How To Develop Your Keyword Strategy
Choosing the right keywords. Sounds simple enough, right? It can be - if you take the easy way out. If you’re doing the best job possible, your keyword strategy should be just that. A strategy. It’s going to take planning, research and the utilization of specific tools in order to ensure you’re approaching your website’s search engine optimization as logically as possible.
I’ll outline a few tools and tactics you should utilize when developing your next keyword strategy. But remember - it doesn’t stop here. It’s a process that needs to be refined and revisited over time.
First...let’s start with the free tools you should be using to your advantage.
Google Analytics is a great tracking tool for your website. You’ll see what pages people are spending time on and, specifically, how they’re getting to your site.
Use the Acquisition section of GA to delve into what keywords are driving users to your site. If there’s large search volume surrounding 1-2 keywords, it might be worth incorporating them into new pages you’re creating.
Google Trends reveals more than just what popular musical artist is being searched the most that week. It reveals how often a search term is entered relative to the total search volume across different parts of the world and in different languages. But how does this impact your keyword strategy?
Google Trends reveals the popularity of a search term, rather than total search volume. You’ll get a better idea of how a search term ebbs and flows, due to seasonality, geography, etc. This will impact your analysis of the keywords you use, as you’ll understand when they’ll be generating the most traffic.
- Google Adwords Keyword Planner Tool
Probably the most useful of the three, this free tool is extremely helpful when it comes to determining which keywords make the most sense for you to use. You’ll be able to search for new keyword ideas and get the search volume for a particular term or phrase.
This tool does more than you realize, and it’s awesome for SEO. Take the time to get familiar with it and utilize everything it offers.
Now that we’ve discussed some helpful tools you can utilize moving forward, let’s chat about some tactics you should be utilizing when it comes to determining the right keywords to use for your website.
- Long-tail Keywords
When you’re determining which keywords you’re going to incorporate into your website, it’s important to understand the impact long-tail keywords have on search. Long-tail keywords are those three or four word search queries that are extremely relevant to whatever offering or service your website is discussing - and they’re becoming more and more popular in use.
Long-tail keywords resemble natural language and incorporating them into your website copy should be seamless. It’s great to include them in your blog posts as titles, as they may fit here better. So, dig into long-tail keywords you could use in your keyword strategy and reap the benefits down the line.
- Location-based Keywords
If you’re deciding to incorporate location-based keywords into your copy, you must ensure that you’re doing it in a way that makes sense and doesn’t look like keyword stuffing. Google is smarter than ever and will pick up on any black-hat SEO, so be sure you do this the right way.
- Keyword Difficulty
When choosing the right keywords for your site, it’s important that you understand the difficulty-level. You might be wondering how this is determined. It takes into account competition, authority and relevance. The higher the difficulty ranking, the harder it might be to rank high on that keyword.
For instance, if your goal is to rank in the top 10 for the term ‘women’s shoes’, you would have a lot of difficulty doing so, as larger brands tend to have those spots locked down. This will let you know how creative you need to get with your keyword strategy - but remember, it takes time to improve your ranking and certainly doesn’t happen overnight. This is why it might make sense to work on long-tail phrases, such as “women’s walking shoes” or something along those lines.
We’ve given you some free tools to utilize and some tactics to keep-in-mind when you develop your next keyword strategy - but this is just the beginning. It’s a complex process that, like I said, needs to evolve and be tweaked over time.
So, have patience - and get to work.