If you’re new to blogging and learning about keyword research, but not sure how to apply it, don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! In this article, I’ll give you a keyword research checklist to help you maximize the benefits of keyword research for your website.
I know, I know, it’s not the most exciting topic out there, but trust me, it’s crucial for anyone who wants to dominate the search engine game.
So, let’s dive into the topic of keyword research and uncover the power of targeted keywords for your blog!
Table of Contents
Why is Keyword Research necessary?
Can’t you just write blog articles on any topic you want? Well… technically, you can, but don’t expect to get any traffic. The key to attracting visitors lies in understanding what people search for on search engines.
These searches are made using specific words or phrases known as keywords. Basically, keywords are what people type into the Google search prompt.
If your content is relevant to those queries, your page will be displayed in the search results. And here’s the catch – the more relevant your content is, the higher it will rank.
It’s that simple. However, the problem arises because every other website in your niche is also trying to rank for those same keywords.
This is precisely why you need keyword research. It helps you achieve the following goals:
- Find relevant keywords for your niche and target audience.
- Identify keywords with low competition.
- Discover keywords with high search volume.
- Uncover keywords that are not difficult to rank for.
- Locate keywords with no paid ads.
Admittedly, this can be a challenging task, especially if your niche is highly competitive.
But don’t worry! In the next sections, we will delve into the process of finding the best keywords to target for your specific audience. And yes, we will discuss the target audience too, so stay tuned!
Define Your Goals
Before you dive into identifying keywords to target, take a step back and define your business goals.
Ask yourself: What are you trying to achieve? Spending some time clarifying your goals will make the process of finding the right keywords much easier.
Your business goals could be diverse and can include:
- Increasing website traffic
- Improving search engine rankings
- Generating leads
- Making more sales
- Staying ahead of competitors
- Optimizing content for your target audience
- Increasing brand awareness
- Improving customer retention
- Building a community
- Increasing trust and credibility of your products and services
The list goes on… As you can see, you can have many different business goals. By clarifying your main objectives, you’ll find it easier to target the right keywords for your specific target audience.
And speaking of the target audience, let’s explore that aspect in the next sections…
Identify Your Target Audience
Why is it essential to write content specifically for your target audience? Because your target audience is more likely to purchase your products and services.
To maximize your ROI (Return on Investment) you should focus your content on your identified target audience.
By writing content focused on your target audience, you’ll gain the following benefits:
- Attract the right readers (the people most likely to buy from you).
- Increased engagement (they will read, share, and like more of your content).
- Builds trust (boosts customer retention).
- Generates leads (more likely to sign up for a newsletter, provide contact info, etc.).
To help you identify your target audience, consider asking these questions:
- What interests and hobbies do they have?
- Who are your competitors targeting (learn more here: Dominate Your Niche with Comprehensive Competitive Content Analysis)
- How can you add value to their lives?
- What challenges do they face?
- What frustrates or stresses them out?
- What is their age range?
Gathering information about your target audience will help you target the correct keywords and craft content that resonates with them. Understanding your audience is the key to unlocking the true potential of your content strategy!
What is a buyer persona? Understanding Your Ideal Customer.
A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer. This is a good way to segment your target audience.
To construct a buyer persona, you can gather information about your existing customers and conduct additional research to improve your understanding.
Typically a buyer persona will include the following information:
- Job title
- Education level
- Pain points
- Interests and hobbies
By creating one or more buyer personas, you gain a better understanding of your target audience, and this knowledge empowers you to effectively target them in your keyword research. Understanding your customers on a deeper level is the key to crafting content that resonates and drives success!
Wondering how to find suitable keywords? Spend some time brainstorming keywords that align with your niche and target audience.
Keep in mind that not every keyword will be suitable for your blog. Some may be challenging to rank for, have low search volume, or face stiff competition from paid ads.
To identify the right keywords for your content, you’ll need to use a keyword research tool.
Keyword research tools collect and store vast amounts of keyword data by crawling and analyzing websites. Simply input a keyword phrase into the tool, and you’ll receive a comprehensive report with detailed information about that keyword.
The report will not only feature the specific keyword you entered but also list similar and related keywords. This valuable insight will help you make informed decisions on which keywords to target.
To get an idea of what a keyword research report looks like, you can use the widget below. Type a keyword phrase into the widget, e.g. “keto diet”:
If your blog or website is new or has little traffic, it’s wise to focus on low competition keywords. These keywords will be the easiest to rank for in search engine results. As your website traffic grows over time, you can gradually shift your focus to target harder keywords.
