French toast” is a better keyword to use than “Best bread” although bread is more conclusive and general.
Google Keyword Analysis
An essential tool for keyword research is Google’s keyword planner. It’s a free tool designed to help Google AdWords users pick which keywords to choose for their ads. But it’s used by everyone for its massive amount of data on keywords. The first step is to create a free AdWords account. Then from the tools menu choose the keyword planner. This tool allows you to utilize Google’s massive search data. This is the best way to check for keyword search volume and competition and lots of other parameters.
You simply tell Google your landing page, your product or service, your product category, and your targeted country. By using your product and category, Google then generates customized keywords that are suitable for your business. There are many more options like being able to generate keywords with a specific word in them. You can also exclude some keywords with “Negative keywords” option. A good way to find even more keywords is by using the multiplying words option, that sort of mashes up more than one keyword together and show you results.
Adding an extra layer of specificity is always advisable when it comes to choosing keywords. Long-tail keywords are usually three or more words that are highly specific to your products. The key here is that anyone looking for this keyword phrase knows exactly what they want and are probably customers. Another plus side of long-tail keywords is that they have less competition so bigger chance of ranking higher.
A good way to find long-tail keywords is by using the previously mentioned multiplier tool in Google Keyword Planner. Most of the results will be nonsense, just mixing and matching words, but once in a while you strike gold. Another way is to simply type a keyword in the Google search engine and check the searches related in the bottom of the screen.
Research Makes Perfect
Keyword analysis can be very time consuming and not as easy as it looks. In the end there is no guaranteeing results, at least from the first try. That’s why a continuous effort is needed. You need to go through the hoops of finding the perfect method that works for your business most with a little degree of trial and error. SEO keyword research doesn’t stop at ranking high with one article. You can always use your highest ranking pages as a gold mine, by checking which keywords you didn’t mean to use that have a high score on Google Analytics.