The following is a guest post by Alex Papa of BusinessOpportunitiesExpo.com.
The wide array of keywords that users key into search engines everyday is like a large dictionary filled with millions of different variations of words and phrases; some of these words could help you increase your sales significantly, but others could cripple your business fairly rapidly.
The keywords you choose to target directly impacts your online business. Today I will reveal a series of little known strategies that I have successfully used to uncover profitable keywords, and build a solid keyword list.
1. Analyze Your Target Market
In general, for you to be an effective marketer you need to immerse yourself into your chosen market. You need to be aware of the habits and preferences of your market. Your level of understanding of your target market will assist you in choosing keywords that are the most appropriate to your buyers. To be able to educate yourself on who your buyers are, you can do the following:
- Join a forum specific to your chosen niche and become an active member
- Get involved in online and offline groups that are focused toward your niche
- Subscribe to email lists and newsletters that deal with the subject matter
- Read books, newspapers, articles and any other information at your disposal
As you research you should keep a mental note of all the information you have gathered, and allow your mind to absorb the new knowledge you have gained.
2. Formulate a List of Keywords
Now that you have acquired a fair amount of new knowledge on your target market, your mind is now prepared to brainstorm keywords that you would have never thought of had you skipped step one. Take a pen and paper and allow your mind to work for you. Write down all the keyword ideas that filter through your mind, and do not limit yourself to just single words, write down longer phrases and all the different variations you can think of.
3. Expand Your List
A few clever techniques exist for you to expand your keyword list and uncover many lucrative keywords that have not been targeted by your competitors.
- Misspelled Words: Typo’s and misspelled words provide an opportunity for you to find keywords that are obscure but also profitable. For instance a phrase like “cheap accommodation” is often mistakenly spelt as “cheap accomodation”. You should include commonly misspelled words when drawing up your list.
- Solution-Based Keywords: Any market that offers a solution to a problem has commercial potential. People are willing to pay for appropriate solutions that “repair,” “fix,” “stop,” “treat,” or “help,” solve their problems. Words of this nature must be added to your keyword phrases.
- Product Names: The names of products that have gained popularity over time are remembered by potential buyers. Including product names in your list ensures you target customers who are on the verge of buying.
- Informational Keywords: Many search engine users are information seekers, but even information seekers can be converted into buyers or they can opt-in to your email list which will increase the likelihood of making a future sale. Include informational words such as, “tips,” “how to…,” “how much is…,” or “the best way to…”
4. Divide Your Keywords into User Groups
Every search engine user can be categorized into the following groups:
- Buyer Groups: This group is the highest converting traffic you can find as they have gone through the buying cycle and are ready to make a purchase. Keywords that are “buyer hungry” are the most profitable but the search volume is low. These keywords contain words such as, “buy,” “where to buy,” “cheap,” “discount,” or they may contain product names as mentioned above.
- Product Seekers: There is a larger volume of traffic in this category but the conversions are usually lower. These types of keywords are used by people who are not brand conscience, and they do not have a great deal of knowledge on what types of products are available to fulfill their needs. Often the word “products” are included in the search phrase, such as “hair loss products” or “weight loss products”. Solution-based keywords normally fall into this category as well.
- Information Seekers: This group is the largest search engine user group but the conversion rates from information seekers are also the lowest. Broader keywords of a general nature fall into this category.
Before targeting any keyword you must examine the keyword’s marketability. To gauge the potential profitability of each keyword you must analyze the “Average Cost-per-Click” for the keyword using Google’s keyword tool. The higher the CPC competition the higher the market value is for that keyword. Companies will not bid on keywords that are not converting regularly.
Every so often you will find a keyword that has a high CPC competition but the first page of the search engine results or the organic results contain pages that are not optimized for that specific keyword. In a case like this, you can easily secure a first page position by optimizing your site for that keyword.
Short keywords are more competitive, larger industry players dominate these markets. But gaps in the market can always be uncovered, longer-tail keywords are where many internet marketers find success, and this should be your focus when you are just starting out as an internet marketer. If you are not sure what a long tail keyword is, here is a typical example: a short keyword is something like “Diabetes Treatment” and a long-tail keyword will be “Diabetes treatment that works” or “Diabetes treatment and its effects”.
As your keyword research experience grows your ability to identify the “golden nuggets” also increases significantly. But this game is all about numbers and statistics – you should constantly analyze the relevant data, and tweak your search engine marketing campaigns to extract the highest ROI.