Get Started on Creating a Great PPC Keyword List

February 1, 2007 by Derek Vaughan

In order to take greatest advantage of pay-per-click advertising opportunities, one must first develop a truly great keyword list. The key to a great list is to generate a vast and deep set of search phrases that are targeted to your goods and services. The reason that a vast list is better than a shorter list is this: you are only charged when someone actually clicks on your ad. Therefore, even if the search term gets only 1 quality click per week - you should use it anyway - as it doesn`t cost you anything to use the keyword unless you recieve a productive business lead from it.

Here are a few tips to get you started. First, start with the most basic keyword phrase that describes what you are selling at your site. For our example we`ll use a site that sells specialty dog food. The list of basic keyword phrases might be:

dog food

Let`s start with these. Now, in order to build out a much broader and targeted list very quickly, we will use a great and free online keyword generating tool:

Yahoo Search Marketing`s Keyword Selector Tool:

We`ll input our targeted search phrases into the tool and display the top results below. Note that there are often many more than just the results shown below, but the technique described is the same for any additional keyword phrases.

First we`ll input `pet` first (you can then repeat the same process with `dog food` later) - here are the top few results:

Number of Searches in the Previous Month Keyword Phrase
566,326 pet
252,871 pet supply
113,835 pet store
106,676 apartment for rent with pet
106,473 apartment pet search
105,919 pet finder apartment
105,261 pet shop boy
59,088 pet supply store
56,478 pet grooming
54,566 pet adoption
49,307 pet services
44,527 pet shop
35,043 littlest pet shop
33,044 pet sitting services
32,999 virtual pet
32,955 pet boarding
32,368 pet product
29,962 pet health
28,700 pet for sale
27,790 be your own pet
25,996 pet insurance
22,105 pet name
19,774 pet care

The number on the left refers to the amount of searches conducted the previous month at Yahoo Search Marketing. This gives you an idea of a search phrase`s relative popularity. The next step is to remove those terms that are not related to your business - here is the truncated list:

Number of Searches in the Previous Month Keyword Phrase
566,326 pet
252,871 pet supply
113,835 pet store
59,088 pet supply store
49,307 pet services
44,527 pet shop
35,043 littlest pet shop
32,368 pet product
29,962 pet health
19,774 pet care

So now we have created 10 good search terms. The next step is to input each of the ten terms back into the Yahoo Search Marketing tool to generate even more search terms. So when we input the search phrase `pet supply` into the tool we get:

Number of Searches in the Previous Month Keyword Phrase
59,088 pet supply store
9,979 pet supply plus
7,360 wholesale pet supply
6,799 discount pet supply
5,743 online pet supply
3,461 pet supply catalog
2,834 pet bird supply
1,879 pet grooming supply
1,095 pet supply plus store
1,029 online pet supply store
899 pet supply chicago
851 ryans pet supply
754 pet food supply
747 jeffers pet supply
659 cheap pet supply
629 care a lot pet supply
627 dr foster and smith pet supply
538 foster and smith pet supply
522 dog pet supply
497 pet supply distributor

Again, it is important to now remove those terms that don`t apply to your business and arrive at a truncated list. Simply repeat this process over and over with each search term. Your pay-per-click list will soon grow to a large size.

One more step that will really help to generate a larger and even more targeted list. Come up with a list of `prefixes` that describe your store`s niche. So if you are a discount store, your list of `prefixes` may be: discount, affordable, cheap, low cost, economy, etc.

You can then add these `prefixes` to your current search phrase list in order to create an even deeper search list. To use the first ten search phrases we created you would then arrive at a list that contains:

cheap pet
cheap pet supply
cheap pet store
cheap pet supply store
cheap pet services
cheap pet shop
cheap littlest pet shop
cheap pet product
cheap pet health
cheap pet care

Remember to always check the relevancy of the terms you create to make sure that they will be reaching the targeted traffic that will purchase your products and services. Good luck creating your targeted pay-per-click search term list!

About Derek Vaughan
Derek Vaughan appears courtesy of the hosting experts at TechPad Agency.

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