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The first SwissMadeMarketing Bootcamp video is ready. In this video, you’ll learn about different kinds of keyword research to match different kinds of websites and website monetization methods. Too many marketers use a “one size fits all” approach when doing keyword research and make their lives harder by doing so. As you’ll see in the video, knowing the purpose of your website and matching the keywords to it, can make a huge difference.

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Hello and welcome to this SwissMadeMarketing Bootcamp video!

In this video I want to cover something that I feel is very rarely mentioned even though it is highly important: doing keyword research and market research for different types of keywords or for different types of websites. Keyword research it is not a one size fits all situation and there is a bit of a problem there because you’ll usually find very, very simplified keyword research advice and I want to warn against that. It’s actually quite dangerous to just apply the typical idea which usually just looks at search volume and does a competition analysis that would just go: “okay, find a keyword with more than 5,000 searches a month.” (often it is not even specified whether that is an exact match, phrase match or broad match) and then some bogus way of figuring out the competition and there you go! You have a good keyword if it matches those criteria!

The thing about that is anyone can do it. Anyone can find a keyword like that and it might actually be a good keyword, you may be lucky. But it might be completely useless keyword making everything you do with it afterwards a waste of time (if you start out with a bad keyword). If it doesn’t suit your business, doesn’t suit your website, doesn’t suite your purpose then everything you do thereafter is a waste of time.

I think it’s quite important to talk about this and what I want to bring in to this is that we also consider the website purpose or type of website that you are going to promote or that you are going to do an SEO campaign for with this keyword that you are looking for.

I just want to give you three very concrete examples that you can apply to your business right away, hopefully.

The first one would be about promoting products: if you have a website that promotes products – this could be the typical affiliate site, or it could also be something like an ecommerce site (but in most cases the typical thing is that you have an affiliate site where you are promoting some type of product and this could be a digital product could be an eBook or software or whatever). It could also be a physical product. The point is that you have a website where you are promoting a product and you get paid when someone purchases that product through your link so you need a sales-conversion to get paid. For this type of website the number one factor in what you are looking for in keyword, is the specificity. You want the keyword to be very, very specific. In other words, you want to find a keyword that makes it very, very clear what the searcher is looking for. The more specific the better, because the more specific the keyword is, the more exactly you can offer what the search was looking for on your website. Your goal is you want people to click through to your website and think to themselves: “yes, this is exactly what I was looking for!”

That is what’s going to result in a sale and to illustrate this, let me just use an example: imagine that you are looking for a review. In fact, you have probably experienced this yourself. If you are looking for a review of a specific product, you want to find a review of that exact product. That’s what you are after. As an example let’s just say you are looking for a specific type of vacuum cleaner, some kind of a new Dyson Vacuum Cleaner with something special, whatever. You are looking for a review of that particular vacuum cleaner because you are thinking about maybe purchasing that. Now, you don’t want to find an article that is generally about vacuum cleaners. You also don’t want to find an article that is generally about Dyson Vacuum Cleaners. You also don’t want to find an article about a similar model or maybe last year’s model to the one you are looking for. You want to find a review of exactly that one specific model, right? And if you find something else if you click through and it is a comparison chart of different vacuum cleaners or it is a general article or whatever you go back and you keep searching and that is what I mean with “specificity” being so important.

In this case, if you had a website and you optimized it for “Dyson Vacuum Cleaners” you might see a far fewer results than if you optimize it for “review of Dyson Vacuum Cleaner model XYZ, year 2011″. For you as a marketer it means that if you are promoting products, you are looking for a very specific keywords. Product names are good, serial numbers are good, brand names are good. And make sure that if you have qualifiers like “cheap [product name]” or “coupon for [product name]” or “[product name] review”; make sure that your site or your page matches that qualifier. If someone is looking for “cheap”, make sure that you mention: “here is the best deal, here is the best place to get at the lowest price”. Make sure that you mention that early on, make sure that you mention that in the title, in fact, so the people find exactly what they are looking for. The same thing goes for a qualifier like “coupon”. If you find a product-specific keyword and people are looking for a coupon code, then find out where you can get that coupon code and make sure you can offer that coupon to people in some way where they go through your link and then purchase with that coupon. Don’t present them with a “normal” review, when they are actually looking for a coupon.

