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Keyword research tools and guides.

Keywords is one of the main factors in determining the success or failure of your website. Keyword research is crucial for successful search engine website site optimization, managing pay per click keywords and achieving top search engine rankings. Keywords are the words or phrases people type in the search engine front end to find sites that provide them with the information they are looking for. Search engines index millions of pages from the web and store specific information about them in their own respective databases. When users type the search phrases in their computers, search engines look for the best match using certain proprietary algorithms and present the searcher with the most relevant sites. The search engines objective here is to give the searchers "exactly" what they are looking for.

Keywords are important to almost every kind of optimization you will do with a web site. You will use them directly in the body of the site's content, in various places in the site's code, and in links associated with the site. Don't overuse them. Read whatever you write with your site visitors in mind, and consider how they would react. Are you serving their needs? Content that sounds as if you're simply repeating the same word over and over again won't fool your visitors into thinking your site is valuable and relevant – and it won't fool the search engines either.

  • Keyword-focused title tag - There are some places where your keywords are essential. You must have a unique, keyword-focused title tag on every page of your site. few people will actually search on your company name; they'll search on things like “swimming pool toys” or “chlorine for swimming pools” or whatever other keywords are relevant to your field. If your company name needs to be in the title tag, put it toward the end.
  • Keyword phrases - These days, savvy searchers know that they can get more relevant results by using a phrase, so you should do the same. Depending on the nature of a user's search, they might also include a location, such as “pizza fort lauderdale” to find a pizza place close to home. If you want your site to turn up in these kinds of local searches, you should put your location in your text. Try "our West Palm Beach store" rather than simply "our store", for example. Since you might have several links and tags on a page, here's something to keep in mind while you're doing this. If you focus on more than one key word or key phrase on a page, it will effectively dilute that page's relevance for each of those key words. So optimize for a single key phrase on each page so the search engines will give you strong relevance for that phrase.
  • keyword selection - Another important fact about SEO is that the keyword selection must be attacked from the point of view of the users. It is a known fact that most users use a search phrase rather than a single word. It is therefore imperative to organize content that is not keyword rich but rather key phrase rich. Instead of using a keyword as common as say, "shoes" it would be better to use"'red shoes," "cheap shoes," "leather shoes" and so on. Statistics show that 32.58% users use two word phrases when using a search engine.
  • Keyword placement - Keyword placement is as important as keyword density. Placing keywords carefully in the right areas rather than simply bunching them all together will go a long way to ensuring that the search engines see your content as being of good quality. On average, it is safe to say that ensuring that the keyword appears once in the title, once in the first and last sentence of the content and once every 100 to 150 words in the body of the content is fairly good keyword placement. At no point should the keyword override the quality of the content. Remember, most readers can be lost or captured by the first few sentences of any piece of writing. You should also use key words in text links, image alt tags, and even your domain name if you can.
  • keyword density - Keyword density is the number of times that the keyword appears in a web page's content. It is this density that decides the search engine page rank that the site shall enjoy. It is one factor search engines use in deciding whether the page is relevant to the searcher's query.

How to Conduct Keyword Research for SEO

Keyword research is the core of any SEO campaign, since the keywords you pick during the research will be included in your website copy, into your PPC campaigns and any other website promotion campaigns.

  • Brainstorming your own knowledge : You should be aware of at least one word that your service or product can be characterized by.
  • Your customers : Talk to your customers and see if they associate any other words with you.
  • Your competitors : Check your competitor's websites for even more keywords or use this tool keywordspy to find out what your competitor's online marketing strategies are.
  • Usage of Keyword Research Tools : Several online tools offer information about the number of times users perform specific searches. Tools such as:

can offer concrete data about trends in keyword selection.

If you are interested in getting an estimation of real traffic numbers, use programs like Google's Adwords and Yahoo! Search Marketing to test the number of impressions a particular term/phrase gets.

Google Keyword Suggestion Tool, Keyword Discovery and Wordtracker

  • Google Keyword suggestion tool which is free can give you keywords, related to your website (if you select the appropriate tab) and offers you a wide selection of phrases real people have typed in.
  • Keyword Discovery compiles keyword search statistics from all the major search engines world wide, to create the most powerful Keyword Research tool.
  • Wordtracker can tell you the exact words that your customers use whenever they search, no matter what industry you're in, and no matter what products or services you sell.

WordTracker and Keyword Discovery also offer free versions of their keyword research tools. They give you a list of keyword phrases with your keyword and also give you some estimation of their popularity. Remember that Wordtracker and Keyword Discovery are both useful tools for relative keyword data, but can be highly inaccurate when compared to the actual number of searches performed. In other words, use the tools to select which terms to target, but don't rely on them for predicting the amount of traffic you can achieve. If your goal is estimating traffic numbers, use programs like Google's Adwords and Yahoo! Search Marketing to test the number of impressions a particular term/phrase gets.

Targeting the Right Keywords

You only need keywords that will drive potential customers to your website. Basically, a target keyword is a keyword that your potential customers will be using to find you. The techniques, described above, for conducting a keyword research should be a good start for managing your keywords.

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