How to choose the right keywords for driving website traffic to your website
Search and email are now the two leading activities that are baked into our life. 68.9% of those searches are going through Google, which is why you optimize for Google as opposed to worrying about every search engine. Inbound Links, Search Engines and Direct Email links are the three ways you get traffic to your site. Ideally, they would all be equal thirds.
In our SEO Research & Reporting presentation, Don talked about how to choose the right keywords for driving the most traffic to your website.
How to Choose the Right Keywords to Drive Website Traffic:
1. Keyword Knowledge: Look at your website and decide which keywords describe and label your content. These are usually what your topics or categories are that are a one to two word phrase that is a top-level category. Make a list of of what you think your top-level keywords are.
2. Keyword Popularity Search: One at a time, enter these top-level keywords in the Google Keyword Tool to see how popular they are. Enable synonyms to find out other ways that users are searching for your topics. “At the end of the day, it’s about being persistent,” Don noted. This can be done once a year, unless you are constantly adding new products, where you’ll want to do research for every new book.
3. Keyword Competition: Find out who is already using your keywords and what your likeliness is for getting ranked on a term by using Google to search for your keywords. Longer keywords (3 or more word phrases) are likely to have less competition and will get you higher rankings.
4. Keyword Strategy: Document your research by creating a spreadsheet that lists all of your keywords, the results of your popularity search and the results of your competition. Choose the keywords with the best popularity to competition ratio. Once you’ve implemented the keywords, you can use a program like Advanced Web Ranking to see where you rank on all of your keywords (or a site like RankingCheck.com on a smaller scale).
What not to do: One of many notable conversations during this session was between Don and Aspire’s Clay Hall. They talked about an anonymous bad-practice example where a publisher created 12 websites that used the same keywords and also the same content. About 30% of the website had original content, but 70% of the sites were all duplicate content. The publisher had bragged about having a page #1 ranking in Google on almost all of their sites for certain keyword phrases.
Why not to do this: Google is looking for sites like this and consider them spam. Optimally, Google wants to deliver 10 different sites on page one, all offering different results. According to Don, it’s only a matter of time before Google slaps them for trying to cheat the system. Google’s #1 priority is to deliver the best search results. Trying to cheat the system by publishing duplicate content across dozens of websites is a cheat that Google will fix.
On the other hand, if you are producing relevant pages with relevant keywords, Google (and users) trust your site and will continue to see your site as a valuable resource.