Keyword Research

Identifying the right keywords is the first step towards optimizing your website for ranking high in search engines.   For any journey to be successful identifying the correct path is important, similarly correct keyword research and its implementation can lead to a successful online endeavor.

What are Keywords?

Keywords are specific words/ phrase searched in a search engine to find a relevant website or information.

Google search result

What’s the importance of Keywords on a Website?

Placing a keyword on your website is a way to inform Google that your site is relevant to that keyword.

Example : If you have a site for “Jewellery store”, you will want to make sure that your site has keywords related to “Jewellery store”. So when people search for “Jewellery store” in Google, your site shows up high.

Since most businesses nowadays rely on the World Wide Web to drive business, it makes sense to invest some time in researching your keywords.

What is Keyword Research?

Keyword research is a process of finding all the relevant keywords for your site so that you can drive maximum and relevant traffic from search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo.

Keyword Research helps you find more than one keyword for your website.

Higher the numbers of keywords -> higher the traffic -> more the leads -> increased sales -> higher ROI and maximum profits.

It makes sense to invest time and effort on Keyword Research so that you can get the best ROI on your website.

Understanding the Customer Search Intention

It’s now time to understand Customer Search Intention doing so will help you find the best keyword for your site.

There are four types of Customer Search Intention:

  1. Explore Intention
  2. Considering Intention
  3. Buying Intention
  4. Brand Search Intention

All of the above four intentions have an impact on the way you plan your site’s ranking in search engines and the traffic it generates. It sees all the Pros and Cons of above intention on your site’s SEO effort.

Customer Search Intention

1) Explore Intention

The visitors usually uses 1-2 words to search when they want to explore about something.

Pros:

– These keywords can get you very High Traffic
– Help you to establish your Brand Name
– Show you as an authority in the Industry

Cons:

– These keywords are very competitive and hence difficult to rank high
– There is no “TO BUY” intention while using these keywords and hence the chances of conversion is very low
– It takes a lot of time, effort and money to rank high for these keywords

2) Considering Intention

The visitor usually use 2-3 word to search when they are considering a product / service.

Pros:

– These keywords can get you traffic between medium to high
– Help you to establish your brand name.

Cons:

– These keywords are competitive and hence difficult to rank high
– The chances of conversion are very low
– It takes time, effort and money to rank high for this keyword

3) Buy Intention

The user usually use 3 or more words to search when they are clear as to what they want to buy a product / service.

Pros:

– Competition is usually less due to long keywords
– The conversion rate is very high
– Cost less to rank them high so higher ROI

Cons:

– Limited Traffic

4) Brand Intention

The visitors usually type 1-2 words to search whey they are searching a specific brand name.

Pros:

– Conversion is usually very high as people come here with the intention to explore your product or service
– Costs very less to rank them high, so very high ROI

Cons:

– You need to be an established brand for people searching for your brand keyword

After discovering the world around customer search intention, let us now discover the different types of keywords.

What are the different types of Keywords?

1) Head Keywords
2) Body Keywords
3) Long Tail Keywords

Types of Keywords

Head Keywords

– Include search, explore intention
– 1-2 words long
– Drive huge volume of traffic
– Very hard to rank high
– Low conversion
– Get 18.5% of search traffic

Body Keywords

– Include search considering intention
– 2-3 words long
– Drive high traffic
– Hard to rank high
– Low conversion
– Get 11.5% of search traffic

Long Tail Keywords

– Include buying intention & other long phrase keywords
– 3 or more words long
– Drive low traffic
– Easy to rank high
– 2.5 times higher conversion
– Get 75% of search traffic

As we see that Long Tail Keywords are most important from an SEO perspective, let’s understand Long Tail Keywords in detail

Long-Tail Keywords – In-depth Study

Long-tail Keywords

Long-tail keywords have buying intention and other long phrase that visitors are more likely to search.

Visitors are more likely to purchase when they use long phrase keyword as it has a very specific intention that they want to fulfil, example : “Bengali Jewellery Store in Mumbai”

As an ongoing practice, you can add pages for your long tail keywords to your site and also expand your traffic from different related keywords.

It may not be possible to rank all your keywords in top 3 search results (your top 3 results give you 60% of traffic) but that still leaves you with 40% people visiting you.

Long Tail Keywords is an SEO effort that will get you easily into the top 10 position in search engines, resulting in good traffic and conversion at low cost.

How to do Effective Keyword Research?

Now that you know the basics of Keywords, let’s begin with the actual task at hand – Keyword Research. Basically, keyword research is a practice widely used by SEO professionals to research search terms that people use in search engines. SEO professionals concentrate on niche topics and keywords and perform keyword research to achieve better rankings in search engines.

To do an effective keyword research, you need to first understand the steps involved in the process. I present to you a series of quick steps to help you get the most out of your keyword research:

Step 1: Create an exhaustive list of topics relevant to your business

To start off with this process, you need to brainstorm about the topics that are relevant to your business. Put yourself in the shoes of your target audience to know what words they would search for if they wanted to find you.

