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Keyword Research

Keyword research is the foundation of any SEO strategy. It is the most valuable, and high return activities in the search marketing. If your site set up to target the wrong keywords, both the search engines and your customers will struggle to find you. This will result in you attracting the wrong type of visitor. Targeting the wrong keywords not only costs you money, but also wastes all the time and energy you have invested in getting your website to rank for those terms in the first place.

How do you judge the value of a keyword?

The first question you have to ask yourself when selecting a keyword is, Will searchers find what they are looking on your keyword researchsite if they arrive after using these keywords?

Knowing who your competitors are for your keyword and how many pay-per-click adverts are targeting the same keyword will give you an insight into how popular the keyword is and how difficult it will be to rank highly for it.

Before deciding on a keyword, set up a test PPC advertising campaign for the keyword and monitor the activity of the visitors you get from the ads. That way you can see how well the traffic converts to your goals.

Use one of the many keyword research tools that there are out there to see what searches are being made and in what volume.

Big Ticket Keywords

A common misconception is that generic or “big ticket” keywords are the most important for rankings. You’d image that everyone would want to rank for keywords that have 10,000 searches a day, or even 1,00 searches a day, but in reality, these “popular” search terms actually total less than 30% of the searches made on the web. The remaining 70% are made up of what is commonly termed “long tail” of search. The long tail comprises of hundreds of millions of unique searches that might be performed only a few times a day, but, when added together, they make up the majority of the information requested through search engines.

Through thoroughly researching and testing, you may well find that it is the long tail keywords will convert better, because they catch searchers later in the purchasing/conversion cycle. A person searching for “tennis racquets” is probably browsing, and not quite ready to buy yet. On the other hand, someone searching for best price Wilson Tour Limited BLX” have more than likely decided what they want and are ready to buy.

How likely am I to rank for my keyword?

In deciding which keywords to target, it is not only a necessity to understand the demand for a given keyword or phrase, but also the amount of  effort needed to achieve those rankings. If the top ten results are filled by big brands and you’re site is relatively new, you could be looking at years of hard work to achieve a page one ranking. This is why it’s crucial to understand difficulty of a keyword.

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