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Keyword Research for Your Product Pages: The Ultimate Guide


Search traffic remains one of the major sources of traffic and conversions to any website. Keep your organic search visibility in mind when working on your most important “money pages” (i.e. those that drive direct sales).

In this article I’ll go you through both basic and advanced keyword research tactics for your product pages that will also positively impact conversions.

Google Organic

Keyword research lies at the heart of any marketing campaign, whether it’s a local or an international business. And despite what many business owners may think, keywords are not for search engine optimization only.

Keyword research helps a marketer:

  • Analyze your competition and learn from it (what is it they are doing that seems to work for them?)
  • Identify market gaps (what is missing and where does my opportunity lie?)
  • Understand your customer better (what is it they are searching for and how can I help them?)

Think about keyword research this way:

Behind each search query there’s a human being with an actual problem. Whether your (product) page is able to solve that problem well defines how successful your business is.

In order for keyword research to be able to provide the required amount of insight, you need to:

  1. Group those keywords by relevancy (Providing a solution to each group)
  2. Group those keywords by search intent (What is it your customer is going to do when searching?)

Let’s see these two in action!

Step 1. Identify and Group Your Keywords by Relevancy


1.1. Run Your Keyword Research Tools

The first step of keyword research is running your core term through tools like Spyfu, Majestic, Ahrefs or Wordstream and downloading hundreds of phrases your target customer is typing when searching for solutions, answers and/or products in your niche.

Free keyword research tool

1.2. Use More Market & Niche Research Tools

Here’s one problem with traditional keyword research tools: Your competitors use them too.

Going a few steps further to better understand your niche is never a bad idea.

For example, searching Amazon and picking some ideas there is never a bad idea. Here’s the trick we discussed over at #VCBUzz Twitter chat on improving organic click-through rate:

Check out the market leaders’ TrustPilot/Feefo. Filter to show 4 and 5 star ones. Copy tonnes of their reviews into a word doc, remove filler words or words like “reviews” and run it through a Word Cloud generator. Find common adjectives people associate with a positive experience with this sort of service.

For example, with mortgages I found it was “quick” and “easy.” So used those in page titles and improved CTR notably. Different adjectives are used in different services very often

(Hat tip to Stacey MacNaught)

Another cool idea is to research your niche courses as these offer the best combination of influencer-driven and user generated content. Online learning marketplaces like Udemy or Skillshare allow you to search online courses and instantly see reviews and demand for those.

Kajabi Marketplace arguably offers more fruitful research opportunities. Kajabi is, after all, a platform that lets you create self-hosted courses, so the course sellers active here are more likely to take topic optimization and discoverability seriously than those active on platforms that promote courses for sellers.

What’s more, the Kajabi Marketplace is curated by Kajabi management to only include the very best and most successful content, so the course products listed here are from only real experts and niche influencers.

Kajabi Marketplace

Once you find a course that may be complimenting your product, click it to see the details and pick up some keyword ideas.

This process will also help you find some niche influencers to possibly work with to promote the products that compliment their business.

(Hat tip to WordStream)

1.3. Add Question Research

Question research is another great source of keywords. You can pick up some question research tools and trick in this article.

Now that you have lots of data to work with, how to make sense of those enormous lists? There’s no way you can create as many landing pages to match all those search queries.

Question Research

1.4. Cluster Your Keywords

Identify groups of keywords by relevancy and optimize your product page for the group of keywords instead of each individual one.

Serpstat’s clustering feature is a great way to make sense of huge keyword lists. It breaks your lists into meaningful groups based on how they are related:

Serpstat's clustering feature

How can this research help both rankings and sales?

Grouping your keywords helps you maintain focus: Instead of trying to target each individual query, it allows you to create landing pages that can get ranked for a variety of keywords within one group and capture all those potential leads.

On the other hand, keyword clustering gives you a better understanding of your niche, types of queries and questions your target audience tends to ask online. This provides you with more structured and organized ideas on how to serve them better.

Step 2: Group Your Keywords by Search Intent


Search intent analysis is the most important aspect of keyword research. It defines all your further actions when it comes to content creation and search engine optimization.

Search intent reflects the most probable kind of action a user is likely to take when searching. In other words, it helps you identify what your target customer intends to do when searching.

There are three main types of search intent: Do – Know – Go

  • Do: Commercial search intent, also known as “transactional” search intent (your target customer intends to buy)
  • Know: Informational search intent (your target customer is exploring the topic)
  • Go: Navigational search intent (your target customer is searching for you or your competitor)

Now, with our step above in mind, instead of assigning intent to each individual query, we try to identify search intent behind our keyword groups, which is much more doable:

Search intent

So what’s next?

