Before you start working on SEO, you need to identify your keywords. Keywords are essentially phrases that you’re hoping people will search for on Google and find your business. If you own a sporting goods store in Colorado, your keywords are “sporting goods Colorado.” Companies can have many keywords at once, but it’s best to try to narrow it down. The same sporting goods store can use “rock climbing Colorado” or “camping equipment Colorado,” but remember that the more you have, the more your resources will be stretched thin. I’ll explain that further down. The reason why I included the location in the keywords is because local businesses are targeting a local audience. If you are targeting a national or online audience, your location will not be a keyword.
A good place to research keywords is Google Trends: http://www.google.com/trends/, When you type a search phrase into Google Trend’s query box, it will tell you how popular that search currently is on Google. It looks like this:
When a number is at 100 on the line graph, this means it is at it’s highest point of popularity. Often times, that means it’s also at its peak, but not always. Your keywords are generally pretty successful if they are at a high number and have a recent trend going only up. Going down isn’t the worst, as you never know when something will revive its popularity. For example, “Tiger Woods” was probably a popular search term during his last scandal a few years ago. If Tiger Woods does something to end up in the news again, the search term will most likely go up in popularity. If you do choose keywords that are heading downwards, you need to predict that, in the future, they will regain popularity.
Keep in mind that the “Region interest” section is a great one for helping you identify your audience.
After you’ve picked some keywords, try to put them into your domain name. This helps with SEO. Even if you don’t put them in your domain name, you want to have them in your website a lot. This includes lots of blog posts, tags on pictures, interspersed throughout your content, etc. Be careful though – too much is overkill. The rule of thumb is to use a keyword specific to one blog post only 3 times, including once in the title. Use the same keywords as tags on your blog posts and when you share your content on social media platforms.
The desired result is that your name will be at the top of the page when someone searches for those keywords. This is why I said you don’t want too many – for all of your keywords, you have to do a lot of work to optimize your website. However, you don’t want to go the opposite way and have too few either, otherwise you’ll only dominate one search phrase. How many you have will depend on your business, how many products/services you provide, and what you think your customers will search for.
And that’s pretty much it for keywords for now. Comments, questions, concerns, and anecdotes are welcome below.