#1
  1. No Profile Picture
    Contributing User
    SEO Chat Adventurer (500 - 999 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    527
    Rep Power
    16

    Anatomy of a Good Keyword


    What makes a good keyword?

    Jasontnyc posed this question to me, and I poked the searches here, and am npt sure I have an answer yet, so I thought someone else might.

    I use the digitalpoint keyword suggestion tool, and I look at supply of sites for given KWs at Google, and I look at Adwords for guidance. But I don't know if that information gives you a 'good' keyword.

    So what does a good keyword look like? It would seem that traffic volume is one metric. Site supply relative to KW demand might also be a valuable metric. I would think keywords that lead to focused traffic would be up there as well (traffic that leads to conversions, new members, or just traffic that is exclusive to the given topic).

    So how do you determine if a keyword is good?

    And maybe this is a simpleton question, but please consider the source.

    Comments on this post

    • Jasontnyc agrees : Great Post - Many blindly believe that number of searchers are all that matters regardless of conversions and time spent to achieve the goal!
  2. #2
  3. No Profile Picture
    SEO Chat Skiller (1500 - 1999 posts)

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    St. James Gate
    Posts
    1,988
    Rep Power
    18
    Certainly traffic is a big part of it but should be weighed against other factors. When I go about choosing whether to target a keyword, I do go to the DP's tool first to establish searches. If its really low I may decide to scrap it right there.

    For me it all comes down to efficiency of resources. You may get a lot of traffic for a general word like widgets, but if there conversion rate is miniscule due to its generality, it may not have been worth your time. Say it took 200 hours worth of work to attain it. You have to keep in mind whether it would have been more time and cost effective to choose 20 other keyword phrases that took 10 hours each but delivered a better conversion rate. When added all together they may blow the general term out of the water.

    One of my other stops is to Randfish's keyword difficulty tool. Just because a lot of people search it doesn't mean its competetive (and vice versa). Knowing this can help you decide how much approximate work it will take you. This just comes with experience.

    Another tip - Study those logs! Know the patterns your existing customers fall under. Do those who search General Terms buy 5% of the time while specif searches yield 65%? Use that info to tailor your keywords.

    Maybe you are in a market where the majority of your conversions are searchers that add a geographical variable (such as local services). Why spend $10,000 and 1,000's of hours to be number one for "Roofing" when you service only Anytown, USA? That time would have been better spent DOMINATING the local keywords. Being number 1 for "Roofing" in this example may actually COST them money as high numbers of visitors but no sales = bandwidth waste.

    I have other variables I consider which I may share as this thread develops.
  4. #3
  5. Mr. Goober Guy ;)
    SEO Chat Good Citizen (1000 - 1499 posts)

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Tampa, Florida
    Posts
    1,320
    Rep Power
    24
    This is a very important topic in site development. Nice Post! IMO, your KW analysis is more important than your content development. Only from the standpoint of how your content relates to your target phrases and the SEO you apply. If you pick the wrong KW phrases, you're done and you'll have to start over.

    I think many of the more experienced will tell you to dig deep into the kw phrase range. But when you do this, how do you apply the information? That is the biggest question for anyone developing their traffic word sets.

    I am trying to improve my skill in this. However, once you've fully built and have your sites ranking, it is an exceptionally difficult and time consuming job to go back and "Fix" your kw error for any section of your site. The content has been written, the back links aquired and depending on your site, maybe other factors are at play as well.

    I made it a point to study KW patterns in an effort to address just this with some new sites and new KW phrases I want to target for existing sites. It is interesting how search engines relate these patterns.

    For me, I am interested in relevant traffic. IMO It is the content that will drive the traffic to convert. So, identifying what phrases to target and more importantly, the optimal method of targeting is more important than just the traffic potential of the KW set itself.

    I would be interested to read more on this before giving my own process I apply. Just finished up yesterday doing this for a members site, so I definitely look forward to your comments.

    Cheerios
    Cheerios!

    New to SEO? See the FAQ!

