SEO Keyword Rankings: Choosing the Right Terms to Rank #1 on Google
Chances are, you want more traffic to come to your website. After all, more traffic means you’ll boost your business revenue, right?
You see, more traffic’s all well and good, but there’s no guarantee it will lead to a revenue increase. In fact, if you draw the wrong kind of traffic, your revenue could stall since you’re not getting your content in front of the right people.
Instead, focus on getting better quality traffic. One way to do this is prioritizing ranking well for high intent keywords.
Why? Consider this: the number one Google search result for a given query has an average click-through rate (CTR) of 31.7 percent. It gets 10 times more clicks than the page in spot number ten.
Where would you rather be if you’re trying to grow your business: spot one or ten?
I think we all know the answer.
With this in mind, here’s how keyword ranking for SEO works and how to choose the right keywords for your content.
What Is Keyword Ranking in SEO?
A “keyword” in SEO refers to a word or phrase someone enters into a search engine like Google or Bing. Ideally, the search engine will show results that match what the user is looking for. Your “keyword ranking” refers to your position in the search results for a given search query.
Here are some basics about keywords:
- The average keyword gets roughly 989 searches per month.
- Around 14.1 percent of keyword searches involve a question.
- Keywords vary in length but the average is 1.9 words long.
Say you sell electric hand mixers, and you write a product category page for your products. Think about what keywords people enter into Google to find your product. For example, they might search something like “buy electric hand mixer.”
As I mentioned, your keyword ranking is the spot your page occupies in the list of Google search results. In this case, All Recipes ranks above Homes and Gardens, and so on.
SEO, or “search engine optimization,” means optimizing your content using the right keywords to improve your page ranking. Let’s check out why this is important.
Why Are SEO Keyword Rankings Important?
Organic searches drive traffic; in fact, recent data suggests that at least 53 percent of traffic comes from organic search queries.
If you want to capture this traffic, then you need to elevate your SEO keyword rankings.
However, as I’ve already mentioned, you’re not trying to draw just any traffic. If you want to grow your brand, you need traffic that converts.
You want that coveted number one spot for the keywords most likely to boost your business. To snag those spots, you need to be strategic about the keywords you choose and how you use them in your digital marketing campaign. Let me walk you through the process.
How to Choose Keywords That Can Get You the Top Spot in Google Keyword Rankings
Now that we’ve covered the basics, here’s how to proceed if you’re hunting for high-quality keywords for your digital marketing goals.
1. Research and Compile a List of Topics to Cover
First, you need content ideas, so find out what matters to your audience. Research what type of questions they’re asking and what they need help with so you can deliver the answers they need.
Check out online platforms like Reddit, Quora, and Answer the Public. Reddit, for example, has over 50 million active daily users, so it’s a good starting point for researching questions.
Look for common questions across a few platforms. Common questions suggest it’s an “in-demand” topic that your audience cares about.
Make a list of topics to cover based on your findings. Keep a note of the questions themselves, because they might make good keywords later.
2. Plug Your Target Topics Into a Tool Like Ubersuggest
Once you have some topics in mind, you need some keyword ideas. That’s where tools like Ubersuggest come in handy.
Ubersuggest shows you the most profitable keywords for your topics so you’ll know where to focus your efforts. You can see which keywords your competitors rank for, so you can learn from their strategy and outrank them.
Once you have content up and running, you can perform regular SEO audits to identify performance issues.
With over 50,000 users, Ubersuggest is super easy to use. Say you want to write about inbound marketing. Type the phrase into Ubersuggest and click Search:
From the main screen, you can then see how popular this keyword is and view some related keywords. You can also check out the “Content Ideas” section to help you craft an article based on popular competitors’ content:
Bonus Keyword Ranking SEO Tips and Best Practices
If you want to maximize your shot at a #1 ranking, here are five practical tips for boosting your Google keyword rankings.
1. Optimize for Featured Snippets
Featured snippets are answer boxes that appear at the top of a “SERP” or search engine results page. Here’s an example:
According to research by SEMRush and Brado, at least 19 percent of SERPs have a featured snippet and they take the #1 spot almost 100 percent of the time. This means, as featured snippets become more popular, they’re transforming SERPs…and you should know how to make them work for you.
From a keyword ranking SEO perspective, featured snippets are more common for question-based keywords (like the example above). Choose a long-tail or question-based keyword to write an authoritative answer for and you’ll boost your chances of featuring. Tools like Ubersuggest can help you select the right keyword.
2. Use the Primary Keyword Strategically
To get the most from your main or “primary” keyword, use it strategically around your website.
Always use the primary keyword in your page title to help Google understand what your page is about. You should also try to include your primary keyword and some keyword variations in subheadings as well.
It’s also best practices to try and use the primary keyword in the first paragraph of the page.
Finally, don’t overuse any keyword; otherwise, it could be considered keyword stuffing which can damage your Google SEO rankings.
3. Streamline Your Page Speed
For the best conversion rates, your page should load within zero to four seconds, according to Portent’s research. They discovered that, from the five-second mark, conversion rates drop by up to 4.42 percent per second, and 78 percent of websites (i.e., your competitors) now have a load time of five seconds or less.
A slow loading time could increase your bounce rate which may damage your SEO, so streamline page performance where possible.
You can use page speed testing tools, like PageSpeed Insights, to analyze current page speeds. Just input your URL and click “Analyze” to get started:
Then, make adjustments, such as compressing images, deleting unnecessary plugins, and caching pages to reduce load time. Check your page speeds again and compare the results.
Conclusion: SEO Keyword Rankings
If you want to rank number one in a Google search, your keyword ranking for SEO matters. Otherwise, while you might gain traffic, you won’t draw the visitors most likely to convert to paying customers.
No one wants to lose revenue just because they choose the wrong keywords or their content is stuck on page three. Give the SEO keyword tools I’ve suggested a try and if you need any extra help, don’t hesitate to check out my consulting services.
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