Choosing the Right Keywords

What is the single most important thing you can do to insure the success of your website? One of the answers is to choose the right keywords.

Choose the right keywords.

imagesWhy is that, with all of the highly effective search engine strategies that we can employ? It’s rather simple. If you don’t choose the right keywords, all of your other strategies won’t help you at all, because those strategies build on top of choosing the right keywords.

Let’s look at it from the point of a view of a searcher. A searcher visits one of the major engines looking for your goods or services. He types in what he considers to be the most important topic, or keyword, for his search. Up come the results, ten per page.

If you haven’t taken time to choose the most effective keyword phrases, you may have done something like use the name of your company as your main keyword. If your company has significant name recognition, like Sony, that’s fine. But, if your company is like the vast majority of companies on the Net, optimising the page for the name of your company has just cost you some business.

Choose the most effective keyword phrase for your page!

How on earth do you choose your important keyword phrases? First off, don’t depend on yourself to choose the right keywords. Your searchers are probably not finding you the same way that you’d think they’d find you. Instead, ask your customers or someone outside of your business what they would type in the search window when looking for your site.

Optimise each page separately.

When working with search engines, consider the focus of each page separately, because the engines do. So, if you want top ranked pages, create content-rich information pages that centre on one or two topics only, and use those fine-tuned topics as your keywords for that page.

Don’t try to optimise a single page for every keyword that’s important to your business. It just won’t work. Instead, create separate content-rich pages and utilize your other keywords in that manner, and bring additional traffic into your site.

Let’s look at some tips on how to choose keywords.

Stay away from general keywords.

Take your keyword ideas and fine tune them based on each page of your website. While it’s tempting to choose very general keywords, like “computers,” don’t do it for a number of reasons.

First off, the competition will be fierce. And, more and more searchers are realizing that they can fine tune their searches and cut out never-ending search results by searching for phrases rather than single keywords.

Also, research has shown that when a searcher wants to purchase something, he conducts extremely fine tuned searches to find it. In other words, if he’s searching for a DVD title by a particular actor, he’ll search for the exact title or under the name of the actor, rather than simply “DVD.”

So, while having a web page that ranks extremely well for a very general keyword seems like the ideal situation, keep in mind that you may get more traffic, but you won’t necessarily get more sales.

Consider your individual goods or services.

imagesSome excellent keyword choices are the names of your individual goods and services. For example, if you’re a professional writer, create pages that advertise your services, such as “ghost writing” or “technical writing.” Creating a page for the very general keyword, “writing,” actually may not get you the business you want.

By the same token, don’t use trademarked terms for your competitors in your tags. Trademark lawsuits are springing up faster than blemishes on a teenager’s face, and you certainly don’t want, or need, to find yourself in the middle of one.

Take a general keyword and add a specific word to it.

If you can only think of very general keywords, start with a list of those keywords, and then add specific words to each one. For example, if you ‘re an artist, take the general keyword of “art” and add a specific word or two to it, based on your particular business. So, your keyword phrases may be “art lessons for children” or “modern art.”

Consider regional keywords.

Does your business cater to a particular region? If you have a restaurant in London, for example, your keyword phrase should contain the name of the city or state.

Different terminology?

Do people from other regions use different terminology when searching for your keyword phrase? If so, utilize that terminology in your tags or on your page, or create a separate page. For example, in the South, people call “shopping carts” that you find in grocery stores “buggies.”

What keywords are your competitors using?

Search for your competitors’ sites and see what keywords they’re using. Do NOT copy their tags or anything else. Simply review their pages to see if they might be using a keyword phrase that could be helpful to you.

Once you’ve determined your keyword phrases, don’t stop there!

As mentioned earlier, just because you think that a keyword phrase is perfect for your page, doesn’t mean that it is.

The bottom line here is, we’re after traffic to our sites. Even more to the point, we’re after paying customers! So, if our keyword phrase is so fine tuned that no one is using it, it will do us no good, even if we have a number one ranking for it.

On the other hand, if our keyword phrase is too general, we may get traffic, but we might not get paying customers.

In Closing

If you spend time choosing the best keywords for your web pages, it will add up to traffic and sales for your online business!

Keyword Research

keyword research Tools

One needs to choose those keywords that are frequently searched for and which is in high demand, but ones not being already used by many other websites and competitors, and thus with low competition.

There are a number of keyword research tools that can help you find them.

WordTracker keyword suggestion tool is free and easy to use.

For example if you type ‘Computer’, the WordTracker search suggestion tool will tell you that during the last month the word ‘Computer’ was searched, say for example 45955 times. Similarly ‘computer game’ was searched 30221 times.

