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Search Engine Keyword Research and Selection Tips

Search engine keyword research and selection is critical to your website marketing success. Across all of your website content, you need to make sure that you appeal to the right audience and get their attention, while also appealing to the search engines so that your prospects can find you.

The first step is to think like a buyer rather than a seller. You need to think about what words and phrases your prospective buyers are most likely to use in search when looking for a service or business like yours. Start with those words because they will probably be the most common. Then you can use specialized tools to find related keywords.

Using free services, like Google's keyword tracking tool, is a great way to both evaluate your initial keyword ideas as well as find additional, related keyword phrases. To start, type in your initial list of keyword phrases, one per line, then click the “Search” button. The tool will return a list including your keywords plus additional suggestions along with the typical monthly search volume and level of competition (i.e., how difficult it may be to rank) for each keyword phrases. Once you have gathered a list of keywords that are popular, relevant to your business and not too highly competitive, you can move on to the next step.

The next step is then to find out what keywords your key competitors are using and who is competing for those keywords. To do this, perform a search using some of your keywords, and see which companies appear in the results. This will enable you to estimate how your site is likely to rank compared to your competition, as well as identify which words are already overused. You may end up choosing different keywords that are less competitive but still have reasonably high search volume.

Generally, the higher the search volume on a keyword, the higher the competition. You can of course still use competitive keywords, but just know that you will need more time, content and links in order to rank for them. An alternative is use those high-competition terms in a paid search (search engine marketing) campaign. Search engine keyword research and SEO are ongoing processes; over time, you’ll determine what works, what doesn’t, and which words will work best for your business.
 

 




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