Planning any SEO strategy requires meticulous attention. As you may well have read elsewhere, one of the most important decisions a business must make is selecting which keyword phrases it wishes to target as part of its SEO strategy.
Not taking the necessary time and effort to research and identify what are the popular keyword phrases relevant to the products and services your business provides will undoubtedly result in having a negative impact on any SEO initiatives you undertake.
However, in some cases even after conducting thorough keyword research, you still may not be able to draw concrete conclusions as to which keyword phrases you should target as part of your SEO strategy. In these situations I strongly recommend using PPC (Pay Per Click) marketing as a good, reliable and cost effective method to test which keyword phrases produce the right results for your business.
Setting up a PPC campaign through the UK’s number 1 search engine, Google, means you can have adverts targeting your list of preferred keywords instantly. However, for a test to be successful it’s important the necessary tracking is in place so you know the money you’re spending with Google is reliable for the sales/leads your business receives.
A good way of helping you achieve this is by implementing Google’s Conversion Tracking software. By implementing this code on areas of your site where you either record a sale, or a customer completes and submits an enquiry form or signs up to use a service etc, this piece of technology follows a customer the moment they have searched and clicked on your advert, and should they complete a transaction such as those mentioned above, Google records the transaction against the keyword that originally generated that lead/sale.
By going through this process, you can soon find out which keyword phrases generate good volumes of traffic and more importantly, which ones gain the most results, such as a purchase, signing up to receive a newsletter, registering to use a service you provide etc.
The best USP with PPC campaigns is you’re in control. You can set the amount of budget you wish to spend on a daily basis and you can decide how long to run a campaign for. Also if you run a campaign and you can see the results quicker than expected then you can simply stop the campaign as and when you wish.
In terms of making your final decision on which keyword phrases should make up your short list of those you want to target as part of your long term SEO strategy, is to understand how competitive those keyword phrases are. By getting an idea as to the competitiveness, you will get an indication of how long it would take before you can expect your site to start appearing on the all important first page of Google’s organic search results once you start your SEO campaigning. Should a particular phrase be very competitive and therefore take you many months to start seeing positive results, you may decide to target a phrase that isn’t quite as popular as you stand a better chance of gaining good visibility within a shorter space of time.
SEO is a process that has to be well thought out and researched from the start, by doing this, you will yield greater results from your investment which in turn, so long as you keep up your SEO efforts will become a good solid long term foundation for any online business.
It is not uncommon for many businesses to run PPC campaigns alongside their SEO targeted keywords, as it may be more cost effective to target some keywords using PPC rather than the time and effort SEO requires. The beauty with online marketing is being able to experiment to find a winning formula that suits your business. It goes without saying, no two businesses are the same, and that scenario holds true in terms of a marketing approach, what works for one business may not work for another.