We all know it and we all do it. Whenever the typical web user needs to
find something on the web, he or she will almost always instinctively go
to one of the top search engines and run a search. Then, he or she will
have a look at the first 30 search results returned (usually the first three
pages of results), hardly ever looking beyond that. If nothing looks appealing,
they will run another search using a variation of the keywords they used
on the first search. Again, they will look at the first 30 results. If they
still find nothing of interest, they may switch to a different search engine
and repeat the process. This, believe it or not, is the typical web navigation
behavior of at least 86% of all the 110 million web users out there. The
question is, does your web site capitalize on this behavior? If the answer
is yes for you, then no matter what a user searches for that has any relation
at all to your products, they should find you even if they hadn’t thought
of finding you! That translates to a very high amount of daily traffic to
your site. Is this what is happening for you?
We bet the answer is no. Very few web sites really capitalize on this behavior.
However, you can learn how to do so. For this tutorial, we shall assume
that you are in the business of selling wedding gowns. You have a web site
that does a good job of displaying your wedding gowns, but like most other
web site owners, your web traffic is really low and clients are simply not
finding you. You have done everything you can think of, but your pages hardly
come up on the search engines. What next? Well, get ready to learn one of
the most effective online marketing strategies.
Gather Your Keywords
We know that the web user will think of a keyword or phrase and type that
into a search form on an engine. That is his or her first step, and so it
should be ours. This is a very important step! Get a piece of paper or open
up your text editor and keep writing all the keywords and phrases that you
think of as you go through the steps outlined below. Selecting the right
keywords or keyword phrases will skyrocket your traffic. Research has shown
that most people use phrases of 2 to 3 keywords when searching. People have
come to learn that just typing in one keyword in a search will get them
thousands of records that they just do not need. Therefore, they combine
two or three keywords in their searches.
Your list should end up having about 50 or more keywords and phrases. You
must write down every word that a person might use to look for your site
PLUS words they may use to look for other related information or products.
This is no easy task. It involves some research and a fair bit of thought.
Remember, thousands of people out there looking for wedding gowns may not
all think alike, look for wedding gowns directly, or even realize at the
time that they can get wedding gowns on the net! To get a good list, here
are the steps that you should go through. Keep your pen and paper handy
so that you keep writing as you go along each step.
1.Think! Brainstorm! Sit down for several minutes and think! Write down
whatever keywords or phrases come to mind. Then look at your list and see
what other word combinations you can make out from the keywords you have
already written down.
2. Look at your products and services and see what words relating to them
will pop up in your mind. Write the names of each product or service that
you deal in. These product names will also be part of your keyword list.
3. Ask your family, associates, clients, and friends what words and phrases
they would most likely use to search for products or services like yours.
4. See what keywords your competitors use. See what keywords are featured
on their pages and in their meta tags.
5. Be specific AND general in scope. Think of words that also describe things
related to what your site is about. For example, if you sell wedding gowns,
also think about other things and words related to weddings, such as honeymoon,
bridal registry, wedding rings, engagements, and other wedding accessories
and services. The idea here is to capture people who may be looking for
other things related to weddings, whether they are directly looking for
wedding gowns or not at the time. Chances are that someone looking for any
wedding related information will also be interested in knowing about wedding
gowns. Get the idea? This is a very powerful way of getting more targeted
traffic to your site.
6. Do not forget misspelled words. People often misspell words when they
enter their search terms. Include commonly misspelled words or phrases as
part of your list.
7. If your site deals with a particular region, remember to include that
in your keyword list. E.g. ‘Los Angeles wedding gowns’ if you deal in wedding
gowns within Los Angeles. A lot of people will search for wedding gowns,
get a big list of returned search results, and decide to add the words “Los
Angeles” (or wherever else they may be interested in) to get more specific
8. Use the long and short form of words, e.g. consult, consulting, and consultants.
9. DO NOT SPAM! Do not use keywords that have nothing to do with your web
site. Do not list the keyword “sex” or “free pics” just because they are
frequently searched for if they do not have anything to do with your web
site. You will only get traffic that is of no use to you anyway because
surfers will come to your site and leave angrily when they realize you just
cheated them. Also, search engines are on the look out for such deceitful
practices and can sometimes ban your pages for spamming. As long as you
stick with keywords related to your core business, you will be fine, but
do not go way out of line.
10. Now its time for some research. You now need to look at what people
are actually searching for on the various engines and get more phrases for
your list. Here is a list of sites that will help you out with that. When
doing your research at these sites, remember steps number 5, 6, and 8 above
– people often misspell words, they use different word forms, and they may
be looking for a whole lot of different stuff all related to your products.
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