Keywords and keyphrases are the bread and butter of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Ranking for one particular keyword over the other could mean the difference between thousands of organic visitors a month and millions. In order to rank for those juicy, valuable keywords for your niche site, you’re first going to have to do quite a bit of keyword research.
You probably already know a couple of places where keyword research would be beneficial, like choosing keywords and keyphrases to generate blog post entry ideas, or to build ecommerce sites around. Keyword research however, goes a little more into detail than that. Here we’re going to show you some unique tools to find popular search terms and how to rank highly for your particular niche keyphrases.
Keyword Research Tools
Google Adwords Keyword Tool – When it comes to keyword research, this is probably one of the most well known tools available. Designed primarily for Google Adwords users, the Google keyword tool lets you check search terms to get a rough estimate of its number of monthly searches. You’re able to filter your search results by broad keywords and exact match, and also limit search to different regions, countries, and languages.
Alexa Search Analytics – Alexa offers a great way to learn interesting information about your various niche competitors. Just enter their URL in Alexa’s search form and then under Search Analytics you’ll see the up-to-date top search keyword queries used on that blog or website.
Google Trends and Insights for Search – These two tools let you find out the most relevant, viral content on the internet right now that relates to your keyword search. Many current events have never been searched before on Google, so it’s important to check on this and stay on top of what’s hot and what’s not.
Google Webmaster Tools – One particular section of Webmaster Tools lets you research which keywords and keyphrases users are entering into its search engine whenever your blog or website turns up in the Search Engines Results Page (SERP). While this particular section won’t let you know which keywords led to a user actually clicking on your link, it is useful in the sense that it’ll show you which keywords you can work on to come in at first. It’s always easier to improve a ranking than to start from the beginning.
Yahoo Answers – A good percentage of daily searches are asked in the form of a question. These questions are many times in reference to a specific problem or “how to”. Search your most relevant, basic terms for your niche site on Yahoo Answers and then you’ll see popular questions relating to that specific topic.
There a many more useful, detailed keyword research tools out there, but with these few, reliable sites, you’ll be able to find all of the relevant information you could ever need for your niche blog site.
One big, often overlooked part of keyword research is keyword placement. Where exactly are you going to put these terms you’ve tirelessly looked for, and how often should they be placed? Here we’ll take a look at where keywords and keyphrases work best and the tools that can help you do so.
Homepage Titles- In most cases, your blog’s homepage carries the most weight on your website. By weight I mean that search engines like Google will see it as one of the highly ranked pages on your website since it’s more than likely your homepage will garner the most backlinks from other webpages around the internet. This makes your homepage easier to rank for more competitive terms.
Most people believe that their blog title has to be an exact description of what your site is all about, or that it should only include your blog’s name. But doing so probably means you’re missing out on a lot of potential search traffic. Try choosing a homepage title that has anywhere between 4,000 and 50,000 exact searches monthly (using Google Adwords Keyword Tool). Keep it relevant of course, but realize the more popular terms are generally a lot harder to rank well for, so anything with a good size, average monthly search will do.
Easy Rank Keyphrase Titles- Easy rank keyphrase titles involve turning your homepage title keyword into a keyphrase. For example, a more competitive keyword could be Custom Flash Drives, whereas a longer keyphrase title could be Custom Flash Drives for Promotional Marketing. Since the keyphrase is longer, it’s less popular, thus having a better chance at being ranked first.
Permalinks- Permalinks are the keyword snippets at the end of your URL. In www.usbmemorydirect.com/products, the permalink would be “products”. By default, permalinks are usually taken up by the title of that specific page. You can however, customize the permalink URL without changing the page titles. In this way, you can rank highly for certain keywords, while at the same time giving your latest blog posts interesting, attention-grabbing titles.
Now that you’re armed with your list of ideal target keywords and the basic fundamentals on how to use them, you should be climbing your way to the top of the SERPs in no time!