First, what is keyword research and why do you need to do it?
Keyword research is uncovering the relevant keywords and keyword phrases that people are searching for, so that you can focus your website or blog or PPC (pay per click) campaigns on the right words. For example, if your website is built around the phrase “National Football League”, but everyone is searching for “NFL football”, you’ve missed an opportunity. I know you “gurus” will say it’s more complex than that, but were talking about the basics here.
So how do you do keyword research?
Creating large, targeted groups of keywords is a lot of work, but can be a lot of fun as well. In the next 3 posts, I’ll explain how I go about doing keyword research. It’ll make it easier to follow if I use a real world example. Let’s say you’re building out a list of NFL football keywords to promote Stubhub’s affiliate program with pay per click advertising on Google.
There are three steps to my process:
- Organizing Keyword Groups
- Creating Small Keyword Groups & Testing
- Expanding Keyword Groups
Step #1 – Organize Keyword Groups
This step is crucial, but can be done fairly quickly. If you get this first step wrong, you could have a huge mess on your hands. In a pay per click campaign, it’s going to be about return on investment, so it’s very important to create buckets of similar keywords. That way, you can track not only how a particular keyword is performing, but also a category of keywords.
Example: 10,000 NFL Keywords
Here are some of those keywords:
- NFL football tickets
- 49er football tickets
- Superbowl football tickets
- Preseason football tickets
- Cheap football tickets
What if you ran 10,000 NFL keywords on Google with no consideration for categories?
That would cause several problems:
- Turning on/off for times of year – you want to turn off all the preseason ticket keywords but where are they?
- Differing ads – if Vikings and 49er tickets are in the same ad group, how can you create specific ads?
- Differing bids based on competition and ROI – if you want to bid higher on certain word groups, where do you find them?
Here are some of the keyword categories you might create:
- Team Specific
These could end up being your campaigns in Google Adwords.
Now that I’m done with this step, I can go on to Step #2.
Any thoughts? Questions?