Should You Market to Keywords with No Search Volume?

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Keywords are the common language between your prospect, your website and the search engine results you’re found in. They’re important because of their relevance and ability to convert. For a site like the Marketing Technology blog, broad keywords may be important to drive visits. But that’s only because visits and overall popularity are the goal of this blog.

For your business, visits shouldn’t be the primary performance indicator of your site, it should be your conversions. Many times, the keywords that convert are different than those that drive traffic. Analysis by many optimization companies have found that, while a great ranking on a high search volume, single keyword can drive thousands of visits… a long-tail phrase of 3 to 4 words can drive many more conversions.

What about keywords with no search volume? Before we answer that, we should state that no search volume as reported by Google. Virtually every relevant keyword or phrase has some kind of volume… even if it’s only a handful of searches each month.

One of our clients is Right On Interactive – a marketing automation company that works with companies to not just capture leads but to drive up the value of each customer. When they were explaining their business to prospects, the phrase customer lifecycle marketing explained it easier than any other in the industry. While it was a perfect phrase for their business, customer lifecycle marketing had no search volume when we began working with them a year ago.

We didn’t advise Right On to stop marketing to that keyword, though. It was a compelling enough phrase that it was relevant to their brand and could be a term that was more widely adopted in the future. That’s exactly what has happened. Customer lifecycle marketing is a term that’s growing in both popularity and in search volume. There are now over 30 searches a month for that term. And guess who ranks for it?

Don’t limit the conversation on your site to just the popular keywords and phrases that have the most search volume! Use any phrase that is relevant to your business, even if it drives a single visit! The likelihood that a keyword or phrase will drive a conversion increases with its relevance… not it’s volume. Best of all, if search volumes are low… you’re probably not going to compete as much for that traffic!

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