    My Disclaimer:
    Don't Listen To Me - I know nothing!
  6. #4
  7. SEO Chat Skiller (1500 - 1999 posts)

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,888
    Rep Power
    47
    It is critical to judge a keyword based on every available factor. I believe you can develop a very good model for keyword value and ROI using an Excel spreadsheet and a list of inputs. I'll try to share one that I've made after checking with the site owner.

    UPDATE - I should be able to provide this by later tonight or tomorrow - It will be downloadable in Excel, with the terms removed.
    Last edited by randfish; Mar 22nd, 2005 at 06:34 PM.
    CEO & Co-founder of SEOmoz
  8. #5
  9. No Profile Picture
    Contributing User
    SEO Chat Adventurer (500 - 999 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    527
    Rep Power
    16
    Randfish, I'd be very interested in seeing the spreadsheet. I'm putting together a binder of all the good stuff I've found here - I have quite a few pages already

    I tried your keyword analysis tool - it provides an amazing amount of data - so much I need a little time to digest all of it and figure out an action plan. Quite a tool to have in the toolbox. Thanks for sharing that.
  10. #6
  11. No Profile Picture
    EGOL
    SEO Chat Mastermind (5000+ posts)

    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    9,689
    Rep Power
    2482
    Posted by gchaney... "IMO, your KW analysis is more important than your content development. Only from the standpoint of how your content relates to your target phrases and the SEO you apply. If you pick the wrong KW phrases, you're done and you'll have to start over."

    I always preach content, but this is very true. If you have fantastic content but have done a poor job on KW research and SEO then your success will be fractional.
    * "It's not the size of the dog in the fight that matters, it's the size of the fight in the dog." Mark Twain
    * "Free advice isn't worth much. Cheap advice is worth even less." EGOL
  12. #7
  13. SEO Chat Skiller (1500 - 1999 posts)

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,888
    Rep Power
    47
    Robert, thanks for starting this excellent thread. I've made the keyword spreadsheet available on my site - http://www.socengine.com/seo/blogdetail.php?ID=100

    Hopefully you can all rip it to shreads, as it isn't very scientific or exact. Keyword research is actually one of my weak spots, but I'm working on improving that. If you do have good ideas or useful modifications, please let us all know!

    NOTE: I can't seem to edit out the hard link... sorry!
  14. #8
  15. No Profile Picture
    Contributing User
    SEO Chat Adventurer (500 - 999 posts)

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    527
    Rep Power
    16
    Randfish, if KW research is one of your weak spots, you must be one hell of an SEO'er. Either that or I'm so green to this that I don't realize how much really goes into it.

    Here was some interesting data I found tonight:

    http://64.233.167.104/search?q=cache:R1cTVDuGiDIJ:www.ahorre.com/archives/2004/09/inside_the_sear.html
    http://www.clickz.com/stats/sectors/search_tools/article.php/3469361

    I couldn't find any stats on being the #1 result, but from the information in these two pages (which seem to be published everywhere), It would seem that 15% should be a pretty conservative number for expected traffic from the #1 SERP position (and I think conservative estimates are valuable here).

    One of the things I've just begun considering in keyword analysis is demographics. I'm not sure this can fit into any formula, but I used to have access to fantastic demo data that spelled out the habits of about 100 different demo groups. I would think isolating their search terms and habits would be really difficult, but possible. Might require a leap of faith or intuition, but I would think sites could be constructed or SEO'd based on that information.

    Great information, and I appreciate your sharing it. If I was able to give you more rep, I'd do it.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 5
    Last Post: Dec 27th, 2004, 11:03 PM
  2. Free Adwords keyword tool
    By knubbi in forum Google Adwords
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: Dec 16th, 2004, 06:31 PM
  3. Keyword density for principal keyword
    By gonzalo in forum Google Optimization
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: Jul 5th, 2004, 11:29 AM
  4. GOOD Keyword Tracking Tool
    By critter in forum Google Optimization
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: Jan 21st, 2004, 03:52 PM
  5. A new kid on the block looking for a bit of help
    By Broker online in forum Google Optimization
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: Apr 18th, 2003, 05:58 AM

IMN logo majestic logo threadwatch logo seochat tools logo