Follow-Up on Search Session From the Annual Summit

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 Finding the Unexpected in the Long Tail

 Thorough keyword research uncovers surprising topics in every study. It also presents us with numerically supported ratios that challenge our assumptions about our industry (eg. we may think that oversized bikinis are searched 5% as often as string bikinis, but research may show a different numerical relationship; this deeply affects the relative prioritization of different strategies). As with most statistics, numbers can be used to prove almost any hypothesis.  But, taking an unbiased, non-ego-driven, exhaustive look at keyword research can find stuff even 30-year veterans of ANY vertical do not already know. This is a vital strategy for companies that want to grow.

Thorough keyword research uncovers surprising topics in every study. It also presents us withnumerically supported ratios that challenge our assumptions about our industry (eg. we maythink that oversized bikinis are searched 5% as often as string bikinis, but research may showa different numerical relationship; this deeply affects the relative prioritization of differentstrategies). As with most statistics, numbers can be used to prove almost any hypothesis.But, taking an unbiased, non-ego-driven, exhaustive look at keyword research can find stuffeven 30-year veterans of ANY vertical do not already know. This is a vital strategy forcompanies that want to grow.
Keyword Research Tips!

Mine Multiple Keyword SourcesWhen doing keyword research don’t just depend on one keyword tool’s results as each toolhas different sources. In addition you may be relying on tainted information due to:
• Automated rank checking software.
-          Typically third party tools that companies frequently use to see how
well they rank on their phrases in the search engines.
• The “shell game”.
-          You might be looking for the best key phrases but your competitors
could be trying to hide them from you by auto inflating the keyword
frequencies of related phrases though the use of automated scripts or
manual searching.
Instead, use multiple sources when collecting keyword research, compare and verify the
accuracy of the data from each source by:
• Looking for realistic phrase variations.
-          Tip: Sort your keywords in Excel alphabetically to see how realistic the
phrase variations are.
• Look for questionable phrases typically in the long tail
  (Long Tail means phrases with 3 or more words in them
  Eg: “affordable professional wedding planner California”)
• Long tail phrases are rarely searched more often than the root or “head” of the phrase (Eg: wedding
   planner), be suspicious of those that are.
• Use common sense!
-          If the phrase looks to good to be true, it probably is.
Don’t just rely solely on keyword research tools to identify all your great keyphrases.
Instead:
• Track searches being done in your site’s internal search box.
-          You’re site doesn’t have one? Purchase or build one.
-          Make sure it tracks the actual phrases being searched. Those
new found phrases can provide great insight into what your
visitors are looking for and new keyphrases to add to your SEO
and/or SEM campaigns.
-          • Mine your logfiles.
-          Look at what phrases are driving traffic to your site that you didn’t
internationally optimize or PPC on? Are there opportunities there?
-          Do PPC broad match on the “head” of phrase to identify new “tails”
Eg: “women’s shoes”, identifies “purchase women’s shoes online”
• Talk to your Customer Service Reps (CSRs)
-          What phrases are being used by your clients to describe your products
or in questions asked of your CSRs?

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