Just like we need a vehicle to drive us from point A to point B, small business owners would need search engines to drive customers to their websites. Without a road map or any road signs, the driver of a vehicle would find it hard to reach their destination. The same applies to your website. Specific pointers/signs in the form of carefully chosen keywords, from a thorough keyword research, are needed to direct visitors to your site. Business owners can expect to get hordes of visitors coming to their website through using the exact keywords or word phrases.
On the other hand, if your keywords are too vague or overly used, then the possibility of your visitors making it to you site would be very slim. In turn, it will greatly diminish your profits. In essence, your keyword research can be seen as the foundation of your marketing strategy. You should be very careful when selecting your keywords as it does not matter how good your marketing campaign is, the right people may never find what you have to offer them. Therefore, your first step should be to gather as well as evaluate keywords and word phrases.
The saying goes that you should think like your customers with regards to searching for specific keywords. Go directly to the source instead of just writing down a list of search words and phrases yourself. As business owner you should ask as many customers as possible what keywords they will be looking for. You can also use keyword research tools such as Google Keyword Planner.
In doing this, you will find that their understanding of your business and your understanding are worlds apart.
It goes without saying that the consumer proves to be an invaluable source. By accumulating words and phrases from them, you will soon find that these were the last thing on your mind. Only when you have their keywords on your list would you be ready to continue to the next step; Evaluation. When doing this, you should keep in mind three specific elements: popularity, specificity, and motivation.
1. Popular keywords
Of the three, popularity is the easiest one to evaluate due to its objective quality. In essence, if your keyword is very popular, your chances of getting found due to users typing in the chosen keyword is so much better as it may even bring up your URL (WordTracker is a very popular software tool that is worthwhile using)
2. Long tail keywords
The next one to consider would be specificity. In using a specific keyword, the likelihood that your consumer who is ready to buy your product will find you is so much greater. Lets use the keyword "automobile companies" as an example to help drive the point home that we are trying to make. Should your company specialize in body shops, it would be better to focus on the keyword "automobile body shops" even though it ranks lower as it is more specific, and exactly what your target market would be looking for. The greater the specificity, the less competition you will have from other business owners targeting the same keyword.
3. User intention
Another factor to look at would be consumer motivation. Here again, it would require that you put yourself in the shoes of your customers to figure out what motivate them to look for your service or product in terms of keywords or phrases. To find people who are ready to buy would require subtle tinkering of the given keyword until you have managed to turn it into a more specific and targeted keyword phrase to attract motivated traffic to your site. Amazingly, there is software that analyzes consumer behaviour in relation to consumer traffic that allows you to determine which keywords would bring you the best customers.
The best search engines like Google, Yahoo and MSN are often used to help as much as 85% of the world's population find what they are looking for. The whole idea of optimizing pages to obtain high Search Engine rankings would be to attract targeted visitors to your site so they are inclined to make a purchase. The higher page rank you have in the Search Engines, the better your chances of converting traffic that gets directed to your site. That is exactly what SEO is all about.
In essence, SEO is a science and involves a meticulous approach and continual monitoring to ensure your website conforms to the latest requirements. In all probability it would be in your best interest to make use of a reputable Search Engine Optimization company in your local area to take care of all your SEO needs. There is a lot more to SEO than you think. To get a good overall understanding of what is all involved in getting your SEO right, we suggest you read "Search Engine Manifesto" where you will gain further insight into how to increase your search engine ranking, building your link popularity, protecting your SEO rankings and get to see which top search engines give you the most bang for your buck.
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