One of the best, free, ways to help us out with SEO is called the Google Keyword Tool.
Whether we like it or not, we have to face the fact that Google is (by far) the most used search engine on the planet. Even after Microsoft’s massive marketing campaign for Bing, they are still only managing to capture about a fifth of searches that Google is taking. With this in mind, it is reasonably sound to say that when Google produces statistics surrounding SEO and search trends, we can rely on the results. That’s where the Google Keyword Tool comes in.
You start off by entering a key word or phrase and click (much like an average search) the search button. At this point, the Google Keyword Tool will take the term you entered and use it’s back catalogue of billions of searches to show you other related terms or phrases.
For example, if I type Online Golf Tuition, it will then come back to me to tell me a number of things:
a) how big the competition is for that key phrase (low, medium, high, very high).
b) Statistics surrounding that key phrase (Global monthly searches, Local monthly searches etc.)
c) Similar key phrases or words based on other searches (in this case, “Golf Coaching Courses” and “Golf Academies” among others)
d) Statistics surrounding each of those key phrases (competition level, Global monthly searches, Local monthly searches etc.)
But how is this relevant?
This tool is extremely useful for so many reasons. Primarily because it is free, but on a more practical level, it can help you achieve an number of important elements that surround the SEO for your website/s.
1) Know the level of competition you are up against. Sometimes you are up against giants. From example, if I were to try and configure some SEO surrounding the key words “Online Hosting”, it can tell me I would be up against a high level of competition. But don’t loose heart at this point!
2) Alternative options. With the use of the related terms, you will be able to see terms that aren’t in such high competition, but can still base it on how many average searches they get in a month. Using the global and local statistics will help you analyse which option to take. For example, “online hosting” would probably be fine for global statistics because the business would be run online and therefore wouldn’t necessarily require a regional audience. Whereas, if I was trying to publicise “my shop in Brighton”s website, the local statistics would be crucial for me. Using all this information, I can select a better set of keywords that will be more cost effective to my business.
3) Repeat, until streamlined. I would then repeat this process a few times, simply because you will soon be able to identity the terms that users search for. Making it more likely to search the terms for your business.
The balance you want to achieve is:
As low competition as possible.
As high global or local search count.
As easy to search for as possible (i.e. a phrase people obviously search for).