This is a guest post by Adam Lee
For those of you that don’t know, Google Suggests offers search suggestions and the number of resulting pages as you type into the text box.
Typing ‘car insurance’ for instance will offer results like ‘car insurance for woman’, ‘car insurance for young drivers’ etc. This is really useful for search term research but has now become even more important.
The tool has now been integrated with Google search, (if you haven’t spotted it you maybe using ‘iGoogle’ select ‘classic Google’ and you should see it).
The Google Suggest Optimization Effect
Your original search term research may now be outdated as users' search behaviour will change.
For instance if a 17 year old is looking for car insurance. He might be ready to type into Google "car insurance for young drivers" but as he starts typing Google's dropdown box suggests to auto-complete "car insurance for 17 year olds".
Of course he would see this as a spot-on search — and it's convenient to just click the suggestion instead of continue typing.
As a result, if your site is still optimized for "car insurance for young drivers", previously the highest traffic term for the targeted audience, you might end up with noticeable lower Google traffic.
Google Suggest Keyword Research
The free tools I use are:
- Google Keyword Tool to investigate top generic search terms
- Google Suggests to develop the generic search terms into longer tail terms
- Google’s "Pages related to" links to broaden my semantic options
- Google Insights to see top searches and highest growing search terms (tip: set this up on iGoogle to keep up to date with changes)
These tools will help you develop a long tail search strategy that will result in higher conversions for less competitive terms than the top generic search terms.
Adopting this approach now will offer a competitive advantage before everyone develops a similar approach.
The faster you can change your website the more benefits you will gain – large organisations tend to be slow at making large changes to their website, offering a significant advantage to the reactive business.
Adam Lee, No Pork Pies Search & Social Media