A lot is written about keyword research and there are many websites which give a list of probable search queries related to a particular service / product / industry. But, to determine the perfect list of search queries which the targeted segment is actually using and which will maximize the inbound traffic is a challenging task for the website owners and SEOs .
The next daunting task is to keep the blog active with regular, topical, relevant and fresh content which calls for preparing a list of blog post ideas to fill the editorial calendar.
I am not a type of SEO who spends a lot of time on keyword research as I think if the content on the website is written keeping the user in mind, then half the battle is won. The other half which is the search engines is taken care of if the content is informative, unique and the technical SEO is up to the mark.
As the competition on the web goes on increasing and the search engine index goes on widening multi-fold on a daily or rather hourly basis, achieving an extensive search presence for a business and at the same time getting that presence correlated to increasing number of search queries on a regular basis is becoming more and more important.
Hence, instead of focusing on coming up with a list of probable keywords you want to rank for, let us divert our attention to the categories in which the search queries can be divided. Each category will have a list of key phrases you want the website to rank for.
Every industry more or less has the following categories for the search queries:
- Brand Searches
- Questions about the product / service / brand
- Differentiation between two or more products of the same company or different companies
- Same product referred to by different names across the globe
- Exact Match Searches
- Phonetic Spelling Mistakes
- Need Based Search Queries
- Descriptive / adjective based searches
- Local intent search queries or queries with a mention of a country name.
- Queries which have a mention of a specific format of content.
- People’s names searches ( team members and their profiles)
- Price Related Searches
- Review & Ratings Searches
- Profession Search Queries
Brand searches are the most common type of searches from people who already know about your brand or from those people who have heard about your brand via some friends or social media. As the number of brand searches increase, it positively impacts SEO. Hence if you are not having a prominent search presence for your brand search query then you need to work on that first. If people who have heard about your brand , search your brand name and cannot find your presence on the first page of the search engine then they will stop looking further and if they find your website URL , social media URLs , blog post URLs, etc. On the first page then they will look no further .
Questions about the product / service / brand
These type of searches have shown an increasing trend recently. Search has become more conversational and people consider a search engine as an assistant and what it to answer the questions they have. Right from a primary school kid who has questions about the project that he has to submit to his teacher to the high end professional who needs to take decisions on critical matters , all turn to Google for answers.
Hence, if people have questions about the product you deal then having a search presence for questions related to it is highly important. As it is always better that the people seeking answers to their queries related to your product get their answers from your company website only. This increases the trust factor and you are also assured that the information gathered by the searcher about your product is correct.
We have written a detailed blog post on :
Queries regarding differentiation between two or more products of the same company or different companies
It is very common for people to search how one product is different from another.
- Samsung Galaxy s6 v/s iphone 6
- Samsung Galaxy s6 v/s Samsung Galaxy s6 Edge
Hence when a company launches a new product it is important to have content regarding how the new product compares as to the previous product the company has. If you have a search presence for this type of a query then again the people get the information from your website rather than from some other general website which curates content regarding these topics and ranks better on search engines.
Same product referred to by different names across the globe :
Many times a single product is referred to by different names across different countries. For e.g:
Edible oil is referred as cooking oil or vegetable oil in many countries. So if you want to target the global market and your site is about edible oil refineries then care should be taken to see that the website has a good search presence for edible oil refineries , cooking oil refineries and vegetable oil refineries.
Exact Match Searches:
These are very common type of searches for products which are very famous or are in vogue. For example a teenager searching for Air Max 2015 Black Running Shoes will search for the exact term. Having a good search presence for these type of queries again helps the website owner to target this segment and get inbound traffic to the site. With the number of eCommerce sites mushrooming these days. This kind of segment will get diverted to the third party eCommerce sites which are ranking well for this product.
Phonetic Spelling Mistakes:
There are many terms which are spelt in different ways . For e.g jewelry or jewellery. Trying to have a presence for both the terms helps in reaching out to a wider inbound audience .
