If you’re putting off keyword research because it sounds overwhelming, you might be overthinking it. Keywords capitalize on search terms that people use to find what they are looking for on the Internet. Keywords can improve your search engine rankings and drive users to your site.
So yes, picking strong keywords is critical, but it doesn’t have to be the painful, soul-wrenching process that many people imagine. If you are looking for the right keywords for optimizing your website, follow these simple strategies.
- List topics that pertain to your business – You can start the process by thinking of the topics that you blog about frequently or that come up in sales conversations. Make sure that your topics cover the most important aspects of your business. Whatever is at the core of those topics is likely a keyword to consider targeting.
- “Orbit” keywords around your topics – Write each topic in a circle in the middle of a piece of paper. Then write keywords and phrases in offshoot circles radiating out of your main topic idea. Write down any terms that you think customers might look for in relation to your company.
- Check out the competition – You’ll want to be where your competitors are, so make sure that your keywords allow you to be found in similar places. There are a number of programs that will allow you to see what words your competitors rank for.
- Brainstorm synonyms – When you’ve exhausted your own brain, pull up Google and start looking for related search terms. For example, if you own a taco-themed food truck, type in the keyword “tacos,” then scroll to the bottom of the page and see what pulls up. You’ll see terms like “taco recipes” and “tacos and salsa.” Take these new phrases into consideration. Some of them might be keepers.
- Mix your phrase length – Short-tail keywords are generic, consist of one to three words, and are more commonly searched. Long-tail keywords are specific, contain four words or more, and are not as frequently searched. While short-tail keywords may bring more searches, long-tail keywords convert better. Aim for a good mix.
Once you have established a list of winning keywords, don’t go into autopilot. Study Analytics monthly and see how your words and phrases are performing. You may find that you need to delete some and add others. Adaptivity is the name of the game. Make sure to adjust your keyword targets as needed to achieve optimal results.