Internet marketing is a game of managing resources better than your competitors. You are limited in the amount of time you can commit and the money that you can spend. With search engine optimization (SEO), it all starts with keywords. Using a strategy that allows you to select the "right" keywords to target will help you make more money online.
The first question to ask is how many keywords to target for your site? Keep this simple and go after only 1-9 at a time. This will allow you to devote more time to getting a high ranking for specific terms, and once that high ranking is reached you can move on to your next target. If you overreach and try and optimize your site for 50 keywords at once, none of them will get ranked and you will have wasted both time and money without seeing much in return.
When it comes to the number of keywords to target on individual pages the goal is 1-3. You can only fit so many terms into your title tag and having your keywords in the title tag is important for both conversion and getting a high ranking. Matching keywords to the right landing pages is also important for conversion purposes. Plus, that extra content also helps gain you more Pagerank on your site that you can use to give a boost to internal pages you want ranked.
Once you know how many terms you are going to target you have to choose your keywords. The main point here is to make sure you go after the terms that will earn you the most money. If you are just starting out, these are the ones you want to simply get listed on the first page of the results. If you already have some traffic it could mean moving up the listing for terms you are already ranking for.
For existing sites, it is important to use the rankings you already have in order to learn which keywords are most profitable for you, and also which are the highest traffic. Getting a No. 1 ranking will provide a huge boost over 2-5, and getting up into that second tier is big over ranking in the 6-10 spots. Optimization that moves you up a few places to get seen on the first page will provide a nice traffic bump rather than being on page two.
Another advantage that older sites have is that they can learn keywords to target with their site analtyics. Site stats can tell you what keywords visitors are using to find your site and what pages they are landing on. You can then either improve the pages you already have or create new ones more appropriate for those terms.
How difficult will it be to make a dent in the rankings? As part of your research you have to analyze your competitors. Big sites tend to do better because they can point more internal links to certain pages. If a site has a lot of authority it's internal links will also provide it a boost, and of course external links going to a page directly using the anchor text desired provides a lift. Find out where your competitors stand for each of these and you'll be able to paint yourself a picture on what you have to do to rank closer to the top.
That is our keyword strategy from start to finish. If you use the tips provided you will start using your resources more effectively and do a better job of increasing your traffic with your SEO efforts.