Keyword Research & website Architecture

As a Marketing Consultant when I work with B2B clients I often find that SEO is not given the priority in the website development process it deserves.

Proper keyword research is vital to maximizing online visibility. Getting keyword research correct from the beginning is crucial. It drives site architecture. One of the mistakes B2B marketers continue to make with organic search is inadequate website architecture - the fact is that many B2B sites don’t have sufficient content (pages) to respond to enough search terms. The solution, however, isn’t simply adding more content. Proper website architecture is also critical.

The typical scope or work for a Keyword Research and webite Architecture engagement includes:
  • Developing understanding of B2B prospect profiles and the nature of the B2B buying cycle
  • Reviewing client’s list of desired keywords
  • Reviewing existing site and those of stated B2B competitors
  • Using multiple sources to research popular keywords and keyword variants actually used by searchers
  • Identifying lower volume, high-conversion keywords
  • Identifying important words in the search tail of keywords
  • Identifying with the client the keywords for which the site should be optimized
  • Designing the appropriate site architecture to support the keyword strategy
The investment for the B2B Keyword Research and Website Architecture varies based on the goals and complexity of the Internet Marketing project. But the cost can return itself in new business many times over.

Information Architecture

Information Hierarchy and website architectureMany website development projects seem to focus too much on the design aspects of their website before they put any thought into the site architecture and information flow. By inserting information architecture at the beginning of your process, you can dramatically change your website's performance. The benefits of developing a strategic site architecture will not only increase visitor engagement but it will help you attract more of the right visitors. This process will also lead to higher conversions.

The first step, of identifying high-performing keywords, is essential if you wish to drive the right traffic to your site. Keyword research is no small task if done correctly, as it includes an analysis of competitors and the keywords that a specific target audience uses in searches. It's a given that you will be using branded keywords on your site, but more importantly identify keywords that your target audience might use to find you. As in any marketing approach, we are researching customer needs, and engineering a problem/solution content strategy in order to promote your Brand.

This simple process will help you get into the minds of your audience and anticipate their needs. When they finally land on your site, they will feel right at home since you have taken the time to lay out the information just for them. They will reward you with higher conversions, lower bounce rates, and undoubtedly word-of-mouth praise through social media channels.

Your Internet Marketing Strategy is your Brand.

I often hear web designers selling design services as if it is the starting place for web projects, without a full understanding of Site Architecture. Very often Brand is represented as the creative that goes into imagery, or site structure is thought of in terms of semantics and hierarchy derived from someone in a company, who “knows their business”. Like any Marketing challenge, what these individuals are minimizing is that marketing is about customers; what customers think, what customers are looking for, and the language customers use to Search for solutions to their problems.

At Location Traffic my approach to SEO is first to understand what the customer is looking for by carefully researching competitors and Keyword data. Then using the Keyword data I build a strategically optimized site architecture, for those keywords, that is understandable to Search Engines and relevant to visitors. Relevancy breeds trust, and opens up the opportunity for a Brand to position itself in the mind of the target customer.

There are a lot of factors that go into a successful SEO Campaign. There is content, keywords, titles, descriptions, usability, architecture, and link building. While website architecture doesn't contribute directly to the keyword optimization, it does give the search engines the best "sense" of a site. Without good architecture, your site can be keyword optimized to the hilt, but it won't matter because the search engines are unable to read and decipher the content properly.

Understand your Market

That may sound pretty basic, but few people realize how important keyword research tools can be in understanding your market, and in formulating an Internet Marketing Strategy that does a good job of Branding and displaying your content on the first page of searches.

To summarize: understand what's going on in the head of your potential customers, consider the ways customers think about your services, determine what words they use to search for your services, and give consideration to specifically what words your target customer uses in searches. Insight into that mindset equals insight into how to start a persuasive dialogue. Build a site architecture that optimizes the effectiveness of these keywords.

Aside from the technical issues, SEO basically IS internet marketing.

Posted: 9/16/2011 4:43:40 PM by Shep Morrow