How Broad Should Your Target Keywords Be

Choosing the right keywords for your blog posts, website, and digital marketing ads is an essential skill to learn as a digital marketer. Digital marketers should be able to know how to develop and research effective keyword lists. This will yield the best potential traffic and conversion results, resulting in more affordable SEO.

Choosing the most effective keywords for SEO means understanding the intent of the different audiences searching for specific keywords. Concerning SEO keyword density in content, having a broad set of keywords can yield the most effective SEO results when it comes to your ads and blogs. It is important to understand that when increasing the broadness of your keywords, it is crucial to maintain quality and prioritise the right categories.

Why do different keywords perform better than others?


When it comes to different types of keywords, there are various levels of interest. The keyword categories below rank from the lowest potential to the highest potential of conversion. These are extremely useful in understanding the intention behind your audience’s keyword searches and planning out the most attractive page content. 

Terms and Targeting

  1. Complementary product based terms

These are terms which relate to the main product you may be selling. They relate to the terms which are essentially someone else’s product terms. For example, your business may sell a specific brand of phone. The customer may be searching for a ‘’phone case’’. This category yields smaller potential for winning conversions, but can often increase the value of the transactions it does attract.

  1. Substitute product based terms

These terms refer to the category of keywords which relate to the substitute products that a consumer may use as opposed to yours. For example, if your business sells cars, optimising on keywords which relate to motorbikes and public transport as an addition to your main product may help traffic.

It is important to understand that because you are a substitute, you won’t receive high relevance scores from Google, which will lower rankings. It may be worth considering as an addition, but should not be the focus of your keyword lists.

  1. Competition based terms

Similar to substitute product based terms, competitor terms can be usefully optimised only as a secondary traffic source. Because Google is likely to rate your competitor’s website very highly for its brand terms, it can be very difficult to rank for these. Additionally, trademark violations and other issues might come into play. Instead, try using an SEM platform for these terms..

  1. Product based terms

These terms are some of the most effective to build upon for SEO. Product terms relate to the functionality of a product. Depending on the product/service range, the potential keyword list may be extensive. Utilising this keyword category along with Brand based terms should be the minimum for digital marketers.

  1. Brand based terms

This category should be a digital marketer’s top priority. Brand based terms are those customers and users who are familiar with your business’ brand. This category yields both the easiest and best conversation rates. 

 When choosing terms, it is useful to remember that there are different search intentions and categories. Through the foundational understanding of these terms, the strategy behind building your keyword lists and which to prioritise can be better laid out.

How to use the terms for your Keyword research

The creation of a seed list

The next step in the process of identifying the keywords to use involves creating a seed list. Through analysing and brainstorming, writing a list of keywords under each category mentioned above should be a digital marketer’s next goal. Although this should be broad between all categories, the most time should be put into product and brand terms.

  1. Researching your audience

Start by looking at blog posts, articles, comments and groups such as Linkedin groups and Facebook groups. What will be useful are those terms which you audience use to describe your business and the products and services offered. Finding relevant and commonly used terms can be utilized into keywords which may be used later.

  1. Relevant search terms and the suggested terms

Using tools such as Google Trends and the Keyword Planner is crucial for this part. These tools are provided by Google to assist digital marketer’s to view which search terms are being used to reach your website. Google keyword planner within Google ads can provide you with suggested keywords and their traffic and competition for your products, services and blog topics. Below is an example of the keyword planner interface which illustrates the average searches for specific keywords and their competition.

Transferring your seed list to a built keyword list

  1. Topics

The first step in building a usable keyword list includes grouping keywords by their topics. This includes grouping the keywords on the type of product, service and/ or blog SEO post style keyword. If keywords relate to the same product, for example, they are grouped together.

  1. Match Types

Using the Google trends tool, the volume of traffic for specific keywords is available to view. This will provide you with the most accurate information on how your potential keywords are performing and which of those to remove from the list and which to prioritise.

  1. Selecting the most relevant topics

Now, you have the information that is required to understand the performance and likelihood of specific keywords to perform well. Selecting the most relevant and effective topics is important. This means removing those keywords and topics which have no relevance and are not performing well from your list.

Shortlisting Keywords

Selecting the right keywords for SEO is essential. The easiest way of doing this is removing the least interesting and worst performing keywords from each category. Below are some factors which will assist in refining your list.

  1. Categorisation

When it comes to the distribution of your keywords on your website, product and brand based terms should take priority. For example, if you have a large amount of keywords for substitute and competition-based key words, and fewer amounts for product and brand terms. In this case, remove those less relevant keywords in order to focus on the keywords which are closest to the target of your SEO.

  1. Testing your potential words

This factor is very important for the effectiveness of your keywords. Enter your keywords into a search engine and view the results. Those terms with ambiguous meanings and may come up with results which have nothing to do with your target industry should be removed.

  1. Competition analysis

Using tools such as Ahrefs in order to view the difficulty for different keywords for SEO provides insights on the likelihood of success. Ultimately, using various tools to assess the quality of keywords is very important.

When it comes to getting the optimum amount of traffic to your site., it is important to maintain a broad category of keywords. However, ensuring that you’re focusing your content on relevant Search Terms can be the key between useful traffic and a lack of conversions.

About Us

At HESK Digital we’re experts in SEO, paid advertisements and analytics, with over three decades of marketing experience and a senior team who has experience with major Sydney marketing agencies. We strive to keep up to date with and discuss developments in our field.

If you’d like to grow your business and leverage our wealth of knowledge on analytics and SEO, don’t hesitate to contact us for a free discussion on how we can help.