Okay, so in the past week 4 different clients asked about adding, “beefing up” or “fixing” their keywords so they could get on the top page of Google. That’s when I had to break it to them that most Websites never make it to the top page of Google anymore — but that’s another post.
Don’t get me wrong — keywords (actually keyword phrases) are at the heart of any Website’s marketing strategy. One part of hundreds of factors in Google’s algorithm. (If you want to get your mind blown with all the variables and “factors” check out this excellent article: Google Ranking Factors: 260+ Facts & Myths)
A comprehensive review of potential keywords should be discussed during the development process — not afterward. Keywords are fundamental to your SEO (search engine optimization) efforts but only when researched and integrated properly.
There are a bunch of tools to help in this effort, one that I recommend is WordTracker.
Surprisingly I find that many are under an incorrect perception when it comes to keywords and their rankings. Many surmise that one-word keywords (car, boat, property, homes) are what they need to “add to their site.” Specifically to the over-rated “Meta Keyword tag” which the search engines minimally rely on (if at all) in lieu of actual content on your site. All they need to do is “add them to their site” and they’ll be found “on top” on Google, right? Wrong.
The reality is that one-word keywords are very difficult to get ranked for. That’s why you need to investigate the most relevant 2-3 word keywords, a.k.a. phrases, that you want to concentrate on that are specific to what you do.
For example, if you are a Realtor in Memphis, TN, instead of “homes for sale”, you would instead concentrate on phrases that are more descriptive of what you do — specifically. Such as: memphis tennessee homes for sale, memphis real estate, memphis tennessee realtors.
As of today, if you do a search for “homes for sale” on Google and you’ll get 1,080,000,00 results and the sponsored ads are filled to the brim with folks bidding big money to get found. One realistically should not plan on pulling in the top 10 for such a generic phrase. However, if you get more focused and search for “memphis tennessee homes for sale” Google pulls 1,060,000 results — still a difficult number to tackle but a huge difference!
Yes, there may be searchers that look for “homes for sale” that do not know to narrow their search geographically to get the best results. But we can’t compensate for that as successfully as we can by concentrating on the most used phrases searchers use to find what you do and where you do it — specifically. Then we have to carefully and diligently ensure those important researched phrases are represented properly throughout your Website’s content.
How do you determine what keyword phrases to concentrate on? Check out my article on Bullseye Marketing to get started. The article includes tips, my worksheet and services to help you determine what terms searchers are actually using to find folks like you.
Then once you gather your list, look how you can add those phrases to new and established content. Only concentrate on one or two phrases for each page and you’ll find over time that your rankings for what searchers are actually looking for — for what you do specifically — will improve. And, you might be surprised to find that those who find you based on more focused and targeted phrases, actually turn out to be more qualified leads.
Working on your keywords should be viewed as a long term consistent project to realize any tangible goals. Set an appointment with yourself once every month to go over all the data available to you, including your Website statistics. Then, add new content accordingly as you discover additional phrases to use to your advantage.
You know what they say — knowledge is power; but only if you use it — and that applies ten fold to SEO.
At your service,
P.S. Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” Read my full Affiliate Disclosure Statement here.