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Search Tricks of the Trade

Did you know that there are many different ways to search? Should the geographical keyword go first (ex: Houston SEO) or should it go after the main keyword (ex: seafood Houston)? Do you perform “exact match” searches and accept what Google propagates or are you more of a general searcher? Do you choose from Google’s drop-down menu as you are searching?

Is there a right or wrong way to search?

NO! There are ways to research how and what people are searching.When choosing keywords and performing keyword research to build a website or marketing campaign on, you need to know how prospective clients search and what they are searching for.

Consider the difference between the words “embroidery” and “embroidered.” Obviously, using the word “embroidered” should yield results with things already embroidered as it’s past tense. Searching the word “embroidery” should yield a totally different set of results. Anything from hand-embroidery to embroidery floss and threads, to Pinterest posts pertaining to handwork and Grandma’s quilts. But what about the word “embroidery” as a verb, as in “how to embroidery?” What happens when you add the word “Custom” embroidery? What happens then? The longer the string of words, the closer the search match will be if you are using the correct words to being with. This is called a “long tail keyword” search.

Google Search - SEO HoustonThe more information you can give a search engine, the better the results will be. Adding a few different words or characters to a Google search can help target exactly what you want to search. Adding a hyphen before a word, will exclude the word following the hyphen. Example. You are looking for information on Jaguar “CARS” and don’t want information on the cat/animal, enter your search:

jaguars -animals: Your search should exclude documents and websites with information on jaguars, the animal, and more than likely offer up results about the car or the manufacturer.

Adding quotation marks around a search term or keyword/keyword phrase will help you search for exactly what you type in and not the words individually. Google looks at each word separately when a string of words is entered. Adding the quotation marks around the object being searched tells the search engine to look at all of the words together.

“search engine optimization”: Your search should yield ONLY sites with information on SEO and search engine optimization and nothing about trains/engines/locomotives or “lost people searches.”

Using a tilde (~) before a word tells the search engine to grab related terms. Example:

~ college: Should yield results with other keywords like university, higher education, degree plans, how to apply, etc.

Consider using some of the strategies above to better hone your searches yielding better results. If you really think about it, Google has an amazing algorithm built to serve up the best possible search to searches across the world. Try the different search methods and let us know how it goes.

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