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Keywords Are Key: Writing E-Ads Customers Can Find

March 3rd, 2010 by Katherine

When e-marketing outside of a preset mailing list, you need online advertisements that are easy to find. Preferably advertisements that pop up at the head of the Google search results list.

The most basic—and perhaps most important—element of search engine optimization is keywords. They help customers find you by matching what you offer to what people want.

Think like a customer. Only researchers search for the phrase “industry award.” Press releases and honors are fine for convincing potential clients you know your business, but they won’t get you to the head of the line in a search for “data storage systems”—even if your innovative data storage system won you the industry award. Choose words that describe what your current customers buy, and make those words prominent.

Be as specific as possible—in lay language. No one will search for you by the words “super” or “fantastic,” even if your business is superhero memorabilia. On the other hand, it won’t help to list the scientific names for your pharmacy’s products when most people search for medications by their common names.

Beware of keywords that bring you to the front of search results but can’t be found among the visible text on the pages those results link to. Finding a “search result that isn’t” can be infuriating to the semi-proficient Web surfer; and furious consumers rarely make future customers.

Spell keywords correctly! While most search engines make allowances for spelling variations, getting the word wrong won’t put you at the front of the line. However, if your business name or product/service prominently features a commonly misspelled word, assist your search engine ranking by including the “variations” on your site—preferably somewhere invisible in the regular page images.

Do include your company name, and the names of prominent staff members, among the keywords. Especially if your business name is easily confused with some common phrase, include any slogans as well. While the Web surfer looking only by product or service won’t be searching for any of these, the people who have heard of you will. Whether or not your Web address is identical to your business name, people get annoyed (and begin to doubt your professionalism) when they search by exact name and the official Web site isn’t high on the first results page.

Think outside the box! Include keywords that describe your business’s unique attributes, those things that set you apart from thousands of others in the same industry. If you have no ideas, gather the staff for a brainstorming session. Have fun competing for the best keyword ideas!

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