How to Identify Keyphrases & Select them

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Deciding on which keyphrases to advertise on and the relevant ads to displays is one of the biggest tasks in search engine marketing.

Keyphrase analysis and selection are core to success in SEM. Identifying relevant key phrases for your marketplace is crucial starting point both to starting and refining both paid search and SEO.

1. Quantitative estimates of potential should be developed using tools like the Google keywords planner and the Overture Keyword Assistant. However, these tools also include repeated and software generated searches and may be quite inaccurate, particularly for low volume searches.

2. It is important to understand and then target different searcher behaviours. Searcher behaviour tends to start with generic high volume phrases and then becomes more specific in a long-tail pattern. However some searchers have a dominant mode such as comparison or bargain-related and this pattern doesn’t seem to change.

3. Keyphrase volumes vary seasonally and between different countries

4. Keyphrase analysis is not a one-off – a keyphrase repository should be developed for adding new keywords, reviewing performance and revising strategies.

You should approach keyphrase research and selection in a structured way. We recommend these steps:

  • Step 1. Scope keyphrases identifying main themes
  • Step 2. Identify full-list of potential keyphrases
  • Step 3. Keyphrase gap analysis
    1. Demand analysis – how many are searching?
    2. Performance analysis – our results from SEO and PPC?
    3. Gap analysis – where are we stronger and weakest?
  • Step 4. Keyphrase selection & strategy – selecting which phrases to target through SEO, PPC and affiliates.

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