A Basic Guide to SEO, Search Engines and Keyword Research

keyword researchSEO stands for “search engine optimization.” It is an internet marketing strategy used to affect the visibility of a website in search engines’ organic results. Visibility is translated into traffic, so anyone owning a site or a blog should be interested in employing some of its specific techniques. As opposed to SEM (search engine marketing), where companies pay for a better placement in a search engine’s results page, SEO requires the use of several methods and metrics in order to optimize websites.

How Do Search Engines Rank Your Website and What Can You Do About It?

Search engines crawl through links that interconnect billions of documents. After reaching the destination site, they start deciphering the code of those pages, and store important pieces in specialized hard drives in order to be recalled later, when needed through a search query. Looking up something on the internet requires the search engines to search through billions of documents, and return results which are relevant, in order of their usefulness. Usefulness is seen as importance, and generally speaking, a search engine usually interprets importance as popularity. The more important the search engine will consider a page to be, the higher its rank in search engine results pages. In reality, search engines use complicated algorithms and metrics in order to rank a page’s importance.

In order to obtain better page ranking for their web pages, webmasters are advised to make the pages having the users in mind first of all, as they are the ones who appreciate the content, search engines just interpret the information by use of mathematical calculations. Contents displayed to users should not be different than the ones presented to search engines. Sites should be clear and organized, with links to access every page. The site should have useful information, with clear and accurate content. URL structures should be clean and contain keywords. Research to see what users are actively seeking should be made on a regular basis, and content should be kept up to date, according to shifts in preferences and demands.

Why Invest in SEO? Search engines are very popular, and they drive a huge amount of economic activity. Being visible and having a higher rank in the first few results can be the difference between success and failure. Besides bringing a lot of traffic, it also inspires trust in users that the top pages are reliable and important. Making a website easy and accessible to both users and search engines makes them more likely to come up in the first few search results.

The Importance of Keyword Research

Keyword research and analysis is one of the most important methods in internet marketing. It is a valuable SEO step that offers high return. Before you start optimizing your site for search engines, you should know which words to target. Researching the market will tell you which terms and phrases are the most popular search keywords, and you’ll also understand some things about client preferences. Also, by obtaining valuable information about what web searchers are seeking, you can adapt your business and respond to changes and shifts in demands, and customize products and services so that you are always prepared to offer them exactly what they want.

When trying to determine which keywords are best to target, you also have to understand how valuable they are for you. In other terms, you need to see how much of the traffic is converted to profit. If you opt for a broad keyword that generates 1000 hits which turn 50 visitors to your site, and only 2 of them actually buy products worth, let’s say – 100 dollars, it means that each visitor searching for that keyword values 2 dollars. Choosing broad keywords might turn more traffic to your site, but even without considering the competition for those popular searches, most visitors ending up on your site probably won’t convert to profit. Selecting specific or unique terms might mean you’ll get less traffic, but those entering your site might already know what they want. In reality, broad search terms represent only 30% of all searches for keywords, the remaining 70% comprising the world’s actual demand. They also convert better than broader keywords, due to the fact that in that stage, people already know what they want, and aren’t just testing the market.

Keyword research tools are in abundance on the internet, but due to the fact that many details concerning their algorithms and how they generally work aren’t published, it is better to use several from multiple sources and compare the results, or hire experienced SEO experts to help with this task.

Keyword research is probably the most important tool in internet marketing today. It helps you establish a strong foundation for your site and optimize your content for both users and search engines. You can learn about the competition, how they rank and which strategies they are using, in order to outrank them and be successful. You’ll also be able to find the perfect niche for your business and get targeted traffic, and make your business flourish.

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