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Search Engine Optimisation: It's All About Keywords

While most people understand that keywords are important to the internet, many don’t really grasp how important keywords are. Let me be perfectly clear: the internet is all about keywords. Keywords are the foundation, the basis, the core of all internet activity.

When you are looking for information on the internet, you use keywords to find that information. For example, if you are looking for the words to a song, you would use a search engine to find the words by entering the title of the song plus the word, lyrics. Let’s say you are interested in the words to the song Lay Lady Lay. You can easily find those lyrics by entering in the search box: song lay lady lay lyrics. The results are about 1,760,000 hits for that search phrase. And, the first link, as well as most of the following links, all give you the lyrics to Lay Lady Lay.

It is easy to comprehend how to find information. But too often I see businesses who are providing content for the web page I am designing forgetting this simple rule. That is, they begin to view their website from an English 101 perspective instead of Internet Marketing 101. How you state your business offerings will affect whether you are found by someone looking for your products and services. If you think that it is important to clearly describe how you got into this business, your deepest held convictions about this business, and what you are trying to accomplish in this business on your home page before you use the keywords that are your business, you will fall further and further down the list of pages that result from a search for your keywords. Before you begin preparing content for your website, think of how you would find you on the internet. That is, how do people find your competitors? You want to run in that crowd, don’t you? Well, you want to run ahead of that crowd to be exact.

To determine which keywords will be most useful and profitable to you, first exclude the saturated words. As an example, as a web designer, it does not make sense to compete for the keyword web design. The results from that broad, saturated keyword phrase is 2,340,000,000 (that’s billion) results. Now, don’t get me wrong, I would love to be on the first three pages for web design, but that’s unrealistic. However, if I narrow my keyword search to web design reno, the search results are 9,280,000 (because I didn’t use quotes to narrow the search even further), and I am on the first page. I’m a happy camper.

So you say that you will do web design anywhere in the world? Fine, but to compete against everyone in the world is an unrealistic and expensive goal. Your chance for landing on the first three pages of a Google search using a saturated keyword is highly unlikely. Narrow your search by thinking locally or regionally perhaps. Or think of a more descriptive keyword that you know will be in your page content.

This is your first assignment (should you choose to accept): make a list of keywords that you think of when you think of your business, your services and your products. Then expand that list using one of these websites that will offer additional, expanded keyword ideas:

Overture Keyword Selector Tool
Google’s Keyword Tool

Start here. It’s a beginning. But know that this is the most important beginning because it sets the standard for whether or not you will be found on the internet.

©2007 TAO Consultants, Inc. All rights reserved.
Chesa Keane has been designing and developing web sites with an eye toward search engine optimization and traffic generation since 1995. TAO Consultants offers online web and SEO courses to help you make the most of your web business and investment at the www.computergoddess.com website.