The Google Keyword tool is the first tool I use to find out more about keywords. Normally, when you decide to create a blog or a website you usually have a message or something you want to pass across. What do you want people to do on your website? You have to entertain them, but first of all you have to get their attention and let them know you have the thing they want. What they want usually should be what brought them to your website in the first place, your 'Keyword'. So you have to chose your keyword right by researching it properly with the right tool to make sure it is something people want. That's where the Google Keyword comes in.
There are two main ways to use the Keyword Tool. You could use it if you specifically have a keyword in mind and you want to get other ideas or synonyms for the key word. The other method is when you have a website but don't have any keyword in mind and any word would do (honestly, I don't think this is a good idea because you would be loaded with too many options, I'll rather avoid it). So I'll focus on a specific keyword.
Take a simple example, my company website which designs websites, Dimasoft Ltd. Now that sounds pretty simple. We know the who and what about the website, a company that offer website designing services. That means your keyword is 'website design' or even 'designing websites'. Do you know how many people actually search for either keywords? The reason why I ask is because there is absolutely no point selecting a keyword no one is going to search for. If you do, no new person is going to come to your website. You can't market something no one wants, what is the point? So how do you know how many people search for a keyword you are interested in? The Google Keyword tool helps, in fact, it actually goes a step further by helping you with synonyms and possible suggestions, very handy. Let's have a look at the Google Keyword tool:
There are three main columns: Advertiser Competition, which we will come back to, Local Search Volume and Global Monthly Search Volume. My results are tailored to United Kingdom searches so that's what the Local Search Volume means searches in the UK; In February, there were over 350,000 people in the UK searching for 'website design'. Now that is a very good number. However, if your company is International you want to look at the Global column which shows over 2 million searches, even better. Just think about all those people coming to your website... the power... the money you could make with all those people! But sadly the Advertiser Competition column is on maximum, meaning a lot of people are competing for that keyword. If you are new to the SEO business then believe me, you don't stand a chance. New websites are very very poor competition to websites which have been around since the 1990s. So if it's a new website, pick on keywords which are not in high demand and then you stand a better chance at being found.
So I decide to make my search more specific 'website design north east' and this is what I found:
I chose 'North east' because that is a geo-locational search on the Internet, believe it or not, it helps when you make your searches more location specific because it narrows down the possible solutions. Yes, the geo-location search volume is smaller (a measly 170) but you stand a better chance at being found at the top 10 for this than being found in position 4000th for the other keyword. Start small, then as you gain more authority and power on the Internet you aim for the bigger fish. That's the way I see keyword research. It is practical and frankly you spend less effort too when you start on the simpler keywords. Think about it. But that does not mean you stop SEO when you're number 1 for a particular keyword, you should then broaden your keyword and try to get found for a less specific keyword. In other words, SEO never really ends...
The other method of using the Google Keyword involves the tool searching through your website to find the most common keywords and then bringing out a similar table. However, like I said, this can give you some very weird keywords which are quite pointless to your website, so I would never recommend anyone use this. Unless you want to use it for a particular webpage.
That's crash course in using the Google Keyword Tool. My next post will touch on the other two tools, Google Analytics and Google Webmaster so stick around.
Feedback please ;-).
Note: Here are some added tips for keyword research...