Articles Written About Web Design, Web Development, And Seach Engine Optimization.

Keywords: The Backbone of Search Engine Optimization

Posted on 04/18/2011 by Brian Petti

Search engine optimization all begins with keywords. No matter what type of website you own, keywords are ultimately what will get visitors to your website. This is true for websites made for branding purposes, leads, or selling products or services. Finding the right keywords can seem like an easy task, but realistically can take a lot of time, skill, and effort to ensure the right visitors are visiting your website and converting.Keywords are basically the words or phrases that people type into search engines to find the websites that will hopefully answer their questions. Before link building, on-site optimization, and social media, you must narrow down a list of keywords that will most efficiently lead potential customers to your website over going to your competitors. Keywords can be placed in many different categories. Some of these categories are general search terms, strategic keywords, and long tail keywords.
  • General – These are search terms that generally relate to your website and your business. For example, if your business is a law firm, your general keywords relate to the type of law you practice, firms within your area, or law in general. Most of the time these keywords are very competitive, but also have the highest amount of searches per month. The downside to these types of keywords is that they aren’t the highest converting types of keywords. People may search for a general term and your website might get traffic, but may not convert as well as more buyer focused phrases. General keywords are usually linked straight to your homepage.
  • Strategic – These keywords are specifically related to your business. Many times these keywords should have their own content pages on your website other than the home page. They tend to have a higher conversion rate than general keywords because the searcher has a much better idea of exactly what they are looking for. A best practice in search engine optimization is to choose your top products and/or service, and optimize these keywords as your strategic keywords.
  • Long Tail – These types of keywords don’t get nearly as much traffic as the previously stated types of keywords, but they usually have a much better conversion rate. The people using long tail keywords are searching for something specific. If you can give them the answer that they are looking for, the have a good chance of completely a sale or contacting you for more information on your products or services.
By creating a good combination of these 3 types of keywords, you can then go on to other areas of search engine optimization such as link building and on-site optimization. Finding the right keywords with the lowest amount of competition can be very complicated and also take a lot of time. If you are not familiar with search engine optimization, it would be most beneficial to contact a professional to run your campaign. It will save you a lot of time and frustration, and possibly help you avoid having to re-design your website later on. Be sure to be a part of the keyword finding/suggesting process, though, because no one knows your business better than you!