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10 Keyword  Selection Methods For SEO Using Elimination Technique

Keyword  Selection Methods For SEO

In the previous chapter – 6 Keyword Research Techniques For SEO we researched for keyword(s) and came up with a list of keyword(s). The problem is, you cannot use all the keyword(s) on your webpage. That is not the right way to optimize your website for search engines. This chapter – 10 Keyword Selection  Methods For SEO Through Elimination Technique  will help you identify and select the right keyword(s) to optimize your website for search engines through Keyword(s) Selection.

Keyword Selection Methods

 

Our goal is to select a maximum of 2 – 3 related primary keyword(s) per webpage for efficient search engine optimization (SEO). Using more than 3 primary keywords per webpage might confuse search engines.  Also, web pages with a focus on more than 3 keyword(s) may not rank higher on search engine result pages (SERPs). In the next chapter – Keyword Placement On Webpage For SEO  I will teach you what is a secondary keyword(s).

From the huge keyword(s) list that we managed to get [after using keyword(s) brainstorming techniques as discussed in the previous chapter], let us understand how to select the main 2 – 3 keyword(s) for SEO. In this chapter, I will discuss various elimination techniques through which you can arrive at your final 2 – 3 keyword(s).

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please note that, for the sake of simplicity in writing, I would use the term Keyword(s) which directly or indirectly means Keywords or Keyword Phrases

10 Keyword  Selection Methods For SEO

I assume you have a long list of keyword(s) that you have come up after thorough keyword research. With that assumption, we can go ahead and filter out keyword(s) from the list to arrive at our final 2 – 3 primary keyword(s) through the 10 Keyword Selection Methods.

The 10 Keyword Selection Methods using Elimination Techniques are given below:

  1. Eliminating single-word and double-word keyword(s)
  2. Eliminating and separating keyword(s) based on categories
  3. Eliminating keyword(s) based on synonyms, association and meaning similarity
  4. Eliminating keyword(s) based on search volumes
  5. Eliminating keyword(s) that do not have commercial intent
  6. Eliminating keyword(s) based on Google PR
  7. Eliminating keyword(s) based on semantic nature
  8. Eliminating keyword(s) based on Google Trends Report
  9. Eliminating keyword(s) after analyzing Pay Per Click campaigns
  10. Eliminating keywords(s) based on target customers

Let me explain each one in detail.

#1. Eliminating single-word and double-word keyword(s):

All single-word and double-word keyword(s) are the informational keyword(s) and are highly impossible to rank, especially if your website is a newbie. There are several reasons for it.

Firstly, Google assumes that you are looking for some information about the topic and drives you to Wikipedia directly.

Secondly, no user with an intent to buy a product/service will key-in single-word or double-word keyword(s), instead, they will key-in the keyword(s) that are phrases (keyword with multiple words).

Thirdly, single-word and double-word keyword(s) are already well optimized by old and established websites. Trying to out-compete them within a shorter span of time is almost impossible and a waste of precious time and resources. If you still wish to dare, you are at your own risk.

In the previous chapter, we had chosen a training academy that specializes in digital marketing as our use case. So, if we are on a keyword(s) selection task for optimizing its website, we have to eliminate all single-word and double-word keyword(s) such as the following:

  • Marketing
  • Digital
  • Digital Marketing
  • Internet Marketing
  • Online Marketing

Try to key in these keyword(s) in the search query box and check what appears.

#2. Eliminating and separating keyword(s) based on categories:

A single business usually sells multiple products/services. For example, think of e-commerce websites. Trying to optimize the homepage of your website for all products/services that you offer is a bad idea.

Each product/service has its own set of keyword(s) and a webpage should be dedicated only for specific product/service through relevant and specific keyword(s) that best describes that particular product/service. We call each product/services as categories. You can also have sub-categories as you go deep down a particular category vertical.

Let me explain with a simple example. Assume (as discussed in our previous chapter) we are on a mission to optimize a homepage of a website of a training academy specialized in digital marketing. After a brainstorming session, the website owner has come up with a keyword(s) list as follows:

  • Digital Marketing Training
  • Internet Marketing Training
  • Online Marketing Training
  • Google Analytics Training
  • Email Marketing Training
  • Google AdWords Training
  • Digital Marketing Classes
  • Digital Marketing Courses

Out of the 8 keyword(s) listed above, we can eliminate the three keyword(s). They are listed below.

  • Google Analytics Training
  • Email Marketing Training
  • Google AdWords Training

The reason for elimination is, though the above three keyword(s) are part of digital marketing training, they are more specific than generic. The best strategy would be to create three separate web pages ( or landing pages ) for each of those specific keyword(s) and optimize those pages separately.

This strategy has better chances of getting higher ranks on Google SERPs. The thumb rule is – have separate web pages or landing pages for a more specific category of keyword(s). Do not mix up generic and specific keyword(s) for SEO.

The rest of the keyword(s) can be used for optimizing the homepage for the theme “digital marketing training”. And all pages can be interconnected through internal links or technically – anchor text.  This method of website arrangement where the keyword(s) are separated based on categories and optimizing web pages separately for each sub-category is called “Siloing”.

