SEO: How to hunt for keywords

Keywords are the foundation of on-page SEO

Every SEO website content project, begins with you building your keyword list. Building your list means hunting down those keyword terms and phrases that your potential website visitors would use to search for your products and services using online and offline tools.

As I have mentioned repeatedly in other posts: your goal when you compile your list is to match your list to your audience’s searches. You can compile your keyword list in a few ways.

Ways to build your keyword list

  1. Ask yourself: What terms would potential site visitors use to search for your products or services? Write down those terms.
  2. List multiple ways of saying the same thing.
    • Let’s use a thumb drive as an example. How many different ways can you say it? USB drive, flash drive, jump drive, USB key.  These are all the different ways that you can describe a thumb drive.
  3. Make sure you include all the variations on your keyword list.
  4. Poll your existing clients: Ask them “What terms would you type into Google to find my service or product?”
  5. Find out what terms “regular people” use to search. By regular people I mean those people outside your industry.  Clients can be so immersed in an industry that they know the “industry terminology” but regular folks wouldn’t search with those terms.
  6. Now run your keyword list through a keyword tool. Currently I recommend the Moz Keyword Explorer. When you sign up for an account, you can conduct 10 keyword searches a month for FREE.
  7. Google Trends helps you identify patterns. Google Trends is particularly good for e-commerce and identifying and comparing different terms for the same product. You can search by region (down to the provincial level), by season and by year.

Keywords form the foundation of organic search. There are many other tactics to help improve your rankings in Google but don’t miss this step!

Happy keyword hunting.

How do you search for keywords? Share your tips below.

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If you liked this post, you’ll love our Toronto SEO Workshop for WordPress. Learn tips, techniques and strategies to supercharge your organic search results. Our next scheduled SEO for WordPress workshop is on February 7, 2020. Subscribe to get our blog posts sent to your inbox.

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