Researching keywords for an online business is a complex, long term endeavor. What begins with simply typing the words into the search box is one of the crucial elements of an effective online marketing strategy. The point is not just to attract visitors to your website, but to convert their money into profit. Well chosen keywords can greatly contribute to the success of your online business. Conversely, choosing them poorly can cripple you from the start.
The Importance of Choosing Keywords
Why are well chosen keywords so important? For starters, they direct traffic to your website, some of which can convert into purchases. While in the age of social networking the importance of optimized keyword has slightly diminished, as you can get plenty of exposure through alternate means like Facebook or Twitter, it still remains an important part of any online campaign.
There Are Two Types of Keywords on the Internet
Not all keywords are created equally. Some only increase traffic, while some convert directly to a purchase. To understand this, you need to familiarize yourself with the concept of the Long Tail. Keywords can be roughly divided into two groups. The most popular generic keywords that get thousands of clicks and searches every day are not necessarily the best group to target. These account for a less than 30 per cent of the searches performed on the Internet and usually signify browsing, rather than looking for goods to purchase. The remaining 70 per cent are called Long Tail keywords.
Those That Convert and Those that Do Not
The long tail is considered by search engine optimization experts to be the more valuable part of a keyword curve, as it contains more specific keywords used by people looking to actually make a purchase. Naturally, this creates an opportunity for you to enter the market and start building your own position. As expected, this is also an excellent chance to compete with established companies, who worked for their position in search engine ratings for years.
The Right Tools for Research
Of course, easier said than done. To research keywords, you need the right tools. By far, the most powerful set of tools is offered by Google. Google Trends allows you to see how different keywords rank in searches, as well as recall past performance of a given keyword. What’s more, the Keyword Demand Prediction service is a unique tool that, basing on past data, helps determine how the keyword will fare in the future. Finally, Google Adwords are an excellent proving ground for trying out different keywords. Small scale marketing campaigns are a good way to estimate the popularity of a given keyword.
Researching keywords can be likened to market research. Targeting generic ones isn’t going to take you very far, but aiming for very specific ones is a perfectly valid strategy. Of course, to know which specific search terms to target takes a fair bit of research and effort. However, it is well worth it, if only to see the returns.