NOTE: This is just a simple example for a simple training website. Categories can extend to several sub-categories for really monstrous e-commerce websites with thousands of webpages for which careful “Siloing” activity is needed

#3. Eliminating keyword(s) based on synonyms, association and meaning similarity:

Our aim is to select 3 – 4 primary keyword(s) for optimizing our webpage. The catch is – to select those 3 – 4 primary keyword(s) that should also convey the same meaning. In other words, those 3 – 4 primary keyword(s) should either be synonyms or associated with each other in a more meaningful way. For example, assume you are optimizing your digital marketing training website. In the below set of keyword(s),

  1. Digital Marketing Training
  2. Digital Marketing Classes
  3. Digital Marketing Courses
  4. Digital Marketing Services

the first three keyword(s) are considered synonymous to each other. All three convey the same meaning. Whereas the fourth keyword(s) has no association with the above three keyword(s) and hence can be the candidates for elimination. The first three can be selected as our primary keyword(s).

#4. Eliminating keyword(s) based on search volumes:

There are several tools both free and paid that will give you information on keyword(s) and its search volumes [number of people searching for that keyword(s)]. The one that I use frequently is the Google Keyword Planner. Key in a seed keyword(s) and Google Keyword Planner gives a list of relevant and associated keyword(s) related to your seed keyword(s) along with average monthly searches for those keyword(s).

Eliminate all the keyword(s) that has a monthly search volume below 1500. Such keyword(s) are called low-competition keywords. I personally feel, there is no much use in optimizing a webpage for keyword(s) that has a search volume below 1500. The rate of conversions [visitor turning into a customer is called conversion] is very less and your cost of customer acquisition turns out to be huge.

On the contrary, avoid optimizing for keyword(s) that are having an average monthly search volume above 50,000. Such keyword(s) are called high-competition keyword(s). Several established and old websites are already ranking high on SERPs for such keyword(s) and trying to compete with them at the initial stage of your SEO effort is not a wise decision. Therefore eliminate all keyword(s) that has an average monthly search volume above 50,000.

Try to strike a balance between low-completion and high-competition keyword(s). With my personal experience, any keyword(s) with a search volume between 1500 and 50,000 is the right choice for your website’s SEO.

NOTE: If you wish to rank for high competition keyword(s), you can start it slowly as part of your SEO effort without expecting short term results. To win in the long term, focus on quality content

#5. Eliminating keyword(s) that do not have commercial intent :

Commercial intent keyword(s) are those keyword(s) which customer keys into the search engine query box with an intention to make a purchase. For example, among the below two keyword(s), can you guess which can be considered as a keyword(s) with commercial intent?

  1. What is digital marketing
  2. Digital Marketing Training

If you guessed it as (2), then, you are right. (1) is an informational keyword(s). (2) is a commercial intent keyword.

Why optimize a website or webpage with the keyword(s) with low commercial intent to rank higher on SERPs without making a sale? I am not talking about bloggers who have a different intention (they follow Inbound Sales Funnel). Businesses selling products/services should eliminate those keyword(s) from their list that has no commercial intent. Investing time and resources to rank web pages for keyword(s) that does not bring in paying customers is an utter waste of both time and resources. In simple words, select high traffic and high conversion keyword(s).

Let us take an example. Assume we have three keywords as follows:

  1. Digital Marketing Training
  2. Digital Marketing Education
  3. Digital Marketing Courses

And for a digital marketing training institute that is selling courses, out of the above three keyword(s), the second keyword(s) can be eliminated. The first and third are the keyword(s) with commercial intent, whereas the second one is an informational keyword(s).

#6. Eliminating keyword(s) based on Google PR:

Google PR is a measure of the importance of a website based on backlinks. According to Google, a website with Google PR of 6 is considered as more trustable and reliable than a website with a Google PR of 1. More on Google Page Rank algorithm is explained in the chapter –  Google PageRank Algorithm In A Nutshell.

Assume you have a list of selected keyword(s). Take each one of them, key it on Google search query box, and analyze who or which websites/web pages ranks high on the top of SERPs [first, second and third positions] for that particular keyword(s). Check the Google PR of such links. If Google PR of such links is somewhere above 5, I would recommend you to eliminate such keyword(s) from your list. At least for time being. The reason is with my personal experience, I have understood that it is quite difficult to outrank such high PR web pages for a particular keyword(s). Trying to outrank sites with that much importance takes time and resources. Let me clarify – it’s not impossible though.

Your aim should be to optimize your website/webpage for those keyword(s) for which low Google PR rated websites are ranking high. 

NOTE: This is not Google’s advice. This is my recommendation to you. I must admit, that, I have seen newly created websites outrank some really amazing webistes/webpages with high Google PR. The reason for such success stories should greatly be attributed to their high quality content and extraordinary backlink strategy.

#7. Eliminating keyword(s) based on semantic nature:

Google’s Hummingbird algorithm has changed the way its search engine looks at keyword(s). The goal of the algorithm is to understand each keyed-in keyword as though a user is talking to a friend, in a natural free-flowing language. This is to help the user get better results and enjoy a better user experience. Keyword(s) that is free-flowing in nature with natural language and intended logic is called Semantic Keyword(s).

