Performing a correct keyword analysis for SEO competition is the very first step in planning a new media venture. It is the initial observation and orientation factor that needs to happen before anything else. Even before you plan you product and develop a branding strategy.
We will take our cue from two key authors in this field and we will apply their advice to a research we want to do in the field of senior care in the USA.
The first author is Barry Feldman an expert in copywriting that has put together a basic guide on SEO for content marketers titled SEO Simplified for Short Attention Spans: Learn the Essentials of Search Engine Optimization in Under an Hour. The second author is Adam Clarke who is a Google certified SEO specialist and author of SEO 2016 Learn Search Optimization With Smart Internet Marketing Strategies.
From what we have learned studying their texts, you need to observe what people are looking for before you commit to a specific content plan and marketing plan. You need to know what type of help they need and which kind of product or service you can provide for that.
Essentially you figure out what they want so to be able to reach them and provide them a product or service and then you also need to figure out what they really need (which they might not know or not tell) so that you will make sure that your product or service provides for both.
In the previous two articles we have seen how to use a free tool, Google Keyword Planner which is used for planning AdWords (advertising campaigns) to locate what competitors are bidding on in terms of paid keywords (see An Amazing Free Tool for Internet Marketing Optimization and An Amazing Free Tool for Internet Marketing Optimization – part 2).
We have applied the advice provided by a very basic SEO book, we have gotten an overall idea of our exploration field which we have decided to be elder care in the United States.
Long Tail Keywords Versus Short Keywords
Now it is time to see what people are actually looking for. Let’s explore a key concept of SEO literature: Long Tail Keyword versus short keywords. A long tail keyword is a keyword phrase containing several words. It is typically at least 3 or 4 words long, but it can be definitely longer. It is used to target more specific searches.
Its contrasts with Head-term keyword or just Head keyword which contains only 1 or 2 words. For example care and elder care are both head-term keywords. You expect to have more traffic and competition on head keywords and you generally do.
Here is a infographic that summarizes the key factors that are associated with long tail keywords.
And here is a second infographic that explains you why it is not always wise to use them.
So we see this is a highly controversial field. Let’s see an example of how it might work and how to look for alternatives.
An example of long tail keyword is elder care florida. Let’s do some research and see where we arrive at.
We will use some free tools offered by SEO consulting company MOZ. The first one is Keyword Explorer. You can try it for free at this address and the you can subscribe to it if you like it.
Let’s feed it elder care, which is a head keyword, and see what happens.
We see that there is a lot of traffic but it is also a fairly difficult area to compete in. There is opportunity and potential if you have the money to force your way through with AdWords initially while you build you authority, but it is a difficult road.
Exploring the Long Tail Keyword Potential
Let’s see elder care Florida which is a long tail keyword, although not very long and we get the following:
The traffic is much lower, but still interesting and the difficulty has decreased, while the opportunity has increased markedly. The potential is lower because the traffic is so much lower than the head keyword above but it is still fairly good.
This is an area worth investigating, but before diving into it let’s get a wider view and see if we can get other keywords suggestions related to this subject.
Keyword Suggestions to Widen Your Exploration
The next step is to therefore to Keyword Explorer to give us suggestions for alternative keywords. We get one thousand ideas neatly laid out so that we can select the best for us.
Most relevant alternatives with the highest volume:
florida elder care – volume 51 – 100
assisted living florida – volume 201 – 500
florida senior services – volume 51 – 100
eldercare (just one word) volume 851 – 1.7K
florida senior housing – volume 51 – 100
Still very relevant alternatives with the highest volume:
care tallahassee – volume 51 -100
senior housing florida – volume 51 – 100
Bit less relevant alternatives with the highest volume:
elderly care – volume 2.9K – 4.3K
florida elder law – volume 51 – 100
elder care jacksonville fl – volume 51 – 100
elder helpline – volume 51 – 100
elder care services tallahassee – volume 101 – 200
elder care tallahassee – volume 51 – 100
elderly services – volume 201 – 500
care florida – volume 201 – 500
There would be more alternatives possible but they would be less relevant and our research would become more complex. So, for the time being, we are happy with what we have.
So lets try eldercare (all one word) that has come out of the research we just did and we get the following graph:
The picure above shows the scores obtained by researching the keyword eldercare.
It looks like it has a totally different profile as compared to the other keywords we have found and indeed it is a different type of keyword.
Navigational Keywords Are Different
Lets refer to SEO 2016 by Adam Clarke, one of the best SEO manuals available out there. We discover that eldercare is actually a navigational keyword. These are keywords used to locate a particular brand or web site, and indeed we do have at least three web sites that uses this word as their main name. It is part of the domain name they are using.
We can locate them with the SERP Analysis area provided by MOZ Keyword Explorer. It is a report on the Search Engine Results Page produced by the search engine in response to our keyword.
Among the first three organic results on the SERP we find www.eldercare.gov and www.eldercare.com. If we look further we find www.eldercare.org and www.eldercare.net. So there is a substantial traffic associated with this keyword because people are using it to find specific web sites and they are getting used to employ it as a single word.
In a following article we will delve more into it, to check the feasibility of using this particular keyword for writing content and to run an AdWords campaign.
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