Despite many publications proclaiming the death of SEO, search engine optimization remains the key to ranking on search engine results page. There are many elements to SEO, and some are fairly simple such as the style guidelines. Others are more complex but ultimately easy to do correctly once you understand them, such as drafting a cohesive web architecture. However, some areas are particularly challenging, such as keyword research. Keyword research is extremely important, but it requires a combination of hard knowledge, analytics, and practiced intuition to achieve the best results.
Why Does Keyword Research Matter?
Keyword research matters because keywords are the basic means by which web searches work. Even if you make your website otherwise SEO-perfect, you aren’t going to reach your customers without relevant keywords. While this is an extreme example, the principle applies in general; good keywords are the foundation of good SEO. However, some of the principles of finding the right phrases can seem counterintuitive, and competitor analysis can seem impenetrable to the average person.
Important Elements of Keyword Research
It seems intuitive that the most important keywords are those that receive the most searches. While this is partly true, targeting the most popular keywords is often counterproductive and a waste of resources. You might achieve much greater success by targeting less popular keywords; there’s more to a keyword than how often people search for it.
Competition for a highly popular keyword is going to be cutthroat. In general, the websites that rank for it will have inordinately polished content as well as high domain authority. Your odds of claiming a slot on the first page of a search engine in such a case will be narrow, but you could target less popular keywords and find success.
Long-tail keywords are strings of words that receive fairly little traffic and are highly specific. At first glance, you’d dismiss all of these key phrases on the basis of their modest traffic. However, some of these specific keywords can be used as powerful long-tail keywords thanks to user intent. It’s not enough to drive traffic to your website; you need to drive the right traffic.
Read Into User Intent
The reason that specific, low-volume keyphrases can be so powerful is that they betray user intent. If a small number of people are searching for something you have the power to provide, then connecting that keyword to your website can result in a disproportionate ratio of conversions; users who make use of your content, products, or services. The intentions that people have when searching for a keyword are one of the more subjective and intuitive, but nonetheless vital elements of keyword research.
Gain Insight Into Your Website and the Competition
Competitor research is a key facet of SEO that deserves an article unto itself. By identifying your competitors and analyzing their keyword usage, you can gain vast insight from their experience. Before investing time and money into your own SEO campaign, you’ll be able to learn from the mistakes and successes of companies similar to your own.
Kick Digital Media Keyword Research Experts
The Kick Digital Media team incorporates our keyword research expertise into every digital marketing campaign we run. If you’re interested in learning more about how our SEO expertise can help your business, get in touch with us.