Website development and designing takes a lot of time, effort, and money, therefore can be a total waste of resources if no one visits it. However, it will not be a waste of time and money if you optimized your website for the search engines by wise choice of keywords. With the right use of the right keywords and key phrases, be guaranteed that your website will rank among the top in the search engine results and thus drive the much needed traffic towards your site.

First and foremost therefore, you should be in a position to clearly identify your target audience to be able to know the most likely key phrases and keywords that they are likely to use when searching for your website online. Your first course of action therefore should be to collect as many keywords and key phrases as possible – words that are as closely related to your service or products as possible and which are of course relevant.

After that, you should analyze the words based on their competitiveness, popularity, and limitations, all which are determined by advanced search methods. As per this analysis and with your target audience in mind, you can then narrow down the list by choosing the most relevant keywords and then of course incorporate the keywords in your site by using them on the HTML code, all the tags as well as on the content.

The criteria of choosing keywords related to the services and products you are marketing online can take different turns but the greatest advantage of online marketing is the ability to target a specific niche audience, hence your keyword research should target this. The length of the keywords you choose is another criterion, where people place more value on lengthy keywords than single word keywords.

Adding words like ‘affordable’ ‘discount’ and ‘cheap’ before or after your keyword phrases will also work very effectively, especially at such economic tumultuous times. Be advised that people have a tendency of misspelling some words and as such, you should also include some of the most common misspellings in your site content. Note however that you should use the common misspellings in a way that it will not appear to your visitors as a grammatical error.

There are online keyword research tools like Market Samurai, WordTracker, and Google Insights for Search which can greatly help you in collecting keywords. Further, the tools can help you analyze the competition, search volumes, latest trends, and a lot more on your selected keywords. The simplest way however to check how efficient a keyword is should be to search for the keyword on any of the search engines and look at the results that will be generated.

You will discover that if a keyword gives you more results, it will be very hard to get sufficient traffic from that keyword. Common keywords are way too competitive while less popular keywords, although they will give you the top search engine results that you want, they will drive less traffic to your site as they are rarely used by your target audience. This is where keyword research comes into play to be able to help you find a balance between the two in order to identify keywords and key phrases that will give you a substantial amount of traffic with little or no competition.

Boiled down, keyword research should be a continuous process and not a one-off thing when starting out your online marketing campaign.