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Choosing Keywords For A Wide Niche


Best Answer torka , 13 August 2015 - 09:43 AM

Depends on your definition of "SEO" versus "other marketing strategies." :)

 

Seriously, a lot of the things that often get termed "other marketing" -- particularly digital marketing, but not exclusively -- can have the ancillary effect of also boosting organic search traffic for the site (which, ultimately, is the goal of SEO, n'est ce pas?). I don't know that I think of it as an "either/or" situation.

 

I mean, as I see it SEO is essentially three things:

  • Basic on-site technical requirements: reasonably clean code, logical site architecture, visitor-friendly navigation

     

  • Excellent on-page user experience: well-written content for both human and spider visitors to sink their virtual teeth into, easy to read or scan as the user prefers, visually presented in a way that doesn't make people's eyeballs bleed or cause seizures when they view the page, with prominent and frequent calls to action, and

     

  • Good, legitimate editorial links pointing to the site's pages

     

The first two should be taken care of automatically in the course of developing a website designed for maximum conversions. Unless you have a good quality website, there's no real point in anything else, is there? If you then start doing "other marketing" -- public relations/media relations, outreach to other complementary/related businesses, community relations, social media, content marketing, customer loyalty programs, etc.... you will, by default, be bringing this attractive, well-written, user-friendly website to the attention of other people who may be in the position to bestow those editorial links you need. So by doing "other marketing" you're automatically working on that third component of SEO, plus you're also building a solid base of referral and direct traffic for the site (which is where you really want most of your traffic to come from in the first place).

 

My :02:

 

--Torka :oldfogey:

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7 replies to this topic

#1 philraymond

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Posted 11 August 2015 - 09:10 PM

Some sites I've started or otherwise worked on have had a narrowly-enough defined niche that it was quite clear how to build a list of related keywords.

 

But I'm currently working on a site for a health center that has naturopaths, acupuncture, chiropractors, osteopaths, homeopaths, massage, etc., and then various health issues that each of those specialities can help.

 

So when I'm building out my pages, it's harder to come up with a nice tidy 'family tree' of keyword groups. In this case, do I just go practitioner by practitioner (e.g. chiropractor), and health issue by health issue (e.g. back pain) and try to choose the best keywords for each page? i.e. optimizing on a page-by-page basis rather than optimizing the site as a whole? Or is there a better way?

 

Also, since I need to build pages for all of these practitioners, am I in for a tough battle trying to rank for 'Chicago chiropractor' when there are plenty of websites that are made solely for one chiropractor? I suppose so, right?

 

Thanks in advance for your wisdom,

Phil



#2 Jill

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Posted 11 August 2015 - 09:28 PM

So when I'm building out my pages, it's harder to come up with a nice tidy 'family tree' of keyword groups. In this case, do I just go practitioner by practitioner (e.g. chiropractor), and health issue by health issue (e.g. back pain) and try to choose the best keywords for each page? i.e. optimizing on a page-by-page basis rather than optimizing the site as a whole? Or is there a better way?

 

 

 
Every site can only be optimized on a page by page basis and never as a whole, IMO. 


#3 Michael Martinez

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 02:10 PM

I agree with Jill.  "Sitewide optimization" is about performance, appearance, and operability.  Search optimization is about improving the relationship between search engines and: what is on the page, what is pointing to the page, what the page is providing in terms of user experience, and how the page points to other documents.



#4 philraymond

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Posted 12 August 2015 - 03:23 PM

Thank you Jill and Michael. That makes perfect sense. I've been running my own websites for many years, doing most of the marketing myself, so I'm a bit of a jack of all trades. I've also more recently started doing online marketing consulting on the side. 

 

Here's the decision I'm trying to make. When working for a client with a set budget, how do I decide how much of my focus should be on SEO vs other marketing strategies? 

 

For example, when working with this health center, it's clear to me that we're not going to rank for 'back pain' or 'stress relief' or any of the dozens of health issues they can help with. I could build moderately strong pages around these keywords, but I can't get into link building and ongoing social media around these issues because the center works with so many health issues.

 

So in this case, I'm trying to figure out how much time to devote to SEO. Do you have any thoughts on this or is it kind of a chicken and egg question (i.e. if we want the revenue that would support the SEO, we first need to invest in the SEO)? It just seems like a losing battle.

