What is the Importance of Keyword Research?
This post is for everyone who is an Internet Marketing Strategist, Search Analyst or SEO etc. and does Keyword Research for his projects. I think Keyword Research is the most important aspect for SEO and if it not done perfectly you can make a huge mistake by targeting your whole SEO campaign around some wrong and useless keywords. This is process which can make or break your website. I would like the SEO’s and Internet Marketers to start thinking differently about how you gather all the data for Keyword Research.
Every Search Engine uses its own, unique algorithm to provide search results. They employ text matching to help them determine relevance. When a searcher searches for a keyword like “Hotels in Delhi” , the search engine shows the WebPages most relevant and informative to this keyword. So Keyword Research brings valuable & relevant traffic to your website and also it enhances the user experience for a website by providing the most relevant keywords which decreases the Bounce Rate. That means Keyword Research is a great way to find the areas of opportunity for the success of a particular website.
How much is a Particular Keyword Worth to Your Website? Ask Yourself to Get the Answer.
1. Will the searchers find here what they are looking for when they are coming to my website by searching this keyword?
2. Is the content relevant on the page for that keyword?
3. Is the keyword relevant to your website?
4. If this keywords rank well then it would be sending a lot of traffic, or minimal traffic?
5. Do this keyword fit in with the website’s business model?
6. Do this keyword logically represent the website’s products/services?
If the answers of these 6 questions are clear “Yes” then you can proceed.
Keyword Tools Provide Some Predictions, not Accurate Data:
The whole Internet Marketing industry knows that the search volume data from the Google Adwords Tool is bullshit. The simple truth is – you should not trust Google Adwords Tool; it is there for illustrative purposes only to predict the real volume. Check the competition and search volume and competition from Google Adwords Tools by singing in and without signing in , you will find different data.
Search for Some Desired Terms/phrases in Google:
Put the desired terms or phrases in Google search box to see that for which keywords the Paid advertisements are appearing. Roughly we can say that many paid ads means it could be a high value and conversion-prone keyword.
Go for Long Tail Keywords:
I think long tail keywords are more conversion-prone keywords, Why ? If a searcher searches for “Chocolate Cookies” , is does not mean he/she wants to buy it, may be he/she is searching for the recipe or wants some discounts for ordering bulk products or wants to sell it. But if a person searches for “Chocolate Cookies Recipe” or “How to Make Chocolate Cookies” then we can clearly understand that his/her purpose for the searches. Although it has a very good search volume, may be it is a mistake if you target “Chocolate Cookies” to optimize as a keyword. So the conclusion is we should be doing keyword research thinking about the search intent. This is where you have to be careful when researching for keyword.
Are You Basing Your Search Volume Calculations On Broad/Phrase Match Searches?
I think this is the most common and most damaging keyword research mistake.
Let us consider a keyword “Tennis Shoes”.
These searches could be considered as broad match: “tennis racquet”, “high heeled shoes” , “buy tennis shoes” etc.
And these searches could be considered as phrase match: “tennis shoes photo”, “best tennis shoes” , “red tennis shoes” , “buy tennis shoes” etc.
So what we have seen here? If you offering “Tennis Shoes” , you can attract traffic who are not looking for to buy tennis shoes, rather looking for “Tennis Shoes” etc; but it will definitely be worthless for you. Traffic quality is the best thing for a website.
How to Take Your Keyword Research to a Next Level ?
Add Some Social Media Signal Data!
Social media data can provide some extra valuable information to your keyword list. But where to find these data? Ok, here it is :
It is free. You can analyze tweets, Photos, videos, trending topics and everything here. For better result use the “Advanced Search” field.
check it out for the keyword “Hotels in Delhi” :
It is also free. You can use this tool for Real-time social media search and analysis. It is like Google alerts but made for social media only.
check it out for the keyword “Hotels in Delhi” :
Get Some Über-suggestions with Übersuggest Tool:
You can get keyword ideas using Übersuggest Tool that makes good use of Google auto-complete word suggestion. It is free and very simple to use.
For example, check out the suggestions for the keyword “Hotels in Delhi” :
I think a perfect keyword is that which has very high search volume and Low competition.
The Search Engine Google changes its search algorithm constantly, each year up to 500-600 times. These algorithm updates help them to provide better search results to the web users. But most of these changes are minor, only the Major algorithm updates affect search results in significant ways. So it is very important for the SEO experts to know these Google updates for the rankings of the websites.
But Why These Algorithm Updates?
The Search engine Google makes money from the gigantic market shares and advertisements. They can charge more than others because they have the biggest pool of potential advertisement impressions and clicks to sell or generate leads. So Google has a complete interest in insuring a better search user experience. And That’s it. Google does not care about your website’s ranking. They only care about providing the most relevant search results, so that everyone keeps using Google.
Recommended article: How to Make Google Love Your Website?
On 24th February 2011, a major Google update called “Farmer Update” or “Google Panda 1.0” has affected 12% of search queries and halved many well-known websites visitor numbers.
Google’s Head of Search Spam Mr. Matt Cutts puts it in a Blog post announcing that:
“This update is designed to reduce rankings for low-quality sites—sites which are low-value add for users, copy content from other websites or sites that are just not very useful. At the same time, it will provide better rankings for high-quality sites—sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis and so on.”
And Matt Cutts Tweeted :
So what are the Search Engine Optimization mistakes that are hurting thousands of websites since the Google Panda Update?
- High Advertisement Ratio
- Keyword Stuffing
- Duplicate Content
- Back links from Blacklisted Sites
- Buying or Exchanging Links
- Less Content and Heavy Template Footprint
- Pages with Empty content and with Only Links
- High bounce rate on page or site.
- Low percentage visit times on web page or website.
- Low percentage of users returning to a site
- Low percentage of Click Through Rate (CTR) from Google’s results result pages
- Low quality inbound links
We can say that Panda is a ranking factor for the websites. It is a filter that Google has designed to evaluate the low-quality Web Pages. Remember that the Google Panda is a site-wide penalty.
Google Panda Update Favours Images and Videos:
If we look at the winners and losers found by Searchmetrics, it is obvious that the websites with valuable images and videos were the big winners.
Here are the winners:
And the loosers are:
What Should You Be Doing?
Where should you focus your energy now? Content, of course Content!
Use blogs, infographics , articles and other high quality content to leverage for link building and to attract natural, organic back links. Remember, we should earn links, not create links.
For more , you can check out this Rand Fishkin‘s Whiteboard Friday : How Google’s Panda Update Changed SEO Best Practices Forever