2.1. Match Your Landing Page Content to Search Intent

Now that we know what people are searching, create and implement your keyword optimization plan:

Search Intent Type

Landing page type Sales funnel

DO

Use these keywords on your product pages (especially in the title and in the subheadings (H1, H2) Use your primary call-to-action / sales funnel

KNOW

Create articles, guides and tutorials (Linking to product pages from within context as one of the solutions) Use your lead generation funnel to tie these searchers to your brand

GO [Your brand]

Use these keywords on your product pages Use your primary call-to-action / sales funnel

GO [Your competitor’s brand]

Create additional landing page demonstrating the selling point / advantage of your offer/product Use your primary call-to-action / sales funnel: Get creative here!***

2.2. How can this research help both rankings and sales?

Search intent helps you understand your customer better and consequently serve them better. There’s no point in trying to sell right away to someone who has no intention to buy: This will result in page bounces (sending poor signals to Google and losing your leads).

Matching your page content to the search intent results in higher conversions and better page engagement (which is also an important search ranking signal)

Step 3: Create Content Matching Google’s (and Customers’) Expectations


The first two steps may have taken you a couple of days of work. On the bright side, this research will last you for a year or so (before you’ll have to re-address your search positions or introduce a new product)

Now that you know which keyword group refers to each product page, and which action is intended (“buy”, “research” or “research, then buy”), it time that you start creating content.

Google SERPs analysis

Google generates these search snippets based on what it is they have found to be serving the user best. We can reverse-engineer Google’s editorial decision and build the product page that matches both Google’s and users’ expectations best.

That is exactly what TextOptimzer.com is doing: It grabs your query, searches Google and using semantic analysis extracts related terms and categories for you to build the best product page around:

TextOptimzer analyisis

[Text Optimizer urges to create a better copy by suggesting what Google and its users expect to see on that page]

You can use it before you create your page as well as for your existing content (in which case it will compare your content to Google’s SERPs and suggest areas of improvement).

How can this research help both rankings and sales?

Like with search intent, this is another level of matching users’ expectations better, this time using Google search result page analysis.

The idea is, Google has already found that these terms tend to do a better job satisfying their users, so our task is to add them with in the copy to engage those people better, once they land on our page clicking through the search result.

Step 4: Ask and Answer Questions


Niche question research gives you even more insight into your target audience struggles and your own content opportunities. With Google’s “People Also Ask” boxes this research is easier than ever.

Notice those “People Also Ask” boxes all over search results offering users a list of related questions on the topic they have just typed:

Popular questions

Whenever you are working on your product page copy, take note of those “People Also Ask” results and think how they can be utilized.

It makes perfect sense to address popular questions on the landing page. This will accomplish several goals:

  • Improve the page organic rankings (more optimized content generally helps rankings)
  • Get it featured more (Most of those questions trigger “Featured Snippet” results when typed into Google’s search bar)
  • Improve conversions+user engagement by giving your target customers good answers to their questions (and showing how your product can help)

Featured Snippet Tool helps you research People Also Ask opportunities for any page: It checks your domain’s and/or URL’s important search queries and generates “People Also Ask” results for all of them:

People Also Ask tool

How can this research help both rankings and sales?

Questions are highly engaging: Asking a question triggers an “instinctive elaboration” reflex in human beings prompting them to stop and look for an answer. And higher engagement results in more time spent on a web page, more time to consider your offer and a higher likelihood of the conversion.

Putting it All Together: Creating a Search Optimized Product Page


So to make it easier for you, here are your basic steps:

  1. Identify keywords people may be typing into a search box when looking for products and/or solutions you offer (using tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, or Spyfu)
  2. Group those keywords by meaning using Serpstat clustering
  3. Identify search intent behind each group to map out which group should applied to which landing page
  4. Build content implementing the chosen group of keywords as well as related and neighboring terms using TextOptimizer

Product page keywords

Further reading:

And how do you research keywords for your product and landing pages? Let’s discuss!





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Honestly, What is Growth Hacking?? And What it isn’t!!

So there is this new kid on the block called “Growth Hacking”. You may have read an article about it or heard it mentioned somewhere, somewhen. Growth Hacking seems to be a divisive and emotive term.

I first learnt of the phrase in January 2013 when the Guardian posted a job listing called “Head of Growth Hacking”.  Having not heard of the term at that point I was intrigued to see what this job was. I thought it might be one of those random job titles you see now and again on the job boards. Two excerpts from the job spec really caught my attention.

“Its about the intersection between Marketing, Product, Technology, and Data” and “The Guardian is committed to a “digital-first” strategy and in order to support this, we are seeking a Head of Growth Hacking to manage a virtual, cross functional team focused on GNM’s growth hacking plan. This role is responsible for finding innovative ways to accelerate adoption, use, and retention to drive up audiences to the Guardian’s digital product portfolio”.

