8 Steps to Successful Keyword Research

Getting your web pages to rank higher on the search engines can be a challenge, and the concept of keyword research has consistently remained a fairly complicated thing for many. However, it’s crucial to the success of your business because these rankings determine whether people will discover you online or not. If you aren’t aware of the words and phrases your target audience is likely to use, it will be hard to reach them.

Here are 8 steps that will help you deliver keyword optimization:

1. Understand the fundamentals of keyword research
Keyword research is the starting point of any SEO campaign before you proceed to look at content and link building. However, keyword research is not solely about finding a keyword, but understanding its income potential, competitiveness and whether you can rank well for it.


2. Get to know your niche
A business niche defines your specialized area of a greater market that helps you to differentiate yourself from competition. Selling shoes is a greater market but selling shoes for nurses is a niche. Find out as much information as possible and then use it to make a list of important, relevant topics.


3.Develop keyword ideas
From the topics that you chose for your niche, identify keywords from them. This is not hard since there are a number of tools you can use that will do all the legwork for you, including Ahrefs, Keyword Shitter, SEMrush and Ubersuggest.


4. Determine the keyword difficulty
Keyword difficulty is indicated on a scale from 0-100. A higher value indicates harder competition while a lower value shows that the keyword is easier to rank. Don’t be deceived by large search volumes because the important factor is how you will earn from a given volume. Many people don’t even click on a result that they search for and low search volume for a given keyword does not mean that it’s bad.


5. Examine the intent
The next step is to find out what people really look for when searching using those keywords. Are the intents informational, transactional, navigational or commercial?  The top 5 results of a Google search for each keyword should give you a quick answer.


6. Use both head terms and long-tail keywords
Head terms are short, more generic keywords, while long-tail keywords are phrases that contain three or more phrases. A healthy mix is good since you get to reap the benefits of both quick and long-term searches.


7. Cut down your keyword list and convert them into page titles
Remove the keywords that have either too many or too little search volumes using Google Keyword Planner, but only after assessing their trend history and projections with Google Trends. After that, move ahead and incorporate them into page titles and develop content.


8. Improve relevancy by inter-linking
Semantically related keywords and topics make content more relevant to search engines which increases your ranking chances. To pull this through, you need to be good at picking up on patterns.


With the right keywords, it is time to focus on developing your content, but don’t forget to review them regularly.