Keyword selection can mean the difference between having your website dominate the search results and having it get buried pages deep. This is a process that you should not take lightly, as half-baked keyword research won’t deliver the results you need to grow your business and convert traffic into sales.
You don’t have to buy the fanciest, most expensive keyword selection tools, either. You can perform the bulk of your research for free using the Google AdWords Keyword Tool. Since most advertisers want to rank their websites in the Google search engine, it makes sense to use Google’s own keyword tool to give you an idea of what you’re up against competition-wise.
Beginning Your Keyword Selection
So where do you begin? Start by selecting your niche, if you don’t already have your own website. If you’re simply researching which niche you should begin to market, this tool is a great place to start. Type in some search ideas that you might look for yourself if you were a customer wishing to buy a product in your desired niche.
The keyword tool will populate keyword results within a matter of seconds. These results, by default, will show you how much advertiser competition exists and how many times that keyword phrase is searched for.
At first, it’s hard to tell what you should do with these numbers. But let’s break it down to make your keyword selection a little easier.
Keyword Selection and Advertiser Competition
The green bar on the right side of the keyword selection phrase indicates how much or how little competition exists already. If the green bar is full, or nearly filled, it means there are already a lot of ads running for that keyword. Unless you have a huge website, like Amazon or Best Buy, you likely won’t rank for those keywords.
If the green bar is half full or less, you might do a little more keyword selection research into that keyword phrase, as this presents an opportunity that isn’t quite so competitive. But before you go further, look at the number of searches that keyword phrase receives.
Some keywords receive very little search volume, as you’ll notice in your keyword selection process. If you see a phrase with only 76 searches, you probably won’t get too much traffic. However, if you see a phrase with 22,000 searches, you might have struck gold.
Further your keyword selection process by going to Google.com and typing the keyword phrase into the search bar inside quotes. This will delineate search results by the exact phrase. Look at the top of the page to see how many results Google pulled up. If you see results in the millions, chances are there is still too much competition.
But your keyword selection process is just about finished if you see search results that add up to less than 100,000. If you pick a phrase with a lot of searches but little existing search results, you can easily compete – and dominate – for that keyword phrase.
You can see how this might get dull after a while. After all, you’ll have to perform this process with each keyword phrase during keyword selection. But the payoff will be well worth it when you realize that you’ll pay less for bids and compete against very few advertisers. Prudent keyword selection will help you dominate the search results in the end.