“In 2020, organic search traffic has increased to 53.3% on average across all industries.”
The success of an online business on search engines depends on its target keywords. Organic search improves the ability to map to user intent. Despite having the best strategy for dominating Google’s organic search, the wrong keywords can make it useless. So, you must choose the potential keywords that will target your online business.
Keyword Research Blueprint Steps
A blueprint is an SEO framework that provides a basic outline of ranking a web page from start to end so that you can build your campaign on top of it.
Let’s now discuss the steps to create a keyword research blueprint that will help your online business gain higher rankings.
- Work Smarter Not Harder
Generally, people make mistakes by choosing keywords that are too broad, keywords with too much competition, keywords without enough traffic, or keywords that don’t convert. However, the biggest mistake is that they try to rank for one keyword at a time.
In comparison to rank for a single keyword, rank for hundreds or thousands of long-tail keywords with the same piece of content is much easier and more profitable. Hence, you must aim your project around a keyword theme. In comparison to rank for a single keyword, rank for hundreds or thousands of long-tail keywords with the same piece of content is much easier and more profitable. Hence, you must aim your project around a keyword theme.
- Use Keyword Theme
It resolves a whole lot of problems as ranking for lots of keywords focused around a single idea displays better results than ranking for a single keyword.
You must know your business very well – what type of visitors you are seeking, whether you are looking for traffic, conversions, or both. The more specific you define your keyword theme, the easier it will become to rank. Therefore, you need to know your broad topic rather than focusing on specific words.
Further, identify the right keyword qualifiers.
- Get Specific With Qualifiers
You must add specificity to keywords and define intent using qualifiers. Find as many qualifiers as possible that fit your target audience. For this, you can use any keyword tool that you like.
- Find Diamonds In The Google Rough
Now that you have dozens or hundreds of keywords, you can copy them into Google Adwords Keyword Planner.
(i) Although you can run hundreds of keyword phrases at once in Google Keyword Planner, limit your searches to 5-10 at a time to get more variety.
Look for 10-15 closely related keyword phrases with decent search volumes (without too much competition) using “Exact” search types.
(ii) The “Competition” column in Google Adwords Keyword Planner refers to bids on paid search terms, not organic search. So, be careful while trusting it.
- Get Strategic With The Competition
Since you have a basic keyword set, you have to find out if you can rank for your phrases.
There are two basic methods of ranking the competition – automated tools (such as Keyword Difficulty Tool) and eyeballing the SERPs.
You do not require to rank #1 for any of your chosen words to earn traffic; however, you must be comfortable to rank in top 5.
Using keyword themes, it becomes possible from keywords that you never thought about.
- Create Value
You should create value for your keyword theme. Although the value is difficult to produce than words, it gets more rewards as it builds links` by itself and creates loyal fans.
Value comprises four things – utility, emotional response, viewpoint, and perceived value (fame of the author).
You must include one or more characteristics in your content to be successful.
- Drive Your Content Vehicle
Since the blueprint requires link baits (at least one), you must think about the structure of your content.
“How can you deliver valuable content?”
Add things like infographics, simple blog posts, how-to-guides, interview series, and many more. Find more ways to deliver your content and take advantage of more channels. Create at least one piece of content that stands out and makes you proud.
- Title – Most Important Work
Writing your title is the most important task that requires spending more time – a minimum of two hours. Bizarre??? If you have a profound experience in writing titles, you can consume less time, else take your time to deliver a finely crafted title.
- Length Vs Depth – Why It Matters?
You should focus on the depth of the content rather than its length as it will help to rank in several ways. It avoids duplicity in your content by meeting the minimum uniqueness threshold.
In-depth content results in more “about” a particular topic. If your content is more “about”, it will be able to answer more search queries and thus earns more traffic. Hence, longer in-depth content transmits relevancy signals.
Furthermore, longer quality content correlates to more links and higher rankings.
- Content Qualities You Can Bank On
Without focusing on word count, you won’t be able to add quality depth to your content. It is well known that Google uses guidelines to churn out good content from bad. SEOs know how Google may define quality involving certain metrics, such as reading level, spelling, grammar, and Author Rank.
- LDA & Words On The Page
Google can’t understand your page the way humans can. However, it is getting close. Search engines leverage sophisticated algorithms to model your sentences, paragraphs, blocks, and content section and understand your keywords, topic, intent, and expertise.
