User Habits and Keyword Selection

by Gary on March 24, 2008

in Keyword Research,SEO

I have been posting about keyword selection in my last two posts and I thought that this would be a good time to discuss how and why you should factor in user habits when selecting keywords.

First of all I want to emphasise that internet users’ habits evolve rapidly. This is probably both a reason and a result of the rapidly changing internet. Due to the fast evolution in the needs and habits of internet users those in the internet industry have to adapt really fast as well in order to keep up. At the same time due to the numerous innovations in technology user needs and habits are also changed as well. That being said, how does this affect SEOs when it comes to keyword selection?

It affects SEO because this means that we constantly have to keep an eye on user habits so as to be able to choose the best keywords to optimise for. A few months back I read an article about the changing habits our users when it comes to search (I do apologise for not being able link to that post if you read this and think that it might be your post I am talking about leave a comment and I will link to you and give you credit). The article mentioned that users are learning that the results they get are more accurate when they type in more specific keywords than when using generic terms. Although generic terms still get a large search volume more and more users now enter specific terms in order to look for the information they need. What this means is that niche keyword phrases are becoming even more valuable in terms of SEO. Couple this fact with what I mentioned in my last post on keyword competitiveness means that more searches and less competition equals better ranking in SERPs and more traffic.

Aside from optimising for niche keywords you should also find out the common misspellings of your key terms. Even regular typists know that a misspelling is inevitable and ignoring the traffic that these misspellings can send your way is a big mistake. You should not optimise primarily for incorrect spellings because then your website would look amateurish BUT you should make sure that you at least rank for these misspelled words. One thing we can be sure that stays constant is that people will mistakes. Take advantage of those mistakes.

What are other user habits that you think affects keyword selection? Share it with the rest of us in the comments. ^_^

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Fun trivia: After writing this post I found out that I have been misspelling the word “misspelling” all my life (the spelling you see on this post is correct)!

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