It can be quite frustrating to target keywords that are too difficult to rank for and end up with no website visitors. To avoid this, ensure you begin by targeting easy-to-rank keywords when starting with a new website.
Remember, even for new websites, you can generate website traffic. The key lies in selecting the right keywords that match your niche and audience’s search behavior. So, take a gradual and strategic approach in targeting keywords, and watch your website flourish with increasing visitors and engagement.
Target low competition keywords – you will find it easier to rank for them
Analyze Keyword Metrics
You can’t improve what you don’t measure.
To assess whether your keywords are working effectively, you must track your ranking position for each keyword. Use a reliable rank tracking tool like SE Ranking.
Using this tool, you’ll receive detailed reports on your Google ranking positions for each tracked keyword. Additionally, you have the flexibility to choose multiple countries to obtain rankings from (the available options depend on your chosen pricing plan, determining how many keywords and countries you can track).
By using a rank tracking tool, you’ll stay informed about your keyword performance and obtain valuable insights that help refine your SEO strategy.
In addition to tracking your keyword positions, these tools typically conduct a thorough audit of your website for potential SEO issues. It’s essential to avoid low rankings due to easily fixable SEO problems that you may not be aware of.
I highly recommend supplementing your keyword research tool with Google Search Console. This free tool from Google provides a comprehensive list of all keywords your website is ranking for, including keywords you might not have intentionally targeted. By leveraging this data, you can consider tracking these additional keywords or optimize your content to capitalize on unexpected opportunities.
Furthermore, Google Search Console also alerts you to any mobile usability issues that require attention. Addressing these issues promptly will contribute to a better user experience and potentially boost your website’s rankings.
Google search console will also warn you about security issues on your site.
You can provide a link to your article to Google Search Console for quicker indexing
After brainstorming keywords, you are likely to have a large list of potential keywords for your content.
It’s important to prioritize your keywords to get the maximize return on your time and effort.
Ideally, focus on keywords that offer a combination of high search volume and low difficulty. These are the keywords that can yield the best results and attract a significant number of potential readers or customers.
Depending on your niche and target audience you may find some of these highly valuable keywords. If you can’t find any high volume/low difficulty keywords then think carefully about the priority of your keywords.
Ranking in Google and other search engines only benefits you if you get a high ranking (first page on Google). Lower rankings don’t help because no-one goes to the second page on Google (a very small number of searchers do but not enough to help you).
Getting on the first page of Google is your priority.
So prioritize low difficulty keywords, then search volume. Don’t forget you can target multiple keywords per article. The potential search traffic you get for an article is the combination of all keywords in your article multiplied by the monthly search volumes.
Try to include related keywords in your content in addition to your main keyword for each article. By tailoring content to search queries you know you are targeting issues and problems your readers have.
Avoid keywords that have high difficulty scores
Keyword Research Checklist
Now, it’s time to provide the advice in this article as a simple checklist you can refer to when doing keyword research for your articles.
Define your Goals
What are your business goals?
It could be one or more of the following:
- increase website traffic
- improve search engine rankings
- make more sales
- stay ahead of competitors
- optimize content for your target audience
Identify your target audience
Who are you writing for?
What frustrations and pain points do they have?
How can you add value to their lives?
What challenges do they face?
Use a keyword research tool to find suitable keywords for your niche and target audience.
Filter possible keywords by:
- monthly search volume
Don’t try to rank for keyword that are too difficult or have too much competition.
Analyze Keyword Metrics
Track your ranking position for all your keywords.
Track your impressions using Google Search Console.
Track security and mobile usability issues with Google Search Console.
Track SEO issues with your SEO/Keyword Research tool.
Look for high search volume / low difficulty keywords.
Prefer low difficulty over search volume.
Don’t limit yourself to one keyword, add related keywords to the same article.
Invest in a Powerful Keyword Research Tool
To take your keyword research to the next level, investing in a reliable keyword research tool is essential. If you haven’t made a decision yet, I highly recommend SE Ranking; it’s the tool I use for this website.
SE Ranking offers a number of benefits, including:
- Great tool for keyword research: Provides essential insights like search volume, difficulty, competition, and more.
- SEO audit tool: Conducts comprehensive website audits, highlighting SEO issues, and offering recommended fixes.
- Backlink checker: Uncover the sources of your valuable backlinks.
- Competition research: Gain a competitive edge by researching your competitors.
- Affordable: SE Ranking is cost-effective, tailored to fit various budgets.
- 14-day free trial: Test-drive its features with a generous free trial period.
Check out SE Ranking below and unlock the full potential of your website’s SEO performance!
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