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Building Your Keyword Strategy: 3 Things to Know to Get Started

No matter what your content marketing or website performance goals are, the keywords you use make all the difference. From integrating keywords in on-page website content to using them consistently in metadata, choosing the right keywords is an essential component to your overall digital marketing strategy. And choosing the right keywords is even more important when you’re trying to target a specific audience.

If you’re ready to focus on creating an effective keyword strategy for your business or organization, here are 3 things to know before you get started.

1. Know the basics of keyword research

For starters, it’s important to know some basics about keyword research. A keyword is a word or phrase that people search for on search engines and social media. A keyword with three or more words is known as a long-tail keyword.

Keywords have a search volume and difficulty score affiliated with them. Search volume stands for the number of searches that keyword receives on average. Difficulty score (also known as a competition score) represents a prediction of how difficult it will be for your website to rank for that keyword. The score is based on factors like competition for that keyword, your current rank, and domain authority. The higher the percentage, the more challenging it will be to rank for that keyword.

2. Know why keyword research matters

It takes time, but doing keyword research is important because it gives you insight into what people are actually searching for, how highly searched a keyword is, and how your competitors rank.

For example, say you’re selling organic dog food. You’d want to know what type of keywords people search for when looking for a product like yours. Do users search for organic dog food, or are more searches conducted on a variation of the keyword, such as organic food for dogs? What’s the difference between search volumes for the keywords? Is the difficulty score higher for one over the other? Thinking through questions like this will help you identify which keywords are more popular, which keywords are actually used, and which keywords you want to put time and resources into targeting as part of your keyword strategy.

3. Know how to get started

Creating your keyword strategy should be a thorough process, but there are a few easy steps you can take to get started.

  • Make a list – Start by making a list of 10-20 keywords you think people would search for when looking for your products or services. Think of the different variations people might use when conducting searches. Also think about if there are synonyms for any of the words you’ve written down. Capture those keywords in a list.
  • Access the tools – Tools like Google Keyword Planner and Moz Pro are fantastic for keyword research. Google Keyword Planner is a great way to get more ideas about other related keywords people might be searching for. Moz Pro is a tool that lets you look at valuable information such as how you and your competitors currently rank for chosen keywords. Through this tool you can track your keyword performance over time, analyze individual pages for keyword density and performance, and more.
  • Do the research – After you know the basics, know what you’re looking at, and know what tools you need, it’s time to do the research. Start looking at your list of keywords and get ideas for other similar keywords people are looking for. Using the tools mentioned, analyze the search volume, difficulty score, and how competition ranks. Once you see what people are actually searching for, where you and your competitors rank, and where opportunities lie for you to go after different keywords, you’re ready to create your keyword strategy.

Still wondering how to build a keyword strategy for your business or organization? Let us know. From digital marketing coaching to hands-on strategy development, we can help!

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