Perhaps you’ve heard it said by Hamlet, “words, words, words,” emphasizing how our world becomes filled with so many words that they lose their meaning. This was, of course, a satirical statement for Shakespeare to write since words contain incredible power in his plays. When it comes to internet marketing, they are just as fundamental. Because of this, your word choice is the key to your company’s marketing success.
For the best use of SEO, your social media posts, paid ad campaigns, and the like, choosing the right wording may be the most important step in asserting your company’s goals to web users, and increasing traffic and conversions on your site.
This is amplified tenfold by the use of search engines, as said in Inc.com’s article,
'“[i]f there is a single concept that is the driver of much of the Internet's growth over the past decade – not to mention nearly all of Google's annual revenue of $25 billion – it is the concept of keywords.” That’s a LOT of pressure on what started as just simple wording.'
We should underline that Google has become wiser since the beginning; you can no longer just fill your site with one keyword in as many places as possible, and expect to move to the top of the results page. You can actually drop in rankings if this is all you do since Google watches out for such misuse.
Instead of selecting one word to repeat all over your web content, you have to generate quality content related to a pool of phrases, participate in tools like paid ads incorporating your selected words, and understand search queries so you know what your customer wants when they come to your website. So back to words, at the core of ensuring you optimize all of the above, you must focusing your content, services, and goals around a few targeted phrases.
So how do you take advantage of this gigantic power and avoid the consequences of improper use?
You analyze, plan, and execute, and then repeat, with each step of all of your digital marketing campaign. For more on kicking off your internet marketing campaigns, take a look at our Inbound Marketing Campaign Checklist.
Buyer Personas: Know who your searchers are so you know what phrasing they enter in their search surrounding your service (read more about searcher behavior and targeting your audience). Study what search sites they would be on (Bing vs. Google; see infographic for who uses Bing here). Recognize that each unique type of buyer may be in a different part of the buyer's cycle. For example with an email automation service, one searcher could be a school teacher, so they may be more likely to ask a question about a problem they are having, like organizing their email. Their search would be something like, "how to organize my email." Another potential client could be a marketer in the tech field, more aware of the industry and thus more interested in pricing and comparing email automation software. They might use a phrase like, "comparing email automation services."
Possible long-tail keywords: It's not so much about finding key words so much as it is key phrases. If you choose one word, the competition is higher and your site is less likely to rank for it on the search page. Study the phrases your searchers are typing in when they go on Google or Bing by noticing the search bar's auto-fills, looking at a site like WordStream or SEMRush that can generate phrases for you based on your services, or studying a site like Google Trends (a how-to guide found here) to see what is a trending search query surrounding your industry. Don't rely on one-worded synonyms you think are appropriate and don't assume too much about your audience.
How many to use: An article on SEOmark discusses using five. You don't want too few because you won't be maximizing your potential. You also don't want to go too far with 30 or more because you probably don't have enough resources to monitor this wide array or create enough content to even to rank for all of them.
Paid Ads: Decide if you are ready to monitor a Google AdWords account and/or Bing Ads. If you are, checkout some basic setup guides and best practices (here's some for Google and Bing) and make sure to closely track their performances in order to get your best ROI. Both of these tools have you choose your wording and bids based on those keywords so if you have them chosen before even registering your account, it will help align your paid ads with your other efforts, and enhance both efforts.
Social Media & Landing Pages: Use the selected long-tail phrases in your social media posts and in the language in your descriptions on each social media page. Publish blog posts and eBooks containing useful information surrounding them as well. One often overlooked step of this is having an editorial schedule, containing a plan for when to use which ones. Hubspot provides a free template to help you make these decisions and ensure you're covering content across the board.
Execute & Repeat
How: Try to select on keyword phrase for each landing page and build the page around it. Then use variations on this keyword: change up the order, make certain parts plural, or replace a minor word (a, in, to etc.) rather than using the same exact phrasing and order of words all throughout the page.
Where: Take advantage of the knowledge you accumulated by placing the keywords in the appropriate places: the page title, URL, H1 Tag, body content, site navigation link text, the image tag, and your meta description.
Repeat: With ongoing efforts, study your performance with Google Analytics or the like, as well as your own a/b testing, to fully understand where to make changes.
For additional assistance contact ArcStone today or follow SEO blogs like Moz to keep up with the constant changes in this realm.