Keyword tools are not specific to photography – they can help everyone expand their consideration sets beyond the most competitive keywords and down into the long-tail keywords that should be driving the most traffic to your site. Long-tail refers to the 4, 5, or longer word phrases that users are typing into search to find very specific content. Everyone knows that “wedding photographer” gets searched, but how about “artistic outdoor wedding photographer?” Optimizing for long-tail words like that become much easier to rank for and they add up quickly when you optimize for lots of them. Here are 10 tools I use to expand my main phrase into more specific keywords.
P.S. Don’t get overwhelmed. The first 2 in the list will cover 95% of your need. I would have stopped there, but a post with only 2 tools is weak!
Google Keyword Tool
Default standard for free keyword research because of the robust results, ease of use, and accuracy of data. Shows the number of monthly searches for your phrase and tons of related phrases. Tip: under Advanced Options choose “Ideas containing my search terms” to only see phrases that contain your original phrase and exclude slightly related material. This sample shows an expanded list for “wedding photographer.”
PC only download is less confusing than the above and also provides more features for links and page analysis.
Google Traffic Estimator
Helpful for finding the cost of keywords should you buy Google AdWords pay per click program and appear in sponsored results. Cost indicates level of competition, for example a phrase where people are paying $10 per click (versus $1 per click) shows a lot of sites’ desires to appear in search for that phrase. It may be too difficult for you to compete in the organic free listing.
Google Insights for Search
Shows not only search phrases but insight to volume trends and cycles. For example it shows that “photography cards” peak in search volume every November as people prepare to send cards for the holidays. It may be helpful for you to know what time of year certain searches are done.
Google Search Based Keyword Tool
Type in a website URL and key phrase and let Google analyze the content and suggest the most searched words that would apply to the same topics. Perhaps enter a competitor or the #1 ranked site for wedding photography.
Quintura Visual Search Engine
As a photographer you are probably a visual learner. Quintura displays related keywords like a tag cloud, in a visual mapping of how words relate to each other. Also has an image search filter.
SEO Book Keyword List Generator
I like to come up with a list of different keyword types like a list of adjectives, another for locations, and another for photography niches. SEO Book’s tool will combine all those lists together and output every possible combination.
Similar to Google keyword tool but focuses on high demand keywords only. So it will give you decent results for “wedding photography” but not “Sacramento wedding photography.” It shows the daily number of searches done for your phrase and related phrases. WordTracker is very capable of finding great keywords, but beginners may have difficulty using it and get only limited information with the free version.
Google Webmaster Tools
Show what is ranking well and what keywords generate traffic. Tons of ideas come out of the Top Search Queries report in Webmaster Tools. A snapshot of my site below tells me that users search “reviews.” That’s something I never thought about before (hypothetically) and should write more content about.
Keyword analysis for your already written WordPress blog posts. There’s a monthly fee of about $30, but it insures you place your keywords in the right spot so in order to rank well. Here is my keyword density for this post in Scribe. There’s other places to find density for free… this tool offers a lot more than that.
What tools do you use to find keywords?
Photographers SEO Book
This ebook helps you place your chosen keywords in the right places on your photography website. Learn how Google works and where it looks for keywords with this easy to read guide.
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