So, how will you know whether your content fits Google’s model of expectations? Using certain words around a topic associated with concepts like LDA is correlated with higher rankings.
- Better Than LDA – Poor Man’s Topic Modeling
Use keyword themes to structure your content. Since you have already researched closely related keyword groups from Google’s keyword tool, incorporating these topics into your content may help in increasing your relevancy to your given topic.
- Design Is 50% Of The Battle
You should spend your money on design as a good design has a lower bounce rate, increased page views, and increased time on site; earns more links; establishes trust, thus earns higher ranking.
- Content Hubs
Successful websites generally contain multiple pages. “What’s on your page? What are the pages around it? Which pages are linking to it?” – considering all these things, Google determines the context and relevance. It is far easier to rank when you create Content Hubs exploring several topics (focused around a central theme) in depth.
- Linking The Hub Together
Since your pages explore different aspects (content topics) of the same broad topic, you must now link them together. Linking will help them to rank by distributing PageRank, anchor text, and other relevancy signals.
- Find Your Center
Content Hub works best with a center or hub. Let assume the center as a master document that provides an overview of all your content pages, i.e., acts as a gateway.
Hub is the authority page. It is often a link bait page or a category level page. This page has the most inbound links and often used as a landing page for other sections of your site.
- Master The Basics
If you are new to SEO, you must learn it using some tool that can classify various on-page SEO elements and give the report and suggestions on how to fix each element. This is an excellent way to learn SEO.
- Linking Internally For The Reasonable Surfer
Since all links are not equal, you must consider a few important points while interlinking your internal pages within your content hub:
- Links from inside unique content have more value than navigation links
- Links at the top of the page have more value than links at the bottom.
- Links in HTML text have more weightage than image links.
You must link your content naturally and editorially to other places on the web.
- Diversify Your Anchor Test – Naturally
Linking content naturally and editorially to other places on the web helps diversify your anchor text. The same is applicable for linking internally.
Always select your anchor text to fit the content around it and not to fit your keywords. It means link internally – mix partial match keywords and related phrases. You can link occasionally without good keywords in the anchor. However, the link can still pass relevancy signals. You can under-do but not over-do linking.
- Title Tags – Two Quick Tips
Using “keywords” in the title tag is the highly correlated on-page ranking factor. There are two things to consider while crafting your title tags – avoid boilerplates, and avoid unnecessary repetition.
Never tack on your business phrase or main keywords to the end of every title tag. It is no longer a good idea. You must ensure to make every title as unique as possible.
Avoid Unnecessary Repetition
Earlier a keyword was not supposed to be repeated more than twice in the title. But now, you must not repeat it more than once.
- Over-Optimization: Titles, URLs, and Links
Writing for humans will lead to higher rankings because the content gets more clicks. Also, the content will rarely get you in trouble with search engines.
As an SEO, you would want to exactly match your title tags, URLs, etc. But, this is unnatural in the real world, and Google will recognize this.
Thus, you should not over-optimize; instead, diversify.
- Structured Data
You must include the structured data (such as reviews, business information, events, etc.) on each webpage because its future value can be seen in rich snippet SERPs and social media sharing. It is an absolute necessity in some verticals.
In case you are not creating webpages with structured data, you are lagging behind time.
- 90/10 Rule
90/10 rule indicates 90% efforts should be in content creation and 10% into building links. In case you did not put the desired effort into content creation, you will face a hard time building links. It means good content can solve your problems to a great extent as it makes building links easier, attracts high-quality links in less time, and builds links on its own even when not working (while sleeping or during vacation).
In case you are new to marketing, you may require to spend more than 10% of your time building relationships. That doesn’t mean you should compromise on creating valuable content.
- Link Building is Building Relationship
There are multiple ways to build quality links to every good project. You may consider link building resources like Citation Labs, Promoted Tweets, etc. that can give you the basic tools and tactics for a successful link building campaign. However, you must know that all good link building is relationship building to become successful; hence, foster each relationship and connection.
- Always Tier Your Link Building
Link building never ends for professionals. Each content and link building campaign layers on top of the previous content and the web.
You should link to great resources and build links for the best user experience possible. If this is done correctly, the search engines will reward you with higher rankings.
Although creating a blueprint is a long process, you will have to deep dive into it.
Follow the right steps and tools to identify the right keywords for your website.
Further, build your SEO strategy through the keywords and develop the on-page and off-page SEO campaign to compete against the bigger and more established competitors.
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