What is Keyword Research & Why Is It Important?

What is Keyword Research & Why Is It Important?

Category: SEO

Keyword research is a process we carry out to help make sure web pages are accurately indexed by search engines and directories. And that they are found by as many people running related searches as possible. Including the right key words and phrases in your web page content increases traffic, and assuming the page delivers helpful relevant content, this will inevitably increase organic (non-paid) rankings too. I am often asked before we design or build a new site for a client, what keywords should be used in their website. But that’s getting ahead of things. We don’t write and produce websites for search engines, do we? If you do, you’re doing it wrong. First and foremost, we create websites for people; users, customers and potential customers to tell them about (or sell them) our products and services. If you were to begin writing a website with search engines in mind, you’d end up with a pretty boring, not to mention, incoherent website.

Here’s how it should work:

Create a Page Plan

Work out what your menu will look like, consider what are top level pages and what sub-level. If you are a service provider, then you should have a page for each of your services beneath a navigational top level page. You can begin to plan some content for each page to get a feel for what you want to say and how to structure it.

If you’re selling products online then work out a structure for categories and sub-categories, brands, sub-brands and begin to group things logically together. Once you have the plan in place, then some initial research can begin.

Run the Research

It used to be that when setting up a web page for SEO, we’d need use keywords that exactly matched what someone keys into a search engine. This is not so long ago, maybe only 6 or 7 years? But in search engine land, things change quickly and often. Now, with the sophisticated algorithms that Google (and other SE’s) use, this is no longer the most important aspect of including keywords. What we are looking to do is provide content that matches the meaning or intent behind someone using that and other closely related keywords.

But that doesn't mean keyword research is no longer required. Far from it, in fact. By running thorough research, you can find and use the keywords that attract the highest volume of searches per month. These are called long-tail keywords in the trade. And you can gather some useful, but less often used keywords that apply nicely to what you do. These are called short-tail keywords. Keywords can also differ greatly by location, so make sure you take this into account. For example, people may search for ‘rubbish bins’ in UK but the US they are looking for ‘trash cans’. ‘Trainers’ and ‘sneakers’, nappies’ and ‘daipers’… you get the idea.

Once you have arranged your content into topics (eg. services and categories) that you want to provide content on. Then, by using the right tools in the right way, you can run accurate research to find out what people most commonly search for in relation to them.

Here are some keyword research tools that you may find useful. Or of course, you can just Google it!

Build in Keywords

These keywords and phrases should then be built into key parts of your web content in order to have your pages found as often as possible. These include:

- Meta data
- Page titles and headings (H1, H2, H3… etc.)
- Image tags
- Title tags
- External and internal links
- URLs

Get The Best Possible Return

At Big Red Digital, we take SEO into account from the very beginning of any website that we work with. No website is launched without extensive research being done and a thorough initial set up of pages and content. We call it an ‘initial’ set up because we know from experience that SEO is an ongoing process that needs continual analysis and adjustment in order the get the most out of your website.

SEO support is just one of the Digital Marketing services we provide and we have years and years of experience behind us in doing so.

Our clients have found that by having Big Red on their side, they are generating valuable traffic and revenue online. If you are at all unsure about how to properly research keywords and set up your business website for SEO, contact us now.

We’d love to hear from you!

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About The Author

Hi, thanks for reading this article. I'm Big Red Digital's Managing Director and have been with the company since 2012. After starting my career in one of Glasgow's busiest advertising and design agencies, I made the natural shift to web design and digital marketing. I'm passionate about getting the very best results for our clients.

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