Believe it or not, there is actually a field of study called “Keyword Research.” Keyword research is a method used in search engine optimization (SEO) to determine which actual search terms people enter into search engines. Professionals in SEO use this information to attain improved rankings in search engines. There are several keyword suggestion tools that aid the process, including Google’s “Adwords Keyword Planner”, the “Bing Adword Planner” and numerous SEO strategy consultants who offer thesaurus and alternative keyword research suggestions. These companies can do in-depth research and analysis that relate specific keyword usage to a country or region, even down to a given zip code.
If you are a typical business person engaged in local trades and services, a professional practice, a ministry or non-profit organization, the choice and positioning of keywords and phrases is critical to your webpage search ranking. This is good news for small business, local non-profits and professional practices. By choosing a search engine optimization company that has the time and resources needed to research keywords and phrases, these local small businesses, professional and non-profit organizations can actually outrank national giants in local results.
This is a critical point for small business and SEO. If you are a local plumbing contractor, a small business operating in a given area, you do not have to outrank Kohler or Home Depot in national rankings. You are only interested in getting to the top of the rankings for “plumbers” or “plumbing contractors” in your zip code and surrounding areas. By matching keywords to the other data available to search engines (such as the user’s location, past search history and cookie library), an SEO strategy professional can vastly improve a webpage ranking.
Sometimes this is not very obvious. In the broad search engine topic of “plumbing”, how often are the words “faucet” or “drain” or “leak” used? The tools mentioned above can give you an evidence-based answer. Let’s take a specific example. Consider a person living in the Daytona Beach, Florida, area who is looking for an assisted living facility for themselves or a loved one. The search engine they are using knows their location and has a cookie file with their past search history. Using the two terms, “assisted living” and “retirement homes” turns up very different search results.
Using the keyword search, “assisted living” turns up:
The keyword phrase, “retirement home” yields:
These are completely different results generated by keyword search terms that could be easily confused by a typical consumer. The same browser and search engines were used. That is why it is critically important to have data specific to the keyword and keyword phrases unique to your particular product, service and location. If a small business owner or non-profit administrator has the time and the skills needed, he or she can search publicly available sources from Google, Bing and others. More specific data can be obtained by subscribing to SEO software from proprietary sources.
Knowing the best keywords for a specific situation is only part of the solution. The placement of those keywords inside the website is also important. Good SEO technique places keywords and phrases in strategic places like page titles and the ‘metadata,’ a part of the website that is unseen by typical viewers but is very important to search engines.
For most small business people, professionals like attorneys or realtors, or non-profit administrators, this is a task better left to SEO professionals. At Axiom Administrative Services, our staff is proficient in traditional skills like graphic design and webpage technology, but also in the professional SEO services, like keyword selection and effective local SEO optimization.
If you are serious about your website, about finding good digital marketing solutions for your small business, non-profit or professional practice, you probably need the professional SEO services of an organization like AXIOM. AXIOM understands the needs of small businesses, professional practices and non-profits. Please visit AXIOM’s small business services page by clicking this LINK or call Axiom at 800-888-6348.