It’s very important that you take some time to find the best keywords for your website. The time and efforts that you invest in finding the right keywords will pay back in no time.
When web surfers want to purchase something online, they go through three research phases. Searchers usually start with general keywords.
1. Keywords for browsing
A web surfer might be interested in an MP3 player. The keyword that the web surfer might use in search engines could be:
- mp3 player
People who use keywords for browsing are usually looking for information only. Keywords for browsing usually have a very high search volume. Getting a top 10 ranking for these general keywords is very difficult and nearly impossible.
It is unlikely that a web surfer who uses such a generic keyword will buy something.
2. Keywords for comparing
In the second research phase, web surfers narrow their selection because they now know what type of product they want. For example, the web surfer might have found out the he is interested in a USB stick MP3 player. The keywords of these web surfers are more specific:
- mp3 player 8 GB
- mp3 player USB stick
- mp player under $100
- sony mp3 player
- samsung mp3 player
People who use keywords for comparing are more ready to buy. Keywords for comparing often have much lower search volume than general keywords but they will lead to more sales, and it is much easier to get top 10 rankings for these keywords.
3. Keywords for buying
During the last research phase, web surfers know what they want to purchase. They are just looking for the website with the best offer. For that reason, these surfers use very specific keywords:
- sony walkman 16 GB
- samsung 8 GB
People who use keywords for buying are ready to buy. Unfortunately, these keywords won’t help you much if you offer competing products.
Single words cannot be promoted effectively. For example, it is not likely that someone looking for “free accounting software” is going to type just “software” into the search box.
One-word keywords are very competitive
Another disadvantage of one-word keywords is that they are very competitive. You will be competing with millions of other pages for a search engine’s attention. It is unrealistic to think that a new website could rank number one on a popular phrase like “mp3.” More established companies, who have been on the Internet for several years, will have the big advantage of a high link popularity.
Multiple-word keywords are more likely to convert
People who whose multiple word keywords on search engines are either in the ‘compare’ or the ‘buying’ phase. They are more likely to purchase goods or services than those using fewer words (source: Oneupweb Research).
Why multiple word keywords make your website more relevant
Search engines analyze all pages of your website and put them in context. Start with multiple word keywords and then extend your keyword list. If you’re selling MP3 files, you should optimize your web pages for keywords such as “independent bands mp3,” “alternative grunge mp3,” “80s pop music mp3 download” and similar keywords first.
If your website has many rankings for these keywords, search engines will find out that your website is relevant to the mp3 topic. As soon as search engines consider your website relevant to this topic, it will be much easier to get high rankings for keywords such as “mp3 download” or even “mp3.”
A keyword that has many searches per month isn’t necessarily a good keyword. It also depends on what the searcher is looking for. If you are booking hotel rooms in Miami Beach, then people who enter “book miami beach hotel room” in Google’s search box are exactly the people you’re looking for.
But that’s the best case. Depending on the intention of the surfer, the searches might be different:
This person might be interested in hotels in general, in hotel jobs, an old TV series, etc.
- “miami beach”
This person wants general information about the place.
- “miami beach hotel”
This person is looking for different offerings.
- “miami beach hotel prices”
This person is comparing prices.
- “book miami beach hotel room”
This person is ready to buy.
► The probability that a visitor that you get through the search term will convert on your website increases from search number 1 to search number 5. The more general a search term is, the more difficult it is to get a sale.