Know Your Keywords

BigCommerce has a nice article highlighting 6 things you can do now to maximize your store for the holidays.  A bit of a Christmas in July primer to gear up for great sales in the upcoming holiday season.  Ecommerce SEO: 6 tips to maximize Black Friday & Cyber Monday traffic.  Although I think this is an informative article with solid tips, I don’t think it’s written for the novice or non-technical website owner so I thought I’d go through step by step to clarify some of the suggestions.  I think you could easily get through all the tips in 1 week (if you took 1 – 2 hours a day).  Personally, I find my head starts to swim with too much SEO so I’ve made it real simple by covering 1 step a post over 6 posts!

Know Your Keywords

It should go without saying that the basis of all good SEO is to understand what your keywords are.  It’s not enough to guess, you have to take the time to research and find out what keywords make the most sense for your products and are getting regular searches.  I think the single biggest mistake I see people making with SEO is guessing what their keywords are.

The BigCommerce article recommends using the google keywords tool.  I am not a fan and have found it tedious to use.  That’s just me – if you know it and love it, use it.  If you have never done any keyword research I find that SEOBook‘s free tools are a bit easier to use.  I know that might make some experts cringe, but the bottom line is to best maximize my time I have to use tools that are on the easier side for me.  I might give up some quality but I save a lot of time and in the end that’s worth it for me.

To start on keyword research for your boutique website, go to SEOBook and go to the “SEO tools” section of the site and click on “keyword tool.”  You can type your keyword into the box and see a list of possible keywords along with their daily/monthly searches.  If you get no results it means that there were no estimated monthly or daily searches for that term.  As an example, I typed in “organic baby clothes” and got a list of about 20 possible keywords.


Now I know that if I type “organic baby clothes” in google there are 73,800,000 results – that’s a lot of competition.  As a site that is just starting out, this is not a good “niche” for my new organic baby clothes website.  Even though there are 264 daily searches for the term, the competition is going to be too much in the beginning for me to break into.

Scrolling down the list of keywords that SEOBook’s keyword tool has come up with I see “hip organic baby clothes” listed.  This might fit my new site and a google search discovers that there are only 48,700 pages coming up with this search term.  Although there is only 1 estimated search per day and 40 per month for this keyword, there is also a much better chance of getting my site ranked on the first page for this term.  Also, using this keyword automatically uses the preferable “organic baby clothes” so I’m not losing out by targeting this niche.  It also works with my site.  In my mind, I am selling hip organic baby clothes, so it will be easily to fit this term into my site’s content.


When you continue on with Ecommerce SEO: 6 tips to maximize Black Friday & Cyber Monday traffic you find that they recommend starting with broad terms and moving onto finding long tail keywords.  In a nutshell, if you follow the above steps you are already doing this.  According to Wordtracker, “A long tail keyword is a keyword (or, rather, a search that has been made on the internet) which is really specific to something that the searcher is looking for. So, if, for example, you’re selling exterior paint, your research may lead you to discover that there are real people (your potential customers) out there who have asked “can exterior paint be used on interior walls”, for example.”  Long tail keywords are going to be more specific keywords that may be a bit longer but are also getting some very targeted traffic.  

And that’s pretty much all there is for the first step.  He does recommend targeting some very specific holiday terms, which may or may not work for your store.  Depending on how many keywords you want to target in total, 10 – 15 is a good number to start with, this will take you 2 – 3 hours.

It’s very important as you go through this that you keep track of your keywords so you can track your progress as the holidays get closer.  Enter your Email Below to Sign up for our Newsletter, get our FREE SEO guide and a spreadsheet to help keep track of your keyword rankings.


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