Knowing what keywords to use is arguably the first step in search engine optimisation (SEO). And whilst increasing search traffic is a priority, it’s essential to ensure that it’s the right traffic. Attracting high volumes of irrelevant traffic will mean people quickly bounce (I’m not trying to sound “down with the kids”, bounce is an actual SEO term!) So having the right keywords will help ensure you are getting in front of your ideal client avatar (ICA). However, it’s not uncommon for people to avoid keyword research like a salad on a cheat day.
And why? Because some unscrupulous SEO businesses like to make it sound complicated. If it sounds complicated, maybe you should let the “experts” do it, hey? Alas, it doesn’t have to be over-complicated, but it can be time-consuming. So, here are my 3 top tips for getting started with your keyword research…
Be Your ICA
Knowing precisely who your ICA is, their pain points, and how your product or service helps them is essential before starting keyword research (or any marketing, to be honest). Once you know this, you need to think like them. The keywords you associate with your service may not be the search terms your ICA is using. A great tool to help with this is answerthepublic.com. You just type in a keyword, for example, business coach, and it will provide you with a whole host of questions and related search terms that are popular right now. I use it all the time when choosing blog subjects as it saves me so much time. Just be aware, it is a freemium service, though. However, you get 1 or 2 searches per day, and you can export the information, so this is incredibly useful.
Keyword Research Tools
Whilst you probably can do some keyword research without using tools, why make things harder for yourself? Using tools can give you more accurate data to work with and even give you some ideas you may not have thought of.
There are some fantastic tools available if you have the budget to pay; however, unless you have a lot of disposable cash or keyword research is actually your business, they can be expensive, so it makes sense to utilise free tools wherever possible. So here are some of my favourite free tools:
- As mentioned above, answerthepublic.com
- Google Ads (don’t worry that you start going through the process of creating an actual ad, you are only going as far as to use the Google keyword tool)
- Google Trends
- Google Analytics and Google Console
- The Hoth Keyword Tools
This should certainly be enough to get you started, and if you want to look at premium tools, make sure you understand precisely what you want the tools to be able to do and conduct thorough research as the prices vary significantly. A great site to find discount tools for all different things, not just keyword search, and one I spend way too much money on is AppSumo.
Data, Data, Data
And finally, I cannot stress this enough; please make sure you regularly review your website analytics. Bear in mind; it can take a while for SEO changes to take effect (anywhere up to 12 weeks is quite normal). However, after adding your chosen keywords to your website copy, blog posts, meta tags, social media posts etc., use Google Analytics and Google Console to review where your website traffic is coming from. If you have added keywords that are not generating any traffic, it may be worth tweaking them or switching them for something else.
When adding your keywords, make sure your copy still sounds conversational and not a list of keywords. Remember, your copy should still be written for your reader, not the algorithms. Keywords are there to optimise but not change the overall style. Furthermore, Google and other search engines have started penalising sites and content that are obviously “keyword stuffing”, so be sensible.
How confident are you to start doing your keyword research? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time xx
As a content and copywriter, helping businesses attract and nurture their ideal clients to grow their sales is what lights me up. If you need help with identifying your ideal client, messaging, or communicating your offer, drop me a message today.
I hope you have found this helpful; you can also download my FREE guide to Make Your Copy POP! which is a handy desktop guide packed with quick and easy tips to write like a pro.
This post contains links to affiliate websites, and I receive a small commission for any purchases made by you on the affiliate website using such links. I want to assure you that I am a long-term customer of AppSumo, making one or more purchases a month and would not recommend them if I was not highly satisfied with the service myself.