How to Pick Keywords that Can Unlock More Traffic
Give You an Advantage Over Competitors
Practically everyone uses search engines like Google to find information online, which is why many businesses will bend over backwards to capture all that search engine traffic. Keywords are fundamental to search engine optimization. Knowing how to pick the right keywords, therefore, can give a company a big advantage over its competitors. Choosing keywords isn’t hard, but there are a few essential tips for doing it well.
Focus on Natural Phrases that Real People Use
When people search for information on the internet, they usually search phrases that they use in their daily lives. For instance, most people will ask Google to find ” computer repair near me” instead of asking the search engine to find a “computer store.” Using natural phrases as keywords, therefore, will help more people find your business.
Natural keyword phrases have always been important. Over the last few years, though, they’ve become even more relevant because more people have started using virtual assistants like Alexa and Siri. By including natural phrases in an SEO strategy, companies can align their content with the way that people speak. This makes it easier for companies to get higher rankings when people use voice search.
Use a Combination of Head, Body and Long-Tail Keywords
SEO programs often target three categories of keyword phrases:
- Head keywords that use only one word.
- Body keywords that use two to three words.
- Long-tail keywords that use four or more words.
Each type of keyword has its pros and cons. Since head keywords containing only one word typically have a lot of websites competing for them, which will make it difficult for smaller businesses to get high search engine rankings and capture their immense traffic.
Body keywords face less competition, so businesses have more opportunity to reach the top positions on search engine results pages (SERP).
Long-tail keywords have become the go-to option for many online marketers. Small to medium businesses have an uphill battle ranking for popular, single-word keywords, which is why one of the better strategies for smaller businesses is to target longer-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords face even less competition than head and body keywords. Not only is there less competition from bigger brands, but they also attract customers who are further along in their buying journey. For example, an online retailer targeting the long-tail keyword “Asics men’s running shoes” is more likely to attract shoe buyers who have already done some research to prepare for their shoe purchase, compared to targeting the short-term keyword “shoes.” A user searching for “shoes” is a different prospect than the user searching for “running shoes for night”, who knows exactly what he or she wants. These keywords can help companies convert customers who are closer to purchasing or committing.
Businesses can use the Google Keyword Planner to find out what keywords people are searching for. Be sure to target topical keywords as well as the right keyword themes, as semantic search is becoming increasingly important.
Take Advantage of Local SEO
Changes to Google’s algorithm has made local SEO more important in recent years. Google now includes local businesses at the top of its results, which is useful since so many of today’s consumers use their mobile devices to find nearby businesses that can meet their needs.
Since these local listings face less competition than worldwide listings and get positioned at the top of Google’s search results, marketers can’t ignore their effects on consumer decisions.
There are a multitude of local SEO keyword strategies. One of the easiest a business owner can implement is to simply add a business’s geographic location to other keyword phrases. For instance, someone who owns an ice cream company in San Francisco can take advantage of local SEO by using a localized keyword phrase like “best ice cream in San Francisco” or “Bay Area ice cream.”
Getting more specific with your keywords can provide a strategic advantage in the quest for more search engine visibility and opening the door to even more clients. SEO companies can provide the market research and expertise to craft an effective SEO program and implement for the busy business owner.