Every article explaining SEO tells you to target keywords relevant to your business. It sounds easy, but finding the right keywords isn’t always that simple.
Keyword research is crucial to the success of your SEO campaign. Besides industry relevance, you have to look at how competitive the keyword is and whether your website is strong enough to beat the competition. You also need to know what kind of consumers use that particular keyword and their intent when searching for it.
To help you propel your SEO campaign, I’m going to share this guide on how to choose keywords for your website.
1. Consider the search intent
Keywords are sorted into four types of search intent:
- Informational: The user is researching a problem or concept. The searches often start with why, how, what, and other information-seeking modifiers.
- Navigational: These keywords contain brand names, which means the user already has an idea of who you are and what you’re offering. The intent may still be to search for information.
- Transactional: These keywords are a mix of informational and commercial intent. The user is considering buying a product but needs more information before they decide.
- Commercial: Commercial or ‘buy now’ intent means the user is ready to make a purchase. They’re looking for the brand that can provide them with the most value, so they use keywords like ‘best’ or ‘vs’.
You have to choose keywords with the right intent for every content piece. For instance, informational blogs should have informational keywords, and landing pages should have transactional keywords. Knowing the purpose behind the search will help you push consumers further down the sales funnel, converting them from leads to buying customers.
2. Focus on relevant, low-competition, high-volume keywords
Find out how consumers usually find you online. What questions do they ask that are related to your business? What are the search terms they use? These are the keywords you want to go for because they’re highly relevant to your company and your target market.
Next, look at the volume and level of competition of each keyword. The highest-volume keywords tend to have the highest competition. And the higher the competition, the harder it is to rank for that keyword. So, it comes down to finding the balance between volume and keyword difficulty.
3. Know your domain authority
Your domain authority is your website’s search engine ranking score. It tells you how likely you’ll rank on search engine results pages (SERPs) versus other businesses targeting the same keywords.
Knowing your domain authority will help you become more strategic with the keywords you choose. If a keyword has low competition but is already won by a high-authority website, you might have a hard time ranking for it.
Look at the current SERP rankings for the keywords you’re eyeing. If the top entry has a domain authority that’s way higher than yours, that keyword may not be the most strategic one to target.
Boost your domain authority to increase your competitive power. You can do this by publishing more high-quality content, removing broken links on your site, and making sure your website is mobile-friendly.
4. Use a blend of head and long-tail keywords
Long-tail keywords usually have lower search volumes compared to head keywords. However, they drive more relevant traffic since they’re precise. Long-tail keywords are also easier to rank for because they have lower competition.
It doesn’t mean that you should focus solely on long-tail keywords. Head keywords, or general search terms, still provide good SEO value because they drive plenty of traffic. Choose a blend of head and long-tail keywords to create user-focused content. Make sure to choose keywords with matching search intent.
5. Utilize keywords that are already driving traffic to your site
Finally, don’t forget to take advantage of keywords that are already driving site traffic. Letting go of these keywords might negatively impact your current SERP rankings. Note which pages these keywords often lead to. This way, you know which of your products, services, or content are the most relevant to your market. You can develop similar content pieces or boost the SEO work in those popular services and product pages.
Plus, your traffic-driving keywords give you an idea of the language people often use when they reach your website. This information gives you direction when researching other keywords to target.
This guide is a general approach to keyword research. If you’re wondering about how to pick keywords for specific webpages or different types of content, I am here to answer all your questions about keyword research and SEO.
As a trusted SEO Expert, I help businesses catapult their online presence through powerful optimization strategies. I’ll help you choose the right keywords, create compelling content and anchor your SEO campaign on your overall digital marketing strategy to fuel your business success.