Free SEO Course Part Two: Keyword Research

Following on from Part One “What Is Search Marketing“. Part Two of a series of posts covering search engine marketing techniques in 2007. Together, they’ll form an easy-to-follow guide to some of the best up-to-date resources and advice on the topic.

Keyword Research

  • Discovering what keyword terms potential visitors are using is critical for search marketing campaign success.
  • To discover what terms potential visitors are using, there are a number of methods and tools that have proven effective for search marketers, including online keyword database tools and market research.
  • Databases: There are keyword research software tools available. Some of the most popular currently include Wordtracker, Keyword Discovery, Google Adwords External, Nichebot and Keyword Intelligence. A good independent review of these, and other, keyword research services can be found at
  • Market Research: Try to think of as many words as possible that relate to your site topic and make a list. Extrapolate that list using synonyms.
  • This list should be made up mostly of term your customers would use to describe a product, service or subject. Be aware that these terms often aren’t the same terms as what you’d use, or your marketing department would use, to describe your product or service. Listen to how your customers talk, and use the same terms they do when making your keyword lists.
  • Be specific, and use multiple words. If you sell “Televisions”, then you also want “buy sony widescreen online”, “what television should I buy”, “plasma screen overnight delivery” etc.
  • Most search terms are unique. For this reason, search marketers keyword lists often consist of thousands of terms. Tens of thousands. Generally speaking, the wider the keyword net, the more fish you’ll catch.
  • Mine your logs for keyword data. Keep a track of search queries under which people have found your site in the past. If a query keeps coming up time and again, and you haven’t got a page that specifically covers this term, write a new page using that term, adding synonyms, and publish the page on your site. Repeat. This is a very powerful technique, often overlooked.
  • Watch what terms your competitors are using. Be aware that the meta keywords tag won’t give you much, if any, insight into which keyword terms they are ranking under, as search engines don’t rank sites based on this field. Instead, look at the page content, title tags, paragraph tags, and frequently used terms.

Tomorrow: Part Three – Site Content.

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