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A superfast guide for choosing keywords for SEO

keywords for SEO

Help others find your site by spending a little time choosing keywords that best describe what you do.

Keywords are the words or phrases you want people to be able to find you under when they run a search for you on the Internet.

They’re essentially the words that best describe your business and the things that people associate with your goods, services and content. The more specific the words or phrases that match what you offer, the more likely they’ll be able to drive people to your site.

The keywords you identify will be the important building blocks of your SEO (search engine optimisation) tactics and help set themes for your various pages, helping people find your site when searching these topics. So it’s worth investing a little time in researching the words that will work best for you.

Using two or three-word phrases improves your chances of ranking highly as these phrases attract fewer competing companies and sites, and can be more specific to your market.

When using Google’s Keyword Planner to identify keywords, as we’ll show you how to do in the step-by-step below, the goal is to find keywords and terms relevant to what you offer that have a high search volume and low competition.

high search seo keywords

As the effectiveness of your keyword search improves, the number of search results will drop, so it’s a balancing act between being on page 100 for a top phrase with millions of searches and being on page 1 for a less-used phrase with only a few thousand searches. We think higher up and more focused is better.

Note: Google recently replaced its Keyword Tool with Keyword Planner. The good thing about this is that it automatically shows you the average number of searches for a keyword idea on all devices (desktops, laptops, tablets, and mobiles).

Before you start:

– Have a few pages of content or products on your Moonfruit site to inspire your search

– Create a list of keywords you think your website should cover

– Create a Google Adwords account if you don’t already have one – you’ll be using their Keyword Planner tool

Now let’s get started…

Step 1. Sign into Google Adwords using your Google account (and if you don’t have one, set one up), so you’re able to save your ideas to refer back to at a later date.

google adwords

Step 2. Go to ‘Tools’ in the top tool bar then ‘Keyword Planner’, which provides a free and simple way of finding the search volumes and competition for keywords.

Step 3. Click on the ‘Search for keyword and ad group ideas’ option.

keyword planner

Step 4. Take your initial list of keyword ideas and add them one per line in the ‘Your product or service’ box. Here you may also refine your searches, such as targeting the best phrases for particular countries and cities. Hit ‘Get ideas’.

Step 5. Go to the ‘Keyword ideas’ tab and along with your search terms you’ll be presented with a list of results. These show relevant keywords and terms (phrases that other people are searching for).

Step 6. What you’re hunting for are terms relevant to what you offer that have a high search volume and low competition – this is an area to capitalise on and a corner of the market that you can call your own. The list that you fine-tune will be invaluable when it comes to working out what your page titles should be, what you should call the sections of your website, and even what you might want to call your business! Filtering the list is a manual job that takes some time and dedication. Fear not, it’s all worth it!

Step 7. If you think the list is too broad, try adapting the results by excluding keywords that are irrelevant to your site on the ‘Customize your search’ left menu.

Step 8. Keep on adapting and mutating the keywords in the ‘Your product or service’ box as you discover more terms that might be relevant. Aim to have a phrase for your homepage, one for each main section of the site, and various other terms you can distribute across the rest of your products and pages.

google keyword planner

Tip: 
While one, two and three-word phrases may have the most volume, there may be some hidden gems within phrases consisting of five or six words (commonly referred to as the ‘long-tail’). These often start with ‘how to…’ or ‘tips for…’ so investigate deeper to discover the questions your audience are asking, then create pages that answer them.

See our comprehensive SEO Guide for a case study on Joe’s London Taxis.


Marcel Reinard
Senior content producer and full time Arnie obsessor

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11 Responses to “A superfast guide for choosing keywords for SEO”

  1. Derrick Wilkinson

    After reading this post I tried to use Keywords Planner and signed into Google AdWords as instructed. Unfortunately it does not appear to be possible to get to the Keywords Planner before agreeing to buy a Google ad and providing credit card details to pay for it. Am I doing something wrong, or should that have been made clear in this post

    Reply
    • Steven

      Hi Derrick,

      When you first sign in to AdWords there is an option to ‘Skip the guided set-up’. If you select that option then you will be able to continue to access the keyword planner.

      Cheers,

      Steven

      Reply
  2. Derrick Wilkinson

    Thanks Steven, but when I signed in – and when I sign in now – I get a “your first campaign” page that is all about buying an ad from Google. There was – and is – no other option; absolutely no links to anything else at all – not even profile or such basics. When I log in I go straight to the “first campaign” page that wants my credit card details. The only way I can see ANY other pages at Google AdWords is to log out!

    Derrick

    Reply
  3. Derrick Wilkinson

    Steven – to be more precise: after clicking on ‘Skip the guided set-up’ it then goes to a page page to set up an AdWords account requesting email, country, time zone and currency. Then it goes to a page requesting log in to AdWords account, which then goes to the “new campaign” page, and you have to buy an ad – no other options/links that I can see.

    Derrick

    Reply
  4. Paula

    Where on earth do you find adwords? I have signed into google and have searched everything l can think of in there including a search for adwords. Not being too computer literate there was nothing to find and fill in like in the e-mail….help

    Reply
  5. matt

    Hi Derrick,
    When you log onto your adwords it brings you onto the home page, across the top you should see the word “tools” in the menu bar. Click on that and it will give you a list of options, the keyword planner being one of them.
    Good luck!
    Matt

    Reply
    • Marcel Reinard

      Thanks for helping out Matt,

      Google does change the format slightly every few months. We update our posts to try to keep up when this happens.

      Marcel.

      Reply
  6. Zoe

    Hi, I am experiencing the exact same problem as Derrick; I have created an adwords account, and when I log in the only options open to me are: ‘about your business'; ‘create a campaign'; ‘billing’ and ‘review’. You can only move onto the next section once you’ve completed the previous. There is no menu other than this whatsoever – literally nothing, not even a tab for signing out. I am computer-literate so it’s not that I’m missing anything; there’s just not anything to miss! I would prefer to have a play around with keywords, etc before signing up for a campaign and forking out money daily. Can anyone help?

    Reply
    • Marcel Reinard

      Hello Zoe,

      I just took another look at this using privacy browsing and indeed you do have to now fully sign up to Adwords to use Keyword Planner (previously I believe you could skip these steps).

      Unfortunately I can’t confirm about what Google Adword’s payment section means, however, there is a UK freephone Google support number at the top of the page. Keyword Planner is a free tool so I can only suggest that billing details are asked in the event of a user wanting to start a campaign.

      I’ll be certainly keeping an eye on this one.

      Reply
  7. Cad Delworth

    OK guys, I happen to have a Google account (but NOT an AdWords account) and I was just able to get to the Keyword Planner without needing to buy anything.

    First I went to https://adwords.google.com/KeywordsPlanner.

    I then saw a prompt to sign in to my Google account, which I did.

    Yes, there is then a page asking (among other things!) what currency you use which you have to ‘save and continue.’ Note for the paranoid: no means of payment or bank account details are requested.

    At this point, you have an AdWords account (congratulations!).

    Yes. the next page says ‘Create your first campaign’ BUT you DON’T have to create a campaign OR spend any money.

    On that ‘Create your first campaign’ page, the menu (across the top) should read:
    Home Campaigns Opportunities Tools
    … so click Tools, then in the dropdown, click Keyword Planner.

    Voilà! You see the options in Step 3 in the post above, and you can continue from there.

    I hope that helps anyone confused about this.

    When you next want to use AdWords, just sign in to AdWords using your Google account details.

    Cad

    Reply

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