Key(word)s to Success

On the surface, identifying target keywords may seem relatively simple. Unfortunately, this couldn’t be farther from the truth.

In an effort to debunk misconception, we’ve compiled a list of ways to avoid common mistakes relating to the research and use of keywords.

Don’t Skip the Research

It’s extremely difficult to accurately predict which terms and phrases are used to search for specific products and services. Regardless of business acumen, no one should exempt themselves from some form of keyword research.  Keyword research will give you a snapshot into the mind of people searching for your product or service. There’s also a strong possibility that your final list of keywords will differ dramatically from what you initially predicted. 

Don’t Let High Search Volume Blind You

Be careful not to let the high search volume blind you. Targeting a keyword based solely on monthly search volume is not a recommended strategy. When narrowing down your list of prospective terms, take the difficulty score and search volume into consideration. Popular terms have high search volumes, but are extremely competitive. Give yourself a chance, and go after phrases that have medium-high monthly search volume, but low-medium competition.

Don’t Target Senselessly

Keep your eye on the prize. When finalizing your keyword list, consider whether or not keywords have the potential of driving qualified traffic to your site. Put yourself in the shoes of the user. If you made this search query, would you be pleased with the information found on your company’s website? If not, you may want to reconsider targeting this particular keyword. Don’t get caught up in quantity. Remember the higher the quality of traffic, the greater potential for return on investment.

Don’t Write for the Search Engines

In the past, a common strategy was to “stuff” as many keywords as possible onto one page of content. The assertion was that the greater number of terms, the greater your chances of achieving a higher page rank in the search engine. Due to algorithm updates, this is no longer an accepted method of keyword targeting. In fact, this type of keyword usage can lead to penalization by the search engines. To avoid these types of penalties, write for users rather than search engines.

Don’t Overlook Your Resources

When it comes to keyword research, take all the help you can get. Don’t miss out on an opportunity to gain valuable insight about an effective way to choose or use targeted keywords. Google AdWord’s Keyword Planner and the Moz Keyword Difficulty Tool are among the most trusted resources for keyword targeting and on-page optimization.

Keyword research is a crucial step in building a foundation for lasting SEO success.  There’s no special formula for constructing the perfect list of keywords, but avoiding these common mistakes will help you optimize your site for both users and search engines.  For more information on the benefits of search engine optimization, contact Full Media today!