So, how has the keyword research been coming on? I hope you’ve been looking through Google’s keyword tool and finding keywords that you hadn’t thought of for your business. One thing I didn’t mention in my previous post on keyword research was the ability to put in a website address (URL) instead of a keyword. Why would you use this? I would usually use this to see what the competition are up to, and what keyword they have optimised their site for.
Simply type in their website address into the ‘Website’ box on the Google Keyword Tool and Google will then search the content of their website and find keywords/phrases that have search traffic. It can be very enlightening to see what keywords the competition have optimised for! Here’s an example of one of the biggest SEO and internet marketing companies in the UK, Distilled, and what keywords come out of their website:
So, if I wanted to compete against Distilled (not that I would – David vs Goliath springs to mind!), then I would go through the list provided, see which keywords were suitable for me and then off I’d go with my own optimisation process. Easy … !
Incidentally, the guys (and girls) at Distilled organised the Pro SEO event in London back in November along with SEOMoz and it was an excellent event – don’t miss it if you get a chance to attend in London or one of their other cities.
Finally, if you’re using the Google Keyword Tool for any kind of in-depth research then do make use of the ‘Download’ option within the interface that allows you to download your keyword results into CSV format and, usually, on into Excel. When doing serious keyword research I’ll rattle through a whole list of potential keywords, downloading every set of results, labelling the tab on the Excel spreadsheet with the seed keyword I used and then take time to go through the spreadsheet later to find potential keywords.
I hope this has been useful – until next time!
As mentioned in my first post on this blog, the first step in good SEO is to find the keywords that people are actually searching for – after all, there’s no point in ranking for keywords if no-one types them into the search engines, right?
I often come across clients who ar quite happy with their SEO efforts because, when you type in their company name, they’re number one on Google. That’s all very well if you are Coca Cola, Nike or some other huge brand but if you are Joe’s Widget Store from Victoria and, online, no-one has ever heard of you then the number of searches for ‘Joes Widget Store’ aren’t going to be very high!
So, what keywords should you optimise for and how do you find them?
While there are a few tools on the market to help you with this task, by far the cheapest (it’s free!) and usually one of the most accurate is Google’s own Keyword Tool. Part of the Adwords product, the Keyword Tool is a window into Google’s database of previous searches throughout the world. You can interrogate it for searches from Canada, the USA, the UK, Australia – wherever.
A couple of key things to remember whenever you’re using the Google Keyword Tool though:
- ALWAYS change the ‘Match Type’ (found in the left hand column) to ‘Exact’ from the default ‘Broad’. Why? It’s to do with the way that Google classifies its search types but suffice to say that Broad will give you much higher search numbers than Exact and for SEO purposes it’s the preciseness (is that a real word?) of the Exact match type that we want
- If you don’t already have a Google Adwords account, create one and ALWAYS login to Adwords before you do your keyword searches. Why? When you’re logged into to Adwords you will get many more results than when you’re not – particularly ‘long tail searches’ i.e. searches that contain three or more words in the search phrase. People who type in 3 or more words into their search phrases are much more likely to take action on your website than people who type in one or two keywords (who are more likely to be searching for information).
Have fun with the Google Keyword Tool – it is a great (and free!) resource to find out what is really happening in your industry. It can even tell you which products/services people are actually searching for, giving you the strongest possible indicators of what it is you should be offering your potential clients.
I’ll put together a video showing you how to get the most of the Google Keyword Tool shortly – there’s a lot you can get from it!
Till next time!
The world of search engine optimisation (SEO) is often thought of as being shrouded in mystery and very much a ‘dark art’. And while only Google knows exactly what their algorithm contains, there are three basic steps that will get your pages ranked on Google, and the other search engines:
- Find the keywords that people are actually searching for
- Optimise your pages so that the keywords you discovered in Step 1 can get picked up by the search engines
- Get links from other sites into your pages
That’s it! Easy – right? Hmmm … I wish it was! I’ve been practising the art of SEO for 7 years now – and it sure is anything but easy! Still, stick to this 3 step formula and you will get good rankings – I guarantee it!