Posts Tagged ‘keywords’
Thursday, March 28th, 2013
More and more, search marketers are seeing “(not provided)” in their Google analytics associated with keywords they are tracking. This is frustrating for most of us, but it doesn’t have to be the end of your keyword tracking. There are other ways to mine the data that is important to you.
One way you can measure traffic by keyword – though admittedly it isn’t perfect – is to track the traffic for your landing pages instead.
Measuring Landing Page Traffic
If you’ve done a good job of optimizing your website’s landing pages, then each page should be optimized for one or two keywords. But no more than that. So how can you use those landing pages to measure traffic for your keywords?
Let’s say you have four landing pages optimized around five different keywords, like this:
- Landing page 1 is optimized for keywords A and B
- Landing page 2 is optimized for keyword C
- Landing page 3 is optimized for keywords D and E
- Landing page 4 is optimized for keywords C and E
Your task is to find out how much traffic you are getting for each of your keywords based on the traffic you are getting for the landing pages. So how do you do that?
Let’s say each of the landing pages received this much traffic last month: Landing page 1 = 1,000 visitors; landing page 2 = 1,500 visitors; landing page 3 = 500 visitors; landing page 4 = 2,500 visitors.
One way to break down your visitor count per keyword is to split the traffic count evenly for each keyword associated with a single landing page. So, on landing page 4, each keyword would receive half the traffic count – 1,250 visitors. You could then ascertain that keyword C received approximately 2,750 visits last month (1,500 + 1,250).
That’s probably not very accurate, but it could be close. The problem is, the more traffic you receive for each landing page, the less accurate this measurement is going to be.
Historical Keyword Traffic Measurements
Another way is to go back through your history. If you have access to historical records, then you could take a look at the last known traffic numbers for each keyword you are tracking. If you know, for instance, that keyword A had 800 visitors at last count and keyword B had 400 at last count, then the ratio is 2:1 in favor of keyword A. You could assume the same ratio holds and you could split the traffic numbers for landing page 1 accordingly.
Again, this likely isn’t an accurate measurement, but it can give you some idea as to how much traffic you could be getting for each of your keywords. It sure beats flying in the dark.
Monday, February 11th, 2013
It’s not easy maintaining SEO rankings when you redesign a website. There are a lot of considerations you should think about before you go through with the redesign. One of those is search engine optimization.
What are the dangers?
First, you could lose search engine rankings if you significantly change your content. Secondly, you could lose traffic. And thirdly, you could decrease conversions. If these metrics are high for your website, you should think about your redesign long and hard before implementing it. You don’t want to lose the effectiveness of those key metrics.
However, you do want your website to look like it meets the design standards of 2013, not 2005. So updating the design of your website is a good idea while you guard against the dangers.
Before you get too invested in your website redesign, do these three things and design your website with these tips in mind:
- Make a list of keywords – This should include current keywords you rank for and any new relevant keywords getting searched for a lot that you are not currently targeting or ranking for. On your spreadsheet, note which pages of your website currently rank for your relevant keywords.
- Rank your pages according to conversion rates – Which pages convert better and for which keywords are they converting? This is very important. You don’t want to make significant changes to pages that convert well for the right keywords. You’ll have to decide if you want to create new pages to seize upon new opportunities or revamp your content on certain pages to convert better for the targeted keywords.
- Traffic rates for content – You probably don’t want to rewrite every page on your website during your redesign. What you do want to do is find those pages that aren’t getting a lot of traffic and rewrite those. Identify your low traffic, low converting pages and rewrite the content. Also, if you have pages that include duplicate content, then rewrite those pages.
When you redesign your website, pay careful attention to SEO issues. You don’t want to ruin any good search engine rankings you have.
Wednesday, December 19th, 2012
Not all domain names are equal. When you decide to purchase a new domain name for your business you’ll have to decide on a few things. You really have only three options:
- Exact match domain name
- Partial match domain name
- Branded domain name
The “exact match” and “partial match” are a reference to keywords in the domain name. Are they necessary?
You do have one other option for your domain name. You can do none of the above, but that’s not really an option. If you don’t include a keyword in your domain and you aren’t branding yourself, then you don’t have a strategy. You can of course do both.
There are people who debate whether keywords in your domain name are really necessary or not. I believe they can’t hurt – unless your content is low quality or no quality content. If your content is high quality content, on the other hand, your domain name can benefit from either exact match or partial match. Or you can simply opt to go the branding route as Google, Yahoo! and Bing did.
And Small Business Mavericks.
I wouldn’t put undue importance on keywords in your domain name, but if you can make it work for your business and still produce high quality content for your website that is helpful to your site visitors, then that’s the main thing. Otherwise, stick to effective branding.
Thursday, November 29th, 2012
Are you struggling with writing content that flows naturally and doesn’t sound stilted or artificial? If so, then Matt Cutts and I have the solution for you. Synonyms.
You’ve done your keyword research and you’ve discovered that there are some great keywords you can use for your content that are high volume keywords, they’re searchable, and they convert well. Are you stuck with those? Do you have to stick with those keywords, or can you use something else as well?
The good news is, you are not relegated to using the same keywords over and over again. In fact, you can expand your ranking possibilities by using synonyms. Synonyms will also make your writing more natural.
