Selecting the right keywords for your website.  Print this Article

Before you can attempt to try to optimize your website for search engines, you need to find the right keywords to target for your site. It is absolutely critical that you not skip this step because the rest of your SEO efforts depend on it.

There are a number of very good free keyword research tools available to help you with this part of your SEO efforts. You can also quickly compare the popularity of up to 5 keywords at once using Google Trends.

Keyword Research is Not Just About Search Volume

The crux of keyword research and selecting the right keywords for your website is not based on search engine volume alone. Search volume must be weighed carefully against the competitiveness of your keywords - the number of sites already ranking for those terms. The balance between high volume and low competition is the ideal selection.

For example, a recent check in WordTracker's free keyword research tool for the term keywordsreturned an estimated daily search volume of 1,310 search queries per day, considered to be a strong volume. A search in Google for the term keywordsreturned 391,000,000 results, which is considered to be extremely competitive (prohibitively so, except for the largest and most authoritative sites). Someone with a smaller site would be better off selecting a lower volume keyword with less competition, rather than focus on an extremely competitive keyword or keyword phrase for which that site has virtually no hope of ranking well.

During the search for keywords, WordTracker's tool also returned the phrase search engine keywords. While the volume for search engine keywords was only estimated to be 21 searches per day, the number of sites returned in a Google search for search engine keywords was only 704,000, making the term much easier to target for high search engine rankings. Any site would be better off getting 5 visitors per day for the keywords search engine keywords than it would be getting no visitors for the term keyowrds.

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