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5 biggest keyword research mistakes you must avoid

5 biggest keyword research mistakes you must avoid

Keyword research is still one of the most crucial aspects of search engine optimisation. Although search engines have gotten smarter and do not rely as much on specific keywords as they used to a few years ago, having specific keyword phrases in the right places still helps.

According to a study, 66 percent of webmasters perform their own keyword research, instead of outsourcing it. Therefore, it is crucial that they know what to do and which mistakes to avoid.

Here are the five biggest keyword research mistakes you must avoid to get the best possible results.

1. Ignoring the SERPs

It is perhaps the most common mistake most SEO professionals make. They get bogged down and spend too much time in keyword research tools trying to find the best keywords for their web page. Doing that, they completely forget about and ignore the actual top 10 results in the SERPs.

Using keyword research tools helps, but it is also important to look at actual results and see what’s ranking. It is possible that sometimes Google may serve different content to users, which does not really match the search query. 

Make sure to note the following things when you look at the SERPs and the top 10 results:

  • What type of content is ranking for a particular keyword? Is it a blog post, product pages, or guides?
  • What is the average content length for the top 3 and top 10 results on the SERPs?
  • Pay attention to the meta titles and meta descriptions of the results on the first page. Also, notice the main keyword usage in the meta tags.

2. Not paying attention to searcher intent

Search intent is perhaps the most important point you need to remember when doing keyword research. The whole point of getting your site ranked on the search engine results page is that it helps users find the information they’re looking for. That’s not possible without taking into account user search intent.

If your web page does not match search intent, it will have multiple negative effects on your website:

  • First, your website will have a poor conversion rate.
  • Second, it will also negatively affect engagement metrics, such as bounce rate, dwell time, etc. 

3. Shortlisting irrelevant high-volume keywords

During keyword research, you will find many high-volume keywords. The tip is not to get tempted by them and identify the high-volume keywords that actually make sense for your website and website visitors.

Because not all high-volume keywords — regardless of how amazing they seem — will be a good fit for your website.

Apart from identifying the keywords that would make sense for your content, it is also equally important to realize and shortlist the types of queries your website visitors would use to find answers to their questions.

In short, do not just look at the search volume. There are other factors that would also affect your content.

4. Inserting keywords after writing the content

While you can include keywords in a few places after the content is written, you can’t slap the main keyword completely after a page is ready. 

“SEOing” a blog post isn’t an effective approach anymore.

Keyword research and implementation happen before you start writing, and it can’t work well if it’s an afterthought. 

It is important to identify your main keyword, secondary keywords, and LSI keywords before you start writing an article. The outline phase is when you need to incorporate all your primary and secondary keywords.

5. Neglecting long-tail keywords

Many online businessmen and even SEO professionals dismiss long-tail keywords. It happens mainly because long-tail keywords do not usually have a high search volume. 

In comparison, broad or “head” keywords have a high search volume because they represent the top of the funnel. However, with high search volume for head keywords also comes higher competition. 

Long-tail keywords give websites a better chance to rank for better rankings in the search engines and may also lead to a better conversion rate.

Conclusion

Driving quality traffic that also converts well on the website is important. And well-rounded keyword research is the first step towards it. Use the above-mentioned five tips to avoid some of the big keyword research mistakes that might hamper your SEO success.

What are some of the biggest keyword research mistakes you have noticed? Let us know.

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