Technology Advice for Small Businesses

Keywords for SEO success

Web_May13_AWhether you’re running an online business or are avidly promoting your business online, the right keywords can make or break your website. Figuring out what the popular keywords for your industry are will not only improve your SEO, that’s search engine optimization, but also reveal insights about your customer market as a whole. The question is, what exactly are keywords, and how can a business use them to improve their SEO and overall website value?

What exactly are keywords?

A keyword is a word or phrase that you enter into a search engine in order to find pages, or websites that contain relevant content. When you enter these keywords into a search you are typing a Search Query which tells the search engine what you are looking for.

The engine then searches websites, pages, and even video titles that contain these keywords, and displays what it finds in search results. In order to be found by search engines, businesses often incorporate keywords into their content that they think users will search for. The question is, how do you know which keywords to include in your content? The best way to figure this out is through keyword research.

By conducting keyword research, you can predict shifts in demand as well as attract the best visitors to your website. Below are four tips you can use to not only find the best keywords, but also judge their effectiveness and overall value.

4 steps for assessing keyword value:

1. Think and ask

Take a look at your existing content and ask yourself whether or not your keywords are relevant to your website and what you essentially do as a business. Can your customers easily find what they’re looking for? If you’re not sure then the best way to find out is to ask your customers and potential customers. One way is to take a look at common customer requests and questions.

Be sure to also ask yourself whether or not customers would be happy with what they find once they search too; because if not a bumpy road lies ahead. From there, develop a list of what you believe to be the best, or most useful keywords. Be sure to look at this from the customers’ viewpoints, not from your own perspective.

2. Make use of major search engines

Knowing search engines that have already ranked your chosen keywords, like Google and Bing, can give you insight into your competitors and what keywords they use, as well as some idea of how challenging it’s going to be for these keywords to be ranked highly.

Simply visit the major search engines and search for the keywords you identified above. Take a look at the results, specifically the top results. In Google, for example, you may see that the first 3-4 results are actually ads. As a rule of thumb, the more ads you see the more difficult it is to rank in results for those keywords. Experts call this a high value keyword, which usually indicates that conversions are high. This means you will likely need to invest more into your content and overall marketing if you want to rank higher in search results.

3. Invest in Google Adwords

It’s not the end of the world if your website doesn’t rank for specific keywords. It may help to invest in Google Adwords. For example, you can purchase test traffic in Google Adwords to see how well specific keywords convert. Select “exact match” and point the traffic to the relevant page on your website. This add-on tracks impressions and conversion rates over the course of at least 2-300 clicks. The perk: you only pay if people click on your ad.

4. Calculate the exact value of a keyword

Let’s say you ran a search ad for 24 hours on google which generated 6,000 impressions – out of the number of people who saw the add 100 visitors came to your website and four converted, creating a total profit of USD $400. This means that a single visitor is worth USD $4 to your website. In other words, if searches hold steady, you could see a profit boost of up to USD $146,000!

Of course, keyword research takes time, and effort. You will likely not see massive gains by simply researching, but by knowing what works and what doesn’t, and by working to find the best keywords for your business. Looking to learn more about the importance of keywords for SEO? Contact us today.