Eliminate all those keyword(s) from the list that is non-semantic in nature. And optimize your website/webpage with the keyword(s) that has semantic meaning. All keyword(s) that is semantic in nature will have stop words (“a”, “the”, “in”, “for”, etc.) For example, given below are two keyword(s), can you guess which keyword(s) is semantic in nature.

  1. undergoing a digital marketing training in Bangalore
  2. undergoing digital marketing training Bangalore

If you said (1), then, you are right. Search users are more likely to key in a semantic keyword(s) in the search query box. Therefore, select keyword(s) that has natural sounding text with full sentences with natural keyword(s) usage.

#8. Eliminating keyword(s) based on Google Trend Report:

Not all keyword(s) enjoy search volume throughout the year. Such keyword(s) are called seasonal keyword(s). Sometimes, the synonym to your selected keyword(s) might be more searchable than what you had guessed. Such keyword(s) is called trending keyword(s).

Few keyword(s) are highly searchable in particular parts of the region, but not at all searchable in other parts of the same region. They are called are the demographic keyword(s). The question is how to eliminate and select the keyword(s) based on our need, niche, and demographic?

Don’t worry. Google has made things very simple for us. There is a tool called “Google Trends” using which you can analyze about a particular keyword(s) for all the above-said parameters.

For example, I have shown you an example on which keyword(s) among the two is trending and searched the most on the search engine. The report is given below in the picture.

Keyword Selection Methods For SEO - Google Trend Report

 

Based on this report you can decide to eliminate keyword(s) from your list that is not relevant to your business niche or demographics. 

#9. Eliminating keyword(s) after analyzing Pay Per Click campaigns :

Smart SEO professionals understand the fact that the ultimate goal of keyword(s) selection process is to select the keyword(s) that results in a sale. The sale happens when the CTR(click through rate) happens. CTR happens for a particular website link when the webpage/website has been optimized for a right converting keyword(s). But, how do we figure the right converting keyword(s)? The answer is – through Google Ads (Google AdWords) Pay Per Click campaigns.

PPC (Pay Per Click) ads are paid ads that appear in the sponsored link sections of Google SERPs. Using Google AdWords account, you can buy keyword(s) [based on bidding], set up PPC campaigns and go live. You might have to spend a few dollars on it. But, it’s worth the keyword(s) selection effort.

You might have to test with 4 – 5 keyword(s) and check which keyword(s) is performing well. In other words, which keyword(s) campaign brings in more visitors or traffic to your website. After a thorough analysis, you can round on 2 – 3 keyword(s).

Understand the fact that, this is a way to get you clues for keyword(s) research and not an exact method. The reason is Google search algorithm works quite differently with organic search results compared to paid search results.

#10. Eliminating keyword(s) based on target customers :

Why optimize your website/webpage to rank high on search results which always brings in the wrong customers? It is a waste of both time and effort.

Optimize websites/web pages for search engines in such a way that it brings in the right customers who are more likely to convert.

For example, let us assume, you are a business owner, running a digital marketing training academy that offers classroom-based training only for students and fresh job seekers. Your business does not cater to working professionals and to those who want to learn digital marketing online. With this much input, can you eliminate those keyword(s) from the list given below that is not suitable for your website’s SEO?

1. digital marketing training in Bangalore

2. digital marketing courses in Bangalore

3. digital marketing online courses

4. digital marketing course for working professionals on weekends

5. digital marketing training for working professionals

6. digital marketing training for retired employees

7. digital marketing training institute

If you answer is – eliminate (3), (4), (5), (6), then, you are right. You got to select only those keyword(s) for SEO which can bring in targeted customers to your website.

Based on these 10 elimination techniques, you can choose a maximum of 3 keyword(s) to optimize your webpage. As an example, for a training institute specializing in digital marketing classroom training in Bangalore, the following keyword(s) are apt for optimizing their homepage.

  1. Digital Marketing Training In Bangalore
  2. Digital Marketing Course In Bangalore
  3. Digital Marketing Classes In Bangalore

 

Congratulations! You are done with the eighth chapter on “10 Keyword  Selection Methods Using Elimination Technique”. Hope you enjoyed the reading.

Congratulations

All the best for your next chapter on “Keyword Placements As Part Of On-Page SEO”. In the next chapter, you will learn how to carefully place your selected keyword(s) on the website/webpage to help rank your website/webpage on the top of the Google SERPs.

Feel free to comment below if this blog post was useful or not. If yes, please do me a favor by sharing it with others who might benefit.

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Subhash.K.U is a Professional Programmer turned Digital Marketing Enthusiast. He is the most sought marketing consultants for small and medium scale businesses. He founded Subhash Digital Academy to teach professional digital marketing skills to students, entrepreneurs, and working professionals. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and is an Oracle Certified Programmer. He also holds certificates of Google AdWords, Facebook Blueprint and Hubspot Marketing. He is the co-author of the best selling book – Cracking The C, C++ and Java Interview published by McGraw Hill. He is now penning another book on the subject of marketing and entrepreneurship.

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