7 Keyword Research Mistakes That are Affecting your Bottom Line

Keyword research is one of the most important aspects of SEO, yet many people fail to do it properly. Making keyword research mistakes could cost you money because not all traffic leads to sales. In order to drive more profitable traffic to your site, avoid the following 7 blunders.

1. Targeting Keywords People don’t use

This sounds like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised to learn how many companies out there brainstorm to come up with keywords without determining whether people actually search for those terms. For example, some businesses use insider jargon as keywords. While these terms might be familiar to someone working in the industry, they are probably foreign to searchers, who tend to use different terminology. If you hire an SEO company to do your keyword research, make sure that they’re not targeting obscure, easy-to-rank-for keywords on purpose, just so they can guarantee rankings.

2. Targeting only high-competition keywords

For many business owners, targeting only high-competition keywords is simply unrealistic because there’s a good chance that they won’t be able to rank their sites for those keywords. Take your site’s authority and age into consideration when choosing keywords because targeting keywords you can’t rank for is a waste of time and money.

3. Not considering user intent

A keyword reveals a lot about user intent. Why did the user enter that particular phrase? What do they want? When doing keyword research, try to get inside the minds of users to figure out exactly what it is they want when they are using certain keywords. For example, a keyword that includes the word, “buy,” is more likely to convert into sales. On the other hand, a keyword that includes the word, “free,” probably won’t convert to sales because the searcher’s intent is to find something free of charge — not actually purchase something.

4. Selecting overly broad keywords

Ranking for overly broad keywords is pointless because broad keywords are far less likely to bring you targeted traffic and sales. For example, it’s better to rank for a specific keyword phrase, such as, “website development firm Canton, Ohio,” than a general phrase like, “website development.”

5. Failing to review keywords on an annual basis

Keyword research isn’t a set-it-and-forget-it process – it’s an ongoing endeavor. Consumer search behavior evolves over time, so reviewing your keywords on an annual basis is essential. During a keyword review, you can determine which keywords are performing poorly and need to be eliminated, as well as which keywords are performing well and show opportunities for growth.

6. Ignoring conversion rates

High levels of traffic don’t matter to your business’s website if that traffic doesn’t convert into sales. Ranking for certain, high-profile keywords might bring you droves of traffic, but financially speaking, your business would be far better off if you targeted keywords that actually translate to sales, even if they aren’t as glamorous as the former.

7. Rushing the keyword research process

Good keyword research, as with anything that’s worth doing, takes time. Rushing the keyword selection process could cost you money in the long run. Taking the time to select relevant, high traffic/low competition keywords that demonstrate purchase intent will bring you a high return on investment (ROI).

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