Hey everybody, this is Zack here at Yas and today I’m going to be showing you how to find keywords for your business.
Keywords can be used in search engine optimization (SEO) and also in your ad campaigns, so let’s jump right in. You’ll see here that I am logged into Google ads. I’m going to be using Google ads keyword planner. If you don’t already have a Google ads account, you do need one to access this keyword planner, but you don’t actually have to be paying for ads to use it.
So if you aren’t running Google ads you can just quickly sign up, create an account, enter in your billing information, but then don’t actually start running any ads, and that way you can access this keyword planner.
In Google ads, the way that I got here was up in tools this little wrench kind of near the top right. Click on that and you’ll get a drop-down that says “keyword planner”. Once you click on that, it just brings you to this page here and you’ll see there’s a section here for discover new keywords. I’m going to click on that arrow. You can either start by putting in keywords that you already have or you can start with a website.
I almost always like to start with a website and I will actually use competitors’ websites when doing keyword research to see what they’re doing. So in this case I’m going to pretend that I’m a boat dealer in Toronto. I wanted to pick something that has nothing to do with what I do.
I chose three competitors which would be yachtworld.com, anchor yacht sales, and Toronto yacht sales. I’ll type in the first one here yachtworld.com and then you click get results. What’s going to happen now is Google is going to quickly scan through their website, figure out what some of their keywords are and then give you some data on it.
So the most important things that we’re going to be looking at today are the keyword ideas, obviously that’s where you’re going to get your keywords, the average monthly searches, which again is how many times this keyword is being searched every single month, and then the competition. I always like to start by clicking on average monthly searches so I can see which ones are being searched the most.
We’ll give that a second to load there and so when this loads up you can see immediately that boat sale for example is searched 22 000 times which is really really good for a keyword. Now, if the competition didn’t matter, you would want to immediately grab all of these high competition ones and start targeting them, but since competition is an issue, you want to try to find ones that are low or medium competition that are still relevant to you.
Competition means that there are a lot of your competitors basically fighting for the top spots for these keywords or running ads for these keywords so it’s going to cost you a lot more to place for those keywords again because you’re up against a lot of people trying to do the exact same thing.
So in the case of yachtworld.com, I want to look at boat sales used. It’s medium competition and still gets a lot of searches. I see up here that there’s trailer boats low. Not being in the boat industry I’m not really sure what that is but it might be a specific thing so we’re just going to go for boat sales used.
At this point I would take down, you know, a few ideas and for the sake of this video I’m only going to kind of grab one from each just so you can get the idea but I want to look at multiple of these websites so to kind of save us some time I skipped forward a little bit and I’ve also searched for anchor yacht sales.com.
Same thing I sort by average monthly searches and I want to look at competition so I mean in this case the the most searched one is yacht but that’s not really a great keyword on its own because anybody could be searching that if they want yacht information, yacht clubs, yacht…
it’s a lot more wide in general than you want to target so for this one I looked at boat dealer because I’m like “yeah I’m a boat dealer; I sell boats” that’s something that has a low competition, lots of average searches—that’s probably something that’s going to be useful for me.
Third one quickly Toronto yacht sales. We’ll look through this list, trader boats is on there again. Now, if you do anything with trader boats that is a really good keyword for you but if you don’t, well, that’s probably why it’s low competition. From this one I grabbed boat rentals Toronto so what you want to do next after you’ve kind of made a list of these keywords is look into them a little bit further and see what else you can see.
The next step for me when I usually do this is to actually just go right to Google search and start typing in these keywords and seeing what comes up. Some of the things that I’m looking for are at the top here where there’s an ad running. The more ads you see running for a keyword you’ve searched, generally the higher competition you can assume you’ll have in ads and SEO. It’s not always 100% correlated but usually when people are spending money on ads for something, obviously they want to show up for that, so it’s probably something they’re trying to target organically as well for SEO.
I think the max number of ads you can see up in the top is four and then you can also see four on the bottom. You can also see more ads on other pages, so one shows you that it’s not a really super high competition keyword so that’s good. Then I want to scroll down and see what the organic competition looks like.
So organic is everything below the ads and below this map section (the map section kind of follows a few other rules that I’m not going to touch on today). I can see that the top is “get my boat” which is top 10 Toronto boats. Number two is harbor front center—that one is a business.
Now, what I want to be careful for when I’m looking through these is that it can be extremely difficult to compete with listing sites, government sites, and sites that have been around for a really long time. Listing sites are really obvious; they’re going to be any sort of Kijiji. This top one “get my boat” is a listing site and kind of the way that listing sites are designed is to create a lot of backlinks for themselves, whether or not that’s what they’re trying to do. If you find that you’re in competition with a listing site, it’s probably not worth your time to try and get above them because chances are you’re not going to be able to just because of what kind of website that is.
Government sites as well—Google wants to know who they can trust and they’re going to trust what they consider official sources. The last one I touched on there was businesses that have been around for a long time. So in practice, the longer you’ve had a website, the more trustworthy you look to Google because they don’t want to take a risk on a new website that is going to go under in the next year or something like that. That one is usually harder to tell but you should probably know who like the the big ones in your industry are they’re also very often the like big corporations. If you’re a hardware store you’re not likely going to beat like home hardware or Rona in SEO—you might in your individual city depending again on what their strategy is, but these are all things that you want to consider.
I did the same thing for the other keywords you kind of just want to go through all of these again. Only one ad, so that tells me that… there’s more at the bottom here. How many ads are shown is one thing that I don’t think I’ve ever been able to peg down with Google. The fact that there are three down here and only one at the top can be confusing. Maybe it’s because they’re not spending enough budget on it. I don’t really know the answer to that but definitely check the top and the bottom. If there’s lots of ads, there’s probably lots of competition.
Same thing here; this one has two at the top and three at the bottom. Now when you see competition, it doesn’t necessarily mean to stay away from it but if you consistently see like four at the top and four at the bottom, it can be a good sign that it’s really competitive but again it’s not always a hundred percent so you kind of just want to test around.
If you started running ads with these keywords you would figure out pretty quickly with ads analytics whether you have to spend more to compete. I think I’ve said this before in videos but I’ve had the same ad that I ran in Saskatoon here for like a dollar a click cost me 15 a click in Calgary because it’s a larger city
The last thing that I would recommend doing when trying to figure out keywords is that it’s probably likely that you already have some keywords in mind. When I ask my clients the question “if I was a customer what would you expect me to be searching”.
So that’s basically all that I wanted to show you today. I’m sure there’s lots of other ways to find good keywords as well; this is just the strategy that I usually use when I’m getting started. You want to, as a business owner, you’ll have a really good idea of what you think your customers are searching, but you also want to make sure to talk to some people who are not in your industry because it can be easy to get used to your industry terms and think that people are searching what you would search but maybe they don’t know these specific words to search.
Again, make sure to just get as big of an idea of what people are looking for and then you can use some of these techniques today to narrow down and figure out which ones you want to be targeting.
Let me know if you have anything else you want me to discuss in terms of finding keywords or even like how to implement them, that sort of thing, and I can definitely make another tutorial on that. Otherwise, like, comment, subscribe—it’s always really appreciated and I will talk to you in the next one.