Keywords. They’re the engine that drives your business blog to the computer screen of your customer. Pick the right keywords and your business blog can become a goldmine; choose the wrong keywords and your blog might not ever make it to its full potential.

As a business owner, keywords might seem like an elusive element of business blogging. You might have an idea of your best keywords but you don’t know how to effectively apply them.

Or, you might have no idea on your keywords at all, leaving you in the dark as to what your customers are truly searching for.

The Truth About Keywords and Business Blogging

The reality is that business blogging doesn’t revolve entirely around keywords. However, keywords do play a big role in terms of the performance of your company blog. They give your blog posts context for both Google and your readers.

For instance, Google relies on keywords in your business blog to properly rank your website. Once your keywords are triggered by a customer search inquiry, your blog post can appear in the search engine results. A business blog post that’s properly titled and contains the right keywords can funnel a customer into your website, leading them to contact you for your products and services.

If you don’t properly use keywords in your blog post, Google will choose your keywords for you.

The Psychology of Keywords

Another truth is that a keyword isn’t simply just a keyword. There’s psychology and motivation behind your customer searching for a particular query. That keyword is used to fill a need or discover a solution to your customers’ problems.

We might not be able to read minds, but we can help move customers through the sales funnel based on their search inquiries.

But in order to do so, we first need to understand the phases of the buying process and how they tie into your keywords.

3 Buying Phases, 3 Keyword Types

Buyers go through a cycle during their journey of purchasing your product. Not every reader on your blog becomes an instant customer; some are just now learning about your brand, while others are researching your company as an option.

There are typically 5 phases all together, but the phases I’m referring to on this blog post are the following:

  • Research Phase: The phase where your customer likely isn’t aware that you exist, but they need your product or service. They know very little to nothing about your product.
  • Consideration Phase: Customer has a general idea of your product or service, and they’re evaluating your company to fill a need.
  • Purchase Phase: The customer is actively ready to buy your product or service.

So you know that your customers are likely reading your blog for one of the above reasons. Lucky for you, your blog is performing well enough to funnel those customers into your website for more information.

These 3 buying phases will tie into 3 keyword types:

  • Broad Keywords: Short and very general keywords
  • Body Keywords: 2-3 words in length, more descriptive than broad keywords
  • Long Tail Keywords: 4+ words in length that are highly descriptive

But how can you tell which keywords are targeting specific types of customers?

Drilling Down Keyword Structure

There might be different phases of the buying cycle, but your customers managed to find your blog in one way or another—and one of those methods is from the usage of keywords.

Understanding the structure of your keywords can help you evaluate what kind of customer has visited your blog and why they are reading your content at all.

There’s always grey area with blogging and keywords, so understand that these are general keyword guidelines that can help you evaluate the motivation of your customers.

Broad Keywords: Customer Research Phase

Customers who are in the research phase may or may not know that your company exists. Therefore, they’re likely to use broad keyword inquries to find your website.

Broad keywords (also known as head keywords) are typically short and very general. They consist of 1-2 keywords that pertain to the big picture of your product or service.

For example, let’s say that you’re a company that sells sporting equipment. You might choose running shoes as a target keyword since they are one of the products that you offer.

Running shoes is a broad keyword, as it’s just a general description of your product. There are all kinds of running shoes in terms of colors, brands, and even running shoes for different strides.

So, someone who is simply searching for running shoes is probably surfing the Internet and researching their options in terms of cost, quality, and comfort. They need some kind of direction to help them choose the correct type of running shoes—and a company blog can help provide that direction.

Blog Content Suggestions For Customers in The Research Phase (Broad Keywords)

Remember that these customers are likely in the research phase of their buying journey. They’re looking for more descriptive information so they can make good decisions on how to move forward.

Blog content for broad keywords, when done correctly, can help your potential customers learn about the benefits of your products and services.

