Identifying Keywords for On-Page SEO

11.01.2016 |

Episode #2 of the course “SEO Fundamentals” by HubSpot Academy


There are many factors that search engines take into account when “crawling” your pages and trying to understand them, so let’s dive into some SEO strategies and best practices.

One top factor, and the first element of SEO to focus on, is your use of keywords. This is a part of what’s called on-page SEO—optimizing the pages of your website.

Keywords are the words typed into search engines. Basically, they’re the topics that searchers are trying to learn more about.

In order to attract those strangers to your content, you need to do research to figure out which keywords relate to your business and your industry.

Your research should always begin with your buyer personas. Your personas represent the searchers who will become your visitors, leads, and ultimately, customers and promoters. You need to determine who they are, what their goals are, and what problems they face so that you can begin to understand what they’re searching for.

Put yourself in their shoes and make a list of keywords that they would search for.

Let’s say your business makes smart phone accessories, including a waterproof phone case called the “Smart Phone Preserver.” And let’s say that one of your buyer personas is a teenager—let’s call him Luke.

If Luke drops his phone in a puddle, he has a problem. So what are the common industry questions he might ask? He might start by searching for “drying out a smart phone”—looking for general industry knowledge.

Next, what questions might Luke have that your company provides solutions for? He may not know to search for your exact product yet, but he might start by searching for “waterproof smart phone cases.”

Finally, what questions might Luke have when deciding to buy your waterproof case? He might be searching for phrases like “Smart Phone Preserver case reviews.” This is a great opportunity to gather information from your sales team—what are the most common questions they get?

By going through Luke’s thought process, you can come up with a list of keywords like “drying out a smart phone,” “waterproof smart phone cases,” and “Smart Phone Preserver case reviews.”

As you make this list, categorize the keywords by the stages of the buyer’s journey. Industry problem-based keywords are part of the awareness stage. Keywords that your company provides solutions to are part of the consideration stage. And keywords around deciding to buy are part of the decision stage.

Now, while you’re brainstorming, make sure to try and mimic the language that your buyer personas would actually use in their searches.

Keep in mind that language may vary in different parts of the world. What is “soda” in one part might be “pop” or “cola” in another.

You can see that there are many keyword phrases that you could include in your list, but you’ll only attract your buyer personas with the ones that speak their language.


Recommended book

“Search Engine Optimization All-in-One For Dummies” by Bruce Clay


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