Thursday, February 26, 2009

Help Readers Find You With Search Terms

The Web has revolutionized marketing. Before the Web, "interruption marketing" prevailed - marketers interrupted readers/listeners from their articles/TV programs with an advertisement about a product they weren't searching for.

Today, millions of people are searching for information on the Web. As writers, we don't have to interrupt them to get their attention. We simply need to put useful information out there and make it easy for those searching for our information to find us.

Employing key search terms can help. Since I'm currently writing on personal finance, I want to know what terms people use to search for the information I'm providing. By using those terms in my titles, first paragraphs, links and in other prominent places, people will more likely find me when they do a Google or Yahoo search for those terms. So whether I'm writing a blog, a press release, a book title or subtitle (they will be searched on Amazon, for example), a book description, or a web page, I need to know how people are searching for this information.

First, I went to Google's tool for finding key words and phrases in Google Ad Words. (If the url has changed do a Google search for a phrase such as "find key words". Several sites have tended to offer these tools.) I did two searches, one on "money" and another on "finances."

Second, I deleted all the terms that didn't relate to the specific money topics I write on.

Finally, I ordered them according to search frequency.

Below, I've listed some of my results, telling me how many times each of these terms were searched, on average, in any given month.

Here are some of the ways that this information is useful to me:

1) People searching with the term “money” seem to be primarily searching for how to “make money” and “earn money.” 15 out of 19 (I found more terms than those I listed below) search terms were specifically about making and getting money. Make sure these terms are all over my articles and web pages concerning working, developing your skills, etc. at .

2) Knowing what information people are hungry for helps me narrow down topics for future articles.

3) In searching “finances,” people are looking for financial advice or help, particularly with managing expenses and budgeting. I can use those terms when writing on those topics.

4) Obviously, work these key terms into my titles, headings, first paragraphs, links, etc. Titles are no longer determined solely by what's memorable and what's clever.

5) Since budgeting is often misspelled “budgetting,” and searched 2,400 times as such, I might include it on an appropriate page in places seen only by search engines, such as my meta tags or as a name for a graphic.

6) Use these terms as tags when I blog on those subjects.

7) Remember such significant, but not intuitively obvious, facts as “personal finances” being searched 33,100 times, but the singular form, “personal finance,” being searched 550,000 times!

8) Don't forget to use less searched terms at times (not included below), since so many large sites with massive traffic and incoming links will get priority placement by search engines for their use of those terms.

Other reflections or comments? Click below and join the discussion!

Search Terms for "Money"

(includes synonyms)

Over 1,000,000 Searches

Money 24,900,000

Make money 2,240,000

Dollars 2,240,000

Earn 1,830,000

Over 100,000

Earn money 368,000

Ways to make money 135,000

Over 20,000

Getting money 49,500

How to earn money 27,100

Money making ideas 27,100

Lots of money 27,100

Easy ways to make money 22,200

Money manager 22,200









Search Terms for "Finances"

(includes synonyms)

Over 1,000,000 Searches

Finance 16,600,000

Over 100,000

Personal finance 550,000

Expenses 450,000

Expense 450,000

Budgeting 246,000

Financial management 246,000

Finances 201,000

Money management 135,000

Budgets 110,000

Over 20,000

Financial help 90,500

Financial service 90,500

Financial information 60,500

Finance calculator 60,500

Financial plan 49,500

Financial advice 40,500

Personal finances 33,100

Financial 33,100

Household finance 27,100

Student finance 27,100

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