 

Thanks for any advice you have :)



#5 torka

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Posted 13 August 2015 - 09:43 AM   Best Answer

Depends on your definition of "SEO" versus "other marketing strategies." :)

 

Seriously, a lot of the things that often get termed "other marketing" -- particularly digital marketing, but not exclusively -- can have the ancillary effect of also boosting organic search traffic for the site (which, ultimately, is the goal of SEO, n'est ce pas?). I don't know that I think of it as an "either/or" situation.

 

I mean, as I see it SEO is essentially three things:

  • Basic on-site technical requirements: reasonably clean code, logical site architecture, visitor-friendly navigation

     

  • Excellent on-page user experience: well-written content for both human and spider visitors to sink their virtual teeth into, easy to read or scan as the user prefers, visually presented in a way that doesn't make people's eyeballs bleed or cause seizures when they view the page, with prominent and frequent calls to action, and

     

  • Good, legitimate editorial links pointing to the site's pages

     

The first two should be taken care of automatically in the course of developing a website designed for maximum conversions. Unless you have a good quality website, there's no real point in anything else, is there? If you then start doing "other marketing" -- public relations/media relations, outreach to other complementary/related businesses, community relations, social media, content marketing, customer loyalty programs, etc.... you will, by default, be bringing this attractive, well-written, user-friendly website to the attention of other people who may be in the position to bestow those editorial links you need. So by doing "other marketing" you're automatically working on that third component of SEO, plus you're also building a solid base of referral and direct traffic for the site (which is where you really want most of your traffic to come from in the first place).

 

My :02:

 

--Torka :oldfogey:


Edited by torka, 13 August 2015 - 09:43 AM.

  • Jill likes this

#6 philraymond

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Posted 18 August 2015 - 07:35 AM

Well said Torka. That all makes sense. I guess what I meant was, how much time should I spend on developing search engine optimized content for our site vs. going out and getting referrals, reviews, PPC, and even other off-site 'SEO' like citations?

 

I guess one thing I've not yet figured out is how to determine ahead of time the likelihood that an SEO campaign will be successful, which would be helpful to figure out if it will be worthwhile to allocate time and money at it, and how much. That's easier to determine with PPC, you know?



#7 torka

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Posted 18 August 2015 - 11:08 AM

It's got to be a balance. You don't need thousands of pages of content, but you also don't need thousands of reviews and links to do well. The website is not a product to be promoted (unless you're trying to sell the actual website itself). It's just another tool to market the business. It's like a billboard or a newspaper ad or a TV commercial.

 

I guess for me I'm kind of moving away from the idea of specific, dedicated "SEO campaigns."

 

I start with a foundation of the basic content I would need to convert a prospect to a customer. If I do it right, well-written content is automatically going to include the words and phrases my prospects/customers will use when they're searching for the things I offer (or when they're searching on their pain points for which I can offer a solution) -- whether I've deliberately tried to "SEO optimize" it or not. Using the customer's language is just a function of good content in general, so if I do content right it's going to be sufficiently "optimized" by default.

 

I only add more when/if I have something interesting or useful to say. I don't ever force myself to write content because some "SEO calendar" says it's time for another blog post or whatever. (OK, sure, I write a newsletter article almost every month, but that's primarily for email marketing purposes. SEO is at best secondary there. And when I really don't have anything to say I've been known to skip a month on that one, too.)

 

Once that basic content is in place, it's a matter of letting people know it exists. Businesses pay good money to get their commercials on TV or radio, they place billboards by the side of busy highways and they place ads in newspapers and magazines that get good circulation among their target audience. In the same way, by bringing my website to the attention of potential partner organizations and influential individuals, whether through direct outreach or social media posting or paid advertising, I'm also bringing my business to their attention (and through them, to the attention of others). But to me, that's just general marketing.

 

After that, it's an ongoing balance. I create new content when I have something to say (interesting development in the news related to my business, a new product release, some new customer benefit that just occurred to me, a special promotion or sale we're running, whatever). I make sure people know this new content exists, while continuing to remind them of older/existing content.

 

It's not so important if I'm writing a blog post or asking a business partner for a link or posting a new product announcement to social media. It's all marketing to me. I don't tend to think of any of it as specifically "SEO."

 

It will all potentially have the effect of SEO (in the sense of gaining me more traffic from organic search results), but from my standpoint I'm just doing marketing, not specifically SEO.

 

(Not very helpful, I'm afraid. But this is where I am today with SEO...)

 

--Torka :oldfogey:



#8 philraymond

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Posted 25 August 2015 - 12:31 PM

Very helpful indeed Torka. Thanks so much for the intelligent, insightful response. I'm taking notes right now...






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