Dumb SEO Questions

(Entry was posted by Jenny Gomes on this post in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, 09/10/2013).

Jenny Gomes needs help answering to her client`s question about keyword choices

Hello All, I`ve a very dumb question-

At present, we`re dealing with more than 20 SEO clients, the one thing we do on our end is to check the keywords and key phrases that our clients give us, against what are the best performing keywords with google. And suggest them the most relavant keywords as well by doing a deep keyword analysis.

So when we ask a client what keywords and phrases that want us to use, would let us know if they are a bad choice once we have done our keyword research for the category.

We have had several clients ask me why we do this because they say its out job to find this out what the top performing keywords are.  

Please advise how we can improve this process? I want an answer in layman manner...
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Selected answers from the Dumb SEO Questions Facebook & G+ community.

  • Ranu Jain: Hi Jenny,

    I would say that you people follow the correct approach.

    You can explain them taking this example:

    Suppose a client has a business of laptops. Initially you can ask for a set of keywords to understand what all he/ she is selling, which particular brand such as Apple, Sony, Dell, Acer, Lenovo etc.  ;Once you you get an idea and with little brainstorming you can run those keywords and some keywords from your side in the keyword research tools. By doing so, you look for the competition and the search volume. ;

    The clients will send you the keywords of their own choice. At times you may find them irrelevant too as they don't understand how exactly things work. ;

    But you have to make your client understand that it is necessary to see the competition, relevance and the popularity.

    If you start targeting the keywords without doing any research and without looking at the trend, you may waste your efforts in targeting the keywords with very high competition and less relevance. ;
  • Ian Dixon: Sounds like you have some problem clients +Jenny Gomes ;who have no clue what they are marketing. If they have sales pitch ready then how can anybody do anything with SEO?
    Take my favourite example which is widgets. So I want to sell them online and I want to rank for 'widgets' as a single word. Then I have sub-brands so I want to rank for 'Blue widgets by Ian' and 'Green widgets by Ian' which are both terms I use in other marketing.
    I, as a client, can come up with those from my marketing strategy. Your clients should be able to come up with similar things for their own businesses.
    From this comes the SEO part which means finding how effective they are and modifying as needed. Using my example, I would suggest that trying to rank for 'widgets' would be worthless alone as the competition would be too high. SEO can narrow that to be more specific to my business. The phrases suggested would also probably also need to be refined for better results too.
    In summary, SEO is impossible when the client lacks knowledge of what they want to achieve. Yeah sure they want 'page #1 on Google' but they have to put some effort in by defining their own marketing strategy. SEO is simply not a magic tool that will get them there
  • Dave Elliott: We normally go with something like "you know your business and its goals a lot better than we can ever hope too and  ;your suggestions will help us to find not only the best performing keyphrases in your niche, but the most relevant ones as well."
  • Nannette Turner: Client's sometimes think they don't have to contribute or do any of the "work".  ;But it is a team effort. When it comes to SEO it can be a trial and error learning experience depending on the market and industry.  ;SEO is a science that is PRACTICED, not perfected.  ;It's like this if a client is able to help a little then it is just that much less time I have to do the research and we can be making some progress toward our common goals.
  • Tony McCreath: I get new clients to fill in a questionnaire to help me understand their business better. The questions are designed to get them to think about their customers needs, how they solve them etc. At the end I ask them for some keywords as well as a few example sentences that sell the business.

    From all that I get some great seed keywords to work from.
  • Justin Y: This never fails but I think it's important to educate the client first about your process and what's required of them. Like others have mentioned, it's their business and they know it better than we do. If the client suggests to use other keywords, I'll go with it but I also research which keywords will be best for the given query space they want to target compared to their feedback. 

View original question in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, 09/10/2013).

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