Understanding how keyword selection affects your digital marketing plan
Keywords are, by far, the most important facet of a 1Digital Agency digital marketing plan. They set the tone and direction of an SEO marketing campaign, and they are a major factor in determining how effective that campaign can be. Think of your keywords as your website’s trips to the gym. If your website only goes once a week it’s SEO muscles can only develop so much. If your website hires a personal trainer, and builds a gym in it’s garage, it’ll get SEO jacked. The more keywords you have, and the more commitment you make to your SEO plan, the stronger your website’s organic search rankings will be.
When a client comes to 1Digital Agency for an SEO campaign they receive a full suite of digital marketing services. This post will focus on how keywords are selected and implemented in a 1 DA marketing plan.
Keywords, what are they?
A keyword is a common search term. The focus of an SEO campaign is to cause your website to show up in a more prominent place in Google’s list of results when a keyword you target is searched. Targeting keywords gives your site higher visibility among consumers who are already looking to buy the kind of products you offer. You can find examples of keywords by using any one of many keyword planning tools.
Selecting keywords involves a strange calculation. In order to have success with SEO, make your goals for keywords aggressive, but attainable. You’ll want to target keywords that are commonly searched to maximize the amount of traffic that they bring to your site. However, if you choose keywords that are too commonly searched, you’ll get buried by all the sites that are clamoring to compete for that term. For the most popular search terms, large corporations with massive marketing budgets have a distinct advantage, because users are predisposed to click on a name they recognize. This is called brand authority. If your company is starting with low brand authority, we recommend that you start building it by targeting long tail keywords. These are more unique, less commonly searched keywords that are easier to rank for. Once your site ranks for a few long tail keywords, it can then attack more competitive search terms.
The term for brand authority online is domain authority. Domain authority is a score from 1 to 100 that grades how well a particular website is likely to rank in Google’s search results. By strengthening SEO value your website gains a better domain authority score. A website with stronger domain authority can compete for more competitive keywords.
This is a long way around to say that SEO takes time. I know that everybody expects things on the Internet to happen instantaneously. However, much like working out, building domain authority, and ranking for better and better keywords, is a process of small gains that happens over months of commitment. 1Digital Agency can give you a boost in that process by selecting the right keywords to launch your campaign with.
How 1 DA Picks a great set of keywords
It all starts with determining your customer’s needs. A lot of entrepreneurs want to make their product’s name one of their keywords. This is an intuitive strategy, but not a very effective one. After all, the major strength of SEO keywords is that they buy you publicity amongst people who would be interested in your product, but don’t know about it yet. Instead, we base our keywords around the need that the product fulfills. For example, if your web store sells an electronic cigarette called VaporXYZ, your keywords should be something like: ‘quit smoking’, ‘e-cig accessories’ or ‘buy vapor products’.
We identify your customer’s needs by using the 1 DA SEO Questionnaire. This questionnaire will give you the opportunity to give us information about your business, as well as explain how and why your current customers choose your products. This questionnaire should be filled out as thoroughly and specifically as possible. We can never have too much information about a client.
The SEO questionnaire also helps us prioritize. Although it makes intuitive sense to spread your keywords out over all your available products, in order to cast a wider net, that is not the most effective strategy. At 1 DA we determine the products or product category that you can successfully rank for, and build a network of related keywords around them. This calculation depends on weighing the strength of your product against the competitiveness of your industry. Related keywords help organic search results work together, and build stronger rankings.
1 DA selects related, but unique keywords. While other digital marketing agencies might promise a longer list of keywords, they’re including terms that are natural spill over from unique terms. For example, targeting ‘e-cig accessories’ will also cause you to rank for ‘e-cig accessory’. When 1 DA promises 50 keywords, we mean 50 unique search terms that all have their own spill over effect. So, when you target 50 unique keywords you might end up ranking for 500 different search terms.
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Once we have an understanding of your business and your industry, we can get down to the meat of the matter, keyword selection. For a small business, that doesn’t have much domain authority, 1 DA operates under the ‘Long Tail Keyword Theory’. The long tail keyword theory is based on the fact that, while 30% of searches are for the most competitive keywords, 70% of searches are spread out over thousands of more unique long tail keywords. The theory goes that once a consumer has searched a very general keyword, and not found the specific product that they’re looking for, they search a longer more specific keyword. A long tail keyword doesn’t have as high a search volume, but the consumers that do search it are more likely to convert, because they’re looking for your particular product. Also, long tail keywords are more accessible, and can be used to build domain authority.
Keywords are just one piece of the puzzle
While they have a foundational role to play, well-selected keywords can do little by themselves. They need to be backed up by written content, on page optimization, robust social media presence, PPC, and more. Fortunately, a 1 DA marketing plan will include everything your small business needs to start distinguishing itself in Google’s search results. If you’d like to know more about our full suite of digital marketing services feel free to give us a call.
- Joe Chilson
- March 3, 2016