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SEO Keyword Research: Its Importance & How To Do It

SEO

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Posted at 28/02/2019

SEO has a lot of different components that ensure its effectiveness. To name a few; optimising URLs, effective content, meta tags, and then there’s keyword research. SEO keyword research is the process of discovering the right phrases that your prospective buyers are in fact Googling when searching for your company’s product or service offering. Identifying what these phrases are dictates the priority and depth of the phrases to create content for your website and how the content will be featured throughout the site across headings and paragraphs as well as the site structure and menu bar names.  

Before discussing SEO keyword research any further, let’s define the common terminology that you will encounter in doing it. Let’s start with the most common one, the keyword. Keyword is a significant term that acts as a key to information resources. It is the one that makes it possible for searchers to end up on a certain website that utilises the keywords well. But since a keyword can refer to not just a single word but also a group of words or a phrase, the term keyphrase came into existence. According to Yoast, because most of the time they use keyword when they refer to a phrase rather than a word, they switched over to using keyphrase in some areas, therefore they now use focus keyphrase rather than focus keyword.

Another keyword term in SEO keyword research is a long tail keyword. Long tail keywords are keywords that are long and specific. It is easier and is more effective to rank for a long tail keyword because of the specificity that it has. An example of a long tail phrase is ‘life insurance for over 60s’. Other than long tail keywords, there’s the head term. Head term is much shorter and not as specific as a long tail keyword. An example of a head term would be ‘Food Photographer’. Lastly, there’s search intent. Search intent or Buyer Intent’ is the goal or want of the searcher. Search Intent can be like a scale by which someone is specifically searching for a specific product or service or service provider. Consider the search intent between ‘Home Loan Broker’ vs ‘Low Doc Home Loan Broker Melbourne’. The stronger the search intent the more likely the searcher is to consider enquiring. Consider too that the broader the phrase, despite the attractive higher volume, the less likely the visitor may be deeper into the buying cycle. For eg ‘Home Loan’ is a very high search volume phrase, however not only is this phrase extremely competitive and not worth most smaller businesses time to target it, but the new home buyer or those seeking to refinance may be a lot earlier in their buying cycle.

SEO Strategy includes SEO Keyword Research but why is it so important?  

The importance of SEO keyword research is it helps you to understand and know what terms are used by your target audience in searching for your product or service. The terms that are input into search engines are the ones that count, and if that counts then that is what we’re aiming for. To help you with SEO keyword research, check out the list below to know how to conduct proper keyword research.

Understanding your business and its online goals

SEO keyword may be about the target audience but without an SEO Agency understanding your business, the keyword research process won’t be as effective as it can be. You might be able to look for the terms used by a set of audiences but if you don’t have exactly what they are looking for and they ended up in your website, they’ll just leave as soon as they arrived. This, in turn, could increase the bounce rate which is considered a big NO for Google, therefore hurting your search engine rankings. In the end, to understand and recognise the target audience, knowing your core offering and how your prospective buyers search for your exact service or product is essential.  

To get started with SEO keyword research, first, ask the following questions to yourself and answer it as best as you can. This way you will get a better idea of what you are, your goals, and what your audience is looking for.

  1. What is your vision and mission?
  2. What are the services or products you offer?
  3. What do you offer that others do not?
  4. Who is interested in your services?
  5. Who do you want to cater to and where are they located?
  6. Is your service offering likely to be searched by local clients as equally as national clients?

The questions above are quite a lot but knowing the answers for those is a way for you to get a better idea of what you stand for and offer. This allows you to see how your audience will search for your services and products and therefore tailor the content around the very search phrases they are searching to find and engage your business. Delivering on this strategy for human being visitors also addresses Google long-standing criteria of appropriate keyword rich and helpful content which therefore helps it index, list, and rank your website against your competitors.  

Finding the right keywords

Finding the right keywords for your SEO strategy to rank well in search engines, it would be best to always ask yourself this question “What are the terms that my target audience will use to find my content?” Start by identifying the right keywords. But to truly find the right keywords for your website content and achieve SEO success, there are multiple tools that can help you in your keyword research. Those tools will give you extensive data on different keywords which allows you to make an informed decision on what keywords to use and which phrases take priority over others.

Here are five SEO tools that can help businesses with their SEO Keyword Research:

Google Keyword Planner – As the name suggests, it’s an SEO keyword research tool by Google and it is free. Two of the functions of GKP that you should know is finding keywords and getting relevant keyword data as well as data forecast for each. Aside from being a keyword research tool, GKP is also an ad tool which really helps because of all the cost per click (CPC) data that it provides as well as Google Ads competition.

KWFinder – KWFinder gave emphasis on long tail keywords. Furthermore, the tool provides extensive data regarding each keyword which includes search volumes, traffic, domains that target a certain keyword, and more.

Keyword Explorer by Moz – Similar to other tools, it provides a lot of data when it comes to each keyword phrase and provides a summary that makes the data easy to understand. Also, Keyword Explorer offers a full SERP (Search Engine Results Page) analysis which allows you to have information regarding the top web pages which is considered your competitors on particular keywords.

SEMrush- With SEMrush, it analyses terms used in Google as well as in Bing. It also provides relevant data for each keyword as well as a database that can help SEO of different regions. The multinational information allows websites to create enriched content.

Answer The Public: This tool helps with content ideas and is by far the most engaging cloud-based tool to use when exploring content ideas and keywords that can help formulate a content writing brief.

With SEO keyword research, you are not limited to those SEO tools alone, there are many others you may find suitable for your purposes and ease of use. Here are others that you can check out: Google Search Console, Soovle, SECockpit, Jaaxy, Keywords Everywhere, Ubersuggest, Serpstat.

Analysing the Audience’s Search Intent

There’s always a reason why people input terms in search engines but what are those? Those reasons can be referred to as search intents. SEO keyword research considers search intent because it is heavily important. Search intent, as defined previously, is the reason or goal of the searcher for entering phrases or terms to search engines. Analysing it goes beyond knowing the meaning of each term because the search intents could really be different and only gets clearer once the terms came together as a phrase where the meaning can be drawn. According to Yoast, there are 4 types of search intent: Informational, Navigational, Transactional, and Commercial. Respectively, the following means: the need for knowledge about a certain topic, the need to reach a certain website, the need to buy, and the need to know more things before buying.

SEO keyword research as you might have noticed is not all about finding the top keywords, it’s not solely about ranking a keyword that you have decided to use. SEO keyword research is researching what keywords perfectly fit your website, your target audience’s search intent, and the best one to use to rank well. It involves quite a lot of consideration before reaching a set of suitable keywords, with all the keywords suggested by an SEO keyword research tool and all the data associated with each keyword, deciding which one to use requires careful consideration.

With careful consideration and internal stakeholder conversations and brainstorming with your SEO Agency, SEO keyword research is a highly rewarding process. Once the decision making and prioritising of one phrase over another has been reached, it then serves as a foundation for a content writing brief for your website and its core service pages as well as the blog pages and meta descriptions.

SEO keyword research is a critical first step before an active SEO Monthly Campaign should commence. It is also important to review and revise your SEO Campaign to identify any new search phrases or trending products or services that may not have existed previously. TopRankings continues to use SEO Keyword Research and copywriting toward an effective client SEO Campaign. The final tip is to marry up the keyword phrase data to align with the service or product that translates to the highest transaction value or lifetime value from a client. For an obligation free strategy discussion, feel free to get in touch with TopRankings today on 1300 881 911.


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