As someone involved in SEO for several years, I’ve seen the power of keyword research in boosting a website’s visibility on search engines. When done right, it’s a crucial step that can make a difference in your SEO strategy.
What happens after you’re done with keyword research, though? What are the next steps in ensuring your website climbs the ranks and captures organic traffic?
Let me take you, step by step, through the process of what to do after keyword research.
Step 1: Analyse Your List of Keywords
Your keyword list is like a treasure trove, but not every keyword is created equal. You need to assess which ones will yield the best results. This involves understanding the
search volume and evaluating the keyword difficulty. Tools like Ahrefs can help you with that.
Search volume is the number of times a particular keyword is searched for in a given period. Ideally, you want keywords with a decent search volume but not so competitive that you’ll struggle to rank for them.
The process of analysing your list can be a game-changer. The key here is to choose keywords that balance search volume and competition.
But remember, search volume alone isn’t enough. You also want keywords that are relevant to your content. These keywords should align with the products, services, or information you’re offering, and they should reflect the intent of your potential audience.
Step 2: Group Keywords Into Themes or Topics
Imagine your website as a library. Keywords are like the topics on the shelves, and your content is the books. Now, let’s organise these shelves efficiently!
You must organise your keywords into themes or topics to make your website user-friendly and optimised for search engines.
This categorisation allows you to create logical structures for your content. It’s akin to creating sections in a library for different genres.
Here’s how you can do it:
- Think About Your Website’s Topic Areas: Your website likely has a primary topic area but also encompasses various subtopics. For example, if your website is about dog supplies, consider the subcategories like dog food, leashes, toys, and training aids.
- Match Keywords with Content: Match up your keywords with the content you create. For instance, for a page about dog food, you might target keywords like “dog food brands,” “top brands dog food,” and “dog food brands best.” This ensures that your content is closely aligned with what users are searching for
Organising your content around keyword themes provides a better user experience and enhances your website’s relevance to search engines.
Step 3: Understand Search Intent
The key to success in SEO is aligning your content with what the users are looking for. This is where “search intent” comes into play. Understanding the intent behind a search query is crucial for delivering the content users seek.
Let me illustrate with an example. If someone searches for “best running shoes,” they are probably looking for product recommendations or reviews. On the other hand, if someone searches for “how to tie shoelaces for running shoes,” they likely want a step-by-step guide.
The importance of aligning your content with the user’s intent cannot be overstated. This is the foundation of not only getting traffic but also retaining it. Users should find what they want when they land on your page.
So, make sure your content matches the search intent of your target keywords. This can significantly improve your click-through rates and reduce bounce rates, which are factors that search engines consider when ranking your pages.
Step 4: Create a Content Strategy
Content strategies need to be flexible. You may need to adjust and refine your approach as you go along. Your goal should always be to provide valuable content that meets the needs of your audience.
Long-tail keywords can be your secret weapon here. They’re specific and have less competition. They are an excellent way to capture a niche audience.
Long-tail keywords may have lower individual search volumes, but when you add them up, they can make up a large portion of your organic traffic.
Plus, they often have higher conversion rates because they attract users looking for something very specific.
Step 5: Choose the Right Type of Content
Different types of content work for different keywords. For some keywords, blog posts are the way to go. For others, it might be videos, infographics, or product pages.
The search intent and the preferences of your target audience should influence your choice of content type.
In my experience, I’ve learned that quality matters more than quantity. High-quality content is more likely to rank well and keep visitors engaged. So, don’t rush to produce content; take the time to create something valuable.
Consider the user’s perspective here. When they click on your link, what are they expecting? If you can exceed those expectations with your content, they’re more likely to stay, engage, and return for more.
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Step 6: Target Keywords for High-Quality Content
Now that you’ve identified the types of content you need, it’s time to choose the keywords to target within that content.
This is where keyword phrases come into play. Instead of just targeting individual keywords, consider keyword phrases that are highly relevant to your content.
I’ve seen great success with this approach. It’s not just about stuffing content with keywords. It’s about creating content seamlessly integrating these keywords, making it genuinely useful to your audience.
You can use tools like NeuronWriter and Frase to find important terms to include in your content to increase your chances of ranking high in the SERPs and conduct competitor structure analysis to ensure your content flows smoothly.
Step 7: Optimise Your SEO Strategy
SEO is a dynamic field, and strategies that worked in the past may not be as effective today. So, you must keep refining and adapting your strategy based on what’s currently working.
With that in mind, you must make sure every aspect of your strategy, from on-page optimisation to backlink building, aligns with your target keywords.
And you need to keep optimising your SEO strategy based on the performance of your target keywords. This is an ongoing process, and it’s essential to stay up to date with the latest SEO trends.
Remember, SEO is a holistic approach, and everything you do should be geared towards providing a better experience for your users.
Step 8: Incorporate Relevant Keywords
As you craft your content, remember the importance of incorporating relevant keywords. These keywords may not be the primary focus but are related to your main keywords. They help search engines understand your content better.
When it comes to incorporating relevant keywords, it’s not about shoehorning them into your content. It’s about ensuring they naturally fit and enhancing the user’s understanding of the topic. This can improve your content’s relevance and quality, both important ranking factors.
Step 9: Build Internal and External Links
Think of your site as a city. Internal links are like roads within the city that help people navigate, while external links are bridges connecting your city to others. They play a vital role in SEO.
- Internal Links: These are links that connect different pages on your website. They help search engines understand your site’s structure and hierarchy. When you link to other relevant pages on your site, consider using anchor text that includes your keywords.
- External Links: These links connect your site to reputable sources. They demonstrate your site’s authority and credibility. When linking to external sources, also use relevant keywords in your anchor text. This can enhance the user experience and encourage them to explore more of your content.
Step 10: Monitor and Adjust
Your work doesn’t end with content creation and optimisation. To ensure lasting success, you must continuously monitor the performance of your keywords and content.
Utilise tools like Google Analytics, Ahrefs, and Semrush to track your rankings, organic traffic, and user engagement.
Based on your monitoring data, be prepared to make adjustments. Consider tweaking your content or SEO strategy if a keyword isn’t performing as expected. This iterative process is critical for long-term SEO success.
Step 11: Engage With Your Audience
Beyond optimising for search engines, engaging with your audience is crucial. Engaged users are more likely to become loyal customers. Respond to comments on your blog posts, interact on social media, and provide excellent customer service.
In my journey as a search engine optimisation enthusiast, I’ve learned that building a community around your brand is just as important as keyword optimisation.
Engaging with potential customers is not just a one-time effort. It’s an ongoing commitment to providing value and addressing the needs and concerns of your audience.
Social media, in particular, is an excellent platform for engaging with your audience. Respond to comments, answer questions, and participate in discussions related to your niche.
In conclusion, keyword research is just the beginning of your SEO journey. What you do after conducting keyword research can make or break your success.
By analysing your keyword list, understanding search intent, creating a solid content strategy, and consistently monitoring and adjusting your approach, you can optimise your website for the best possible results.
Remember, it’s not just about search engines; it’s about engaging with your audience, providing high-quality content, and ultimately turning potential customers into loyal ones.