Basic SEO for Beginners: Part 1 Keyword Research

Nicole Sison - November 4, 2019

For those new to the world of SEO, setting up a website and getting to the top of search engine rankings may seem like a daunting and complicated task. While it is true that understanding the inner workings of Search Engine Optimization can be a time-consuming and research heavy process, it doesn’t take much to learn the basics to get started on improving your websites.

We have outlined some simple steps to get you started with your SEO work in this short guide. Specifically, our guide teaches readers how to:

  • Conduct Keyword Research to find out what your target market is searching for
  • Assess your website’s content and improve your On-Page SEO 
  • Set up your website’s content structure and Internal Links
  • Build Backlinks with other websites to establish your site’s authority
  • Track and measure your SEO performance and success

Ready? Take a deep breath and keep reading.

Keyword Research and Getting to Know your Customers- What are your customers searching for?

Getting to know your target market is an essential first step in any marketing strategy including SEO planning. Knowing what keywords your customers are inclined to type into any search engine forms the basis of choosing your campaign’s target keywords.

First, find out the top searched words and phrases customers use to learn more about your line of business

Before you can start working towards optimizing your web pages, you first need to know what you are optimizing for. In SEO, keywords are words or phrases people use to search for web content that is relevant to their needs or problems. 

For example, if your business involves making websites for clients in Singapore, some keywords your ideal customers may be searching for might be:

Google's search engine prediction results for web design SEO keywords

  • “Web design services in Singapore”
  • “Website design”
  • “How to create a website”

By just typing some of your ideas into a search engine, you may even find more common words like,

web design search results showing most common keywords for SEO

So logically, you would want to include the most commonly used keywords in your website’s content to ensure your customers won’t have a hard time finding your business online, right? Unfortunately, things aren’t that simple. There are other factors to consider such as:

    1. Search Volume – What are the most common keywords used by the majority of your ideal customers? Keyword search volume is defined by the number of people using the same terms and phrases to search for content online. The more common the keywords you use, the more people are likely to find your content. Less commonly searched keywords, on the other hand, will reach a smaller audience.
    2. Competition or Keyword Difficulty– How many other companies and businesses are using the same keywords as yours in their SEO campaigns? It’s not enough to use keywords with a high search volume. If a large number of similar businesses are using the same keywords to promote their content then there are more competitors sharing the interest of your target audience. For smaller businesses, this could make it more difficult to rank for certain keywords as larger companies of well-established brand owners.
    3. Relevance – Do the keywords accurately represent the services your company or business offers? No matter how common your keywords are or how low the competition for the same keywords is if they aren’t relevant to your business or the services you offer, there will be less likelihood of reaching ideal customers. Additionally, different groups of people use different terms to search for the same content online. If you use highly technical keywords like “front-end design” to refer to “website layout” then you are less likely to reach web design beginners and people with minimal knowledge about website creation.

Some SEO guides would say making profiles of your target market may be an outdated practice but it still helps to paint a clear picture of the audience your business wants to reach and to plan the kind of content to publish to attract more customers. Getting to know your customers better will not only help you identify what kind of problems they seek to address but it would also help you come up with a better list of initial keywords to start off your SEO campaign.

For many, coming up with a “seed list” of keywords may be enough to get started working on your SEO but is this really enough to plan all the content for your website? Simply using one or two keyword phrases is certainly a great jumpstart but we advise going a step further to cover all your bases. Content creation for your business website shouldn’t just be a few days worth of writing! 

How Long Does it Take to See Changes in Site Rankings?

It can take as long as six months to a full year to even begin to see improvement in your site’s SEO even with the help of an SEO professional. This is especially true for new websites. For startups and new businesses, this also means a lot of time and money spent on trial and error learning throughout the process. Of course, it’s also possible to outsource the task to professional SEO companies like CX Vibrancy, so you can focus on growing your business in the meantime.

Conducting good keyword research is just the first step for many website owners who are serious about getting to that coveted front page of every search engine on the web. In our next post, we’ll be sharing more about the basics of On-Page SEO.

It’s in your hands.

Putting together an SEO campaign is an affordable but time-consuming job that relies on constantly generating quality content for search engines. That’s time away from doing other important stuff like managing your growing business or company. Luckily, SEO service providers like CX Vibrancy aren’t that hard to find. 
There’s no one-size-fits all approach to search engine optimization. Every firm is different. SEO first begins as an outgrowth of your brand and marketing approach. You should have a defined marketing strategy, and remember that SEO is a two-way street. Everything you learn from optimising your search presence can go to your marketing strategy. And if all that trial and error starts to get overwhelming, well, outsourcing your SEO planning to professional service providers is another great option for website owners who are new to the process.

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