Keywords Are the Keys to the Kingdom

Posted on May 30, 2013

Keywords Are the Keys to the Kingdom

SEM - Search Engine MarketingYou may have great website and social media content but if your audience can’t find you it won’t make a difference.  This is why keyword research is an essential first step in any marketing effort; it helps you not only determine what your audience is looking for but how you can better leverage yourself against your competition.

Keyword research is the center of all Search Engine Marketing (SEM) success and below are six steps for conducting effective keyword research:

  1. Build a seed list of keywords.  If you’re not sure where to start, visit a competitor’s website and see what words they are using in their website copy. (Tip: right click on any page on a website, click on View Source and in the HTML language you will see the keywords listed in the Meta Descriptions area, somewhere at the top of the page.)
  2. Research seed words with a keyword research tool.  Use a tool such as Google AdWords; Tools and Analytics, to determine performance and competition, and to locate other words and phrases that your audience is using more frequently to search for your service.
  3. Research your competition.  Once you have found keyword phrases you are interested in using, be sure to assess your website against your competitors’ by utilizing competitive research tools such as Market Samurai and SpyFu to determine what improvements you need to make within your own website to overcome your competition.  Competitive comparison is a very important step.
  4. Keyword optimize your website and search engine marketing efforts.  Use these same keywords in your content including website, blog, social media, online articles and press releases regularly. Be sure to add your keywords to your meta descriptions on each website page – ask a web developer for assistance in this area if you do not know coding.
  5. Track and measure your search engine position.  Check your position weekly and monthly on Google, Yahoo, and Bing for increase or decrease in page ranking.
  6. Review your keyword performance.  Check your performance quarterly, if not more frequently, to see how your phrases are trending in number of searches and competition.  Create a spreadsheet to keep track of your keywords phrases and their performance.

Now your audience has a chance of finding your much needed services!  Remember that in order to increase your page panking on any search engine, keyword research and monitoring must be an ongoing process and the above steps performed regularly and consistently.

Do you have a question, tip or challenge you would like to share? Please leave a comment; I would enjoy hearing from you! – Maureen

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