Many business owners say they want to do SEO. Far fewer understand the right keywords to target.
I hear you say, “That’s what SEO companies are for”, but sometimes the last person you want to leave this decision to, is your SEO company. That’s because many SEO companies may suggest keywords that are easily attainable (in order to make themselves look good). Or they may simply slip into “order taking mode” and quote on the keywords you specify, without advising on the suitability of your suggestions.
This article explains the 3 essential criteria for choosing the most productive (read: highest ROI) keywords for your search engine optimisation activities.
Here they are:
- Traffic Volume: is the keyword searched frequently, or are you (and your SEO company!) the only people searching for it? This can be estimated using the Google Keyword Tool (among many others).
- Conversion Rate: what percentage of searchers on this term make a desired action on your website (opt in, enquire, buy, donate etc.)? This can be determined by first running paid search campaigns for the same keywords and tracking conversion.
- Competition: low competition is better (obviously!) There are a number of ways to determine keyword competition. My fave is the SEOmoz Pro Keyword Difficulty Tool. It returns a percentage difficulty. Two seemingly similar terms may have very different levels of competition. Sometimes there’s a reason for this. Other times, it’s an anomaly you can exploit.