Understanding the use of keywords is integral to success in search engine optimization. Keywords are the foundation for all online initiatives so choose them wisely and use them well!

1. Pick the RIGHT words

One of the best seo keyword tools for do it yourself SEO keyword analysis is Google Adwords — it’s free but you need a Google account to use it. This valuable tool can tell you how many people are searching for a word of phrase (volume) and how many others want to rank for it (competition).

Start by thinking what you would type into a search engine to find your product or service. Avoid industry jargon. Use the suggested keywords in the Adwords tool to find those that best describe your business with realistic levels of search volume and competition. Our infographic for selecting the best keywords gives you more details. Keywords are so important that we give all UpCity subscribers a free keyword consultation.

2. Be realistic

Many people new to SEO make the mistake of selecting hugely popular search terms. Who doesn’t want to be on page 1 of search results for ‘computer repair’ with 164,000 monthly searches?! But the reality of a new small business website ranking for one of these high-volume terms is infinitesimal. Start small and aim to land on page 1 for a relevant, targeted term that just 70 people are searching. Better that 70 people find you than none. Narrow the word selection with modifiers and location whenever possible — ‘PC Computer Maintenance Naperville’ is much more realistic.

3. Go local

Back my example of a broad search term like ‘computer repair’. There is no reason a small computer repair business that only operates in Naperville, wants to be in competition with ones in Miami, New York, or Los Angeles. If you are a local business, use local SEO to your advantage.

4. Use keywords across the web

Now that you have your keywords, where do they go? Start with incorporation into your web page — title tag, meta data, and body copy. Use them in the exact string as originally selected. It’s also important to use your keywords on all your marketing and communication efforts across the web — blog posts, social media blasts, e-newsletters, site articles.

Keyword targeting is NOT a one-time shot, the mass of information (pages, posts, social media, images) around your targeted keywords counts more.

5. Hyperlinks matter

So now … you’ve found the right keywords, your local business is included as needed, the exact keywords are included on your site and listed on all other marketing efforts across the web. Perfect! Well, almost.

Hyperlinks are another area that have a big impact with search engines. Those keyword rich hyperlinks tell crawlers exactly what the content is that you are linking to and adds authority to your site. Rather than links to information saying ‘click here’, hyperlinks coming to you and on your internal pages with the targeted phrase ‘PC Computer Repair Naperville‘ is much more effective.

6. Revisit your keywords regularly

The marketplace changes. New trends, products, or competition can alter the playing field in SEO keyword optimization. Every three months or so, go back to the adwords tool to see how your targeted terms are faring with volume and competition. Remember that SEO results improve over time, give yourself several months to test your keywords and see how you are faring.

Do a reality check. Google your keyword phrase and see what comes up. The results immediately tells you what you’re up against. Look at the compeitor’s site and the information they use to rank in the top spots. Review and adjust your efforts regularly.

7. Quality wins

You’ve heard of keyword stuffing. The practice of hammering as many keywords into a body of text as possible. This practice is bad in the eyes of search engines and your visitors don’t appreciate it either. The goal for successful content is to produce a piece of text that is keyword friendly for engines and humans. Overall quality of the entire text is just as important as how the keywords are used in it.

Do it yourself SEO is extremely attainable with the right tools and keyword strategy. We see clients go from the bottom of the pile, to the first page in search engines all of the time with best-practice tactics. Do-it-yourself or we can do-it-for-you, either way be sure you start with seo keyword optimization.