Keyword research is the most important part of your SEO campaign. Choosing the wrong keywords is wasted time and money. Choose the right keywords and your traffic and conversion rates will rise. Keyword reasearch can also be helpful in discovering and targeting new markets.
Short, medium and long tailed keywords
Keywords are defined into 3 main target categories. Short, medium and long tailed. For example:
- Short Tail - Ski, horse, walking, golfing
- Medium Tail - skiing france, horse riding, walking holidays, golfing tournaments
- Long tail - Skiing holidays france, horse riding lessons, cheap walking holidays, beginners golfing lessons
Although short tailed keywords are of obvious choice, most short tail keywords are the most competitive and hardest to achieve. Medium tailed keywords less generic but more targeted. And long tailed keywords are amongst the easiest to achieve and should not be ruled out as they can be some of the best to convert in special niches. All in all you should have a good mix of each throughout your website. This way you have short term and long term goals and achievements.
We use tools such as Google Adwords Keyword Tool, Wordtracker, Google Insights and Google Export Advisor to check search volumes and potential ROI on a number of keywords. Competitor back link tools such as Link Diagnosis, IBP and MajesticSEO to see how many backlinks are pointing to sites that rank for particular target phrases. This helps us to make calculated decisions on what keywords will rank and convert well for you.