So, in this case, when you are doing keyword research, what you want to find are highly, highly specific keywords that still get a reasonable amount of searches but we are not necessarily talking about thousands upon thousands of searches here. You want to find the right one, you don’t just guess and go “[product name] review”. You want to find out which kind of very specific keyword people are looking for when it comes to this specific product. That’s what you are after when you are doing keyword research for product promotions.

The second example would be if you have an AdSense site. This would also apply to other types of monetization where you have ads on your site, where you get paid for people clicking on the site or just paid for people visiting (paid by impressions, for example with display advertising networks). For this type of site, the number one factor of what you are looking for in a keyword is traffic volume and the value that you are getting from that traffic. With AdSense specifically, different keywords have different values, so the more traffic a keyword has, the more clicks that means for you and the higher value per click the more money you will end up making.

Look at those factors and put them in relation to the competition strength, because if you have a super-valuable high traffic keyword but you can’t even rank for it, then that is no use. What you want to find is you want to find the perfect keyword that it gets a good traffic volume, that has a high value per click or high value per impression, but that you still have a chance of ranking for. For AdSense specifically, you would be looking for keywords that have high traffic, low competition and high CPC (a high Cost Per Click on the advertiser side). Here, whether or not the keyword is specific or whether it is a “buying keyword” or not, doesn’t matter at all as long as these factors are given. As long as it is high traffic, low competition and high CPC, then you are good to go with an AdSense type keyword.

My final example for type of website or type of keyword is if you are doing SEO work for a client or what is widely known as “offline marketing” where you approach businesses and do SEO for them and do their online marketing for them. Here again is completely different situation, because the number one factor here is existing data. You are going into a business and they have existing data, they very probably already have a website and even if they don’t they already have a business, they have something of a customer profile, they know what kind of people their customers are and it is very important to start with the data that is already there.

You would definitely start up with getting into the analytics of their website and if they don’t have that setup yet, setting them up with analytics, setting them up with conversion tracking. If the conversion takes place onlin, this is pretty easy to do, so you can make sure that you see where conversions take place, which pages on their site conversions take place from, which keyword the traffic is coming from without generating conversions etc. Then you start optimizing the site they have for the best keywords, according to the stats. So, you look at the analytics and you look at what keywords are already sending traffic to this site and you look at what keywords does this site already have a page one ranking for or maybe a page two ranking that could be bumped up to a page 1 ranking pretty easily.

You look at that and you look at which keywords are the best converting keywords and you basically make a large group of all the keywords you find like that and you figure out okay which ones can we rank for, can we bump up the keywords that we currently already on page one, can we bump those up further up without spending too much time and money? Are there some keywords on page two and three in the results that we can bump up to page one? So you take all of that into consideration and look at the competition for these different keyword to look at the value of getting more traffic to those keywords and you start optimizing the site for the best keywords that it is already getting traffic for.

Then, in a second step, you go out and find new opportunities, you go and find new keywords that this company would benefit from ranking for. Find out if that matches their customer profile and start creating new pages and doing SEO for those keywords.

Those are my three examples and I hope you can see that with these three examples, with product promotions as a product owner or as an affiliate, with AdSense sites and with doing work for SEO clients, we are looking at three completely different ways of doing keyword research and we are looking at completely different ways in which keyword data is important. There might be more examples than just these three and it might seem quite complex but really, what it comes down to is simply asking yourself: “what is the exact purpose of this website that I’m trying rank, here and what is the perfect keyword to match that purpose?”

Don’t just look at the simplest metrics like search volume and competition strength. If you follow this advice, it can make a huge difference to your business and it can also mean a big difference because there are so many people just clamoring for almost random keywords that they for some reason think, oh this is good search volume and low competition. If you really drill a little deeper and just go a layer deeper and look at “what exactly am I looking for?” and take a closer look at the data you can find opportunities that others just miss completely.

If there’s just one thing you take away from this video, it should be that it is not just about search volume and competition. There is more to keyword research than that. And if you look at SE cockpit, I think that it’s pretty obvious that we put in a lot of data and detail and that we take a keyword research much, much more seriously than most competing keyword research tools do. That is because keyword research is not just about search volume and competition.

I’m also going to talk about a different factor in keyword research or a different purpose possible purpose for keyword research when I talk about that in the next video. Until then, thanks for watching and have a good day!

Did you enjoy the video? Do you have any follow-up comments or questions? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

Shane Melaugh


Shane Melaugh is the Chief Marketing Officer of SwissMadeMarketing who is responsible for most of the video- and marketing-related stuff you see on this site.