Keyword Research: How to Find Keywords for SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a great way to drive traffic to your website, increase conversions and tap into the millions of consumers shopping for products online. However, finding the right keywords or key phrases to target can be a challenge. Here are a few ways to help eCommerce merchants find the right keywords for SEO and some tips for maintaining SEO over time.
Choose keywords and key phrases that best describe your business
Make sure to first research keywords and key phrases that specifically fit your business. The key word here is “specific.” If you are a car window repair shop, choosing the keyword “windows” will get you nowhere fast. If you are a local New Holland tractor dealer, trying to rank with the phrase “New Holland” might put you into unwanted and unprofitable competition with several large cities around the world. If you are a coffee shop, tempting as it might be, you have little chance with the keyword “coffee” alone. Do you see the trend? Make sure your keywords are on-target, ownable, realistic and not easily mistaken for another subject entirely.
While it’s important to go after the keywords and key phrases that best describe your business, it is also important to research your competition. For SEO, it’s possible to gain a lot of valuable information on your competitors. There are several tools available to help with this including SEMrush or Moz’s Keyword Difficulty Tool. Both are great used separately or together. The goal is learn what your competitor’s strengths and weakness are and where there is an opportunity to gain an edge. Start with the same keywords and key phrases used in your initial research. Does your competitor rank for the same keywords? Are there other keywords they’re ranking for that you’re not? How are they using those keywords? A competitor analysis is a valuable tool in SEO.
How many people are searching the web using those keywords
Once you’ve built a list of relevant keywords, it is important to analyze how often those keywords are being searched for via search engines. Two free tools that do a good job of this are Google’s Keyword Planner and Wordtracker’s GTrends Tool. Follow this rule of thumb: if a keyword generates a lot of searches, it will be harder to rank organically through an SEO effort. If you find that your keywords have too much competition, try adding the town, city or state name. Also, try longer-tailed keywords; for example instead of “windshield repair” try “windshield repair Cincinnati” or “window repair shop in Cincinnati.”
Estimating costs for ongoing SEO efforts
A cost analysis of the effort and time required to implement your keywords versus the amount of traffic they may generate may also prove beneficial. Your current rank for a keyword or phrase, the amount of competition for the same keyword and the current state of your website are all important factors in estimating ongoing SEO campaign costs. In addition to keywords, merchants can improve SEO through new content, optimizing metadata, updating product descriptions, category pages, optimizing images must be taken into account. It’s important to budget efforts based on what is necessary and what will drive conversions.
Optimizing Keywords for SEO Is an Ongoing Process
Determining the proper keywords for your SEO campaign is an ongoing process. A set it and forget it mentality just isn’t possible with SEO. Tracking changes made to SEO efforts is important. Performing consistent traffic analysis, keyword position reports, and frequent website updates optimally tune your website for SEO. It’s good to document what changes have been made on specific pages and what the targeted key phrase is. A reference document tracking changes with notes can prove to be valuable. Historical data will help you learn what changes had a positive impact and what still needs to be tackled or revisited.
Like most things, experience and first-hand knowledge are paramount. Start your SEO campaign on the right track with the proper keywords and you’ll gain the experience to make your website highly competitive by constantly refining your SEO strategy.
To learn more about finding the right keywords for SEO, or more about SEO for for Magento and our marketing services, contact us today.