I have spent years doing search engine optimization; I have clients in some of the most competitive markets on the web. I'm talking hundreds of millions of directly competing pages. The core of my success is the detail, and care I put into my keyword research.
Here is my technique:
Ok, so you got a whole bunch of keywords now? So now what? What do you do with your exhaustive list of thousands of keywords?
Filter your list to the keywords that convert the most sales:
I'm sure you've been told and have even beaten over the head with this quote: "The longer the keyword phrase the more targeted it usually is, and the higher it will convert". Yet it baffles me how many times people still overlook this. If you want to spend a year targeting keywords that get bazillions of searches go right ahead, I'll spend a dedicated month getting a top ranking for a longer more targeted phrase. I tend to get the highest conversions from keyword phrases 3-5 words long, but it all varies on the site and market.
Please don't do what everybody else does and use KEI (Keyword Effectiveness Index) as the be-all-end-all solution to keyword research. You'll simply be doing yourself an incredible disservice as that data is not very accurate.
So what is the million dollar secret to finding the keyword in your market that convert the most sales? It's simple: run a massive Adwords pay-per-click campaign.
Google Adwords is a very efficient and inexpensive way to find the keywords that convert the highest possible sales. Create an Adwords account (as the other pay-per-click options don't come close to the accuracy or tracking Google offers) Place all of the keywords you accumulated in your market into a single AdGroup (there are better ways of grouping your ads but its irrelevant in the context of this article) Bid high enough to have a top 8 listing for every word (this will ensure many impressions). Also, be sure to integrate the "conversion tool", under the "Tools" tab in your Adwords campaign. Simply paste the bar of code Google gives you on the "thank you" page of the targeted site. This will give you the conversion numbers and ratios that make this technique work. After a few good weeks of impressions you should have a large enough sample to know EXACTLY what keywords are converting at the highest percentage.
Note: Don't be afraid to spend the ten or so dollars on your pay per click campaign, the information this technique reveals is worth thousands alone.
Jot down the keywords that converted at the highest percent; you now have an edge on 99% of the competition in your market.
David Chase is a professional SEO Consultant. He has had success achieving top 10 rankings in some of the highest margin-markets; for some of the most competitive keywords on the web. You can find out how he does it, by subscribing to his free mini email course The 7 Simple, yet Wildly Successful Strategies for SEO. Or visit his blog David Chase SEO where he posts his latest and greatest SEO secrets.