Getting started in SEO can seem sometimes like a daunting task, and if you have a new site or page that you want to quickly rank for Google searches then you will find you have a lot of work cut out for you. The question then is where do you start? Fortunately the answer is fairly straightforward and there is one highly logical starting place, which is keyword research. This should come even before you start creating the pages and should in fact help to direct the course of your website development and particularly content creation. Essentially here you can consider SEO as a ‘weapon’ of sorts, whereas the keyword research provides the target – and any weapon is far more effective when designed for a specific target.
By target is meant that it’s those keywords that you will want your page to rank for. It’s not really possible to rank highly for everything, so it’s necessary for you to choose a single phrase to bring up your site in the results. This way when someone types in ‘best pens’ they’ll come up with your online pen store instead of someone else’s and will be likely to use your service as a result. Alternatively they might type in ‘how do lizards swim’ and find your article where they’ll be likely to click adverts and affiliate links.
In order to get your site to rank for keywords or key phrases you need to then include all of those keywords in every aspect of your website. That means they need to be laced in with the text, included in the file names of your various files, even included in the links you have pointing to your page from elsewhere. As such you need to know what your keyphrases are before you start building the website. Inserting them after you’ve written the content will look forced and awkward, and changing file names after you’ve already uploaded pages will ruin any links you already have pointing there when you do.
To decide on your key phrases you need to use keyphrase research as well, in order to find out which keyphrases are regularly searched for without being overcrowded by other sites ranking for the same terms. This will mean that you relatively quickly get to see your site in the search results, and that people will type in that term to search for it. Bearing in mind that you will be building your site around the keyphrase it’s very important that you first ensure that you’ve chosen your keyphrase well or it will all prove to be a waste of time and energy. In fact searching for your keyword and seeing what people are searching for can sometimes even help you to decide on which articles to write to begin with. There is nothing wrong with doing it this way around, you will simply be providing your visitors and readers with what you know they want. In other words then, keyword research should always be the first step for SEO.