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Finding Keywords for SEO

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Post Finding Keywords for SEO   Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:39 am

Finding Keywords for SEO

The importance of using good keywords for search engine optimization or SEO is well recognized. When a visitor types words or a phrase into a search engine query box, those words are the key to all that happens afterwards. The process of matching the query words with appropriate websites and ranking the list of results all begins with the choice of words entered by the visitor. A website developer can't control what is entered by the visitor, but they can tailor their site content so that it matches the query words. The success of a website in search engine listings therefore depends fundamentally on the developer knowing what words visitors type in to search engines when searching on your website topic. This is the foundation of SEO. There are several ways to determine which words are most frequently used as search terms.

The simplest source of keyword information is to use your own intuition and experience. You will have developed a website about a topic with which you are familiar. You should therefore be as qualified as anyone to think of the most important representative keywords that should appear in your website. SEO has to be applied to each page on your website, so you should list the words appropriate to the sub-topic on each page.

An alternative to using your own ideas is to ask friends and relatives which words they would search with. It can be easy to lead them by including particular words in your request, so care needs to be taken in how you phrase the request. You will then be moving towards a true appreciation of the keywords used by the public, rather than relying on your presumed keywords. Even this gentle expansion of keyword suggestions will produce some enlightening results. The lesson quickly learned is that when you develop a website you are too close to the issues to make objective judgements on keywords for SEO.

The next step in objectivity is to use statistical information rather than personal contacts. If you can get information on the nature and frequency of actual search terms used, you will have a true picture of keywords required. An excellent source of statistical data is provided by Google in their AdWords tool. This is free to use and will show you the numerical strengths of words associated with your subject area. It will also provide you with solid suggestions as to alternative keyword options.

One of the best sources of statistical data is provided by Wordtracker. This is an online service that analyses entries of search terms over recent months and provides visibility on the frequency of use for terms associated with specified topics. To some extent this is similar to the information provided by the Google AdWords tool. Where Wordtracker excels is in further analysing this data to show the number of competing websites for each search term. Rather than simply ranking search terms according to frequency of use, Wordtracker combines this with competition data to create what it refers to as a Keyword Effectivity Index or KEI. Search terms with the best KEI results will have a high frequency of use and low levels of competition. This enables the website developer to optimize a website for popular keywords while avoiding direct battles with strong competition.

While there are many sources of keyword suggestions, for good search engine optimization it can be seen that objective information is better than your own ideas and statistical data is best of all. The use of a paid service may be a step too far for some developers, but there are sources of free statistical data that should be used where possible. Make use of this data and you will develop websites that are not just good aesthetic presentations, but have the additional benefit of strong SEO features. This combination will provide the best opportunity for creating websites that are successful in reaching their target market.

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