For example, if you own a Jewellery Store, you would want to look for keywords related to “Jewellery Store”, in general. I’ve used Ubersuggest for this example and in the following screenshot, you can see a few of the 999 suggestions it provides for the search term “Jewellery Store”:

Uber

You could also make use of a website analytics tool such as Google Analytics to find out which keywords your website is already getting found for. Dive deeper into your website’s traffic sources, and sift through it to identify the keywords people are using to arrive at your site.

Alternatively, a great keyword research method involves getting in touch with your sales staff and asking them about the terms their prospects and customers use and the common questions they ask.

Remember that right now you’re just brainstorming ideas and these are not the actual keywords.

Step 2: Look for related search terms

Still stuck with finding innovative keyword ideas? Relax. Go to Google.com and take a look at the related search terms that appear at the bottom of the page when you type in a keyword.

Related searches in Google

You don’t always require fancy tools to get your work done. Sometimes, you just have to pay more attention to the hints Google keeps throwing at you. Didn’t get the hint yet? Alright, I am talking about the Autocomplete/Autofill option. When you type in your keyword to look for closely related topics, make a note of all the Autocomplete suggestions that you see near the search bar.

Autocomplete results of Google

As it is all of these suggestions come up because they are the most looked up terms in the Search Engine. This might prove to be really helpful. Pretty cool huh!

Tips:

  • Type in some of the related search terms you just found and look at Their related search terms.
  • Check your keyword lists to make sure you have a healthy mix of head terms and long-tail keywords.

Step 3: Refine your keyword list with competitive research

There is a high possibility that a keyword important to your competitor is not important to you at all. However, having an understanding about the keywords your competitors are using can help you evaluate your own keyword list better.

In order to perform an effective competitive research, you need to:

  • Look for keywords that are in common between your keyword list and your competitor’s list and work on improving the ranking for the keywords you find.
  • Experiment with keywords that are not on your competitor’s list. This could be a great chance for you to try something innovative.

So, here’s the Big question: How do you find the keywords your competitors are ranking for?

Well, you could put SEMrush to good use here. SEMrush is an online marketing toolbox that will help you find relevant keywords for your target audience and help you optimize your content as well.

You can enter your keyword and select your country from the dropdown provided in the search bar on the home page. For our example, I looked up for “Jewellery Store” and I got the following results:

SEMrush results for Jewellery store keyword

Not only does SEMrush give you the freedom to run a number of free reports but also provides you with a lot of other interesting functions!

Another approach for performing a competitive research (which might sound a bit crooked) is to manually search for keywords in an incognito browser and check for the positions of your competitors. This is a yet another way to quickly get a hang of the terms your competitors are ranking for.

Step 4: Working with Google Keyword Planner

After you’ve determined the keyword term you’d like to focus on, you need to ensure that this keyword gets enough monthly searches and whether it is feasible to rank for it. If there are a million sites out there which are trying to rank for the keyword you’ve thought of, you’re obviously in tough competition and this might not be a good choice for you.

So now we’re going to get our hands on the Google Keyword Planner to optimize our keyword list.

  1. Go to Google Keyword Planner and Sign Up for a free AdWords account if you don’t have one already.
  2. Select the “Search for new keywords using a phrase, website or category” option and you will land on the following page:

Google AdWords page

  1. On this page, you need to enter the target keyword. In our case, we’re going to use “Bengali Jewellery Store in Mumbai”.
  2. Select the ‘Keyword ideas’ tab and not the ‘Ad group ideas’ tab. The Keyword ideas tab will give you critical information, about your keyword or phrase, such as the average monthly search volume and the level of competition.

Google AdWords results page

  1. After entering the the keyword “ Bengali Jewellery Store in Mumbai”, you will find that it is has no monthly searches or competition. This strongly suggests that it is definitely not the keyword we should be targeting.
  2. So, we will run a search for other sets of relevant keywords that we have on our list. Our aim is to look for a term that has least competition and maximum Average monthly searches.
  3. After running a couple of searches, the best bid we get is “jewellers in mumbai”. It has a medium level of competition and a reasonable number of monthly searches.

Bengali jewellery AdWords results

Other great alternatives to Google Keyword Planner are Keyword Tool and KeywordSpy. Every tool has its own set of unique features so, it’s upto you to choose which one of them works best for you.

So, our job here is done!

If you’re still not satisfied with the results, you might want to check out Google Trends to fill in some blanks.

It is worth noting that no process or tool is perfect. The Google Keyword Tool may underestimate the search volume of a particular term and only provide results based on exact match type. This doesn’t mean that it is entirely flawed. It simply means that you don’t have to completely rely on a particular tool if you’re looking out for the best results. You need to do some digging yourself.

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