Keyword Research Tools – Part 1

Before you can begin to optimize your website and dream of attracting an online audience, thorough research needs to be conducted to understand what you should be optimizing your website for. Extensive Keyword Research is vital for success – not only should you be researching keywords for your company, but you should also be researching your competitors and potential keywords they may be using themselves. Researching your competitions’ keyword strategy is good for many reasons, such as finding what keywords are popular on their website, and using this as an advantage to establish or improve your keywords. If for example, your industry-related keywords are not known to your competitor, you have the competitive edge of targeting these keywords and attracting your target market. A great tool to research your competitors is the Keyword Density Analysis Tool (explained more in the list below).

Additionally, the search volume of keywords is not more important than their relevancy to your industry. Remember – Quality over Quantity. Though a keyword may have a high search volume, and it may seem like a good idea to optimize yourself for, that keyword may not entirely suit your industry. If you do get traffic to your website for a keyword that is not relevant but has high search volume, users will only leave your site (resulting in a high bounce rate) out of disappointment that your website was not what they were looking for.

search demand curve - seo5consultingblog.com

For example, the graph on the top indicates that the majority of searches are “long-tail” queries. Long-tail queries are searches that are of low volume and very specific (for e.g. the long-tail version of the keyword “interior design” would be “interior design apartment”). According to this graph, long-tail queries are searched for less than 10 times a month but account for 70% of search queries, while 18.5% of searches are “fat head” queries, search terms that are highly popular and are searched for millions of times a month.

With 70% of users typing in long-tail keywords, it makes sense to use industry-specific keywords that best describe your company and target your market, rather than chasing after the top 100 keywords that are searched millions of times a month and for which competition is incredibly high. This strategy reverts back to the Quality over Quantity standard – it’s better to get 50 people on your website and buy something, rather than 200 people who visit your site and don’t do anything at all.

This blog begins a new series of tools that we at SEO5 Consulting feel is essential in the SEO process, for both beginners and experts. We start our series off with helpful Keyword Research Tools. Below are some tools that we find are helpful in the early stages of SEO:

1.       Google AdWords Keyword Tool – By typing in potential keywords, one can view the search volume, competition, and global/local monthly searches. You can also specify a specific URL and the tool will show you what keywords Google thinks the page should be advertising for

2.       Wordtracker Free Keyword Suggestion ToolWordtracker helps you identify keywords and phrases that are most relevant to your business and that are most likely to be used as queries by search engine visitors.

3.       SEO Book Keyword Suggestion Tool – This free Wordtracker tool, shows top keyword phrases and sends back a spreadsheet of estimated keyword popularity organized by search engine. It also suggests several other similar keywords and lists their popularity across the engines.

4.       Keyword Density Analysis ToolThis tool allows you to find common words and phrases on your site, or any other site. This is a great tool to use on your competitor and see what words/terms are popular on their site.

5.       Trellian Competitive Intelligence – As a paid tool, this tool shows keywords that competitors rank for and keywords that send them significant traffic. Many other features are available with Trellian Competitive Intelligence such as identifying terms your competitors are advertising for and much more.

As Ken McGaffin, Chief Marketing Officer of Wordtracker, says, “Find the keywords, and you’ll find the marketplace”. If you do it right, then the results can be phenomenal. Remember, while these tools provide stats and numbers, it is up to you to make intelligent decisions based on the information.