Keyword Research

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What Is Keyword Research

Time required: 5m
Lesson URL:
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

In this lesson we will cover:

  • Why you need keyword research to be successful at SEO
  • Where to use keywords in practice
  • Understand how to apply keyword research

Keyword research allows you to bridge the gap between what your potential customers are searching for and the content you create for your website. It can also help to map out the structure of your website so that keywords are targeted appropriately across the onsite SEO elements of a page.

The goal is to end up with a list of keywords which are:

  • Searched for
  • Relevant to your services or products
  • Likely to bring visitors who are likely to convert into customers

What To Do With the Keywords After You Have a List

Other modules and lessons will go into a lot of detail about how to use the keywords you find. But we will briefly explain a few points here to help give some context as to where you’ll be using these keywords.

Once you have these keywords, you will use them in a number of ways:

  • Generate content ideas
  • Help you define your link building strategy
  • Define the structure of your website
  • Incorporate them into the various on-page SEO elements


Generate Content Ideas

Once you can identify the keywords your target customers are searching for, you can write content based upon these keywords. You will want to create content around your informational keywords as well as the transactional ones. We explain more about this below in the “Understanding Types of Keywords” lesson.


Help You Define Your Link Building Strategy

Links to your website will contain “anchor text” which is the portion of text that you click on. The search engines use this anchor text as a ranking signal and will use it to help them classify what the page being linked to is about. Generally speaking, you want to make sure that some (not all) of your links include your target keywords. This will help you rank in search results for these keywords.


Define the Structure Of Your Website

The research you conduct will help you define which categories you want to use and what the sub-categories will be. For example, if you sell leather sofas and this is a popular keyword, you may want to include a category called "leather sofas." You may then find that a lot of people search for “corner leather sofas,” so you may want to make this a sub-category of leather sofas.


Incorporate Them Into the Various On-page SEO Elements

When a user types in a search, Google typically relies on HTML elements to match the content on your site to that specific query. Without optimizing key HTML elements (title, body content, headers etc..), you won't be able to rank, it's as simple as that.

For now, the following diagram should help explain the basics of which elements need keyword research attention:


Here's how that page would look in Google search results:

User Intent

Ultimately you want to attract visitors who are going to convert into customers, if you can identify keywords which will lead to more conversions, you are more likely to see a good ROI.

Google in particular is becoming much more advanced at predicting the intent of searchers. For example, if you search for "apple," are you looking for the fruit or the technology company? Through a lot of user testing and machine learning, Google has determined that its users are probably looking for the technology company. Hence Apple's #1 position on Google.

While you do not have much control over this, user intention should be a priority when you are choosing and filtering your keywords. You want to be targeting keywords where the intention is likely to lead to a conversion for your business.

The Value of Keyword Research

Time required: 5m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Understanding Types of Keywords

Time required: 15m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Introducing the Google Keyword Tool

Time required: 45m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Building Your First Seed Keyword List

Time required: 30m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Grouping Keywords by Category

Time required: 30m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Expanding Your Keyword List

Time required: 1h 30m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Giving Keywords Value (search volume)

Time required: 1 hour
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Understanding and Calculating Keyword Relevancy

Time required: 30m
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Resources & Tools

Time required: 1 hour
Teacher: Dave Sottimano

Q & A: Test Your Knowledge

Time required: 10m
Teacher: Paddy Moogan

Curated Resources

Time required: 1 hour
Teacher: Will Critchlow