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Monday, Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:00 am

SEO Workshop Part 2: Keywords

By Mariel Bacci
June 11th, 2012

The Keyword Mindset

If you missed our first post on how to start working on optimizing your site for search engines, you can catch it here.  It covers the most important part of SEO, optimizing your pages for PEOPLE first.  Today we will briefly touch on how to find what keywords will most effectively speak to your visitors and to search engine crawlers.

When you get started on your SEO journey, you will need to identify your keywords.  Remember that when you are looking for keywords, they are specific to a page, not to your website. You might need to do some mental exercises to prepare for this because it can be difficult to hone in on the skill.
If your website is for a chain of resorts in the Riviera Maya, one page will represent a resort, one will represent something even more specific like hosting a wedding at that particular resort.   You can see how specific search terms like “best place for a wedding reception in Cancun” and “Places in Playa Del Carmen to get married” would not be appropriate for your overall resort page, but will capture the interest of some early stage shoppers and help them find the information they are looking for.  Make sure you are able to look at each page for it’s individual purpose. If it has too many, maybe it is time to revisit the page itself before you optimize it for search engine crawlers.

Keyword Research

Once you have gotten your third eye into a state of being able to focus on a specific pages purpose, you can start your keyword research.  There are many tools out there, and the following are some favorites:

These tools will offer you hundreds to thousands of keyword ideas.  The real work is narrowing it down to around 5 that both fit the page, are highly searched for and have relatively low competition. To do this properly will take time and dedication.  It is easier and more fruitful if you avoid very general keywords.

Create a SiteMap for your new pages by bundling similar keywords

Most general keywords will not have a great profitability ratio because they will have very high demand but also very high supply because a lot of competitors will be featuring content for the same keyword. Very general keywords should only be used to easily categorize various primary and secondary keywords.  The following is an example of a general keyword followed by four usable keywords.

Vacation Rentals (very general keyword term to generally categorize the other terms)

vacation house rental mexico  (more specific keyword term that has higher profitability)

mexico beach vacation rentals

mexico vacation home rentals

mexico vacation villa rentals

Now that you have 4 great keywords, you can start looking at them even more closely.  You will need to pinpoint your primary keyword.  I like to use a simple formula to do this.  I take all the keywords and divide the average monthly searches by the cost per click.  Whatever number ends up the highest will be my primary keyword.  This is a simple method that will give the the most value per keyword used.  You can choose your primary keyword based on whatever criteria you feel will work best, you already have a list of great keywords!

Each Primary keyword should be used as the main theme for a content page. Your secondary keywords would be the remaining keywords under the same section that focus on the same topic as your primary keyword. If you were only able to find one appropriate keyword for the page (we wished this happened more often), then just use varying forms of your primary keyword. You can use synonyms or change the order of the words within your keyword.

The primary keyword should be used 5 – 7 times throughout the page, more in the top and bottom of the page and peppered throughout the rest of the page.  secondary  keywords should be used 1-2 times through out the page, in titles, subtitles or body copy.

Come back soon for our next post about using keywords in headline.  Until then, we would love to know what tools and strategy you use to find keywords for SEO.  If you don’t have any yet, just give us a call, we can help you!

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Comments (39)

  1. Bra makers staniki together with producers first created bras who were purely dependable. Adjusting social fashion and even brand new components and also products have got increased all of the readily available layouts, and also left

  2. Those are great tips I discovered while I’m searching if my keyword policy is correct. With a little modification I think my site will be much better..currently using most of your advices on my website.

    Thank you :)

  3. Good points about SEO. Keywords destiny always important factor in terms of Onpage SEO.

  4. Nice collection at least for beginners good advice too.

  5. i appreciate your advice. it’s hard to start into Seo

  6. Interesting tip on how to pin point a primary keyword term. I’m going to have to put that into practice for my next marketing campaign.

    Thanks for the tip!

  7. All these great are tips I discovered while searching to see if my keyword policy is correct. With a little modification I think my site will be much better. I agree with your points and happy to say I am currently using most of your methods on my site!

    Thanx :)

  8. Thanks,I know after Penguin diversity in keywords is really important.

  9. Thank you for letting me know this information-hopefully I can utilize everything I’ve learned from your post to help boost my business.

