Question: When looking at key word search wouldn’t you want a phrase that has high volume over value?
Answer: Other SEO practitioners define this issue using different terms, but I like to explain it in terms of ‘volume’ vs. ‘value.’ Volume means what is the total monthly number of queries for a given keyword, as determined by the Google keyword tool. Value means whether a particular search is a good indicator (to you) that that searcher is a potentially valuable client.
It easiest to see in a concrete example. Let’s look at ‘Medical Malpractice’
Here is data from February, 2010 – medical malpractice 550,000 medical malpractice lawyer 90,500 medical malpractice insurance 49,500
The volume is very clear. ‘Lawyer’ has 90,500 searches per month, whereas ‘insurance’ has 49,500. But what is the value? Lawyer is currently running an average cost per click of $14.92, whereas ‘insurance’ is running $5.67 per click. What does that value mean? That is measured by the value that advertisers are willing to put on that keyword. ‘Medical malpractice lawyer’ = $14.92, ‘Medical malpractice insurance’ = $5.67.
What the value to you is is the heart of the matter. IF you are an attorney, then ‘attorney’ is much more valuable; if you sell medical malpractice insurance then ‘insurance’ is actually more valuable. In fact, you do NOT want people looking for lawyers. So the value measurement is very very focused on your company and your unique value proposition. As you look at your keyword search queries, ask yourself which ones are MOST ASSOCIATED with potential sales? For an attorney the addition of the word ‘lawyer’ or ‘attorney’ makes a good search term a great term; for an insurance agent catering to doctors, the addition of the word ‘insurance’ does the same thing.
Why do I recommend looking at the average CPC? Because these are important clues to the value of different search phrases. But ultimately you must look at that cost per click through the prism of your own marketing goals. The only value that matters is the value to you!
Got a question? Click this link to email Jason or call 888-993-1122. Dr. Jason McDonald is founder and Senior SEO / Social Media Director of the JM Internet Group. He teaches the SEO training classes for the group, and therefore provides most of the SEO tips for this blog. His goal with this blog is to provide an easy 'one-stop shop' for the busy marketer looking for tips, tricks, and secrets on how to get to the top of Google and Bing for free using proven SEO tactics. When not dreaming up SEO tips, Dr. McDonald lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, two dogs, a cat, four iguanas and twelve children (just kidding). Really you read down to the bio on this guy? Enjoy the blog.
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