One of the topics I promised to talk about a long time ago is finally finished. I have to admit, I didn’t expect the article to be so large and detailed, because of that I had decided to publish it in episodes so that the texts could be comprehended properly.

Now, to cut to the chase, surely one of the biggest dilemmas when making website and its promotion is the way in which the keywords presenting the site should be selected. First of all, it is the step that needs to be carefully elaborated because later modifications are not so simple anymore (e.g. building campaign, keywords on pages that are time demanding when doing corrections afterwards, etc.).

Search engines and its algorithms

Even though all search engines work on the same or similar principle, still they use different algorithms and through numerous factors decide on which way to display and rank the results. It is important to mention that search engines intentionally hide some of the factors, so that malicious and witty users and web owners could not abuse the ranking system and directly influence the results, and also the credibility of the same search engine. Anyhow, it is possible to set some guidelines that will help you achieve better site position, it can be achieved by numerous testings, or by search engines ‘openness’ when keywords are in question.

For example, when a certain user enters into the search engine a term ‘how to use a stapler’, it is most likely that the first result will be the page containing exactly the same matching phrase.

How to select right keywords?

Selection of popular and relevant keywords and expressions (more on that later) directly influence the position, visitor’s profile and at the end the profit itself (if it is about Internet bussiness) because:

  • Proper selection brings visitors interested in your subject matter (targeted visitors).
  • By the proper use of keywords and expressions, users are provided with things they need and search for (user experience)
  • Keywords research can give you insight into certain areas and oppurtunities which normally would not be considered (brainstorming)

Statistics don’t lie, but indicate

According to comScore, 58% of web searches in October last year, came through the Google network, following Yahoo! with 22.9%, then MSN with 10.3%. Therefore, three of the biggest search engines hold over 90% of the market share:

comscore search share

One more fact that clearly shows the importance of proper keyword or expression selection:

OneStat.com in its research came up with the results on the search engine’s query varieties:

Onestat

Notice that practically 60% of all searches are expressions containing 2 or 3 words!

According to this indicator, it is clear how foolish it would be just to take into consideration keywords containing only one word. By making that mistake, you would ignore expressions containing 2,3 or 4 words that make over 70% of queries! One more thing to pay attention to is the popularity of certain keyword, where keywords containing one word are more competitive and more general (it is harder to achieve good ranking).

I hope that this information is interesting enough for you to consider more seriously the effect and importance of keywords.

How to divide the process of keyword selection

  • To generate a list od expressions and phrases important and representative to your site

The biggest problem is the human factor. How could anyone know how other people think when searching for certain content? Afterall, can people be categorized?

It is well-known fact that people describe things in different ways. Terminology used in the field that the site is about, does not mean that the same terminology will be used by the certain search engine.

Many of us often neglect the fact that not everyone is instructed in certain issues as some of us are, so we don’t have the guarantee that people will tend tu use the same or similar expressions like we would expect them to do.

How many variations of certain term can be made? How does a person think when trying to position the page on Google and does not even know that there already exists a domain specialized for that kind of service (SEO)? How do people who have heard of SEO browse the Internet, and yet do not know anything more about SEO? Which terms are used by the experts?

Use your brain and put down on paper a dozen (or even hundreds) of expressions that you think are related to your site one way or the other.

  • If you already have a site and use some of the analytics solutions like Google Analytics, keywords data are easy to get. Lets say that this is the most ideal way, because you already have a keyword data base and know how your visitors are finding your site.
  • Put yourself in the position of visitors, clients or experts. How would they find your site when browsing the Internet?
  • Find out as many synonims and expression used for your basic keywords.

Which group are you in?

  1. A person who is well-educated in this field, will probably correctly use terminology, but- a satisfiable traffic will not be achieved because the terms in use are extremely specialized.
  2. Second example is a person who writes useful stuff on the topic and on that basis achieves good traffic (but still, it is not optimal).
  3. Third type is a person who uses most searched keywords and keywords that bring most of the traffic.

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