Choosing the right keywords can help to improve your search rankings and drive more traffic to your website
- Understand the value of keywords — these are the words and phrases that people type into search engines such as Google or Yahoo! to find the information they require.
- Choose the right keywords and use them correctly. This is a major element of search engine optimisation (SEO) and can ensure your website is listed as near as possible to the top of relevant searches so potential customers can find you.
- Consider the sector you operate in, your products or services, any brand names you use, your location, and what is unique to your business — then come up with relevant short descriptive phrases to find appropriate keywords for your business.
- Identify your competitors’ keywords. Using these yourself may enable you to redirect some of their web traffic towards you. Online services, such as Keyword Spy, can help you do this.
- Use a keyword suggestion tool — such as Google’s free keyword service to find variations on the keywords you have come up with, as well as useful statistics related to the use of these keywords.
- Remember, there is no limit on the number of keywords you can use.
- Embed your keywords in your website. They need to be embedded into the title tag of each page, the page headings and sub-headings, and the metadata (snippets of code that users don’t see but which search engines analyse). They should also be embedded into the content of your pages, and the higher up the better.
- Trial a number of keywords in a paid search campaign — whereby you pay the search engine according to the number of users clicking to your site having used keywords you have previously selected.
- Put the keywords into your link-building strategy. Most search engines work using complicated algorithms that see how many web links point to your site, so you need to cultivate links with appropriate sites. You can do this by, for example, listing with directories using your keywords.
- Track and monitor how your keywords are working by analysing your web server’s log files (available from your hosting provider) or using a free online tool such as Google Analytics. Modify your site and your keywords accordingly.
- Consider paying a specialist agency to do help you track, monitor and modify your keywords as experts understand the constantly changing nature of search engines.
- continually refine and update your keywords
- experiment with keywords
- give your keywords time to show results
- choose single words, eg 'insurance'
- use highly competitive keywords
- write content only intended for search engine ranking
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