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As a business owner, we want to be seen, want more website visitors, and a whole lot more clients or customers. And it’s no secret that one of the best ways to accomplish this is by increasing your SEO ranking. Ranking on the first page of Google takes work, but using the right keywords can make that job a lot easier. These 8 SEO keyword tips will help you research, choose, and implement the right words to boost your visibility online.

women sitting on bed and writing on notebook with text overlay – how to master keywords for SEO

What are Keywords?

Keywords (Or keyphrase) are topics/ideas that describe or give an overview of what your content is about. As keywords relate to SEO, searchers use keywords to find related topics in search engines.

When you market your business online, you want to make sure your content is correctly optimized with the right keywords. By doing this, you will attract not just visitors, but the right paying clients/customers.

Researching and creating a list of keywords should be one of the most important steps in your SEO strategy. Keywords lay the foundation for all other SEO efforts, so it’s well worth the time to make sure your SEO keywords are highly effective or relevant.

Why Are Keywords Important?

When you use bad keywords or no keywords at all, your content will be extremely difficult to find through a search engine results page (SERP). It’s said that 95% of US internet users use search engines every single month, and these users make on average 37 searches per month (source).

Without using keywords, you’re limiting your content from being seen by these searchers.

[Keywords are obviously very important, but they are just one small part of SEO. Through years of implementing SEO for myself and clients, I decided to develop a Plan that takes the confusion out of SEO. It’s been crafted for business owners (Just like you!) who want to take their SEO strategy to new heights.]

Button with text overlay – free download: 7-step guide for seo success

Page Keywords vs. Post Keywords:

You need a variety of keywords for your business. A website’s pages should have similar keywords and be related to your business, describe your work, what you sell, etc. But for your blog posts, your keyword or phrase should relate to a post’s unique content.

These examples show the difference between page keywords and post keywords:

• Page Keywords: Jane Doe markets herself as a Nashville elopement photographer, so using the keyphrase “Nashville elopement photographer” throughout her pages would be extremely beneficial to her ranking and searchability.

• Post Keywords: Jane Doe wants to write a blog titled “A Fall Sunrise Wedding At Riverwood Mansion.” Because she wants to market herself to brides and grooms wanting to get married at Riverwood Mansion, using the keyphrase “Riverwood Mansion Wedding” would give her a better chance at ranking higher and being seen by the right audience.

Tips For Picking The Right Keywords:

Before you dig into selecting the right keywords, I would suggest you start using Excel or  Google Sheets for all your notes and research.

1. Understand long tail keyword.

Long tail keyword is another name for a keyword phrase, so it’s just a combination of multiple words. Therefore, it’s best to optimize your pages and posts with a long tail keyword. Long tail keywords have lower search volumes, but they attract more relevant traffic. Because they are less competitive, a long tail keyword gives you a better chance of ranking and allows you to target the right people.

For example:
• photographer
• elopement photographer
• Nashville elopement photographer
• light and airy Nashville elopement photographer

These keywords get more specific and less competitive. So if a searcher searches for “photographer,” you will be competing with nearly 10 billion other results. By but using a more specific, long tail keyword, results are less competitive, give you a better chance of ranking, and allow you to target the right people.

graph example of how long tail keywords work

2. Think like your target audience.

Just like anything else in marketing, you should think like your audience thinks. But this can be hard because we know our business so intimately. However, not everyone sees our business like we see it.

So it’s important to take time to be the customer. Ask yourself:
• Where would you start your search?
• What would you search for?
• Are there any adjectives or variations you can use?

If you’re having trouble being the customer or want to make sure you’re on the right track, ask others to describe your business or what you do through surveying your email list, polling on Instagram, etc. Because of their outsider’s perspective, they will tell you helpful info that can be turned into keywords.

3. Use Google Suggestions.

As a Google user, you may know that Google often suggests relevant solutions to your search based on what other people have asked. So when you research different keywords, write down how others are asking Google and any keywords or phrases that are frequently used.

screenshot example of Google's suggestion of what people ask.

4. Use Google Related Searches.

Next, at the bottom of each search page, Google shows related searches. This will give you further insight into what your customer is looking for. Again, write down any similarities or important keywords that you may want to use.

screenshot example of Google's related searches

5. Use Research Tools.

Although Google is a great resource for analyzing and researching keywords, there are other helpful tools out there too! Each of these resources can help you get ideas and give important keyword search data.

I have personally used these and would recommend them:
Ubersuggest (free): Finds long tail keywords, gives info about your competitors, etc.
Keywords Everywhere (free): Shows search volume, CPC, and competition data via Google searches.
SEMrush (Paid, but really powerful. Or plan in advance by using their 7-day trial.): Examines CPC, search volume, best SEO content, competitive research, etc.

When you use these tools, here are important things you should be looking for:

High Search Volume. High search volume usually means the greater the effort to achieve organic ranking success. But going too low means that you risk not drawing people to your site. It’s best to go after long-tail keywords, which are highly specific, lower competitive search terms, because viewers will be more intentional in their searches.

Low competition. Low competition is the ultimate goal, but we are rarely that lucky. Be mindful that just because there is low competition, doesn’t mean it’s a great keyword. Again, be aware of the search volume as it relates to the competition.

Cost Per Click (CPC). CPC refers to the price you pay for each click in a marketing campaign. Even if you never create a marketing campaign, knowing this information will show keyword value and indicate that visitors are actually converting to paying customers.

6. Analyze your own analytics.

By looking at your website’s analytics, you can understand your most popular content and terms that are/aren’t working. Pay attention to what your clients are liking and build on that!

7. Track your own competition.

Tracking your competition can give you further insight on keywords that are right for your niche. Pay attention to the keywords your competition uses throughout their pages and their highest ranking search keywords.

Both Ubersuggest and SEMrush can give you this insight about your competitors.

8. Analyze and implement your results.

Lastly, after you complete your keyword research, it’s time to analyze the data. Start by implementing 10-20 terms throughout your website’s pages and posts. But don’t stop there. Set aside time every month (or quarter) to research new keywords to build your list and remove ones that aren’t working.

Don’t stop your SEO strategy with keywords. If you’d like to take your SEO to new heights, take a look at these educational blog posts.

recommended SEO blog category button

To Recap, create a SEO strategy and make keyword research a priority for your SEO plan. With all of these tips in your back pocket, you no longer have to worry about being seen online. When you select the right SEO keywords, you help increase your ranking and boost your website visitors.

What questions do you have about keywords? I’m happy to help you!


How To Master Keywords For SEO

marketing, SEO

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I'm Abigail – designer, educator, encourager, and lover of grilled cheese sandwiches. Most days you can find me behind a computer serving creative women through refined, artful branding and website design. Pour a glass of your fav and grab your pretty notebook – here you'll find a wealth of valuable education intentionally crafted to serve you and your business. Cheers!

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Since 2016, Abigail Dyer Design Studio has been crafting refined, artful brands and websites in Alabama and Tennessee, but proudly serves creative women – photographers, florists, planners, coaches, bloggers, and more – all over the world.

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