How to Identify What Keywords Your Potential Customers are Using to Search

A large piece of the Inbound Marketing puzzle is SEO and content. At the center of those pieces are keywords. When digital marketing companies put together campaigns, strategies, and content calendars, they are often asked, How can you tell people are using or searching for certain keywords or keyword phrases?

So, What Is A Keyword/Keyword Phrase?

Technically speaking, a keyword is “an informative word used in an information retrieval system to indicate content of a document.”

In English; a keyword is most often, “a word or phrase that is a topic of significance.” In addition, there are generally 4 different kinds of keywords or keyword phrases:

1. Broad Keywords are most often one word on its own and a lot shorter then most types of keywords. Although these keywords are easily applied to your industry
or company, they are likely easily applied to many companies within your industry as well.

2. Fat Head Keywords are similar to broad keywords but are generally created by two or three general, broad keywords or keyword phrases.

3. Thick Middle Keywords are where those keywords/keyword phrases that are most competitive and least competitive crossover.

4. Long­Tail Keywords are usually longer phrases or a series of words that are a bit more specific to who you are – both your company and within your industry.

1) Keywords = Fundamental Content Foundation

Each page of content (or blog, or offer, or email) has a main topic, and that topic usually ties back to a keyword or keyword phrase. Keywords help assist and establish the foundation of your content and give your website visitors an understanding of the actual page.

2) Keywords Give Purpose & Understanding
When reading information your website visitors discover, readers are fast to scan content for keywords or phrases they originally searched for.

3) Keywords Help Search Engines

As search engines crawl your site, they index pages based on the keywords they find to help determine the purpose of the content. This is the foundation of Search Engine Optimization; let search engines know what browsers will find.

Four Ways to Figure out What Key-words People are Using

When it comes to figuring out what keywords potential buyers, clients, and customers are actually using, there’s a lot of due diligence to be done by a true digital marketing company.

Our team at Deftly are kind enough to help you with a few keyword research secret weapons so you can DIY, if need be.

1) Use Your People
Yes, your people. Who qualifies as “your people?” Your customers, potential buyers, staff, etc. Anyone who is familiar and has an understanding of your business, uses your product, purchases your goods… even those who choose a competitor – those are your people. So, we recommend that you do some homework and determine what questions they are asking? What are ‘hot topics’ or trends?

When you’re doing this, be sure to remove yourself from the process and put yoursef in your persona’s shoes – use the words and terms they use, ask questions
in the way they ask them, etc. Oftentimes, the keywords a business thinks they should rank for or talk about are not the terms their customers are actually using.

2) Get Social
Don’t overlook your social media channels – especially when it comes to trying to figure out what your people are talking about, asking, or complaining about. Advancements and updates to social channels have brought with them a look into trending topics and more, including such social media platforms as:

Facebook: Facebook has made a tremendous amount of updates to their graph search tool, which gives you the opportunity to search pretty much anything your connections might be talking about.

Take a few minutes to learn more about Facebook Graph Search and how to best use it. Additionally, they also have a Trending toolbar on the right side of their newsfeed that show popular topics, and the option to narrow into Politics, Science & Technology, Sports, and Entertainment.

Twitter: Twitter actually has two different ways to get an inside look at what people are talking about. And the great news is, you don’t actually have to tweet yourself to see them.

On the left sidebar of Twitter’s homepage, you can see trending topics; these can be tailored specifically based on location and interest. You can also use Twitter’s search functionality for trending topics, keywords, and hashtags.

Google+: When you login to your Google+ account, you can head to the Trending page – similar to Facebook and Twitter – to see who is talking about what on Google+. YouTube: Like its social media platform friends, YouTube also has a Trends Dashboard – right here – that will show what the most popular videos and topics are. You can narrow in on these trends by selecting a city, state, or country, an age group, and gender.

YouTube: “Trending Topics are algorithmically­generated topics from keywords in the title, tags, and description of the video within sets of videos that are currently rising in popularity. Trending videos are based on embedded video views and views on YouTube.”

3) Google Tools
It probably shouldn’t surprise you that Google has a whole extension of great tools to help you get to the bottom of the keywords and phrases.

Google Trends: This allows you to get an inside look at Google’s databases of searches. You can look at Google searches by regions, categories, languages, and set the time and search properties (image, etc.). Furthermore, you can look at one single keyword, or compare multiple terms.

Google Autocomplete: You know when you go to search for something, and Google begins to finish your question or thought? That’s autocomplete. The search queries that you see as part of Autocomplete reflect what other people are searching for and the content of web pages.

Google AdWords Keyword Planner: The outstanding thing about the AdWords planner is that you don’t need to actually spend any money on AdWords – you just need
a Google account.

With an account, users can access the Keyword Planner and enter a keyword and Google will populate search volume (how often it is used) and the competition of that word (how many people or businesses want to rank for that word). Because Google is great, this tool lets you filter by language, location, and mobile or desktop use.

4) Wordtracker
Wordtracker is a tool that gives insight as to whether or not a keyword or particular keyword phrase is actually worth content efforts. In addition, this tool gives users an estimate of how many times a keyword or keyword phrase is searched each day, plus any related phrases or keywords.

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