Mastering Keyword Research: A Non-Tech Guide for Small Business Owners
Hello there! I get asked a lot if I can help with SEO and I can to some extent but there are other people out there who really specialise in this - it's a whole discipline which I just don't know enough about myself to pretend to be an expert. This is a little intro for a small business looking to get a grip of their SEO themselves. Hopefully it will help push you in the right direction...
When it comes to improving your website's visibility and attracting the right audience, keyword research is the magic wand. But don't worry; you don't need to be a tech whiz to master it. In this blog post, we'll break down the art of keyword research in simple, actionable steps.
Put Yourself in Your Customer's Shoes
Before diving into keyword tools, start with good old-fashioned brainstorming. Imagine you're a potential customer looking for products or services like yours. What words or phrases would you type into a search engine? Make a list of these initial ideas.
Use Google's Autocomplete
Now, take your list and head over to Google. Start typing one of your keywords, and you'll notice that Google suggests completions. These suggestions are gold mines of keywords. Note them down, as they reflect what real people are searching for.
Explore Related Searches
Scroll down to the bottom of the search results page on Google, and you'll find a section called "Searches related to..." These are additional keywords you can consider. Add them to your list.
Leverage Keyword Research Tools
Now, let's bring some tech into the equation, but don't worry; it's straightforward. There are free and user-friendly keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner and Ubersuggest. Enter your initial list of keywords, and these tools will provide data on search volume and keyword suggestions.
Understand Search Intent
Keywords are not just about the words themselves but also about the intent behind them. Are people looking for information, products, or services? For instance, if you sell hiking gear, someone searching for "best hiking trails" has a different intent than someone searching for "buy hiking boots." Tailor your content to match the search intent.
Check Out the Competition
Look at what your competitors are doing. If they are ranking well for specific keywords, it's a good indicator that those keywords are relevant to your industry. Don't copy them, but use this information to refine your own strategy.
Long-Tail Keywords Matter
Long-tail keywords are specific, often longer phrases that are easier to rank for and tend to convert well. For example, "best hiking boots for beginners" is a long-tail keyword. Include a mix of short and long-tail keywords in your content.
Maintain a spreadsheet with your chosen keywords, search volume, and competition level. This will help you stay organized and track your progress.
Monitor and Adapt
SEO is not a one-and-done deal. Regularly review your keyword strategy and adapt to changes in your industry and the search landscape. As your business evolves, so should your keywords.
Create Valuable Content
Finally, remember that keywords are the means, not the end. Use them to create high-quality, informative, and engaging content. The goal is not just to attract visitors but to provide value that keeps them coming back.
In conclusion, keyword research is a powerful tool for small business owners, and you don't need to be a tech expert to use it effectively. By understanding your customers, leveraging free tools, and creating valuable content, you can enhance your website's SEO and connect with your target audience.
If you have any questions or need further guidance, feel free to drop me a line, I'd love to hear how you're managing your SEO.