Keyword Research is the Foundation of Internet Marketing
I felt that because I had done a lot of research on my real estate blog, I didn’t need to do it on this one. I knew I wanted a key phrase like “salt lake city seo” to test my skills and my success with that term certainly makes a great point in my sales presentation.
When I targeted that term I knew “utah seo” would be the one that would drive more traffic, but I knew it would be harder to get. What I didn’t know was “salt lake city seo” is searched less than 30 times a month on all the major search engines combined.
Had I invested a little time at the beginning, that mistake wouldn’t have happened. Fortunately my success with that key phrase displays my SEO skills and I’ve been able to use those results constructively.
When I started doing some keyword research last week for some new clients who are geographically targeting traffic, I discovered only a few industries in Salt Lake are searched for with a location included. The are dentists, lawyers, HVAC contractors, plumbers, general contractors and real estate agents.
Every other industry in Salt Lake is searched for less than 30 times a month according to the numbers. I believe the reason is pay-per-click advertising is so well filtered for delivering geographic results, web searchers tend not to include a geographic location. Someone is more inclined to search for “SEO consultant” than “Utah SEO consultant” because the PPC result will include the information they want.
This is further evidence multi-pronged Internet marketing is necessary. The medium I’m most interested in is Twitter since it’s so easy to tag and search keywords there. There is also evidence PPC can be effective for driving traffic as well.
The bottom line is, you can’t ignore the keyword research no matter how well you think you know an industry. For my clients the first task is keyword research. I don’t write titles, metatags, copy or press releases until I know which words to use. Unfortunately in the SEO industry, this important step is often ignored or glossed over.
Keyword research is glossed over because it’s boring and tedious. Nobody likes to do it. Why research keywords when you can be doing exciting things like recording podcasts or videos and tweeting? Because those podcasts and videos have descriptions that require keywords to be found! Tweets are searchable. Why not use the keywords that are being searched? You can’t if you don’t know.
If you’re thinking of hiring an SEO company, ask them what the first step is. If it isn’t keyword research, you’re going to be wasting a lot of money.