Tuesday, 24 August 2010
Bruce Smeaton [Guest]
Keyword research is an awesome thing! It enables you to peer directly into people’s minds.
Being able to take a peek at the words and phrases (i.e. search terms) that people use when searching for things online, is incredibly valuable. Rather than trying to guess what people might enter into a search engine, you get to observe what they actually searched for! And when you then aggregate this you get a revealing picture of what words people most often use when searching for a specific topic, product or service.
Once armed with niche-relevant keyword research, you have the ability to create highly relevant web content that not only provides a solution to the needs of your site visitors, but boosts your credibility as well. It’s all about speaking the language of your audience and satisfying their needs and wants.
And if you get it right, chances are you’ll end up ranking well in the search engines too.
Yet, while keywords are still essential components, search engine algorithms – especially in Google’s case - have evolved to treat the trust and authority of a domain, what others think about the content, and the words they use to describe it in links (i.e. anchor-text) as more of an indication of quality and relevance.
Research shows that almost 85% of the total factors that determine how a web page is ranked in a search engine are based on off-page events. The trust and authority of a domain, the link popularity of a specific page, and the anchor text of incoming links to that page are vital factors for search engine optimisation (SEO).
In a Google-driven world, it may seem rather odd to view search engine traffic as a secondary benefit, but that’s precisely how you should view it. At the end of the day, Google won’t brand your content as being relevant until someone else does first.
In other words, I’m saying that “people need to like your content before Google will!”
If you can reprogram your thinking and take a counterintuitive approach to search engine keyword research, you’ll stand a reasonable chance of formulating a content strategy that’s ‘bang on the mark’ and gets you ranked highly in the search engines.
Here are the five key components of keyword research:
Critical elements 1 – 4, while overwhelming for many non-seo savvy website owners, are standard procedures for experienced Search Engine Optimisation experts.
Critical element 5 – the development of resourceful content – is what makes all the difference. And that’s what I will discuss in my next article.
About The AuthorBruce Smeaton is an SEO, Google AdWords specialist and web copywriter. He can be contacted through firstname.lastname@example.org - Subject = Bruce