Keyword research is a fundamental component of an integrated online presence. Without a strong SEO foundation, it’s like constructing a building on quicksand rather than anchoring it securely into bedrock. Most of our clients want to increase traffic driven to their website so they have a chance at online sales conversion. Low traffic volume means fewer opportunities to entice would-be prospects to consume content (blogs and white papers), fill out a contact form, or pick up the phone.
But the first step is to understand a) how and b) what potential buyers search for when looking for products or services like yours. Keyword research isn’t random. Rather, it’s based upon a strategic and comprehensive examination of human search behaviors, trending and analytics. Armed with this information, a website’s architecture can be built. Architecture includes top level navigation all the way down to specific product/service landing pages. The research is also used in PPC management, so you target the right words in Adwords to generate qualified leads.
So what should a keyword research plan include?
Keyword Research Overview
Proper keyword research provides the numerical or quantitative information related to human search behavior. It also provides context – the competitive landscape – for those keywords. A well-thought out research plan includes reviewing competitor sites (especially those with high SEO equity) to determine the keywords they use effectively and if relevant to your industry. At this point in the process, research can amass thousands of keyword phrases. Note: a keyword isn’t a word; it can be a string of words or a phrase used by a human searcher. In other words, a keyword is the question posed to a search engine. It’s answer? A Search Engine Results Page.
Next time I’ll explain keyword trending, cultural interpretation and long tails.
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