Daily Archives: January 5, 2009

Digital Marketing Optimization

Search Engine Optimisation with Webeden: Part 2 – Choosing keywords

Happy new year to you all!

We hope you liked the first part of our Search Engine Optimisation guide. Here is  part 2, which is all about choosing the right keywords.

Choosing Keywords

Now we reach the how to stage for getting your Webeden Website Builder site effectively optimised for Search Engines. This section now kicks off with a discussion on what to do, so pay close attention!

One of the key points in the ground rules section is that “search engines look for consistency and relevancy within a number of different areas of your in-page content and within your referral links”. Let’s start at the top and talk about keywords themselves, as these will be the important building blocks of your SEO tactics.

Keywords explained

Keywords are the words or phrases that you want people to be able to find you under when they do a search on the internet. These are essentially the words or phrases that best describe your business and the things that people would think of when they are interested in your goods or services. The more specific the words or phrases match what you offer, the more likely it will be to drive people to your site.

Let’s take my example company ‘Joe’s London Taxis’ and see how it works. For this fictional business, there are a number of keywords we could try. For each word or phrase below I’ve indicated how many terms or results are returned by google.com as an example of their competitiveness. Here are some terms I could use:

business (1.4 billion results on Google)
car (652 million)
london (402 million)
taxi (97 million)

These don’t seem too good. The sheer volume of pages returned on these terms will make it very hard for them to ever have an impact for my little business. How about:

london taxi (2.7 million)
west london taxi (1.6 million)
hammersmith taxi (221,000)
london minicab (220,000)
west london minicab (96,000)
hammersmith minicab (24,500)

That’s getting a bit better. Using two or three word phrases improves your chances of ranking highly as these phrases attract fewer competing companies and can be more specific to your market. And it looks like ‘minicab’ produces much less competition than ‘taxi’, i.e. there is a greater chance I can score highly with ‘minicab’ as fewer companies compete for this word. This will all help me make my choices about which keyword phrases I should use for my site.

As the effectiveness of the search improves, the number of search results will drop, so it’s a balancing act between being on page 100 for a top phrase with millions of searches and being on page 1 for a less used phrase with only a few thousand. Personally I think higher up and more focused is better.

How many keywords should you use?

That’s debatable too. Most articles suggest less is more; as few as 5 keyword phrases per page as a target, e.g. “london taxi, west london taxi, west london minicab, london airport taxi, hammersmith taxi” is 5 keyword phrases (usually just separated by a comma). Most keyword optimisers won’t complain until you have more than 15-20. So somewhere in the range 5-20 won’t hurt. I chose 15 for my example site.

If you have an exciting or unique brand name then this should be included in your keywords (and probably included in your URL too).

Don’t forget, your keywords will need to vary from page to page reflecting the contents of that page. There can be some overlap, but you can take different page contents as an opportunity to expand your list of keywords. For example, for my page www.joeslondontaxis.com/taxibooking I wanted to choose words relating to booking a taxi, e.g. “book a london taxi, london taxi booking, etc.”

It’s best to plan the keywords for each of your pages and only then start to go through the pages themselves and make sure the keywords are correctly represented and consistent in the right places.

So there’s your first piece of homework: work out the keywords and phrases for each of your different pages. Don’t worry about getting it ‘right’ first time. These are things you can change as you go along, but try to think about the important, specific phrases that summarise or capture the contents of each of your pages.

That’s it for Part 2 – we hope you’re finding it useful. Leave a comment below and let us know how your SEO is getting on. Here’s a link to our Search Engine Optimisation Guide part 3.

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