Keyword research is one of the core SEO tasks that involves identifying popular words and phrases people enter into Google to find a product, service or any information on the Internet.
Did you know? Nine out of ten Internet users use a search engine to find any information. So, 9 out of ten search engine users use search terms to find the information they are looking for. That is the reason why SEO agencies consider keyword research to be the most crucial element of SEO.
Ranking your web page or website for irrelevant keywords is the worst thing to do. Doing so, will not get you traffic. Without traffic, it is not possible to generate sales. In order to avoid ranking your website for irrelevant keywords, you have to avoid keyword research mistakes. Here are the top ten most common keyword research mistakes to avoid.
1. Focusing solely on long tail search terms
A long tail search term is a keyword that contains three or more than three words. An SEO agency usually uses long tail keywords to target niche demographics rather than a wide audience. Such keywords are usually more specific and less competitive than other types of keywords. Here are a few examples of long tail keywords.
● White formal shoes for girls
● Android 4GB Ram phone price list
● SEO company in London
Long tail keywords are easy to rank and generate leads. However, focusing solely on this kind of keyword can be harmful. That is because Google rewards on the basis of the width and depth of the content posted on a topic. Google does this by looking at how the content is grouped on a website. Such groups are called a topic cluster. Therefore, it is good to use both long tail keywords and short tail keywords.
2. Ignoring keywords targeted by competitors
In digital marketing, competition analysis is the first step. And in competition analysis, knowing what keywords your competitors are trying to rank for is quite important. That is the reason why one should not overlook the keywords used by competitors.
If your competitor is targeting a couple of keywords for many years, then that simply means it is working for him or her. Moreover, knowing where they are ranking for vital search terms and phrases will enable you to identify easy wins. In addition to that, it will help you to craft a digital marketing strategy and set goals.
3. Selecting keywords that have low search volume
Keyword search volume is nothing but the number of people that are searching the internet via specific keywords over a certain period of time. Usually, keyword search volume if calculated taking months into account. How this is important anyway?
Keywords with low search volume simply mean less number of people are using them. As a result, you will gain low website traffic. Therefore, SEO experts suggest picking keywords that have high search volume, so that your website obtains huge incoming traffic.
However, ranking keywords with high search volume are quite difficult. That is because many people know their importance and try to rank their website for those keywords. This gives rise to a stiff competition in the industry your business belongs to.
How to find the search volumes of a particular keyword? There are many paid as well as free tools that will let you know the search volumes. Here we are mentioning some:
● Google Adwords
● MOZ Keyword Planner
4. Preferring broad match keywords over exact match keywords
There are three main types of keyword matching.
● Broad Match: This type contains all your keywords, irrespective what the order is. Further, it may also include extra words in the beginning, end or in between the keyword. Here is an example. If your targeted words are “red umbrellas,” broad match may include “red umbrellas for kids,” “red and blue umbrellas,” and so on.
● Phrase match: This type of matching includes your search terms in order but may have extra words in the beginning or at the end. Here is an example of a phrase match. “Price of a red umbrella,” “features of a red umbrella,” and so on.
● Exact match: This type of matching includes only your keywords in order. That is “red umbrella”
Each one of the above-mentioned match types gives different results. If you target only broad match, you may increase the bounce rate and obtain terrible results. Use these match types carefully.
5. Using plural version instead of singular
Keywords can be divided into two categories, they are singular version and plural version. Here is an example. If you are a PPC agency, then “PPC agencies” is a plural version and “PPC agency” is a singular version keyword.
One of the most common mistake webmasters do is using plural version only. The fact is that people generally use the singular version more. Although search engines are quite smart enough to conclude singular version and plural version of a keyword are one and the same, in many cases, we have found the difference in search results.
This mistake is usually committed by e-commerce website owners. So, if you have an online e-commerce owner, you know what you have to avoid.
6. Failing to do enough research
You may be running your business for decades. You may be an expert in your industry. However, one fact remains the same. That is keyword research needs time. You have to spend sufficient time on finding your results.
The keywords which you select should be the outcome of keyword research and not the outcome of your experience and anticipation. Selection of keywords should depend on various factors such as volume, difficulty, priority, and opportunity. Always remember one thing, the more time you spend on keyword research, the better SEO results you will achieve.
7. Ignoring local keywords
In the past couple of years, Local SEO had become a huge industry. It has been delivering huge traffic to countless local business owners. Although there are numerous local business owners taking maximum benefits of local SEO, there are still many who do not have explored this SEO type.
Local keywords help search engines to list your website whenever an area-specific query is searched. For example, searching “Chinese restaurant” and “Chinese restaurant London” may provide somewhat similar search results. However, the latter would help you receive a list of restaurants near you.
So, if you are not using local keywords, your website is less likely to appear in local search results. Check whether the other businesses in the area are doing the same. Reflect their positive steps in your Local SEO strategy.
8. Focusing on irrelevant keywords
As a business owner, one will like to reach more and more people, so that you can generate non stop sales. Well, that is obvious, isn’t it? However, in order to reach maximum people, business owners tend to use a wide range of keywords. In this process, they are more likely to target irrelevant keywords.
Irrelevant keywords are basically those keywords that your potential customers do not use to find your business. So targeting these keywords is nothing but a waste of time and energy. That is the reason why SEO analysts say do not pick keywords unless and until you have done detailed research.
9. Not considering conversions
Most of the experienced keyword researchers make a mistake of not considering the conversions. There are several types of keywords. One of the most important types of keywords are the ones which bring you more sales.
Yes, keywords with high search volume and low competition are good. However, they do not make any sense if they do not generate sales. Only traffic and no sale is definitely not one of your business goals.
So along with high search volume and low competition, you must focus on purchase intent. Purchase intent keywords are the keywords that showcase the buying intent of a searcher. Here is an example. “Discount on Samsung Note 9”, is a keyword that has purchase intent. Only the person who wants to buy something, looks for the discount right?
Note that purchase intent keywords may not bring you high traffic. However, it will definitely bring some quality traffic which increases sales. So, it is always best to target various keywords without going out of context.
10. Using one-word keywords
Another common mistake that people do while doing keyword research is that they select keywords that consist of a single word. In fact, this is one of the most terrible mistakes that business owners do.
One word keywords are very difficult to rank, as they are very much general, competitive, and lack details. For instance, a person searching for “book” may also be looking for a ruled book, unruled book, king size book, long book or any other type of book.
Generally, Internet users do not use one-word keywords. They usually type specific search queries. So, avoid such keywords, and focus on keywords that have:
● Purchase intent
● High search volume
● Low or moderate competition
● Specific details