[Video] Keyword Research 101: Basic Keyword Strategy & Tips

Keyword Research Tips

  • If you have an old site you should use analytics to track what keywords you are getting traffic for. For most webmasters it is easier to rank for more related keywords than it is to discover and dominate new areas.
  • When you start a new site make sure you use keyword modifiers in your page titles, meta descriptions, and page copy. It is easier to rank for long tail terms than shorter search queries.
  • You can find many keyword modifier types in this free XLS spreadsheet.
  • When you start doing keyword research, you can start with a seed list of broad keywords to power a keyword tool and keep digging deeper. Then repeat the process with related keywords and other keyword tools. No tool is perfect. Think of them more as qualitative than quantitative. I like Wordtracker and my keyword tool.
  • Organize your keywords into relevant baskets of keywords and modifiers that should be covered in different sections of your site and on different pages from your site.
  • I listed many bonus keyword research ideas in a recent Wordtracker article.
  • Some of my favorite follow up keyword tools to use when optimizing a page are
Published: November 1, 2007 by Aaron Wall in videos


November 1, 2007 - 1:12pm


Thanks for this resource. Wordtracker is a great tool. I often reference the SEO Book tool as well to get a general idea of search volumes to see what a campaign might drive long term. There are so many great resources, it's really a matter of finding the right matrix, and for different campaigns it's important to employ different tools. I'm always most curious about the process of keyword research for B2B vs B2C campaigns. Do you differentiate strategies there?

November 1, 2007 - 1:52pm

I think with B2B stuff you end up with lower search counts and higher per search value. With the B2B stuff I usually augment any SEO with a significant PPC campaign.

The PPC campaign is set up with at least a few groups. One version of them is targeted with geo specific keyword modifierss, while another group uses geotargeting.

On the PPC stuff I usually use my keyword list generator or other automated tools to create a bunch of permutations on the keywords, and let those ad impressions influence how I focus my inbound anchor text and internal site structure.

I also try to get some of the important modifiers in the page title and copy and mix up how they are used throughout to create a bit of a relevant keyword net that picks up many different queries.

November 1, 2007 - 2:22pm

Perfect work Aaron!

Some additions to the .xls file:

Transactional Terms modifiers
+ shop
+ store

Informational modifiers
+ Tutorial
+ Guide

Share some more such stuff please! :)

November 1, 2007 - 2:26pm

I added those Roman :)

November 2, 2007 - 1:19am

I too use Analog to analyse my logfiles. However you don't have to use Analytics to find out what the longtail keywords/phrases are. You can modify the Analog configuration file to change the cutoff point for the search query report. For example with these lines in the config file (analog.cfg)


the report will show all keywords (even if they've only been used once). I too used to use Google Analytics, but I felt the javascript code you need to insert in each page to use it was slowing down page loading times.

November 2, 2007 - 2:44am

I love to use Google Analytics and there you can identify the keywords very easy. I have never noticed a slow loading time due to Google Analytics. Of course, it must be happening but I think it is insignificant... Maybe you are very meticulous.

November 2, 2007 - 3:24am

Either I am meticulous, or a Google engineer went out of his way to hand edit my site and make me not trust him (or Google).

May 5, 2009 - 2:09pm

May 5/09

Hello Aaron: Tell me why your videos are of such poor quality? You can't see anything properly in them to learn anything from them. You need to buy a better video camera really. SOON

Regina H.

May 5, 2009 - 11:39pm

You don't have to be able to see every word in the video to understand the basics of what I was mentioning in it.

Keviin Caliber
October 31, 2012 - 8:17pm

Do keywords in Meta Tag really cary any wait anymore, or is it better to just place keywords within the text of your site?

November 2, 2012 - 1:26am

...onsite is where it is at, but a description tag that is compelling can help pull in more clicks by standing out.

Then there are new tags that come and go over time...like Google recently announced a new meta keywords tag just for news websites. There are other proprietary tags that have stuck & some that have came and went.

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