Keyword Selection: Five tips for choosing keywords

Choose wisely with the proper keyword selectionWe’ve mentioned before just how important keywords are, both in our article covering on page SEO and in our post on the keyword phrase. The keyword is one of the most important SEO factors.So now that you know what keywords are, when to use them and how to use them effectively you may be wondering how do I choose what keywords to optimize? Read these 5 simple tips to help you start a successful optimization program for your website.

How to make a Keyword Selection

Once you’ve chosen a topic to write or blog about, or a focus for your website, you’ll need to lead people to your information. The keyword phrase you choose will be important for drawing traffic. Here’s how to choose wisely.

Be Honest and Accurate: When choosing keywords, honesty is always the best policy. If you sell Granny Smith apples optimize for Granny Smith apples. Don’t be tempted to optimize for a keyword that may drive lots of unqualified traffic. Honestly and accurately representing your product or services will drive qualified traffic to your site.

Use Popular Terms: When we sit down to find something on the Internet, we use a search engine to find what we want. How do we do it? We think of words that give us the information we need and type them in the search bar. As a business, knowing your customer’s most popular search term gives you an advantage. Bass guitar, bass guitars and four string guitars are all considered separate keywords. If you sell bass guitars, all three keyphrases work to describe your product. Choosing the keyphrase you feel would be used most often by your customers will get you the most clicks.

Longtail: Sometimes zeroing in on a single keyword selection isn’t effective. If you were to sell self-help books using the single keyword books isn’t going to get you anywhere. There are so many sites already devoted to books that you don’t have a chance to compete. Long-tail keywords are the answer. Self-help books will get only a fraction of the search that books does but you can be sure that people are getting what they want and 100% of a little traffic is way more than 0% of a lot.

Simple over Complex: Using simple wording is very important. The idea is to deliver information, not to obscure it. Using simple wording is key to leading people to your material. Often people want to sound important and intelligent. They use the most technical jargon in order to prove their knowledge base on a topic but in doing so they alienate their audience. Don’t sell ‘automatic hydrogen dioxide filtration and distribution systems’, sell ‘water purifiers’. If a search term is unnecessarily complex people will never find it. Remember KISS!

Gauge Competition: The bottom line is you aren’t the only person trying to get a slice of the keyword pie. Many websites and businesses are optimizing for the exact same products or services you are. Choosing keywords that are both honest to your business and that have low competition is an important step. When they are many keyword options, selecting the one that you feel has the least competitors can help drive more traffic.

Generating Keywords

The best way to examine and execute keyword selection is to build a pool of options. Start off determining exactly what your product or service is. For this example we sell toys. Start with toys as your base keyword and generate as many relevant keyword phrases as you can muster.


  • kids toys
  • childrens toys
  • toys for kids
  • toys for children
  • children’s toys
  • kid’s toys
  • etc….

You can see in the example that our keyword phrases are similar. As far as search engines are concerned each one is as different as night and day. You’ll notice we have two versions of children’s toys, one with an apostrophe and one without. Children’s toys is grammatically correct but childrens toys will get more traffic. How often do you add punctuation to your Google searches? If you don’t there’s a good chance your clientele doesn’t either.

Once you have built a sufficient pool of keyword phrases, applying the 5 tips to each word, filter until you have three to five good options that work for your product. Proper keyword selection takes a bit of work at the start but it’s worth the long term traffic to your site or blog.