Effectively build a keyword list

There are a multitude of factors that should be considered when you optimize your web site. When developing great web copy that will provide valuable visitor information and great natural search engine results, begin by building a keyword list. Here are a few ideas to help get your keyword research started.

Here are the steps I use to optimize a website:

1. Identify website themes.
Look for brand names of the products or services that are unique to that particular website. Remember, the website name itself is a brand name too. Then determine the main themes of the website.

2. Create a keyword list
Write down all the keywords related to the brand and themes of the website site. Try to also include keyword phrases in your keyword research. There may be millions of web sites that are similar; therefore you need to sharpen your focus. Search for the niche keywords and keyword phrases that support your brand and main themes. If your niche is too competitive you will have a harder time getting high search engine rankings. Ideally you want your site to appear on the first page for one of the major search engines…Google, MSN, ASK or Yahoo.

3. Use a keyword selector tool.
Pick related keywords, these are words that are something like the main keyword list you created above. You may be able to blend them into the content of your site as it grows. Keywords that have a very narrow focus may not be a popular search term. When I broaden my search to comprise themes and categories, I repeatedly find hundreds of words that relate to the topics that work with my keyword list. To find out how often people are searching on the identified keywords you need to use a keyword selector tool.

I use a combination of both free and paid tools. The real work is understanding the keyword selector tool and the results that they generate. It’s not always the highest search results that will give you the best keywords.

Keys to successful writing for the web

Understanding that content and written articles meant for business print does not invariably render suitably to the online universe of effective writing for the web. The rules that work on writing organic web content for online business websites are different than those for business text articles; excellent content created off-line does not consequently measure up to quality natural web copy for the small business website.

Three keys for writing successful natural web copy:

1. Be brief. Because most web readers skim through pages, write less content. Independent research has shown that many readers prefer to scan an article before reading it thoroughly. Keep your organic web content short, less than 500 words; this may allow more people to read the complete web content, perhaps resulting in more returning visitors to your business website. Include only the most vital points or calls to action that you want to make; text is more difficult to read online, so keep it short and sweet.

2. Make the most of headings and lists. People are willing to scan natural web copy and web articles instead of reading them verbatim from the first word to the last. Produce content that is easy for the visitor to find what they’re looking for by using headings, bold type, and lists. Understandable cleanly written lists makes it easier to skim through web content and let them read only what they are truly interested in.

3. Create clear “calls to action’ and links. One of the main tools that breeds successful writing for the web is to take advantage of the reality that print writers don’t have is the ability to link to other applicable sources. Organic web content such as text or images; can be linked to other web pages, photos, videos, sounds, and other significant natural web copy. Make your links stand out by making them obvious. A universal way to highlight a text link is by using a different color from the standard text and by providing a hover effect, such as underlining the link and changing it’s color, when the reader’s place their cursor over the highlighted link.

Using the steps highlighted above and including links to resource pages, news articles, audio and video, forums, and white papers helps develop meaningful natural web copy. Your website visitors can decide which links to follow and which links to skip using your web article as their basis of information on that specific topic. When successfully writing for the web, your readers should feel that reading your organic web content enhanced their reading experience!

Plan Your Website

The subsequent article contains information that will assist you when you build a web site. When I speak with clients regarding their
business websites, I strongly recommend that when they create a web site, it needs to uphold their business objectives. To me, their professional website is an extension of their overall business and must support their business objectives. Following a review of their overall enterprise objectives and evaluating their website, I then address some of these issues:

  • How will their business make money?
  • Who is their primary intended audience?
  • What do they want their business website to accomplish?
  • How can their web site be used to help their business?

If your are looking to make your own web site out of necessity, will you ponder this, too many professional sites are poorly planned and not very well thought out leaving these sites under-utilized. A successful business website is a more than just a nice design. To many business owners, it’s better to build a web site, any website, no matter how poorly it is thought out and designed. To be truly successful online, and generate ROI, you must look at how your website will positively support your business.

When your business is all web-based, it is much more important to identify your website’s objectives and how it will support your small business. A well designed and clearly defined website operating a web-based business will not distract your visitors, it will draw their eyes to those actions which make your business money.

Clearly identified “calls to action” are critically important your overall plan and to website conversions. When you build a web site, remember that success and value from your web site must be monitored and measured. Your website metrics should support the core metrics of your overall business. As an example of a metric, you might want to measure the number of unique website visitors to the number of website generated leads.

I hope this information above was useful. Thanks for reading, and if you make your own web site or have it done professionally, good luck creating a successful website that supports your business objectives.