Originally published in YNot Web’s "What Now" Newsletter, Volume 2. Issue 2.


  • Brainstorm! Sit down for several minutes and write down whatever keywords or phrases come to mind. Ask family and friends or even clients what words and phrases they would use to find a product or service like yours.
  • Use the long and short form of words, e.g. consult, consulting, and consultants.
  • Look in the keywords META tags and page titles of other web sites. See what keywords your competitors use.
  • Look at newsgroups, mailing lists, and discussion groups on similar subjects to make sure you haven’t missed any keywords.
  • Do not forget misspelled words. People often misspell words when they enter their search terms.
  • If you cater to a particular geographic area, remember to include that in your keyword list. Use your city, area code and zip codes to drive targetted traffic to your site.
  • Research! Look at what people are actually searching for on the various engines and get more phrases for your list. Check the Keyword Popularity tools to help you do this. Remember that people often misspell words, use different word forms, and may be looking for a whole lot of different stuff all related to your products.