By the way, here’s a tip that can save you a bunch of time: YSM data is available
within the Wordtracker tool too. Last we looked, Wordtracker was still calling YSM’s
data the Overture database (Overture was bought by Yahoo!), so be on the lookout for
changes in labels here.
No keyword research tool is perfect, and you should always double-check
the data you get with your gut instincts. We use Wordtracker for most of our keyword
data gathering. We use YSM primarily to find related terms, to double-check trends in
popularity that we find with Wordtracker, and to plan PPC campaigns. Your finances
and preferences will dictate whether you use one or both.
Thursday: Keyword Data Gathering
Congratulations—you’re over the hump in your first week of SEO! You have a long list
of possible keywords and tools in hand to help you analyze them. Today you will fill in
those all-important columns on your Keywords Worksheet:
How many people are actually searching for a given term
How well a keyword connects with your site and conversion goals
How many, and how well, other sites are targeting a given keyword
Finalizing your top target keywords will require a balancing act between all
three of these factors. We’ll look a little more closely at each of them here.
Both YSM and Wordtracker provide values for keyword popularity (see Figure 6.2 and
Figure 6.3). However, we recommend Wordtracker over YSM for two reasons: First,
Wordtracker pulls from a larger network of searchers. Second, as we mentioned in
your Wednesday task, Wordtracker is much more specific about word syntax. For
example, YSM may combine “IL” with “Illinois,” and you will never know which one
is actually more popular with searchers. Wordtracker gives you the option of looking
at the specific differences in terminology that you need to know in order to choose the
“just right” keywords.
It can be time consuming pulling up the search popularity values for every term
on your long list, but you can save time by copying and pasting several words at a
time—or your whole list—into the search popularity tool. If you’re good with Excel,
Switch to the Yahoo! Search Marketing (aka Overture) database within Wordtracker, or go to the
Yahoo! Search Marketing site, and test-drive it with some of your favorite keywords.
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