If you are targeting your content toward customers in the research phase, you can use broad keywords in the following format to help lead them through the sales funnel. I’m sticking with the initial running shoes broad keyword example:

  • How-Tos: Provide quality, step-by-step blog posts that teach your customers how to use your product, or how they can choose the correct product for their needs.  Example topic: How to Choose Running Shoes to Match Your Stride
  • Predictions: Using your expertise, make a few predictions of highlights or improvements that are to come in your industry. Example topic: Where Will The Running Shoes Industry be 1 Year From Now?
  • Pop Culture: Blending your product or service into pop culture can help give potential customers something that they can relate to. Example topic: 3 Pairs of Running Shoes That David Beckham Has in His Closet

Your goal for blogging with broad keywords is to educate your potential customers and help establish a relationship.

Body Keywords: Customer Consideration Phase

Body keywords are more descriptive than broad keywords. They are also slightly longer. Body keywords indicate that your customer has a more specific idea of what they want, but they might not be quite ready to buy yet.

An example of a body keyword is Adidas running shoes. This type of customer already knows the brand that they want, but they’re considering stride, support, and stylistic options.

Blog Content Suggestions For Body Keywords (Consideration Phase)

It’s important to remember that customers who are using body keywords are likely still in the consideration phase. You can offer content that’s slightly more advanced (in context) than what you’d provide for researching customers.

Blog content using body keywords can help funnel buyers into the purchasing phase.

If you are targeting customers in the consideration phase, these are several ways you can compose blog posts by using body keywords:

  • Extensive Guides: Extensive guides go a little more in-depth than How-Tos. This is your chance to highlight all of the juicy details without missing a beat. Example topic: The Ultimate Guide to Getting More Miles From Your Adidas Running Shoes
  • Industry News: Adding industry news can help shed light on advancements in your field. Example topic: New Trends With Adidas Running Shoes That You Don’t Want to Miss
  • Pros and Cons: Customers in the research phase are weighing their options. Highlight the pros and cons of your product, but always remember to twist a negative into a positive. Example topic: Pros and Cons of Adidas Running Shoes That You Won’t Find Anywhere Else

Your goal for broad keywords is to take your customers to a new level of consideration. You want to convince your customers that they are making the right choice by choosing your company and your products.

Long Tail Keywords: Customer Purchase Phase

Long tail keywords are very specific terms that are 5+ words in length. This is the phase where the customer is ready, or almost ready, to purchase your product or service; they just need a final push to convince them to buy.

Continuing with our running shoes example, a long tail keyword would be glow in the dark running shoes. This keyword is long and specific, but the chances of conversion are high because it’s so specific.

Blog Content Suggestions For Long Tail Keywords (Purchase Phase)

When you’re blogging for customers in the purchase phase, compelling content is in order. Your blog content needs to contain good keywords with strong content to help move your customers through the last phase of the buying cycle: purchasing your product.

There are several compelling blogging methods to encourage customers to buy your product, such as:

  • First Person Experience: You can use your personal experiences to help your customers decide to buy your product. Example topic: How I Beat My Best Time by Switching to Glow in The Dark Running Shoes
  • Comparison: Compare how your product stacks up against a competitor, an experience, or an outdated product. Example topic: How Glow in The Dark Running Shoes Trumps Your Old Sneakers
  • Blogging Videos: Videos take your blog content to the next level, and they are known to be highly engaging and can convert very well if done correctly. The trick is to combine your blog with video that gives your customer a new way to engage and absorb your information. You can make almost any blog topic a video. Example topic: 7 Simple Secrets to Rocking Your Glow in The Dark Running Shoes

Your goal for long tail keywords is to make that final push through the funnel, resulting in that much-anticipated conversion.

Kickstart Your Blogging Keyword Strategy With a Free Sample

Need a bit more direction? Our keyword research reports can provide you with a custom blueprint for combining your best keywords with blog posts that convert.

Your customized keyword report will include:

  • 100+ relevant keywords catered to your company
  • Your top 10 recommended keywords with blog post suggestions
  • Monthly search volume data
  • Ranking difficulty with an easy-to-understand ranking scale

We’re offering a sample keyword report for a limited time on this product. Enter your e-mail and we’ll be in touch with more information.