Every successful project starts with a plan. If it is a building, it has a blueprint. A car may have a digital drawing. And a search engine optimization or SEO online marketing strategy has a keyword analysis.
Like blueprints and designs guide construction projects and give them a direction, keyword analysis builds a roadmap for your SEO efforts.
But what are keywords, and what is keyword analysis?
Keywords are a set of phrases that your target audience uses while searching on the web and search engines use these keywords to identify a website’s relevance with the search query and determine its rank.
A keyword analysis is a method of finding the “right words” on which to optimize your website and its contents. It helps you identify the exact phrases that people are using to search for products in your industry, along with important metrics such as search volume and competition.
Search volume gives an idea of how many people use a given phrase in their searches within a time frame while competition identifies how many websites are trying to rank for the given keyword. The higher the competition, the more websites are competing for a single keyphrase. It may be challenging to rank for it. Conversely, low competition means very few websites are trying to rank for that particular keyword, and it could be easier for you to rank with it.
Keyword analysis helps you find the right words to rank for. It eliminates the guesswork and empowers you with data-driven knowledge of what phrases on which to build your SEO campaign.
This is why it is the first step in the development of any SEO strategy. Because, without the right keywords, you will be lost in the internet space as search engines will not be able to link your target audience’s queries with your website.
Let’s explain with an example. Say you have an online flower shop. Your target audience searches for flowers using keywords like “buy flowers online.” But you have neglected keyword analysis and have guessed that your audience will search the web with the phrase “beautiful bouquets.” And based on this guess, you have optimized your website and its content around this phrase.
Do you think search engines will connect “buy flowers online” with a website optimized for “beautiful bouquets?” Not likely.
Most companies that provide consulting in internet marketing and SEO services initiate their SEO campaigns with in-depth keyword research so that their SEO efforts can yield profitable results.
The primary aspect of every SEO campaign is content. When you think of SEO content, your mind immediately goes to keywords incorporated within the text. However, keywords don’t just hold importance within the content, but they actually drive the content.
By giving you insight into your audience’s thoughts, keyword analysis generates content ideas and helps you create content that offers viable solutions to their real problems. This way, it shapes your SEO content strategy to create valuable content, which is another important ranking factor.
Besides creating content, website on-page optimization is another crucial task in an SEO campaign. On-page optimization involves activities that make sure the website is consistent with selected keywords; both the text that visitors can see and underlying “metadata” used in the site. Keyword analysis, yet again, comes into play here. It shapes on-page SEO and tells you which keywords to optimize for each page of your website.
It helps you select the best keywords for different products and services that you offer, so each page of your website can rank for its own audience. This widens your audience base and enhances the exposure of your website as a whole.
Let’s revisit the flower shop example. You offer various services, and you may find keywords for each of these services, such as customized flower bouquets, flower arrangements, floral decorations, etc. These keywords will not only help you classify your services on the website for better SEO but they will also help your website rank for all the people searching for each of these services individually. Moreover, it will also inform you of what the audience needs from a flower shop so that you can target just that.
Additionally, keyword analysis helps you decide which services to rank first, so you don’t have to find keywords for all of your services at once. For example, the customized flower bouquet service keywords may have better metrics than flower arrangements. So, you can optimize the customized flower bouquet services page first. And once that gains traction, you can optimize the flower arrangements page, link it with the (now) higher authority flower bouquet page, and give your new page’s optimization a boost.
You know the importance of keyword analysis and choosing the right keywords. But how exactly do you find these “right” keywords?
One common suggestion you see in the digital marketer’s circle is to go with high search volume, low competition keywords.
But unfortunately, you don’t live in a perfect world. And there rarely is a keyword that has a significant search volume and relatively low competition. Most high-volume keywords have high or medium competition.
Should you go with these keywords, having high search volume but also significant competition?
What do you think? Is it better to appear on the eighth page for a keyword with one million searches or to appear on the first page for a keyword with a few hundred searches? Keeping in mind, most people don’t beyond the first two or three pages.
Of course, it’s better to rank on page one for a low search volume keyword. Because in this case, even though the traffic will be low, you will be interacting with most of it. While in the other case, the traffic might be huge, but you, being beyond the first few pages, will barely get to interact with any of it.
So, it might be better to go for a relatively low search volume and low competition keyword in some cases.
Specific or long-tail keywords can often be an excellent example of low search volume and low competition keywords. Additionally, they are more promising as well because a person typing in a long phrase is most likely searching to buy what you are selling. This means these keywords earn more qualified leads than shorter and generic keywords.
One way to make your keyword analysis more specific is to restrict it to one geographical location instead of targeting all the users around the globe.
Geo-targeting minimizes your competition, limits your reach to people who actually matter to your business, and helps your website rank better. What’s the point of your flower shop ranking for a person in Colorado when your service can’t deliver beyond New Jersey? Therefore, it is better to stick to location-specific keywords.
Keyword analysis provides search terms and phrases that act as guideposts along your SEO journey. Building an SEO campaign without a thorough keyword analysis is analogous to going on a treasure hunt without a map. All your efforts will be based on guesswork and will likely yield no significant results.
Selecting the right keywords is of paramount importance for a keyword analysis to reflect positively on the results of an SEO campaign.
The correct selection of keywords is more than following a set of rules. It requires years of keyword research experience, industry insights, and an understanding of user behavior.
If you think you can’t take the time to perform an effective keyword analysis or you can’t risk compromising the outcome of your SEO strategy, then consider letting an SEO internet marketing services company, like Landau Consulting, take care of your keyword research and SEO.
Landau consulting, a New Jersey SEO company, has years of experience building successful SEO campaigns based on solid keyword analysis. You can find out about our SEO internet marketing services by reaching out directly at landauconsulting.com/contact/.