Keyword search volumes are one of the most important metrics that we look at in SEO.

With most SEO firms that is about as far as you’ll get, but at Boyd Digital we think it’s important to take things that little step further.

Keyword search volumes are by no means the be-all and end-all of identifying exactly what the most valuable keywords are, in fact, we think the context that surrounds keyword volumes is far more important.

Exploring this context in detail is what separates Boyd Digital from the rest of the pack. We are experts at sifting through massive amounts of data and identifying the keywords that offer the biggest tangible results.

We’re not just a lot of hot air either, at Boyd Digital we are defined by the quality of our results. As you can see with the example below, we’ll increase your rankings on high-value keywords, and keep them there.

Increases in rank for a high value keyword after work completed by Boyd Digital

At Boyd Digital we dig beneath the surface to find what really makes a keyword valuable, so you know that our strategies will always achieve maximum results with minimal costs and minimal competition.

We use this deep dive into the data and our wealth of experience to narrow down and focus on the areas that large competitors have neglected, offering our clients clear marketspace advantages and gains in conversions.

Rather than chasing the same old high volume keywords, we will help you to identify the keywords that offer the best return on investment and ensure that you are reaching the most relevant audience.

Unlike most other SEO firms, we’re not going to leave it there at lofty promises and impressive statements. Like we do with everything else, we’re going to back it up with data and an in-depth look at exactly how we approach identifying the gold-standard keywords you’ve been looking for.

Understanding KW volume and value

Effectively translating keyword volume into value is an important first step in converting our extensive market knowledge into actionable SEO strategies. Data on its own is not enough – it needs the context to go with it.

Looking at the pages that are ranking high with a given keyword allows us to quickly identify what the main competition is and what they look like. This enables us to settle on a cost/benefit estimate for the investment required to break through into the rankings with this keyword. This means that we will always target the keywords that offer the highest potential gains for the smallest investment of resources.

Examining high volume keywords can also be a good place to begin branching off on to lower volume related keywords that offer a better potential for a high return in investment.

While the natural instinct might be to chase after the highest volume keywords, this is also the area that you’re likely to see the highest level of competition. A wider net cast across a range of lower volume keywords may offer more overall gains in conversions and value, for the same investment.

Targeting low volume/long tail keywords like these has resulted in tangible growth and conversions for this client

Less competition and placement at different stages of the buying cycle can mean that targeting these low volume keywords results in a higher percentage of conversions. This means that you’re not simply seeing empty gains in traffic, but rather tangible increases in transactions as a direct result of the SEO strategy.

At Boyd Digital we don’t believe in traffic for traffic’s sake – we always want our clients to see genuine results and benefits to their business as a direct result of our work. That’s why we focus on improving ranking and growth with keywords that offer tangible results at different stages in the buying cycle.

Next we’re going to take a look at a few different examples to show how this approach to determining high value keywords works in action.

The Verticals we’re looking at

To demonstrate how this approach can be applied across a wide range of different verticals, we’ll be looking at very high volume keyword examples from three popular verticals:

  • Fashion Retail
  • Electronics Retail
  • Travel

What the numbers tell us

Starting with the electronics retail vertical we can see below that the keyword “PS4” has extremely high volume. By using our proprietary software here at Boyd Digital we can also see that this keyword sees lots of competition.

Top 10 ranking pages for the keyword “PS4”

In this case it is particularly easy to recognise that it will be difficult to rank well with this high volume keyword, especially because of the quality of the competition. We can also see that the intent behind searching with this keyword can be for a multitude of reasons, from looking to buy to searching for news.

As such, although we can recognise that this keyword is bringing high value to those already ranking with it, the cost of growing or breaking into these rankings will likely be prohibitive.

Shifting the focus to lower volume long-tail keywords will help to reduce the competition and offer a greater return in investment.

Competition isn’t the only thing to look at when identifying valuable keywords. We also have to understand the relationship between seasonality and how Google treats time-sensitive terms.

A good way to see how seasonality can impact the value of keywords, is by looking at keywords in the travel vertical.

As we can see below, with the seasonal flux of the keyword “luxury holidays”, the search volume can see fairly significant changes throughout the year.

Seasonal flux for the keyword “luxury holidays”

These changes in search volume translate to shifts in the value of these keywords at different points of the year. It is therefore essential to plan keyword strategies around this flux, investing more as search volume grows and shifting focus in periods of downtime.

The idea of investing in low volume keywords can be impacted heavily be seasonality. While there may be an increase in ranking during these periods, this increase may not translate to tangible benefits.

For example, it may be easier to rank high with search results for “Christmas trees” in June, but this is unlikely to translate into sales.

However, it must also be remembered that investing heavily in seasonal growth will result in increasingly smaller returns. Google will treat some keywords as time-sensitive, particularly if they are in relation to a seasonal event or anything non sales related. To put it simply, keywords which offer high gains that quickly tail-off should be used with caution.

Seasonality is just one example of why the dynamic, bespoke, hands-on approach to SEO that Boyd Digital offers is essential.

As discussed earlier, we can also look at high volume keywords to identify gaps that offer greater potential value.

Using tools like Keyword Planner, we can take a high volume keyword from the fashion retail vertical, like “shoes”, and identify broader related keyword pools.

Related keywords for “shoes” in Keyword Planner

These keyword pools can then be broken down to find individual keywords that we can focus on improving our ranking within a chosen niche.

Investing in these keywords allows us to take advantage of the gaps in competitor’s optimisation, ranking high on search results that are either specialised, or later in the buying cycle of the user. This also offers greater potential tangible returns in direct conversions, rather than empty increases in traffic.

What does it mean for a keyword to be valuable?

To put all of that together into a neat package, simply identifying high volume keywords isn’t enough to determine their value. A deep dive into the context of high volume keywords and the underlying data is essential if you want to see measurable gains from your chosen valuable keyword.

It is important to understand the context surrounding high volume keywords, and the circumstances that make them a valuable option. Competition, seasonality and saturation are all elements that can have a significant impact on the success of a strategy. The expert touch of Boyd Digital guarantees that we only target the keywords that offer serious returns, through minimal cost and competition.

We have found that our bespoke approach of in-depth research is the secret to identifying truly valuable keywords. Finding gaps in the landscape, responding to ongoing trends and creating a dynamic strategy will always find more success than chasing after the same high-volume keywords as your competitors. 

No matter how big the data pool, we’ll sift through it and identify the keywords that give you an edge you simply won’t find anywhere else.

Author Grant Ruxton

I increase sales, traffic and brand engagement using digital marketing.

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