In the previous lesson, we learned that SEO is important and where to find all of our SEO fields. In this lesson, we will learn about SEO Keywords and why they're so critical to research.
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Keywords have long been a mysterious sub-function of SERPs. Questions we regularly hear are: Are they important? What are they used for? How relevant do they have to be? How many can I have? How do I know what to put?
The answer to a lot of the above questions is usually "It depends", which for a lot of customers is - understandably - a frustrating answer to receive. In the SEO world, however, nothing is concrete. SEO rules, regulations, and search algorithms are ever-changing. Even the top SEO experts have to spend hours upon hours of studious research to keep up with the current "best practices". On top of that, not every SEO expert agrees on the same best practices! Think in terms of your toothpaste commercials: they always state things like "4 out of 5 Dentists recommend Brand X". Why? Because even the experts have different opinions at times on the "best way" to do things.
Let's say you're looking to find the movies playing nearest to you tonight, but you're not sure what's playing and you want to see the different show times, too. How are you going to search for that information and get the most relevant results?
Here's an example of a sentence you might think to type:
What movies are playing in Austin, Texas tonight?
Now, this is simple enough to type in, but what is Google going to use to search? Is it going to use the full text you typed, or will the search engine intelligently pull the specific keywords from this sentence?
As you can see, Google did not return results for the entire text string. It took the most relevant keywords from that sentence and returned the best results. The keywords Google focused on were "Austin, Texas" and "movies", because this was the most important information you're interested in learning about.
Keywords help search engines (like Google) identify the core information you're searching for, and return the most relevant information in regards to your query.
Enter: Keyword Research.
As we saw from the previous example above, keywords are an essential piece of search result puzzle. Ensuring you have the most relevant keywords for your customers to find you with is one of the most important things you can do to not only improve traffic, but your chances of converting visitors into customers!
So, how does one decide on what keywords to use? Well, (as I'm sure you've probably guessed) it's not an exact science, but there are some great methods and tools to help you figure out what will work best for you.
First, let's work on the easy wins:
1. The ArtStorefronts Site Auditor helps you get a baseline reading on your SEO and alerts you to any missing and/or incomplete SEO fields in the application. The tooltips to the right detail what will need to be input/completed for these to turn to green checks.
2. The ArtStorefronts Success Plan helps you get all of the marketing steps set up, including installing your Google Analytics. This is extremely important to have, because the information Google provides will absolutely help you find the right keywords and phrases to attract he proper audience to your work.
After you've started on or finished with the above, the next part is to do some intensive keyword research.
As an example, you may want to ask yourself these questions to brainstorm some potential keywords:
1. What are you known for? Do you have a specific genre or business model that stands out?
2. What makes you different? Do you paint or shoot with unique materials? Do you print in special ways?
3. Do you have specific geographic terms? Do you focus your art or business on a specific location?
4. What is your brand name? Do you use your name or a specific business name?
After you've brainstormed some keywords and collected a list, the below tools are great for seeing what the strength of the keywords, how often they're searched and even find out how much they cost per click for an AdWords campaign:
After you've used the above methods, you should have a narrowed-down list of keywords that are both relevant and searchable. Now, you can start writing content to fill in your SEO fields and ensuring Google will pull your website as a relevant result during customer searches!
In our next lesson, we will learn How to Create Effective Meta Titles for your website.