  10. Thanks for sharing all these 5 wonderful source for keyword analyzing. I was aware with adwords keyword tool and Keyword Discovery tools, the other 3 are new for me.

  11. Keyword is the crucial part to build a great content.Your methods will guide me on keyword research

  12. Good Information about seo……!!

  13. Sales on the most important keyword selection is accurate
    Your article is great

  14. It’s difficult to find a suitable keyword but thank’s 4 the tip

  15. i want to be webmaster :D studing SEO in here

  16. Great tips for anyone who writes in English. Since I am from Brazil and I prefer to write in Portuguese will not use them specifically, but the tools of analysis of keywords (I confess that I only knew Keyworld Word Tracker and Google Tool) will be very useful for other purposes
    : D

  17. I was aware with adwords keyword tool and Keyword Discovery tools, the other 3 are new for me.

    Thanks for sharing :)

  18. Google Keyword Tool is one of the best.
    You know, everything about SEO is Google.
    :-)

  19. as you mention, using appropriate keywords liberally is essential. other equally important keyword variables include relevancy and contextual placement.

  20. Good advice about how to use Keywords in SEO. I really appreciate your post. It was so helpful.

  21. Really nice information about SEO you have shared.

  22. Hi
    Thanks for this it was very informative i am new in the field SEO so it was very helpfull for me.
    Thanks

  23. How many keywords are safe?

  24. Great post, I specifically like the reminder of keywords for you post not your site. So many forget that and drop keywords that are completely irrelevant to the topic at hand.

    I addressed a similar issue, but with the emphasis on picking a domain based on keywords:
    http://www.smuggecko.com/seo-tips-picking-a-domain-name-with-keywords/

  25. Great post, I specifically like the reminder of keywords for you post not your site. So many forget that and drop keywords that are completely irrelevant to the topic at hand.

  26. Even when I write an article for a specific keyword it is still very difficult to get exposure to readers.

  27. For keyword research im a big fan of the Google features and option..

  28. I find trying to hit those buy keywords or what makes a visitor want to interact on the site more challenging. Finding those keywords take a lot of time and effort, so thank you for a few nuggets.

  29. Visitor interactive keywords seem to take the longest to figure out, but they are the sweet spot. Thanks for the nuggets!

  30. Google Adwords and wordtracker are keyword tool that i use. These are best for rearch and for beginner as well. Thank you for this nice tip. This helps a lot.

  31. Thanks for the awesome tips! Keyword research is probably the one thing I hate about seo even though thats the backbone of it all –;;

  32. yes of course, the keywords… One shouldn’t forget about them when you want to optimize your site… :)

  33. Yes of course, the keywords… One shouldn’t forget about them when you want to optimize your site… :)
    Thanks for these great tips… :)

  34. Thank you for letting me know this information-hopefully I can utilize everything I’ve learned from your post to help boost my business.

  35. good points regarding finding your keywords and keyword density

  36. Great post. Can I offer additional suggestions. For KW tools look at Traffic Travis and HitTail (for long tail KW’s). Both are excellent.

    Overall I struggle with KW density. Many advice 5-6% but for a text say of 700 words that would result in 35-40 mentions of it, or a combination which to me is really excessive. Personally I never go beyond 1% but fear that this is no the low side. What is your take on this?

    Cheers,

  37. @Lucas

    The top priority of your page should always be your customers. If you feel that your 700 word content page sounds spammy with 35 keywords, it is smart to scale back. On the other hand, if you have 1 primary keyword and 2-3 secondary keywords for the page, it should not be difficult to get those in 5% of the text if you use them in titles, headers, etc. If the page is very focused on a specific topic, 3-4% can sound very natural and 5-6% can be done with a good copywriter.

  38. @Mariel,
    Thanks. I’ll definitely try this but it leads me to another question :-) . A plugin on WP like Yoast advocate one focus KW while other plugins optimizing for SEO allows for several. Obviously one should always have a primary KW but adding the secondary KW focus, won’t that make backlinking a bit of a challenge? Or do you vary this via creative anchors?

  39. Great site and some great post . Has clarified some confusion I had with keywords

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Mariel is a GA certified analyst at FutureNow, Inc.

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