Also, given one word it will tell you all relevant combinations of that word, which are based on actual searches done by people. If the word you keyed in is not a common search term then you will not get any results. It means that very few people have actually searched for that word during the last month.

Even Google Keyword Tool generates potential keywords for your ad campaign and reports their Google statistics, including search performance and seasonal trends.

Features of this tool include,

– Sorting the results of your desired keyword search by popularity, past performance history within the AdWords system, cost, and predicted ad position.

– Easy keyword manipulation where you can select a few keywords here and there or add them all at once.

– Searches for keywords present even in any webpage URL specified by your search. It can also expand your keyword search even further to include those pages that are linked to or from the original URL page.

– More keyword results are generated based on regularly updated usage statistics database. This helps you to get new keywords or phrases.

These sites are useful for researching how people search the web and then optimizing your own pages so that more people find your site.

 

Using Keywords In Page Titles

It is recommended to use keywords in page titles itself. This title tag is different from a Meta tag, but it’s worth considering it in relation to them.

Whatever text one places in the title tag (between the <title> and </title> portions) will appear in the title bar of browsers when they view the web page.

Some browsers also append whatever you put in the title tag by adding their own name, as for example Microsoft’s Internet Explorer or OPERA.

The actual text you use in the title tag is one of the most important factors in how a search engine may decide to rank your web page. In addition, all major web crawlers will use the text of your title tag as the text they use for the title of your page in your listings.

If you have designed your website as a series of websites or linked pages and not just a single Home Page, you must bear in mind that each page of your website must be search engine optimized. The title of each page i.e. the keywords you use on that page and the phrases you use in the content will draw traffic to your site.

The unique combination of these words and phrases and content will draw customers using different search engine terms and techniques, so be sure you capture all the keywords and phrases you need for each product, service or information page.

The most common mistake made by small business owners when they first design their website is to place their business name or firm name in every title of every page.

Actually most of your prospective customers do not bother to know the name of your firm until after they have looked at your site and decided it is worth book marking.

So, while you want your business name in the title of the home page, it is probably a waste of valuable keywords and space to put it in the title line of every page on your site.

Why not consider putting keywords in the title so that your page will display closer to the top of the search engine listing.

Dedicating first three positions for keywords in title avoiding the stop words like ‘and’, ‘at’ and the like is crucial in search engine optimization.

 

PPC Advertising

PPC Advertising (Pay Per Click) on the Internet is both extremely effective and an extremely competitive way to promote your brand and services. There are several ways to go about attracting traffic to your website; PPC advertising is one of the options you can choose from, along with developing an SEO, or search engine optimisation campaign.

Both PPC advertising and SEO are targeted to get your website and placed as close to the top of search engine results as possible. One of the differences is that it takes minutes to set up a pay-per-click campaign versus months for a good SEO campaign.

Pay-Per-Click is a simple type of paid advertising that most search engines, including some of the largest ones, now offer. It requires a bid for a “per-click” basis, which translates to your company paying the bid amount every time the search engine directs a visitor to your site.

There is the added bonus that when a per-click site sends your website traffic, your site often appears in the results of other prevalent search engines. As with all marketing campaigns, there are advantages and disadvantages. If you understand the process and monitor your pay-per-click campaign frequently, it can be very effective. One of the greatest advantages is that you never have to tweak your web pages to change your position in search engine results, as you must do in a typical SEO campaign.

What you do have to do in a pay-per-click campaign is pay a fee. Another advantage is the simplicity of the pay-per-click process. You just bid and you’re up and running. It doesn’t demand any specific technical knowledge, though the more you know about search engines and keywords, the easier – and more effective – the process will be.

The downside is that pay-per-click is essentially a bidding war.

A higher bid than yours will lower your position on search engine results. This means that you will have to raise your bid to regain your position – which can obviously become quite expensive, especially if you are bidding on a popular keyword. In order to determine if pay-per-click is a cost-effective form of marketing for your business, you must do some computing to figure out how much each visitor to your site is worth.

You can compute this value by dividing the profit you make on your website over a given period of time by the total number of visitors for that same time period.

For example, if your site made $5,000 in profits and there were 2,500 hits, each visitor would be theoretically worth 50 cents. The basic formula is profits divided by visitors. The figure of 50 cents per visitor is the point at which your business breaks even.

The idea, of course, is to show a profit, not to merely cover your costs. Therefore, you are aiming at a figure less than 50 cents per click. Be aware that the most popular keywords often cost considerably more than 50 cents a click.

The only way around this is to bid less for these phrases or you will be paying too much for each individual hit. The key (pun intended) to success is to learn everything you can about search engine keyword research.

