Keyword Research

SEO Keyword research

Keyword research can be defined as the process of uncovering and selecting the appropriate keywords for a particular website. Keyword research is one of the most fundamental SEO techniques as it provides the basis for any SEO campaign. Some of the world’s leading SEO experts often credit their success to how much time they spent doing keyword research before launching a SEO campaign. Keyword research is so critical to the entire SEO process that it’s always the first item on any SEO strategist’s to-do list.

When conducting keyword research SEO strategists typically work from a top-down approach. This means trying to understand the website’s target audience, and from this derive a list of keywords that the audience would use to find the website using a search engine. This can be achieved by either brainstorming or surveying both past and potential customers.

A brainstorming session will yield more than just a list of keywords, but also a list of alternate spellings, wordings and synonyms. When brainstorming for a target audience, SEO strategists must also consider how language and cultural factors change the way people search. For example, if the website is located in Australia the SEO strategist cannot use keywords that are spelled out using the American version of the English language, but instead must use keywords from the British version of the English language.

Surveying customers is the most ideal way to extrapolate the perfect list of keywords, however it’s also the most difficult and time consuming. There are numerous ways to perform surveys including emailing existing customers, conducting in-house focus groups or even adding optional pop-up surveys that appear when new users arrive at the website.

Once an initial set of keywords has been established it’s a good idea to write the list up on a whiteboard or somewhere that is accessible to all members of the team, as the keyword list will constantly change throughout the entire SEO campaign. For example, if the Marketing Manager conducts a focus group, he/she may need to alter the keyword list as a result of customer feedback.

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