Imagine you want to eat Greek tonight. Chances are high that you’ll type something in Google and end up finding a nice restaurant. This is what your potential customers are doing as well: searching on the internet. However, it’s not that simple: searches can be done in many different ways. Some people search with a few words, whilst others prefer full questions or even detailed phrases.
To do Search Engine Marketing (SEM) you need to figure out which searches are relevant for your business so that your business can show up in the search results. To make sure you’re not wasting any money and reach the right people you have to pick the right keywords.
How do I know which keywords to use for Search Engine Marketing?
Even if you hire someone to manage your SEM, you’re the one that knows your business best. Therefore, the best place to start what you already know about your business, your competitors and your customers. Think about what questions your customers ask you, what your competitors are doing online and what describes your business best.
Make a keyword list
It’s good to start with 3-5 small and specific keywords. For example, if you’re the owner of a Beeswax business, “wax” would be too broad. With a keyword that’s too broad, you’ll get a lot of competition from any wax related website.
To make it less broad, you can use short phrases as a keyword. So instead of using “wax”, it could be good to use “beeswax wraps” or “beeswax candles” (if that’s what you’re selling of course). Also, keep in mind that every single word has to be hardworking – no “if, “for”, “and” or “but”.
Where do I find ideas for a keyword list?
Once you have a few keywords on your list, it’s time to make it grow! There are a few things you can look at:
- Your own website – check your product pages, about page, the brand, and any other relevant content on your website. This can all become a keyword!
- Your customers – it’s important to start thinking like your customers. Do you have a search box on your website? Perfect! Then you can check what your customers are looking for on your website.
- Your competitors – are they using any relevant keywords? If so, add them to your list!
What tools can help me with finding new keywords?
There are many tools that can give you ideas for new keywords. Generally, all you have to do is add some “seed” keywords and the tool will give you related keywords. Examples of some good keyword planner tools are:
- Google Keyword Planner
- Google Trends
- Ahrefs Keyword Generator
- Bing Keyword Research
Analytics tools can help you to find out which keywords people used when visiting your website. Some of our favorites are:
- Google Analytics