The good news is there isn’t a limit to the amount of keywords you can add to your bid because additional keywords do not add additional cost.

This translates into a lot less hassle for you because there is no need to optimize your site to index a particular set of keywords. Obviously, some keywords are much more effective than others are, but they will not cost you anything except time to set-up your account in your pay-per-click bid.

Of the popular search engines that offer pay-per-click, one called Google Insights provides an online tool that will give you the data on how often particular keywords are entered into their search engine.

They also offer suggestions for keywords after you enter a description of your site. In pay-per-click, this written description is crucial. You must understand that the object of your description is not to generally attract visitors, but to be as specific as possible so that only those visitors who are likely to buy your service or product go to your site.

You must use expert marketing copy to guarantee that your description is both precise and enticing to attract the most ideal candidates to your site. This description is your most powerful tool to insure that your bid is profitable.

Another essential element of pay-per-click advertising is that you constantly monitor your bid. It is very important that you bear in mind that the results of the top search engines providing pay-per-click advertising, which is Adwords by Google, usually appear on other popular search engines. Because of this, the competition for top ranking is intense, and very often you will find that the bidding price balloons too high for pay-per-click to yield a profit.

If this happens, it is advisable to withdraw your bid on that particular keyword and try another one. Remember: when you pay too much per click to make a profit, you are in essence losing the bidding war.

Since losing is not acceptable, you must have a plan in place to closely track the effectiveness of your keyword. It is advisable to monitor your keywords on at least a monthly basis.

Not only is careful monitoring important, but the analysis of visitor behavior can produce invaluable knowledge about consumer motivation, habits, and trends.

Expert monitoring and consumer analysis is essential to your overall business needs, and will also insure that your pay-per-click campaign is a success.

Optimise Your Blog

Optimise Your Blog for Search Engines the right way and watch it soar.

Bloggers who are interested in building high traffic to their blog and maintaining a successful blog should pay particular attention to search engine optimisation techniques which can help to improve the search engine rankings of their blog.

imagesSearch engines all employ some type of ranking algorithm which is used to determine the order in which websites are returned when an Internet user searches for information on a particular topic. However, not all search engines use the same algorithm for this purpose.

As a result there is no simple solution to optimizing a blog for high rankings on all search engines. There are a few tips though which can be useful with most search engines. These tips include using relevant keywords, generating back links to your blogs and using image tags in a beneficial way.

The Importance of Keywords

The use of relevant keywords in blog posts is one of the most common and also one of the simplest ways to optimize search engine rankings. However, not all bloggers agree on the best ways to use relevant keywords to optimize search engine rankings.

Some bloggers believe keywords must be used often to create high keyword densities while others believe using keywords at lower densities of 1%-3% and paying attention to placement of the keywords is the most worthwhile strategy.

Still other bloggers argue that simply using relevant keywords as they come naturally in the flow of the blog posts is sufficient to ensure search engines understand the content.

Regardless of the keyword strategy a blogger opts to employ all bloggers can benefit from researching relevant keywords. They may have a blog which pertains to a general subject such as gardening but may not be aware of the search terms typically used by Internet users when researching this subject.

Fortunately there are many programs available which generate related keywords for a particular time which provides the blogger with other keywords they should consider incorporating.

For the example of a blog pertaining to gardening the blogger may want to use additional keywords such as container gardening or home gardening to attract more interest from search engine users.

Generating Favorable Back Links

Back links are also another common factor used in search engine ranking algorithms. Many search engines consider the number of back links pointing to a website as well as the quality of the websites which provide these back links.

This means the search engine rankings of the website which points to your blog could influence the amount of weight the back link contributes to your own rankings. This is because some search engines consider higher ranking websites to be more valuable than other websites which do not rank well and therefore reward websites receiving back links from these high ranking websites quite favorably.

Some search engine algorithms also consider whether or not the back links are reciprocated or not reciprocated. In these cases non reciprocal links are usually considered to be more valuable than reciprocal links.

Also, back links which come from link exchanges or link farms are typically not considered to be very influential to search engine rankings.

Images Can Improve Search Rankings

Bloggers should also be aware that any pictures used on their blog can be used to improve search engine rankings with some search engines.

This aspect of search engine optimization is often overlooked because many believe the pictures are not viewed by search engines.

While this is true the search engines do crawl the code of the blog in addition to the content on the blog. This means the search engine will view the information provided in the image tags.

Bloggers can take advantage of this by using the image tags to provide relevant keywords which can bolster search engine rankings.

However, care should be taken to ensure the keywords used in these tags also accurately describe the image because blog visitors will often see the text included in these tags when they scroll over a picture on the blog.