Everyone loves a good shortcut. Even in the era of Apple and Google maps, I’ve still managed to find a few alternate routes that shave time off of my commute if needed, and most people do something similar if they can.
People aren’t the only ones who look for the shortest route to their destination though. Search Engines do it too – by focusing in on key words and phrases that you have on your website. While there are a lot of reasons why search engines rank pages the way they do, keywords give you all the more reason to pay attention to the words you use on your website. Let’s talk a little bit about these keywords and how you can use them to help your business.
How Does a Keyword Work?
When doing any kind of online search, there are always buzzwords that yield the best results. Sometimes those words are obviousa, and sometimes they’re elusive. Whatever the case is, it’s always worth investing the time to research.
As I already alluded to, a keyword acts as a shortcut for search engines. When parsing through the billions of pages on the internet, a Search Engine looks for certain things to highlight the value of a site. Keywords are the first thing on that list. It’s how the algorithm can take a quick glance and see if you deserve more attention.
Take for example a pickup and delivery laundry service that wants to market themselves online. That business will want to cash in on a certain set of words like “laundry”, “pickup”, and “delivery”. They would also want to utilize phrases such as “laundry delivery services” and “laundry pickup” to boost results as well. If they don’t have any of these words, their Search Engine rankings will by abysmal at best.
This is more than just having the words on your site though. During the ranking process, Search Engine algorithms also focus on making sure that the words you use add to the quality of the site. You can’t just put “laundry” or “pickup” in random places on and think that results will come pouring in. Taking the time to write thoughtful and effective copy that optimizes your word useage is the secret to making sure that your site gets noticed above the competition.
How to Find Keywords that Word
The most intuitive place to start is yourself. You know your business better than anyone, which means you can put yourself in your customers’ shoes and ask “If I needed a business like mine, what would I type into a Search Engine?” Chances are you could come up with a list of 10-20 words very easily that you think would be good candidates. You don’t need that many, but it’s a great way to start.
Once you establish a base list, look into utilizing one of many online keyword research tools. Google Adwords has one such service, and you can easily set up an account to begin using the Keyword Planner tool. HubSpot also has some very effective tools if you have access to their platform.
Keyword research tools allow you to search for relevant words and phrases you think you might use. Using your suggestions, these tools will generate a number of possibilities for you to tap into in a matter of seconds. To make things even better, you’ll also get an analysis of how many searches per day your choice gets. You’re able to see the hidden potential of the words you’ve chosen and see how much competition there is for those words.It’s a simple and effective way to double check your intuition and give some extra ideas.
We highly recommend taking some time to double-check all of your online material to make sure your keywords are pulling their weight. Comment below to let us know what words you’re currently using, and if they’ve made a difference for you!