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How to Do Effective Keyword Research

KeywordsSearch Engine Optimisation (SEO) means ranking a website highly in the search results with the intention users will click through to the website. This means discovering users keywords to help gain a good index position.

What are Search Keywords?

Keywords are easily understood; most searchers try the shortest possible combination of keywords in their search. Unfortunately, every SEO expert knows this and they are also trying to rank for individual words and short phrases. To compete, website owners usually need large budgets.

The best option is to rank for long tail phrases of up to 9 words. Once the website ranks for long tail keyword phrases effectively, the next step is to shorten the phrases. A good SEO is able to compress the time until a website competes for higher traffic keywords considerably. It is therefore very important to know the main topics the website covers.

Choosing Keywords to Rank Your Website

For established websites one of the best keyword research tools is the analytics software already installed for tracking user interactions. This has the very distinct advantage of seeing at a glance, often in real time, which keywords were used to find the website, and the page the user landed on.

Exporting analytics keywords and using them to determine the competiveness of search results is a solid beginning to increasing traffic. Whilst high traffic keywords are difficult to target, it is often very easy to target synonym keywords if sufficient traffic makes it worthwhile.

Even if existing traffic data exists, using a keyword search tool is still highly recommended. Reputable SEOs have their own tools and are able to generate highly relevant keyword lists and assign a score to each which makes prioritising content creation and link building less challenging and more effective.

Often a good starting point can be the keyword tools provided by advertising inventory companies. The biggest are Google Adwords and Trends, Bing Keyword Research, or for finer control of demographic information, Facebook Business Ads. These tools indicate how popular the keywords are and how much competitors are willing to pay for their ad to display more frequently.

Working with Keywords

After a suitable list of keywords has been developed the website needs to be optimised, and this doesn’t mean stuffing the keywords on every page. Indeed, keyword stuffing is very old hat and likely to get the website flagged by search engine spiders.

Effective keyword research makes assessing every page for keyword density possible, as does rewriting portions of the content to be more relevant. Bear in mind that this should be done for human readers. Rewriting content is an activity that can be done from time to time, though adding more fresh content should not be disregarded.

Despite the often shrill panic of amateur SEO “experts” about every update to Google’s search algorithm, keywords remain the fundamental building blocks of a website promotion campaign. Doing effective keyword research continues to be truest method for high ranking results.

Do you research your keywords before optimising your website? Please leave your comments below…

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