February 2, 2016

How to develop an effective SEO strategy: keywords

If you’ve watched the Wolf of Wall Street, you will be familiar with the marketing methods of yesteryear, whereby promoting a message involved making as much noise as possible.

These methods are now changing, as technology is making these techniques less effective and more expensive. Marketeers new battle is to create content which cuts through the noise and grabs attention. And as we’ve got more and more consumed by the internet, one of the most important strategies for creating awareness is through search engine optimisation. This guide is designed to help you to build an SEO strategy:

Getting ready for the SEO battle

1. Understand your potential buyers

Buyer Personas are your ideal customers. Your buyer personas can be categorised by their educational background, jobs role or even by the clothes they wear. Finding personal information about your buyer personas helps you understand the tone of voice which may be appropriate to use.

2. Map their journey

Before searching for keywords, you should define what stage of the buyer’s journey your ideal customers are at. Hubspot describes the buyer’s journey as “the active research process a buyer goes through leading up to a purchase.”

  • Awareness stage: In the awareness stage, prospects realise they have an issue that needs to be resolved. Keywords should be focused on helping customers to solve their problem.
  • Consideration stage: The prospect has a clearly defined idea of the problem. Additionally, they have researched all the potential solutions to the problem that they are facing.
  • Decision stage: The buyer has evaluated different solutions and now has to choose a business to help them solve their problem. If your website visitors are in the decision stage of the buyer’s journey, you can start using keywords related to your brand to convert customers.

3. The strategy

Do you want to increase your website visits or convert more customers?

  • Ranking opportunities: Web pages which you have an opportunity to rank for by improving your on-page authority. Search for keywords which you rank just outside the top 10 pages for on Google and look to optimise these further.
  • Conversion opportunities: Do you have good website traffic but want to convert more opportunities? You can improve your conversion rate by adding call to actions (CTA) to pages and then linking the CTA to an enticing offer.

Going to battle

4.   Starting the keyword research:

If you’ve identified your target market and SEO strategy, then it’s time to focus on keywords. Google AdWords is a good place to start for generating some keyword ideas. If you know your content ideas, but need some keyword suggestions then Google suggest and Answer the public  will give you useful insights to start your keyword process.

  • Don’t be too broad or too specific
    The keyword term you’re searching for should be narrow enough that you have a good chance of a high search ranking, but broad enough that a lot of people will search for it. For example, the term “customer” is way too general. But, “customer journey mapping” is more specific and still has a high search volume.
  • Focus on what you’re already writing about
    It takes time and frequency to make it to the top of a search query, so make sure you write about content more than once. Look at your categories, article titles, and other content on your site. Are there common keywords that are already driving people to your website
  • Competitor research: Search for alternatives on the web
    It’s always a good idea to see what your competitors are proposing. Michelangelo once quoted that “the best of artists has no conception that the marble alone does not contain within itself” His inspiration came from within the marble and he simply removed the parts that didn’t belong in order to build his sculptures.”Along the same lines, check your competitor’s websites to see what content and keywords they are using. This may just give you the inspiration that you’ve been looking for!

5.  Writers block

Finally, don’t let your keyword research get in the way of your writing. Getting started is the most difficult part of writing, so make sure you don’t procrastinate or spend too long doing research.

Want to master SEO? It certainly takes time and patience to reap your rewards in this field, but we hope our guide below will help you to achieve your goals.