The key to using synonyms is to not go overboard. You don’t want to replace every instance of a keyword phrase with its synonym, but if you make the synonym exchange in moderation, then it will improve the flow of your content, making it more natural and less artificial. You could also increase your conversions. Plus, you’ll rank better for all the keywords you are targeting – primary keyword phrase and synonyms.
Another danger to using synonyms is using too many. In other words, if you have a phrase that can be replaced by 6, 8 or 10 other phrases, then you don’t want to use all of the synonyms on one page. Your best bet is to use 2 or 3 and that’s it. I’d go with the 2 or 3 that are most searched for.
Bottom line: Don’t stick to your primary keyword just because you think it’s the most profitable. Use synonyms and see how your content is improved.
Thursday, September 27th, 2012
Keyword research does not always have to consist of searching for the most searched for keywords related to your niche. Sometimes you just want to write a blog post about a topic that will benefit your readers and you want a keyword that isn’t necessarily popular but will allow you to write about a topic that you may not normally address on your blog. Looking for alternative keywords might be well worth your time.
Soovle is a great tool for helping you do that.
Soovle is a real simple tool. When you arrive on the website you’ll see a search box in the center of the page surrounded by the names of seven search engines. Enter a search term into the search box and related terms will appear under each of the names of the seven search engines. Click on one of those search terms and you’ll be redirected to the page at that search engine that discusses that search term.
For instance, let’s say you enter “internet marketing.” Click on “internet marketing jobs” under Google and you’ll go to the search results page for that search term. Click on “internet marketing secret” under YouTube and you’ll be catapulted to the search results page at YouTube for that search term.
Soovle has other useful tools as well. You can rearrange the search engines on the page or even choose 11 or 15 search engines for culling more results from more places.
Click on “Top” in the top left corner of Soovle and you’ll be taken to a page of the top search terms. It’s quite a list too, arranged by alphabetical order. Search on any search term and it will appear in the search box at the top of the page. Then click on one of the search engine icons next to the search box and you’ll go directly to the search results page for that search engine.
Soovle is a useful tool if you want to find alternative keywords you can target in your blog posts. Try it. I’m sure you’ll like it.
Tuesday, September 11th, 2012
Is it necessary that your domain name be an exact match for your primary keyword? Many SEOs still believe that it does, and many of them teach their clients that it does. However, many websites have been successful without exact match domain names. Here are a few:
- Small Business Mavericks
And of course there are plenty more!
Small Business Mavericks is not exactly a perfect example, however. I would consider it a partial match domain name since we do cater to small businesses, however, we provide online marketing services for small businesses. That makes the domain name a partial match, not an exact match per se.
Nevertheless, the principles of exact match with regard to your domain name hold for us as well.
SEOmoz conducted a study on exact match domain names and found that they are in decline in the search engines. But, they were careful to point out that this is not due to the search engines targeting exact match domains in any way. It could just be collateral damage resulting from other algorithmic changes.
There are times when securing an exact match domain could benefit you, but if you do it strictly for SEO reasons, then I’d say it’s probably not going to help you. If it does, it won’t be by a large stretch. And if you engage in on-page SEO spam, then it likely will hurt you.
A good time to select an exact match domain name is when your primary keyword is in your business name and you want the domain name for branding purposes. Remember, you are building an online business so you should think long term. Don’t get shortsighted about SEO tactics and forget that you are building a brand.
Friday, August 31st, 2012
SEO gurus can sometimes shroud the work of search engine optimization in mystery. It’s usually done to make people believe it’s difficult work so they can sell more services. The truth is, it’s really not that difficult. Here’s an article that sums it up nicely in a cute little nutshell.
The sad thing about the article is that natural writing on the Web is really nothing new. This is the way the search engines have operated for a long time. But it’s more important now than ever.
Real SEO writing is about ensuring that your content passes the quality test. If it does, then you have huge potential to rank for the keywords that you want to rank for. If you over-optimize your content, you can do more damage than if you don’t optimize at all. And there’s the catch.
I can distill all SEO copywriting advice down into three little bullet points:
- Write well
- Write clearly
- Write naturally
The only real keyword usage you have to do is that which comes naturally to the content you are writing. You don’t have to count keyword densities or ensure your keywords end up in some magical place on your web page. You just have to write great content that is worth reading. Oh, and pepper it lightly with a couple of keywords or three.
Friday, August 24th, 2012
Keyword research is one of the most misunderstood parts of the SEO process. Many new online marketers get the impression that it’s a one-time event. You do your keyword research and there’s your list, never to be thought of again. Nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact, what you should do is revisit your keyword list periodically. Not every day, but at least once every six months. If you are marketing in an industry that sees a lot of flux and change, then you should revisit your keyword list more often.
The purpose of keyword research is see what people are searching for within a specific niche. That doesn’t mean you want to chase the most searched for keywords. If a popular keyword phrase doesn’t suit your business, then discard it. But remember that search queries change over time. What people searched for last year to find information on a certain topic might not be the same thing they search for next year. The best online marketers keep an eye on current search trends.
As far as search trends go, you should take a look at them once a month at a minimum. Measure the trends on the popular search engines as well as the popular social media sites. If something catches your eye as a trending topic in your niche, write a blog post about it. Ride the wave.