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SES Miami – Search Term Research & Targeting

June 20, 2007

I attended a good session on Search Term Research & Targeting. Moderator Jessie Stricchiola from Alchemist Media Inc. assembled a strong panel including Sylvio Lindenberg, from Media Contacts in Brazil, Larry Mersman, a Vice President at search products company Trellian, and Liana Evans, Search Marketing Manager, Commerce360 who is also a prominent search Blogger Search Marketing Gurus.

Here are some of the highlights:

The Consumer Cycle of Purchase starts with searches for shorter terms (LCD tv), as they get close to a purchase decision they search longer terms (Sharp LCD tv vs Panasonic LCD tv), at the end of the purchase cycle they include terms like buy online, buy now (Sharp Aquos 41 inch LCD tv buy online best price)

There is a risk targeting short terms, for example the term ‘sandals’ can be a search for a resort or a style of shoe. The term ‘Paris’ can be a search for a city or the famed Heiress/Actress/Inmate.

Misspellings are best left to the pay-per-click campaign vs. putting incorrect words on your site. Some words like recipes have a lot of misspellings, e.g.: recipies, receipes, reciepes, reciepes, receipeis.

The group recommended using a range of tools for keyword research because different tools pull from different databases. Free tools for keyword research including Yahoo’s Keyword Selector Tool, AdWords (biggest weakness is lack of seasonality) and Google Trends (which is good for seasonality).

Most recommended using a combination of the free tools and multiple paid tools:
Wordtracker – a tool to research keyword searches by website (Google, Yahoo, MSN)
Trellian’s Keyword Discovery – is a strong keyword research tool and they also have a competitive intelligence tool that tells you which sites are sending competitors thiergetting traffic and which keywords are driving the traffic
Hitwise – is an expensive tool, strong for competitive research, it also has a function that can measure the number of clicks a website received by keyword.
Spyfu tells you about competitor sites (great tool if you can’t afford Hitwise)
Adguru ia a competitve analysis tool
Blogpulse and Technorati can search the number of mentions on blogs