“How to do Keyword Research”, you just used these keywords or very similar to arrive at this page, Did you ? Don’t worry, you are at the right page.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) starts with Keyword Research and proper keyword research is very important for your content so that search engines and users are able to find it.
This has always been my favorite topic. It is very important to first understand what is a Keyword, as it decides your overall content and marketing strategy going forward?
What is a Keyword and Keyword Research?
As per Google Webmaster Guidelines, keyword is defined as
“Words users would type to find your pages”
Source: Google Webmaster Guidelines
So basically keyword is the word, that users type in the search engines to find the content they are looking for.The keyword research is the art of finding those golden keywords that people use to find relevant pages or content of their choice.
I will take you through a case study that will teach you “how to do keyword research” and the example keyword that I will use is the keyword that you just used to arrive at this page “How to do keyword research”.
CASE 1: Create a list of important topics or head terms
To start with your keyword research topic, first you need to general topics or basically the head terms that relate to your content. By head terms,i mean terms which are short,popular and straightforward.They generally contain 2-3 words.
These terms are very high usage keywords and hence are located at the heard of the Google’s Bell curve for Keyword usage. The one’s which have a lower usage and are located at the tail end of Curve are tail keywords.Will see later about long tail keywords.
So, when I was writing this article I thought of following head terms or topics.
- Keyword planner
- Keyword research
- Google Keyword
So, lets say if you were to an article on “How to start a blog“,then your head terms or topics would have been like blogging,start a blog,start blogging,start blog etc.
CASE 2: Enrich topics with Keyword Ideas
Now once you have the basic topics with you, it will require some brainstorming from your side to enrich these topics and arrive at a list of probable keywords, although this will not be your final list of Keywords. So , when i was writing this article i would think of following enrichment to my keywords.
- How to do Keyword Research
- How people do Keyword Research
- What is the best tool or way for Keyword Research
- What is keyword Research
- Top keyword research articles
- Why keyword research is important
- Keyword research for beginners
So this is the kind of ideas you will need to generate at this step and it definitely requires to you to spend some time.
Can’t think of many idea’s, or what people are looking for related to this content or topic, no worries. Use Google’s “related searches” features to help you find these. Just go to Google search and type one of these, e.g type “how to keyword research“
CASE 3: Long tail keywords and Competitor analysis
This is an important step in your overall keyword research strategy in the long term as well as short term. You will need to have a good and proper mix of head and tail terms in your final keyword.
For beginners, its very difficult to rank higher if you are using head terms or very short keywords for your topics. e.g if you writing on a blogging topic then what do you think, out of below 2 topics, which will be difficultly to rank for?
- blog (head term)
- how to start a blog (tail keyword)
#1, That’s correct!!
The competition for keyword blog is very high ( more than 1 million searches per day), while the competition for how to start a blog is relatively low, so it would be difficult to rank your page for keyword “blog”.
While the head terms drives the highest traffic, the tail keyword drives the desired traffic. There’s a difference. Because one looking for keyword “blog” might be looking for something else related to blog, while traffic from “how to start a blog” is targeted traffic and will be able to find relevant content on your blog.
So, for beginners, targeted Keyword is very important , while in the long run you must target short head terms.
Another small thing that you need to keep in mind is the Competitor analysis and what keywords are being used by your competitors to rank on the first page of Google.
SEMrush is a good tool for competitor keyword analysis. Just type in the competitors website URL and it would be give you the top keywords for that domain. This will give you an idea what your competitors are using.
CASE 4: Use Google Adwords Keyword Planner to finalize your Keyword
Now that you have quite a list of Keywords and its time to decide and finalize your keyword based on statistics. Lot of tools are available in the market, but my all time favorite is Google Adwords Keyword Planner.
Just type in above keywords in Keyword Planner Tool ( which is absolutely FREE to use) and you will be able to see how many people use that keyword.
The above quantitative data should be able to help decide your keyword strategy. You can keep aside those keyword which are way too little like “why keyword research is important” or even which are way too high (none in this case) . Its advisable to chose a low competition keyword for beginners.
You can also use Google Trends Tools to see the trend of the Keyword or to find upward trending topics. The one’s which have a growing volume might be of interest of you and you can focus on them as well.
Yes, you are done, don’t believe it. Keyword research is easy and just requires proper keyword strategy like the one stated above.
Be sure to revisit these keywords every month or quarter. Once you start getting traffic to your site or more authority on your site your SERP(Search Engine page results ) will increase and you can then target more and head term keyword for higher traffic.
Its your turn to implement the right Keyword strategy. Please share your views on above article and also share what strategy you use to rank your pages.