SEO is a key factor in Google ranking success. What is the secret to a strong SEO strategy, you ask? Keyword research!
Keyword research is the foundation of your overall content strategy. This determines the topics and articles you choose, as well as your article titles and search rankings.
This is the problem: Many people, even professionals marketers, see keyword research simply as a process that lists key words and phrases and then dumps them into blog articles.
However, this is not enough. Laziness in keyword stuffing can have a negative effect on your search results.
When done correctly, keyword research is a multi-step process. It requires research and strategy. It’s well worth the return on investment.
The following sections will walk you through Marketing Insider Group’s proven keyword research process, with tips and templates that you can use.
- Buyer intent is the basis of good keyword research.
- A brief document can help you clarify your preferences, target audience, and keyword research goals.
- It is important to begin keyword research by researching your keywords and those of your competitors.
- Headlines determine whether people click through to your content in search engine result pages (SERPs).
- To maximize your ROI on keyword research, follow these best practices when writing blog articles.
- You can track your monthly SEO progress to help you capitalize on opportunities and resolve problems faster.
What is keyword research? Why is it important?
Keyword research should always be rooted in buyer intent.
What does this mean? What does this mean?
The buyer’s stage must also be considered. Consider whether they are ready to buy or just starting their exploratory search. These buyer groups will have different needs.
Image Source: Edwards Media Solutions
With this in mind, I’ll show you how I define keyword research.
Keyword research involves identifying keywords and phrases that your target customers are searching for in each stage of their buyer journey, as they search for solutions to their problems.
The key phrase is: Solutions to their problems. Buyers want to solve their problems and are not attached to any one solution. They look for brands that best meet their needs and address their pain points.
Blogs are read by people primarily to be entertained, learn new things, or keep up with the latest industry news. Simply put, people care only about what they are reading.
Image Source: HubSpot
You can demonstrate to customers that your brand is trustworthy and understands them by conducting thorough keyword research.
How to do keyword research that works
Marketing Insider Group follows a 5-step process to keyword research. It all starts with collecting important information about your brand’s content goals. Then, it continues by publishing monthly progress and continuing to document that information.
Let’s take a look at each step in more detail.
Make a short description
Each MIG client completes a client brief. (See a part of it below). This gives us an idea of the client’s preferred writing style, brand voice, tone, and content goals. It’s something we believe so much that we completed one for ourselves. It is updated frequently to reflect new goals, and keeps it fresh.
img alt=”A section of Marketing Insider Group’s client briefing document.” class=”aligncenter” height=”407″ loading=”lazy” src=”https://marketinginsidergroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/Briefing-Doc-Screenshot.jpg” width=”582″/>
Image Source: Marketing Insider Group
Whether you are working with an agency, or creating your own brief, the first step in your keyword research should be to define your brand’s purpose. This is an important step regardless of how familiar you are with your brand.
Here are some things to include in your brief.
- Writing preferences – Tone, word count, and other details your writers need to know
- Your target audiences – Whom are you writing to? This can be done by using your buyer personas.
- Competitors – Which brands are you competing with for customers or space on SERPs and other listings?
- Content themes and pillars: These are areas of focus for keywords and other topics.
- Examples – These are examples of keywords you want to rank for, articles that you love, and publishers that you have read.
After you have completed your brief, take some time to reflect on it. Consider how it can help with your keyword research and your overall content strategy.
Finding your target keywords is the second step of your keyword research. This step should be preceded by research on your current keyword rankings and those of competitors.
Check out your keyword rankings
Google Search Console is an excellent tool to get started if you don’t have it. This free service gives you tons information on keyword analytics. To find out which keywords are earning results for your site, visit Google Search Console > Search traffic > Search Analytics. This will give you a good starting point to keyword research.
Perform a competitive keyword gap analysis
The next step is to determine the rank of your competitors. You want to find out what your competitors rank for and which ones you don’t. This gap should be one of your content goals.
Important to remember that search results may differ from your direct competitors. To ensure that your competitor list is complete, you can do a Google “related” search. It’s simple: just search for related:yourwebsite.com.
Once you have a complete list of competitors, you can use a content gap analysis tool or competitor analysis tool and enter their domain to find their ranking keywords. This can be done with many tools. The Traffic Analytics tool by SEMRush is my favorite. You will need to subscribe, but you can still use it free.
Use a keyword generator to round out your list
You can also use SEMRush’s Keyword Magic tool to search for keywords that you are interested in ranking for. This will allow you to drill down to identify related keywords and long tail keywords. It will also help you understand the volume and difficulty of keywords and to filter other options to ensure you find the best keyword list for you business.
