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Picking the One Phrase that Will Get Your Site the Most Visitors

New clients start off by telling me that they want their site to show up on the top of Google search results. My response usually stumps them: “For what phrase do you want to be #1 ?”

As I posted last week, you can tune a web page for just one phrase, and most business owners don’t know what their best money-making phrase is.  Selecting the right keyword phrase will get your site visitors. Picking the wrong one will mean your work is invisible and a bad return on your website investment.

Here are 2 tips to help you pick the right keywords for your web pages:

Pick phrases that are specific.

User searchingIf you are offering a guided tours of the Alaska wilderness around Prince William Sound, you don’t want to tune your page for “vacation”, even if people buy your guide service as part of their vacation.  “Vacation” is too generic, and most people looking to go on a vacation have another destination in mind. Perhaps they’re even thinking of a tropical resort.

You’ll be better off selecting a phrase such as “Alaska wilderness vacations” or even “Prince William Sound guided tours”.  If people type those phrases into Google and find your site, they are much more likely to want your services than someone looking to bake on a beach in Puerto Vallarta.

Similarly, if you are selling a product, you should tune the web page for a longer phrase instead of a generic one.

Web visitors looking for Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly shoes  are going to be overwhelmed with choices when they enter “athletic shoes” as a Google search term.  Visitors are also going to have a lot of choices if they search for “Nike shoes”.  Soon these web browsers are going to wise up and search for what they really want, “Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly”.

Your web page should be tuned for that phrase so that you can snag those motivated customers!

Find a phrase that is searched for a lot and which doesn’t have that many competing web pages.

This is a tricky task, but it’s one that can make or break your site. If there are 100 searches a day in Google for “San Francisco limousine service” and already 10,000 sites published with that phrase, it is going to be difficult to rank on the top of Google’s result list.   If there are also 100 searches a day for “San Francisco limo service” and only 100 sites published with that phrase, you should tune your new web page for the phrase with fewer potential competitors.

Finding the most effective keywords is one of the tasks of Search Engine Optimization specialists such as Ozdachs Consulting. I use two tools to identify cost-effective keywords: Google AdWords and Wordtracker.

Google AdWords

Google’s advertising program AdWords tools includes a screen which shows the number of searches for a particular term and the number of other people bidding for that term.  The number of competitors is not quantified and is only described in terms like “Very high advertiser competition”.  And, the number of advertisers doesn’t directly translate to the number of web pages with the keyword term.  Still, the AdWords provides a free glance at what people are searching for and the number of people competing against you.


Boy searching
Wordtracker is specifically designed to find the terms which are most searched for with the least competition. Wordtracker has created proprietary algorithm that produces a Key Effectiveness Index (KEI) that provides a numeric value to indicate the quality of a search term.

When you find a keyword phrase with a high KEI, you should tune your page for that highly-searched-for rarely-appearing term. Unfortunately, in my experience, there are few terms with a high KEI that relate to my clients’ real-world business.

Wordtracker is also relatively expensive, $60 for a month of access to their database of searches and web page competition. Running a search for a client with a small website takes at least a couple hours of my consulting time, so the price of selecting a better keyword for tuning can be several hundred dollars.

Nevertheless, I recommend to my clients that they buy a Wordtracker subscription for a month and have me use it.  We don’t want to overlook a money-making phrase to tune a web page for.  I’d hate to have my San Francisco CPA’s miss out because neither they nor I thought to tune a page for “independent public accounting firms”.

Picking The One Phrase That Will Get You the Most Business

Both Google’s AdWords Tools and Wordtracker will point out keyword phrases that you can tune your web pages for to get the most number of visitors to your site.

But, you and your Search Engine Optimization expert need to use common sense in tuning your site.  Don’t go after visitors for a phrase that isn’t going to make you any money!  If you are renting a vacation home in Puerto Vallarta you may tune for many different phrases that relate to your business.  However, just because you see that “Puerto Vallarta food poisoning” is searched for a lot and there are few sites with information on that topic, it doesn’t mean that you’ll get more customers for your vacation rental if you publish a spiffy page on diagnosing, treating, and avoiding food poisoning in that city!

By |2009-09-05T16:58:51-07:00September 5th, 2009|Google, Search Engine Optimization|0 Comments

Google Ranking Tip: You Get Just One Phrase Per Web Page

I am working with a frustrated client who is concerned that her site is not visible on Google’s search engine results.

I asked what search terms she was having problems with, and she said, “All of them. My site isn’t in the top for ‘aaaa’, ‘bbbb’, ‘cccc’, … ‘xxxx’, ‘yyyy’, or ‘zzzz’. Each of those terms are valid synonyms for the service she offers.


To help her site, I’ve asked her to pick the ONE most important search term she wants her site to show up for. “All of them” is not something I can tune a web page for. Even if all the terms mean the same thing.

