Part 2 in an 8 Part Series

Keyword research defined

Keyword Research and SEO are likened to two different sides of a coin.  Where SEO attempts to find the most relevant and content rich response to a specific query, keyword research refers to the query itself.  The search term. What words are your target market typing into the Google search bar that is relevant to your business? When preparing a comprehensive marketing plan for a client, right after identifying what goals we hope to achieve as a result of the marketing strategy, I start developing keywords, that is, what keywords will my client be trying to rank for and what relevant content can I answer the query with that is a better response than my competition.  The best type of advertising for any business is absolutely free if you can meet the standards set by google better than other companies who are also competing for that organic page 1 search engine result.

How confusing can it get? Try using the developer tools on your browser, click the “Inspect Element”, or “View Source”, from there you will turn anyone’s website into code. Most keywords are put into the header, so, look around, and eventually hidden, you can see anyone’s keywords.

Topic clusters for organization and visualization

The brainstorming technique that has been adopted as an exercise to help visualize and manage keyword research is the  topic cluster method. Essentially you want to brainstorm keywords that you think are specific to your business and brand, and group said keywords into clusters by topic. At Sistemo Design where we build custom websites and offer comprehensive marketing to effectively promote the finished product, our keyword research might have topic clusters like the following infographic depicts:

Keyword selection

After brainstorming and deciding on some initial keywords, it is imperative that you enter your keyword ideas into one of the few good online keyword research tools., Google, Soovle, Jaaxy, and Ahrefs keyword explorer are all sites that offer keyword research tools.  Whichever tool you prefer, they all offer about the same information:

  • How many times a month does your keyword group get searched 
  • How many websites are currently competing for said keywords
  • Suggestions for other similar keywords
  • Difficulty level

The trick here is to find good keywords that you can rank for.  The keywords color pencil for example would be very hard to rank for however water color pencils has a good amount of searches it’s very little competition. So pay close attention to keyword variations for a path to search engine success. Remember to do this process for every keyword group selected

This process has complicated itself, Blog writers have made leaps and bounds trying to communicate this to us. The people that create keyword strategies won’t talk and the people that don’t won’t stop talking.

Competition analysis

Once you have a list of keywords accumulated, it’s time to look closely at who currently has the organic ratings of 1,2, and 3. I always check a competitors blogs, then do it 10 times better. Backlinks the other major google ranking factor also need to be reviewed. 

Recently, I was conducting competitor analysis for a local electrician company, and the number one search result for “Albuquerque electrician” had no blog whatsoever, rather it had Better Business Bureau (BBB) accreditation with a grade of A+, also an “approved contractor” rating with PNM, the Electric utility for the State of New Mexico. And as a result of these relationships both the better business bureau and PNM linked to this electrician with a bad one page website. Don’t underestimate the power of a few excellent Back links.

Application is so vital to the outcome that one has worked so very hard to achieve. You put everything together and see if you can make a successful landing.

Applying your keywords

Once you know your keywords and have a detailed review of the current big three, it’s time to incorporate your keywords into your site in a relevant way, gone are the days of keyword stuffing. Arriving at your final keyword selections, it is important to not only put them in your actual URLs but you should also input your specific keywords in HTML code in the header of your site.

Google doesn’t like people playing games and trying to manipulate SEO with trickery. If possible URLs should contain keywords:


This will help your SEO for those keywords provided that the information on the page is relevant to the title. Notice: relevant. Now that you know your keywords, you have reviewed the search engine results page and can see what the top ranking sites are proactively doing to obtain their organic placement.  The time has come to create content that surpasses the competition. Through every channel available to your business, in order to achieve google page 1 one result ranking and be an authority in your industry,you must use your talents and resources to provide a better response than the competition.  In writing copy for the site and for your blog, make sure to incorporate keywords in your title and naturally in your content.

Both SEO and keyword research are living growing entities.  Oftentimes you may see a whole area of keywords that you missed, or the keywords themselves are changing for your particular industry so a quarterly review of keywords is recommended. Typically companies have come up with more relevant search terms to add to their current keywords, and occasionally entire keyword groups have changed.

As always, Sistemo is a phone call away, if you need any assistance with anything related to the creative world and how you can apply that to business, let us know.

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