Keyword Analysis & Targeting Competitive Keywords
Keyword analysis also known as keyword research utilizes a variety of data to determine which key search words and phrases are most likely to bring the greatest ROI to a given website.
A proper analysis is always the first step to a solid PPC campaign. The purpose of the analysis is to determine under which search terms your website should be marketed. There are several factors to consider during the keyword analysis process.
Are people more likely to search in singular or plural? Will they type in first-person verbs (i.e. buy) or verb participles (i.e. buying)? Do they tend to put nouns in front of adjectives and verbs, or verbs in front of nouns and adjectives? Will people search in full sentences or by single words? To find the best keywords for a website it’s important to know exactly what people are typing into the search engines. This is the study of keyword phraseology.
A common beginners misconception is that search engines will provide the same results for similar keyword phrases such as: “buy online roses” and” buy roses online.” This is absolutely not true. In fact, if you go to Google or Yahoo and try these two searches, you will see that the results are quite different. Obviously, as you build your online marketing campaign it would benefit you to know which term is searched for more.
Part of a good keyword analysis is to carefully determine the exact variations of keywords that are most beneficial to your site.
Keyword targeting is perhaps the most important factor in determining the right keywords for your website, but it can also be the most subjective. A highly targeted keyword may bring you less hits than a broader search term, but could bring you significantly more sales. For example, if you groom dogs, you would get significantly more sales from appearing under a search term like “Seattle dog grooming,” than you would from “dalmatians,” even though “dalmatians” is searched for 400% more often.
Competitive keywords are those that your competition has gauged to be the most important to promoting your business or service. Obviously, if several of your competitors are listed under a certain search phrase, you will want to appear there too. The competitiveness of a keyword or search phrase is determined by three factors.
How many of your competitors show up in natural search listings under the keyword or keyphrase in search engine results. If 7-10 of the first 10 results are direct competitors, the keyword or phrase you have chosen is competitive.
How many of your competitors show up in sponsored listings under the keyword or keyphrase you have chosen? If your competitors are paying for sponsored listings, chances are they believe the phrase to be important, and the keyphrase is highly competitive.
How many listings total show up in the search results under the phrase you have chosen. If it several hundred to several thousand, keyword competitiveness is relatively low. If there are several million, competition is likely high.
Keyword popularity refers to how often a keyword or phrase is searched for. Although certainly important, beginning search engine optimizers often put too much weight on this factor during keyword analysis. Targetedness of a keyword is much more important in keyword selection for almost all industries.
There are several tools that can help you determine a keyword’s popularity. The Google keyword tool is the most popular free tool. These resources test only a limited section of searches on the Internet to determine their keyword popularities. They also ignore word order and the difference between plural and singular words in their listings. Anyone serious about keyword analysis will subscribe to WordTracker. WordTracker is not free, but is, predictably, much more accurate than the free services.
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