The reason I cannot tune a single page for all the terms is simple. Google’s method of ranking pages is to read a web page and to then count the placement and frequency of the words on that page. Then, based on its secret algorithm, Google decides what that one page is about and how valuable the content of that page is likely to be to a visitor searching for any particular set of words.

In order to tune a page to make Google think it is a good resource for, say for example, “San Francisco accountants”, I have to put “San Francisco accountants” in the page’s title, headers, photograph descriptions, and paragraph text. I have to emphasize that one phrase, “San Francisco accountants” in order to convince Google of the page’s focus.

To tune for “San Francisco accountants” the words I use are “San Francisco accountants”, not “SF accountants” nor “San Francisco CPAs”. A human reader may know that those three phrases talk about the same professional service, but Google does not.

Similarly, “vacation rental” may mean “vacation lodging” to a human being. You may search for “vacation rental” and be happy finding a page talking about “vacation lodging”. But, to computer-minded Google the terms have only “vacation” in common.

To Google “apartments” and “apt” are also unrelated as are “tennis shoe” and “sneaker”. (At least they are at the time I write this blog entry.) Google deals in words and phrases and is ignorant of topics and meaning.

A thorough optimizing of a site to show up highly on Google requires individual pages for each keyword phrase. Each of these pages will emphasize that particular keyword, and each page must also have unique content on it.

A business that has 10 “money words” for which it wants high Google ranking will have to have at least 10 pages in the site, one for each phrase. This requirement is, of course, one which many small businesses cannot meet. Creating text and graphics for each of these pages can be a burden!

Therefore, for a first step I advise my clients to pick the one phrase they most want to show up for in Google. I then tune their home page for that most important phrase. As time, energy, and money permit we can, over time, create separate pages for each of the desired money phrases.

If you’re not showing up as high as you want on Google results, start with this simple tip. Look at your home page. Edit it to highlight the ONE phrase that you most want to show up for. Your home page should focus on that phrase like a laser and not throw out all your keyword goals like a shotgun.

Next Up: Picking the One Phrase that Will Get Your Site the Most Visitors

By |2009-08-26T14:19:36-07:00August 26th, 2009|Marketing, Search Engine Optimization|2 Comments

Why Focus on Google?

Google has 79% of search results world-wide When business owners ask for help appearing in Search Engine results,  we talk about what Google likes to see. We tune pages to be attractive to Google.

Being #1 in Google is the Gold Standard.

Why Google?

Because most people world-wide use Google. I checked yesterday morning and the latest statistics show that 79% of all searches go through Google. Second place world-wide is Baidu (China) at 9% . Yahoo! is at 7% and Bing (Microsoft’s new search site) at 3%. (Data provided by HitsLink Market Share)

So, if you have limited time and a limited budget, it makes sense to focus on Google.    Preparing Yahoo!-tuned pages and creating a Yahoo! ad campaign takes the same amount of effort as tuning for Google and advertising at Big B. But the return is the potential of being seen by 79% of the world at Google while only 7% of web

Ozdachs monitors the ebb and flow of search engine traffic.  Yahoo! used to be a much more important force in the search market. It may be more important again.

The recently announced Yahoo! and Microsoft Bing collaboration is currently getting 10% of traffic worldwide, according to HitsLink.  If that percentage grows over time, we will advise clients to consider tuning their pages for Yahoo!/Bing or buying Pay-Per-Click ads at that site, too.

But, right now our recommendation for cost-effective optimization and ad placement is to stick to Google.  That’s where the potential visitors to your site are surfing.

By |2009-08-04T14:44:24-07:00August 4th, 2009|Google, Search Engine Optimization|1 Comment

#1 in Google

Congratulations to Ozdach’s client Seattle Home Staging experts Set the Stage for showing up at the top of Google results for their primary keyword phrase.

When I spoke with Patty, the owner, after discovering their placement, she was non-plussed.  She said something like, “Oh yeah.  We’ve been there awhile. I thought you knew.”

Some accomplishment!  And, nice that you’re staying on top, Patty!

Patty said that being on top in Google search results has let her weather the bad home sales market better than other local stagers.  She also buys Google AdWords and puts her business on the page as a Google sponsor to help keep the phone ringing.

We’re happy to have created her website with Search Engine Optimization in mind.  And, we talk with her regularly to answer her questions about content and optimization.

One trick: Patty updates her site frequently with Contribute.  There’s new text and content online every few weeks.  Google loves sites that are frequently updated, so Patty’s ongoing work reinforces the text optimization we did when we originally created the site.

By |2009-08-03T06:25:46-07:00August 3rd, 2009|Marketing, Sample Clients, Search Engine Optimization|0 Comments
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