Basic Keyword Analysis

Section 1: Basic Definition

Some basic definitions to start with it. I will be keeping it purely on organic searches.
  • What is a keyphrase with respect to SEM?
People use different phrases to search for a concept, or a product, or a service. These phrases are known as keyphrases. Each keyphrase will contain one or more keyword.
  • Why keyphrases are important?
In my opinion keyphrases are like products and all that applies to product management or product marketing applies to keyphrase management and keyphrase marketing, if not direct then certainly in an indirect way. Previously I once had explained the AIM matrix for keyphrases which is a BCG matrix analysis for keyphrase (but lost the original version with server change but still the www has a few copies, you can search for it on web).

Section 2: Attributes of a keyphrase
A keyword has many attributes which can be broadly categorized into following attributes:
-Overall market or popularity 
-Relevancy with respect to the business 
-Overall Competition: 
     +Total players. 
     +Strength of top 10 players (on-page and off-page).
     +Indecisive factors.
-Landing page 
Let's take it one by one for indepth understanding 

            Overall market or popularity
The total number of times a keyphrase is searched across different search engines during a given length of time. For this you can use different online tools. I do not want to give links over here. Search google and you will get it or try [] .

Not each keyphrase is of same relevancy. Some are very directly targeted and not. If I take an example for click fraud company, then "PPC fraud click detection" is more relevant that the keyphrase "Search Engine Marketing" or "SEM". Some searching for SEM may be interested in PPC campagin and thus click farud service but the relevancy factor is low. This highly depends on the product and services offered or rather targeted. This is somehow variably constant as probability of a frequently significant change is very low. You can define a value (e.g. percentage points) to reflect the relevancy.
Note: According to Some experts we can introduce a weighted popularity attribute which is a combination of overall market and relevancy.
No. of searches X relevancy = weighted popularity (will help you find the terms which will best reach the desired audience)

Overall Competition
This can be further divided into three points:- 
Total Players: Total sites under the keyphrase search in different SE. (I will prefer to check it only in google for just no special reason). In order to avoid accidental players (who are there just due to some common keyphrase or accidentally appeared keyphrase, example some blogs just talking about the personal experiences with click frauds.) you can use the following searches,
(returns 1,410,000 results , this is normal search) []
(returns 820 results which is about keyphrase in the page title) []
(returns 386 results when keyphrase is in the url) []
(returns 68,200 results with inanchor) []
Using these search techniques we can develop an estimated figure for competition. You can come up with an algo here.
Strength of top 10 players in Google: Links play a major role – rather a decisive role - for highly competitive keyphrases. In other words the strength of the top players can be judged on the basis of the total links (judging the quality is a difficult job) acquired. Median of Top 10 sites will give a fair idea of competition on the basis of links. Onpage factors are not as decisive as it can be achieved by putting some extra effort on the need and the content. For checking the links you can use the following searches in yahoo (as yahoo gives the most accurate picture as of now) :-
All these link calculation will give you only an approximate estimate of the overall strength of the top players.
Indecisive factors: There are few more indecisive factors like anchor text, keyword density and blah blah blah. (Only few experts know about it :) and surely they will not reveal all the secrets.) 

Landing page
A targeted landing page for each keyphrase (atleast for the major one) is a good practice. Since

f (ranking) = a1 x f (onpage) + a2 x f (offpage) ,
Where f (ranking) = function for Ranking,
f (onpage) = function calculating onpage factor value,
f (offpage) = function calculating offpage factor value and
a1 and a2 are approx weights. 
For major keyphrase f (offpage) plays major role as f (onpage) can’t be improved beyond a limit. If you have different landing pages for different search engine (for any reason) then you may face a problem in strengning your position for a high competitive keyphrase. 

Section 3: Phases of Keyphrase marketing
There are different phases for keyphrase marketing. I have tried to categorize it into three broader ones, which are:- 
-Feedback and ROI calculations 
Let's study them one by one
            Discovery Phase
The first phase is to discover the keyphrases. As we have explained under "Overall market or popularity", you can use the online tools to discover potential keywords. You can also use Google adwords for keyword discovery. A tracking system can play a very major role in discovering some potential but rare keyphrases like "How to get a mortgage in texas?" You can have a high conversion ratio for such crucial sentences. Tools like google analytics can help in redesigning the landing page for a better conversion ratio.

Investment Phase
In order to rank good in search engines you need to invest time into each major keyphrase to bring more traffic and links to the target page. A good analysis can help you with the investment phase. Follow the steps for an investment phase:-
Step 1: Make a 3x3 matrix with weighted popularity and competition as displayed with high, medium and low columns and rows.
Step 2: Now fill in the kephrases inside the cells. If your business operates more profitably in Texas compared to California then Texas mortgage has more weighted popularity for your business. Similarly "Well Fargo home mortgage" is very competitive keyphrase but may not be relevant for you. You should start from (high weighted popularity, low competition) and go towards (low weighted popularity, high competition). You can choose a clockwise or anti-clockwise approach to cover cells.

Feedback and ROI calculations
Keep checking the ROI for the keyphrases , sometimes the real data shows a little different graph than our expectations. A tracking system can help you calculate the ROI and redefine your strategies. A consistent feedback and ROI calculation is a must as the market varies so does the competition and the ranking. 

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