Here is a quick overview of the Keyword Magic Tool’s operation:
Develop creative, engaging headlines
Why are headlines important?
Your blog’s headlines are what will make or break your posts. These headlines are what appears on Google SERP pages and what people use to decide if they want to read your content. The truth is that 80% of internet users don’t read beyond your headline. It is essential to write headlines that catch a user’s eye and make them click.
Image Source: Niel Patel
Great headlines! They are rooted in your keyword research.
Let’s recap: You have already completed your brief, conducted research on your audience, and created your keyword list.
Next, create a list with 20-30 topics and content themes from your broad keyword list. Next, it’s time for you to start creating your headlines. MIG clients receive approximately 100 headlines per week (enough to publish two times per week for one-year).
100 headlines?! This might sound daunting. It is not easy and takes time. However, you’ll reap the benefits of building your headline list early.
You can use a pre-prepared list of headlines to:
- A holistic view of your content listing
- Make sure you are careful about the order of your title and what topic coverage you include
- Keep on top of your publishing schedule
- You can easily assign articles to writers and do it quickly and efficiently.
I suggest that you put all 100 titles in a content calendar. (At MIG, we use a simple Google Sheet template). This will allow you to track your keywords and due dates, as well as your headlines. It is possible to centralize all links to drafts as well as published articles in one place.
Here is the content calendar template that we use for clients. Headlines should be placed in the “Topic/Title” column.
img alt=”Marketing Insider Group’s content calendar template.” class=”aligncenter” height=”494″ loading=”lazy” src=”https://marketinginsidergroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/Content-Calendar-Template-MIG.png” width=”1236″/>
Image Source: Marketing Insider Group
Write headlines that stand out
The key question is: How do you write great headlines?
Although there is no single right answer, research has shown that there are some reliable tips you can use to make your headlines stand apart.
- Your headlines should be no more than 55 characters. This will ensure that your entire title appears in SERPs.
- Use numbers (i.e. Use numbers (i.e. “10 Tips to Better X” vs. “Tips for Better X”.
- To align with search queries, use question words (What? Why, How, Who, Where)
- Use compelling adjectives
- Your audience will benefit from your article if you communicate your value.
Create well-written articles
Rankings can’t be achieved by keyword research alone. Keyword research alone won’t get you to the top. You must use the keyword results to create well-written, SEO-optimized content that delivers value to users and catches the eye of search engine crawlers.
Our 20-Step Checklist for Writing the Perfect Blog Post will help you dive into writing amazing blog posts. Here are the highlights. These are:
People want to feel that they are reading blogs, not research papers. Your tone should be conversational. Avoid using unnecessary jargon and skim the extraneous parts of your writing. Simply put, get straight to the point.
This should be obvious, but I will say it anyway: Check your grammar. One mistake can turn off readers and cause them to abandon your brand.
SEO is key
These best practices include keyword usage, link building, meta data, text length, visual support content and strong calls for action.
Blogs work best when they are between 1000 and 2000 words long. When writing blog articles, ensure that your writers aim to maintain this length.
Your brand voice should be heard
Blog posts should reflect your brand’s voice. Your brand personality will make your blog posts more interesting and fun to read. You are building expertise in your field by including opinions. Do not be afraid to comment on current events that are relevant to your audience, or give an opinion on a topic.
Keep track of your progress each month
Track your progress. The beginning keyword research is not the end of your keyword strategy. You can continuously optimize your strategy by keeping track of your progress, which we do monthly for our clients and ourselves.
You will want to track the following KPIs:
- Keyword rankings (specifically rank changes over time)
- Search visibility is how often your domain appears in SERPs for keywords that rank high for you
- Organic traffic is the number of visitors that you get from search results
- Top Keywords – Keywords that rank highest
More to you
Are you ready to launch a keyword strategy that increases your content ROI?
This article covers the SEO Blog Writing Service. It also includes the complete keyword research strategy. After your keyword research is complete, our writers will provide you with optimized content that can be published every week for a year or more. ).
To learn more, or to schedule a consultation with me immediately, click here!
Marketing Insider Group published The Most Effective Guide to Keyword Research.
By: Michael Brenner
Title: The Most Effective Guide to Keyword Research
Sourced From: marketinginsidergroup.com/content-marketing/the-most-effective-guide-to-keyword-research/
Published Date: Mon, 23 May 2022 10:00:23 +0000