Keyword Research For SEO – Part 1

If you are going to perform Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) in the hope of gaining higher rankings in search engines it is important to do keyword research first.

Good keyword research can help reveal:

  • which keywords potential visitors or customers are using,
  • how often they use those keyword
  • which keywords they don’t use
  • other possible meanings to the keywords they use
  • the likelihood that someone using a certain keyword will go on to become a customer
  • the amount of competition around each keyword
  • potential easy wins or gaps in the market
  • the potential return on investment of different keywords
  • the likely size of the long tail for certain keywords
  • the best SEO strategy for your budget

It is different from Keyword Research that you may perform for Google Adwords advertising. With Google Adwords it is best to bid on all or most of the relevant keywords. You just need to make sure your bid is in proportion to what someone using that keyword is worth to your business. If this bid isn’t high enough then your ad wont show and you wont get any visitors using that keyword but you don’t spend any money so nothing is lost. Within Adwords the price you pay is based on what other competitor’s using Adwords are willing to pay and the quality of their campaigns. It is not effected by the natural rankings at all.

With Adwords you can also bid on a broad term for instance if you are an account you can bid on the word “accountant” but set your ads to only appear in Liverpool or whichever area you are targeting. With SEO if you wanted to rank for the word “accountant” on it’s own you would be going against the whole of the UK. You would be better targeting something like “accountant Liverpool”.

With SEO Keyword Research you need to understand which competitor’s come up in the natural rankings and what their SEO strengths and weaknesses are. The amount of SEO you need to do is dictated by the other competitor’s in the natural rankings and is not effected by the Adwords competition.

So you may find one keyword that has a lot of competition within adwords and little within the natural rankings and a different keyword for the same product or service that is the opposite. Where the 2 do effect each other is in the percentage of visitors your website will get. If there is a lot of competition within Adwords then the ads are likely to be betters and people are more likely to click on them and vice versa.

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