This post discusses how to determine the best keywords, using SEO as an example. In most cases, I am interested in SEO Training, and so here I work through the steps to figure out the most commonly used search terms. Many of the tools are FREE.
What’s in a Name? Identifying the Top SEO Training Keywords
"What’s in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet." asks Juliet in the famous Shakespearean tragedy, Romeo and Juliet. Juliet’s point, of course, is that Romeo is Romeo no matter what his name is, and a rose is a rose is a rose (Gertrude Stein). For SEO (Search Engine Optimization) people, however, a name is critical. That which you call SEO Training for example, I might query as Search Engine Optimization Training. That which you call "Course," I might call class.
Point No. 1 – identifying the correct keywords / keyphrases is critical to successful SEO.
Search engine queries are user-driven, so if your customers are searching for Apples and you are optimizing for Oranges, you will have few if any customers. Or if 70% of your customers query for Apples but you optimize for Oranges, you are constraining yourself to 30% of the market.
Identifying the Top Keyword Queries for ‘SEO Training’
That said, one of your best bets is to use the Free Google Keywords Tool. Input your target keyword, and then click on Global Monthly Search Volume to sort by search volume.
Point No. 2 – use the free Google tool to Poll the Audience, and see how customers are searching. Now I am interested in a few things –
- Synonyms for SEO – which synonyms have the highest search volume?
- Helper words – like training, course, class or like San Francisco, Seattle, San Jose – words that searches use in addition to my "core" keywords.
- The two together will identify keyword families that I will target with my SEO strategy.
SEO Training – the Top Keywords and Keyword Families
So using the free tool, I do my queries and brainstorm to find these families –
- CORE KEYWORDS
- Search Engine Optimization – 823,000 queries/mo.
- SEO – 5,000,000 queries/mo.
- Search Marketing – 550,000 queries/mo.
- SEM – 368,000 queries/mo.
- Internet Marketing – 1,500,000 queries/mo
- HELPER KEYWORDS
- Optimization (in combination with SEO as in SEO Optimization
- NEGATIVE KEYWORDS
- SOME DATA ON SEARCHES
- SEO Training – 22,200 vs. Search Engine Optimization Training – 4,400 vs. Search Marketing Training – 2,900
- SEO Course – 5,400 – courses – 3,600
- SEO Class – 1,900 – classes 1,300
- SEO Workshop – 1,600
The Bottom Line on SEO Training
The bottom line is after I identify my keywords, and then use the Google tool, I have a better idea about how my customers (or potential customers) search the Internet for search engine optimization training. As you can see from the data above, my best phrase is "SEO Training" at 22,200. You can also see that training beats course, which beats class and workshop.
Point No. 3 – poll your audience to identify your top keywords / keyphrases and then loop this knowledge back into your SEO strategy.