Is keyword research still Important for SEO in 2023? The answer is a clear yes!
Keyword research is the basis for any SEO strategy. Without it, SEOs and webmasters might be blindly creating content without any relevance to your business.
In this article, you’ll find five reasons why keyword research is still important and relevant for SEO. In the final part of this article, we’ll provide some effective tips for keyword research that you can use while conducting your own research on keywords.
What is Keyword Research?
Before we determine the reasons why keyword research is important to SEO, let’s clarify the term “keyword research”.
Keyword research refers to the method of identifying the most popular phrases and words that users type into search engines to find the information they’re seeking for.
For Example, if you own a personal trainer company, conducting keyword research will assist you in finding terms like ” men’s chest workouts”, ” best exercises to lose fat” etc.
The research of keywords is the very first step that all marketers and webmasters should follow when creating any content for their own website or client.
With that being said, let’s discuss why keyword research is important for any SEO marketing campaign.
Understanding Search Intent
Search engines are evolving at a rate much faster than ever before. The application of artificial technology and machine-learning has enabled search engines to identify the intent of a search with incredibly precise accuracy. This advancement has resulted in the ability to assess whether a website is able to answer the purpose of an inquiry.
Google currently has data on billions of searches, where they analyze what a user looks up and clicks on, the time the user spends on the site visited and every gory little detail of the engagement between the user and the website. Using this data Google establishes, which website to rank as the “best answer” for the query of the user.
Understanding search intent lies at the core of comprehending what the user is looking for while typing their query as a keyword. If you are aware of what they are looking for and want to fulfill their search, you should create content that addresses that query in the form of blog or rich media content.
Keyword research is the method of determining the subjects, the keywords and the level of credibility required for your website to be the best answer to a search result.
Benchmark The Strength of Your Competition
A significant part of determining the intention behind an internet search is by analyzing the Top 10 websites for that particular search. Discern similarities among the most popular pages and determine aspects that contribute to them being on the first result page of Google.
For example, if the search term you’re looking to rank on appears on 10 pages of huge white paper essays, it’s likely that you’ll require extremely long-form content in order to rank on the first page.
The competitive analysis goes beyond simply analyzing the type of content. It involves deeply examining backlink profiles. One is also recommended to acknowledge the domain authority, the higher the authority, the more credible it seems to the search engines’ algorithm. Be aware they domain authority along with the number of backlinks play an important role in determining your ranking on the SERP.
However, there is an exception to this rule if you follow a strong content marketing strategy. We have witnessed increasing numbers of websites that are offered the opportunity to be in the top results if their content is exceptional and optimized to meet the real purpose of an internet search.
If people respond and are engaged with the content of a website with low domain authority the website could still hold its position until it has backlinks to keep its ranking. If the content isn’t engaging, the site is taken off the top of the results, giving other websites the chance of becoming “the best answer to search intent.” This process can be attributed as one of the many functions of Rankbrain, Google’s Artificial Intelligence which plays a significant part in your ranking on the first page.
However, the backlinks and domain authority of the most popular pages remain a crucial aspect to consider when deciding to prioritize the keyword in your plan. Certain keywords take longer to be on the first page due to the traffic these keywords generate. The profile of backlinks and the domain authority of your competitors give you a fair idea of how powerful your competition is in the specific keyword.
Develop Keyword Options
Google says that there are nearly 17% of the total search results that have never been seen previously. This implies that the method people search is changing constantly and lies in the vast majority of long-tail search terms.
The term “long tail” is usually described as having the combination of three or four keywords together in an online search. With the introduction of voice search and long-tail keywords, they are becoming longer as searches become more conversational.
To create the best method to use keywords, you need options.
While Google is ranked according to keyword topics, optimizing for the targeted keywords can aid your site’s ranking at the top of the list. Keyword research involves finding the most searched-for terms along with some options which have the same purpose. Achieving a balance between the strength of your competition, the amount of traffic, and your site’s status is an essential to your keyword formulating strategy.
Establish a Keyword Strategy
The purpose of SEO is to produce content that ranks and brings users to your website throughout their decision-making journey. As a lead-generating asset your site should focus on keywords that generate traffic at the awareness stage, considering stage, and decision-making stage.
Keyword research can help you discover keywords that your website is not being ranked for currently but can be a source of traffic. Keywords within “striking distance” are considered to be ones in the positions between 11-20 (which occurs on the 2nd page in the search results). There’s less work required on these pages, compared to starting with a blank slate, and they can be considered short-term objectives in your strategy for keywords.
Moving a page’s rank from the second to the first page can be accomplished by enhancing the content, increasing the efficiency, and constructing internal or external hyperlinks. Finding traffic opportunities like these are typically discovered during search engine optimization.
Keywords that need new content or developing a topic cluster are part of the long-term strategy. Because content must be published, optimized, and have links built around it, it can take a long time to get it on one of the top results pages.
Ideally, the SEO campaign should have both long and short term goals to drive traffic.
Consequences of Bad Keyword Research
While highlighting how crucial search engine optimization it is vital to address how bad keyword research could result in serious problems.
- Empty content- If you’re breaking down content writing to its bare bones it all boils down to one point to make it shareable. If your content is aiming at the wrong keywords, or generic keywords, it’s possible that it won’t be ranked highly, or perhaps at all.
- People can’t find you– Again, similar to the previous issue, if people aren’t getting to you, you’re going to have a hard time selling your business or product. Make sure you are up to date on your research into keywords.
- Non-qualified leads Utilizing keywords that are not specifically targeted to your website will draw an unqualified audience. Although people might be landing on your website however, your conversion rate is likely to be non-existent. It’s crucial to improve your keyword research to ensure your bounce rate isn’t bouncing out into the depths insanity.