What Fishing Can Teach you About SEO and Keyword Research

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In order for you as a website owner to drive high-quality, targeted traffic to your website or blog you have to do the hard work of uncovering the right kinds of relevant keywords so that your site is targeting the right kind of traffic. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a vital component to any successful website or blog; you simply must optimize for the relevant keywords! Irrelevant, and/or unrelated keywords may end up driving traffic to your site, but if it’s not the right kind of traffic you will most assuredly spend a lot of your time in frustration wondering why your bounce rates are so high, and your conversion rates are so low. It doesn’t matter whether your conversion goals are to simply to call visitors to contact you, or you have products you’re trying to sell, your keyword research must be relevant to your website’s content.

Fishing with the Right Bait – Relevant Search Terms and Keywords

So what does all this have to do with fishing you may ask? Well, if you know anything about fishing you different species come in to season and go out of season and you have to use the right kind of tackle to get the ones your after. SEO and keyword research does the same thing: it searches out the relevant keywords and phrases that will make your site or blog successful.

Sure, you’ll pull up some that aren’t what you’re looking for, but you just throw those back.  Same thing applies to SEO – no strategy is going to be perfect. But when you hook in to the right fish and get it on the boat, and then another one, and then another one, you know you’re on the right spot with the right tool doing the right thing at the right time.  SEO and keyword research is the same thing – hooking in to the right kind of  fish (relevant keyword phrases) so you can have an outstanding feast when you get back to the dock (relevant SEO traffic).

Okay – enough about fishing for now, back to SEO. First off, have you even thought through what your keyword targets are? This is vital to the entire process. Choosing your initial keyword sets is crucial so that you can set your goals and targets appropriately. If you use Google Webmaster Tools and Analytics you’ll see exacly what keywords users are using to find your website. Are these the keywords that you’ve consciously chosen to be your specific targets? If not, then it’s time to take a deeper look in to what’s going on and specifically target the right kinds of keywords.

The keywords must be relevant to the site content. You need to be very deliberate in how you choose these SEO keyword phrases. I’ve noticed that in my own writing I rank for some keywords I’ve specifically chosen, others are just a mix of junk that serve no good purpose. After seeing those results I’ve been much more deliberate in how I choose what I choose. Use synonym and antonym tools to find variants of your keyword phrases so that your content doesn’t sound overly stuffed with your targets, but use these as support, not as a replacement for your original keywords.

Once you’ve settled on a good keyword set, check your keywords to see if the phrase is actually the phrase for which users are searching for in that particular word-order. You want your list to contain a tight list of relevant keyword search terms that represent the phrases that people are actually looking for in search engines. Make sure that you eliminate from your targets any keywords that are of marginal relevance.

Remember to use your keywords in the correct places in your content as well. These are prime places to place your bait and set your hooks. If you haven’t read them, I’ve written two other posts on the basics of SEO for your website or blog. You’ll find them here:

I’ll be expanding on those posts here in the near future, but here are a couple nuggets for now:

  • Include your keywords in the first sentence of your post or first paragraph of your content page.
  • Make sure you name your images properly using your keywords
  • Use your keywords in your page titles, blog titles and content titles

Hooking in to the right keywords for your website will do wonders for your traffic. Use the right bait and tackle and you’ll pull in a haul worthy of a pro!  Now that we’ve found our relevant keywords tomorrow we’ll focus finding high traffic keywords.

image by Christian Steen