SEO world focused on “content marketing” lately, many website and business owners are focusing their SEO concentration on their blogs and the long-tail traffic they can accept from people looking for general information. While that’s great on many levels, often that their main service and product category pages have been neglected in the Keyword Research CloudSEO department. This is a shame and a waste because these pages should be the keystone of your SEO campaign. When you optimize the top-level pages of your site, you can target competitive keyword phrases that will carry search engine visitors who are looking specially to purchase the products or services that you present.
Keep this at the front of your mind: As you attempt to decide the best keyword phrases for each page, you will have to work them into the content of that page. They must be extremely relevant so that you don’t drive your copywriter crazy when s/he sits down to do the writing.
Here are 13 steps to choosing keyword phrases:
1. Make a new worksheet in Excel.
2. Using your existing website’s navigational structure create a column heading for your home page and each top-level category page featured in your main navigation.
3. With your previously compiled keyword phrase list in hand, find 3 to 5 of the most competitive phrases that are extremely applicable to your business and website as a whole, and paste them under the home page heading of your spreadsheet.
4. If you have existing content, do an internal website search to learn where you might already be using some of your important researched keyword phrases, and paste them into your spreadsheet under the proper page heading. In order to find the accurate phrase within your site, be sure to use quotes when doing your site search. You can use Google for this by typing:
“your keyword phrase” +site:yoursite.com into the search box.
5. Review your web analytics to study which landing pages are now receiving keyword traffic, and paste those phrases into your spreadsheet appropriately.
6. Using your unique keyword research, match your main keyword categories with their suitable main category landing pages, and paste the most applicable and sought-after phrases under their spreadsheet heading.
7. Review any leftover competitive phrases that don’t seem to fit well into your top-level category pages, and decide if they would make sense on deeper product or service pages. If so, add those pages and phrases to your spreadsheet.
8. Review the rest of the keyword phrases for which you have not yet establish a related page, and decide if they are truthfully relevant to what you offer. If they’re too tangential, remove them from your keyword lists.
9. Now try additional site searches for your phrases, but this time, do it without quotes. This will illustrate you the pages of your site that are using some of the words that exist as part of your keyword phrases. Review the content on those pages to decide if your phrases would make sense within that content, and add them to your spreadsheet as essential.
For phrases that don’t seem to fit into the existing website, try the following additional steps:
10. Carefully read through each page and decide upon its final theme.
11. Review your residual keyword phrases, look for those that might be identical with the basic theme of each page, and paste them accordingly into your spreadsheet.
12. Once again, if you still have phrases that don’t seem to have a good home within your website, decide if they in fact are applicable to what you propose, and remove those that seem to be stretching it.
13. Finally, if you have phrases with no corresponding pages, find out why. It’s likely that your website is missing important information, in which case, simply add new pages that cover the missing areas, and add them and their corresponding keyword phrases to your spreadsheet.
At this point, any keywords that are left are most likely the less competitive phrases, the long-tail type of keyword phrases. This isn’t a problem, and in fact can help give you with ideas for content that can use them in a natural way at some point in the future. Keep them handy and use them as a source for new content ideas on your blog or within videos.
What you should have ended up with is a page-to-phrase map that you can provide to your professional copywriter. This keyword map will give the theme of each page of your site, as well as which keyword phrases to keep in mind while they’re writing. If the writer has trouble using some of them, you may need to revise or rearrange them onto different pages.
Don’t be afraid to make changes down the line as necessary. Think of this document as somewhat flexible. It’s a lot easier to desire the phrases when you’re not doing the copywriting, but that means you’ll sometimes get it wrong. If you want the best content for your site visitors and the search engines, listen carefully to your copywriter’s feedback and be sure to adapt accordingly.