Need Based Search Queries:
Every product caters to a certain need of the potential buyer . But, sometimes the searches can be specific as per the immediate requirement. For e.g : green lace bridesmaid dresses, red woollen jacket with black leather sleeves, etc.
These type of search queries cannot be focused on but the content on the site can be specific and in details so that the particular page having this kind of a product can have a chance of catering to these kind of queries on the search engines.
Descriptive / adjective Based Searches:
This is similar to the previous type but here the searcher is not very specific of his need. He may/may not be specific about the color but may just need a dark colored jacket with leather sleeves. Or may just add one adjective to look for a product like – glossy paper , long dresses, beautiful designer sarees, etc.
Local intent search queries or queries with a mention of a country name
Local search of course is different than organic search and the factors too vary but if you want to target the local market then one cannot rely only by having a good presence in the local search results but also focus on organic search for search queries which have a local intent.
For e.g: if you have a page 1 presence in the local search results for SEO Ahmedabad then it is good but as the local search results are volatile in nature,ranking for such a query in the organic search results also is a wise decision. Many people ignore this in favour of targeting the global market which is not a wise decision.
Queries which have a mention of a specific format of content:
Many people search for something and they want it in PDF format or some other specific format. For e.g leave application form pdf format , what is a blog – ppt, etc.
Having content in various formats like text, videos, podcasts, PDFs, PPTs, etc. And having a good search presence for all these formats also helps in reaching out to a wider audience. It is not necessary to have the same content in different formats on one website but these formats should by published on relevant platforms like the videos on the Youtube channel of the company, PPTs on slideShare, PDFs in the downloads section of the website, etc. This way the digital assets of the company also increase and the company has a wider presence across the web.
People’s names/Proper Noun Searches:
We all know that people do Google names to find out more about them. Hence , if your website has a page for team members or their names are mentioned on the contact page then the relevant page have a potential for search presence when those names are searched. Hence, updating the pages as and when people are appointed or when they leave the organization is advisable. Else, people searching for those names can get a right/wrong impression about the company .
Price Related Searches:
People do search for products specifying the price or the range of the price that they want to buy the product for. Hence, if microformats are used for specifying pricing the potential for ranking for such search queries increases.
Review & Ratings Searches:
With social media becoming the rage on the web, people want to rely more on what others have to say about the product/service rather than what the company has to say about their product/service. Hence , having a ratings and reviews section where people can login and publish their opinion is always beneficial and having microformats on the page for ratings and reviews helps search engines index them in the right format and correlate it for a better search presence.
Profession Search Queries:
There are many searches made related to professions . For e.g – Eye Surgeons in India, doctors in New York, Neurologists, etc. getting backlinks If you run a hospital and perform LASIK surgeries the most common search term targeted would be LASIK eye surgery , Laser eye surgery, etc. But if the website page which has the detailed biodata of the doctor also ranks for the queries like eye surgeons, ophthalmologists, eye doctor, etc. it helps in reaching out to a wider inbound audience.
How to determine the topics for the next editorial calendar after the search query analysis:
Once the type of search queries you think you want your online presence to cater to is decided, the next step is to determine the landing pages which can be selected for the search queries category-wise .
- Check which pages are already having a good search presence for which search query.
- List out the search queries which are not having a search presence.
- Try to improvise on the content of the existing pages shortlisted thus or add new pages to target them.
- If you think that adding more content on the website is not possible then write blog posts focusing those search queries which are not yet having the desired search presence.
- Select a topic related to that search query, write in-depth content on it and publish the blog post.
This exercise not only gives us clarity about the targeted search presence which has yet to be achieved but also gives us an idea to plan the topics for the content calendar.
The blog is a platform where you can write fresh content on a regular basis. If the content is fresh, unique, in-depth and informative then the search presence surely gets a boost by targeting additional search queries. This also helps in establishing the identity of the company as a thought leader for that relevant industry.