The search marketing trade press waxes poetic about the value of keywords—the words or terms which people use when conducting an internet search with search engines like Google, Yahoo! and MSN. These lauded words get you to a website but they seldom get you to take any other action.
Once you are on the site you must be convinced or sold. The words or terms that sell are entirely different. For example, the words that you might use to find a Chevrolet Corvette on the web might be: Chevrolet Corvette, 2008 Corvette, classic Chevrolet sports car, or high performance American car. All of these words will help you find the websites that feature Corvettes.
But the words that will compel you to buy a Corvette are entirely different. A quick visit to some Corvette websites finds these words and phrases:
• “Taming America’s sports car while making it wilder.”
• “More horsepower is always a good thing, right?”
• “A new, leaned-down package filled to the brim with the latest high-performance technology.”
• “NEW available dual-mode exhaust system provides 436 hp and 428 lb.-ft. of torque.”
• “Corvette’s on-track performance is outstanding!”
All these words appeal to the Corvette buyer’s emotions and desires for excitement, speed, and daring—clearly the words that sell are different than key words. While it is true that you want to populate your web content with keywords, you need to persuade the visitor and that means using words that sell.
John Bradley Jackson
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