How To Test Keywords

How to Test Keywords for your site

Test keywords to ensure you get the most bang for your buck. It not only also allows you to identify top-performing keywords that will drive the most clicks for your web page or ad; it also enables you to continually improve the relevance of your online advertising campaigns as they run.

Technically a keyword only applies to websites, while Adwords (which uses keywords) are the words or phrases for ads.  But I am going to use the terms interchangeably in this article.

Tools to Test Keywords

research about keywords

While some digital marketers still rely on trial and error, there are several tools you can use online that allow you to experiment with the most effective keywords that can drive most leads.

There are two excellent tools to test keywords.  One is Google’s AdWords Keyword Tool, which is used for testing Adwords.

The other is Wordtracker which is used for finding keywords to optimize your website or articles.

In both cases, they will provide suggested keywords and provide the estimated search volume, it also predicts the cost of running paid campaigns for these terms.

Metrics for Keyword Effectiveness

Just as there is no shortage of good keyword tools, there is also no shortage of metrics that you can use to determine the effectiveness of keywords. Here are some of the most popular metrics used by digital marketers:

  • Search Volume. This refers to how many searches per day or per month is being performed for each keyword or phrase. Generally speaking, the higher the volume, the better the opportunity to drive traffic to your site.
  • Search Competition (Adwords) This provides you with many sites are displayed when performing a search using a specific keyword or phrase.
  • Search Competition (Wordtracker) This provides you with how many sites are optimized for this keyword.
  • Title Competition. This provides you with a numerical figure on how many sites are displayed when performing a search for a keyword or phrase using only title tags.
  • Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI). This score is based on how often a keyword is searched against keyword competition.

Metrics are useful to help create some measurable objectives for your Internet marketing and advertising activities.  For example, you may be hoping for tens of thousands of visitors but then discover the keyword is searched only a few thousand times.  Metrics can also help you find pockets where the traffic potential is good, and the competition is low.  (long tail keyword article)

While metrics are powerful, they cannot be the only consideration.  Any research should be complemented by qualitative research.  You want to learn as much as possible about your target audience online and how they interact with each other and talk about their favorite brands. Visit blogs, watch Twitter, find the popular information sites, and see what the conversations are.  By seeking to humanize your target audience, you get valuable insight into how to speak their language so you can communicate with them more effectively.

You need to apply these three simple rules to test keywords:

1. Is the keyword relevant to my target audience?

Here’s the rule you should keep in mind: As long as your product or service can provide a solution to help address your target audience’s needs, pain points, and problems, then there is an opportunity for you to be relevant.

Make sure you identify a keyword list that best captures your product offerings and how effectively it can solve your consumer’s needs. By doing so, you increase your chances of getting discovered by a new customer.

2. Will the keyword deliver traffic?

Online advertising is a numbers game, but that being said, large foot traffic is not the end goal of every campaign. Your main objective should be to drive the right website traffic. You want the right traffic, so you increase your chances of successful conversion. Do not ignore low-volume keywords.  Often the competition can be low on these low-volume keywords, and when you string a few of them together, the traffic can be respectable.  When you further complement other long-tail phrases, you can drive some good results.

3. Will the lead successfully get converted into a sale?

While ideally, every keyword should be able to convert visitors into potential customers, not all keywords are successful in doing so. You need to identify with higher conversion rates and use this to your advantage.

Simply put, what the three-rule test aims to achieve is Relevance, Traffic and Conversion. Every good keyword should be able to deliver on all of these aspects satisfactorily.

Good luck when you test keywords for your website. Check out our article on long-tail keywords.

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