Growth Hacking is the intersection between Product, Marketing, Technology & Data

Fig 1. The 4 building blocks of Growth Hacking

“Hacking” is a very sensitive word in the UK for the last few years due to certain British press organisations being implicated in hacking prominent public figures’ phone lines and essentially eavesdropping on private conversations [Google “Leveson Inquiry” to read more]. So, for the Guardian, a major British press institution to be advertising for a job using the word “hacking” was fascinating. Secondly, I started out as a coder/programmer and had been working as a Digital Marketer and have a very varied skill set. I’d launched my own start up or two, worked for major corporates but always felt certain aspects of my skills were not being utilised especially when working for the blue chips.

Seeing the Guardian role led me to do more research on growth hacking and reading through the various definitions it was like a clarion call for me, a realisation that there was finally a clearer description for what I do! I was so stoked at this point in 2013 I immediately created a group on LinkedIn [https://www.linkedin.com/groups?home=&gid=4847418 ] to connect with other growth hackers. Feel free to have a look and join if you want to join in.

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Fig 2. Growth Hacking trending topics; velocity of trend; May 1st 2014

From my personal perspective Growth Hacking is NOT:

  • some dodgy technique to hack into your phone and listen to your conversations
  • just about marketing, whether, digital or traditional

o   nor is it suited for fluffy, abstract awareness building campaigns
o   and certainly not ideal for improving Net Promoter Score
o   and definitely not only about inbound marketing / earned media; i.e. outbound marketing and bought media can accelerate conversion

  • only for start-ups – any size organisation with digital content, a mobile app, SAAS product or even a website can utilise growth hacking principles
  • about short quick win hacks
  • as edgy as it sounds. Its a structured, logical and transparent line of attack

For me Growth Hacking is:

  • a digital discipline. It encompasses a digital product, digital marketing, & Internet / Mobile technology stacks. As digital becomes more prevalent in the physical world, hacks for real world retail outlets will become more common.
  • about viral growth and acquisition of active users
  • about consumer lifecycle, journey, experience and insight. Cohort analysis for example is a must have tool in your growth hacking toolkit
  • primarily about the product, be it app, content, website or SAAS. Any digital product / proposition can be growth hacked. Imagine a digital widget that does “something”, people have downloaded the widget but they are not using it. Houston, we have a problem! Applying “hacks” to product features like removing or changing functionality or A/B testing product features [data], changing the IT stack e.g. Optimizely vs. Omniture Test & Target [technology] and modifying the message in the communications [marketing] for example,  will help determine why it’s being downloaded but not utilised and ultimately improve conversion. But it all MUST link back to the product. Great marketing or deep data analysis or the wrong technology will not fix a bad product.
  • about “lean” [not agile] methodologies and hacker mindsets, i.e. applying entrepreneurial and real time experiments and tests. I once waited 8 months for the IT department to install Doubleclick tracking tags. This is not lean, agile or real time. It should be seconds or minutes! A hacker mindset to me, means implementing multiple HELRs [hypothesis, experiment, learn, repeat] in short periods of time. HELRs can be for code, marketing, data etc but you need to be able to learn quickly and adapt your strategy even faster. Your technology stack plays a HUGE role in allowing for lean methodologies and HELRs to be practiced. The difference between an enterprise level CMS to an open source CMS in terms of flexibility for lean is a wide gulf in favour for open source.
  • about formulas, metrics, kpis, Excel [lots and lots of Excel], SQL & databases, viral factors and virality equations, scenario planning, needs analysis, and portfolio analysis. Basically, hardcore data analysis, data hacking and quantitative measurement of large data sets. Data is the pillar upon which product, marketing and technology are tweaked, refined and optimised.
  • being a coder as well as a marketer but more importantly a commercially minded business person. Due to my technical skills I’m always looking to either directly or indirectly implement features into content / products from the ground up that facilitate marketing efforts such as A/B multivariate testing and insight gathering. With focus on entrepreneurship and growth;

Growth Hacking is not mainstream; Yet. Not like social media was a few years ago or is now. But, its growing fast. I don’t know if it’s a fad, buzzword, trend or anything else. It is however a very suitable term to describe my skill set and I like calling myself a “Growth Hacker” J, it just sounds cool don’t you think? In the last month  [April 1st to May 1st 2014] tweets about growth hacking have doubled. But in comparison to social media it’s got a long way to go to reach critical mass.

growth hacking -tweets-per-day-apr-may-2014

 

social media-tweets-per-day-apr-may-2014