We all know it and we all do it. Whenever typical web user needs to find something on web, he or she will almost always instinctively go to one of top search engines and run a search. Then, he or she will have a look at first 30 search results returned (usually first three pages of results), hardly ever looking beyond that. If nothing looks appealing, they will run another search using a variation of keywords they used on first search. Again, they will look at first 30 results. If they still find nothing of interest, they may switch to a different search engine and repeat process. This, believe it or not, is typical web navigation behavior of at least 86% of 110 million all web users out there. The question is, does your web site capitalize on this behavior?
If answer is yes for you, then no matter what a user searches for that has any relation at all to your products, they should find you even if they hadn't thought of finding you! That translates to a very high amount of daily traffic to your site. Is this what is happening for you?
I bet answer is no. Very few web sites really capitalize on this behavior. However, you can learn how to do so. For this tutorial, we shall assume that you are in business of selling wedding gowns. You have a web site that does a good job of displaying your wedding gowns, but like most other web site owners, your web traffic is really low and clients are simply not finding you. You have done everything you can think of, but your pages hardly come up on search engines. What next? Well, get ready to learn one of most effective online marketing strategies.
We know that web user will think of a keyword or phrase and type that into a search form on an engine. That is his or her first step, and so it should be ours. This is a very important step! Get a piece of paper or open up your text editor and keep writing all keywords and phrases that you think of as you go through steps outlined below. Selecting right keywords or keyword phrases will skyrocket your traffic. Research has shown that most people use phrases of 2 to 3 keywords when searching. People have come to learn that just typing in one keyword in a search will get them thousands of records that they just do not need. Therefore, they combine two or three keywords in their searches.
Your list should end up having about 50 or more keywords and phrases. You must write down every word that a person might use to look for your site PLUS words they may use to look for other related information or products. This is no easy task. It involves some research and a fair bit of thought. Remember, thousands of people out there looking for wedding gowns may not all think alike, look for wedding gowns directly, or even realize at time that they can get wedding gowns on net! To get a good list, here are steps that you should go through. Keep your pen and paper handy so that you keep writing as you go along each step.
1. Think! Brainstorm! Sit down for several minutes and think! Write down whatever keywords or phrases come to mind. Then look at your list and see what other word combinations you can make out from keywords you have already written down.
2. Look at your products and services and see what words relating to them will pop up in your mind. Write names of each product or service that you deal in. These product names will also be part of your keyword list.
3. Ask your family, associates, clients, and friends what words and phrases they would most likely use to search for products or services like yours.
4. See what keywords your competitors use. See what keywords are featured on their pages and in their meta tags.
5. Be specific AND general in scope. Think of words that also describe things related to what your site is about. For example, if you sell wedding gowns, also think about other things and words related to weddings, such as honeymoon, bridal registry, wedding rings, engagements, and other wedding accessories and services. The idea here is to capture people who may be looking for other things related to weddings, whether they are directly looking for wedding gowns or not at time. Chances are that someone looking for any wedding related information will also be interested in knowing about wedding gowns. Get idea? This is a very powerful way of getting more targeted traffic to your site.
6. Do not forget misspelled words. People often misspell words when they enter their search terms. Include commonly misspelled words or phrases as part of your list.
7. If your site deals with a particular region, remember to include that in your keyword list. E.g. 'Los Angeles wedding gowns' if you deal in wedding gowns within Los Angeles. A lot of people will search for wedding gowns, get a big list of returned search results, and decide to add words "Los Angeles" (or wherever else they may be interested in) to get more specific search results.
8. Use long and short form of words, e.g. consult, consulting, and consultants.
9. DO NOT SPAM! Do not use keywords that have nothing to do with your web site. Do not list keyword "sex" or "free pics" just because they are frequently searched for if they do not have anything to do with your web site. You will only get traffic that is of no use to you anyway because surfers will come to your site and leave angrily when they realize you just cheated them. Also, search engines are on look out for such deceitful practices and can sometimes ban your pages for spamming. As long as you stick with keywords related to your core business, you will be fine, but do not go way out of line.
10. Now its time for some research. You now need to look at what people are actually searching for on various engines and get more phrases for your list. Here is a list of sites that will help you out with that. When doing your research at these sites, remember steps number 5, 6, and 8 above - people often misspell words, they use different word forms, and they may be looking for a whole lot of different stuff all related to your products.
(a) GoTo.com Keywords Inventory Search (http://inventory.go2.com/inventory/searchInventory.mp) - search for your keywords here and see how popular they were on GoTo.com. The service will also tell you what other related keywords and phrases were searched for. This is perfect for finding related keywords that you may not have thought of. For example, a search here for wedding gowns returns following information:
Suggestions for: wedding gown Searches done in March 1999 Count Search Term 2590 wedding gown 53 wedding gown designer 43 discount wedding gown 33 wedding gown rental 33 designer wedding gown 29 plus size wedding gown 27 low priced wedding gown 24 lazaro wedding gown 21 informal wedding gown 21 wedding gown pattern 17 vintage wedding gown 14 custom wedding gown 13 used wedding gown 13 wholesale wedding gown 13 victorian wedding gown 12 vera wang wedding gown 11 wedding gown online 11 demetrios wedding gown 10 amsale wedding gown 10 alfred angelo wedding gown 10 paloma blanca wedding gown 10 mon cheri wedding gown 10 los angeles wedding gown 9 wedding gown and supplies 9 wedding gown ivory 9 sweetheart wedding gown 9 galina wedding gown 9 eve of milady wedding gown 8 african wedding gown 8 western wedding gown 8 wedding gown at discount price 8 mori lee wedding gown 7 wedding gown restoration 7 full figured wedding gown 7 diamond collection wedding gown 7 christos wedding gown 7 casablanca wedding gown 6 emanuelle wedding gown 6 badgley mischka wedding gown 6 wedding gown in metro detroit michigan 6 wedding gown dress 6 venus wedding gown 6 prviate label by g wedding gown 6 wedding gown catalog 6 wedding gown bargins 6 wedding gown outlet 6 used wedding gown for sale 6 princess wedding gown 6 moonlight wedding gown 6 medieval wedding gown 6 romantic and sexy bridal or wedding gown 6 lazarus wedding gown 6 jasmine wedding gown 5 guzzo wedding gown 5 mature bride wedding gown 5 jessica mcclintock wedding gown 5 how to make wedding gown 5 wedding gown in rome 5 wedding gown consignment 5 wedding gown texas 5 wedding gown for second marriage 5 wedding gown discount 5 wedding gown and veil 5 wedding gown maine 5 renaissance wedding gown 5 used wedding gown in southern california 5 wedding gown wholesale canada 5 wedding gown prom 5 wedding gown preservation 5 california wedding gown 5 bride wedding gown 5 discount wedding gown and supplies 5 dimetrios wedding gown 4 bargain wedding gown 4 carolina herrera+wedding gown 4 carmela sutera wedding gown 4 bianchi wedding gown 4 consignment wedding gown 4 cinderella wedding gown 4 dicounted wedding gown 4 amy lee wedding gown 4 jacquelin wedding gown 4 picture of wedding gown 4 michaelangelo wedding gown 4 hawaiian wedding gown 4 wedding gown in paris 4 wedding gown by galina 4 wedding gown search 4 uk wedding gown 4 used wedding gown for sale tampa 4 wedding gown used 4 wedding gown marys 4 wedding gown in emma style 4 short wedding gown 4 wedding gown preservation in edinburgh scotland 4 wedding gown pics 4 wedding gown history 4 wedding gown with bow 4 wedding gown under $300 4 wedding gown by alfred sung