What are Keywords?
Keywords are ideas and topics that define your content. More specifically, they’re the words and phrases that people enter in to the Google search bar. Everything your piece of content is made up of (images, videos, writing, etc.) make up your primary keywords.
That said, if you’re thinking of loading every sentence of your content with keywords to increase your SEO ranking, think again. Picking and inserting the right keywords is more complicated than you might think. You need to be much more strategic in picking keywords for your content, lest you want to be penalized by Google Panda, Google’s algorithm for detecting pages encumbered with keywords.
How do I pick Keywords?
If you’ve tried learning the ins and outs of SEO, you’ve likely started with formulating a list of backlinks or searching Google Keyword Planner (GKP). Backlinks are important and GKP is a valuable (and free) tool on your Google Ads account. In fact, GKP that tells you almost everything you need to know to make informed keyword decisions.
That said, starting with GKP is a mistake. Why?
GKP only shows keywords that are closely related to the keyword(s) you enter in to it. Say you run a business that sells dog food. GKP will give you closely related keywords like: best dog food, dog food brands, cat food, pet food, etc. While these keywords may work for your business, they are highly sought after. There are others that are less competitive and equally as valuable.
Starting with Niche Topics is the easiest way to find these types of keywords.
What is a Niche Topic?
A Niche Topic is a broad topic that your target customer is interested in, rather than a specific keyword.
What you want to find are keywords related to Niche Topics. These are often the most profitable keywords in your market since most marketers are vying for the most popular ones. For example, the keyword “Can dogs be vegan?” is part of the Niche Topic: “Vegan dog food” which is related to your dog food business.
More examples include:
- How much kibble does a puppy eat (Niche Topic: Dog food for puppies)
- What kind of dog food do old dogs eat (Niche Topic: Dog food for seniors)
- What brand of dog food is good for their teeth (Niche Topic: Dog dental health)
What are effective ways to find Niche Topics?
Create a customer persona
A customer persona is a profile of demographic and psychographic qualities pertaining to your target audience. It’s also an easy way to identify Niche Topics that your customers care about. Based on research and expertise, you should have a good idea of what topics interest your target audience. Once you identify these Niche Topics, you can find keywords that potential customers search every day. Some characteristics to consider in developing your customer personas include:
- Hobbies and interests
Depending on who you are, you may have multiple customer personas for a variety of audiences.
Wikipedia is one of the only places on the Internet where you can find overviews of a topic curated daily by thousands of experts. Not to mention, these topics are organized into perfectly ordered categories. Quite simply, this makes Wikipedia a treasure-trove for Niche Topics and subsequently, valuable keywords.
If you have an audience, chances are they use Reddit. Reddit is home to thousands of communities, some more obscure than others. With a little bit of investigation, it’s almost guaranteed you can find posts from your target audience with unadulterated and honest discussions that will inform your keyword decisions. Establishing Niche Topics becomes a breeze.
As you can tell, choosing the right keywords is a lot more time consuming than you think. That said, the return on investment is well worth it if you can choose effectively.