The first step in any SEO (Search Engine Optimization) campaign is to establish the most commercially valuable keyword phrases to target. By using Google’s (free) Keyword Planner Tool you are able to enter as many phrases into the application as desired. The tool will then evaluate, not only the phrases that you entered, but will offer suggestions for other phrases you may not have come up with. From Google’s perspective, they want you to have as many choices for phrases as possible, so you’ll buy into their “Adwords” campaigns. Feel free to do what you want from that perspective, but the tool itself is really all you need.
The results will tell you how many people are searching for that phrase on a monthly basis (US and worldwide) and will tell you how “competitive” that phrase is. Google defines “competitive” as the number of people in the Adwords system, that are actively pursuing (and bidding on) that phrase. Chances are, you will find phrases with geographic modifiers are not as popular on the global scale. Just keep in mind, you want visitors to find your site, who are searching for “widgets Fort Collins”, not just “widgets”. The main difference would be if you can ship your “widgets” anywhere in the world. Then the geographic part is unimportant. For restaurants, resorts and attractions and local businesses keeping the location in there is critical.
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