CHOOSING THE RIGHT KEYWORDS FOR SEO: When completing keyword research for your school or program, you'll find a lot of keywords that are relevant and that you may want to win on in organic search rankings. But how can you make sense of the pile and drill down to focus on the keywords that matter most?
Monthly search volume indicates how popular a search term is (how many times it's searched for monthly) and keyword difficulty (KD) is a metric that indicates how competitive a keyword is and how difficult it would be to rank for in Google's search engine results. Both of these data points should be used together, combined with common prospect FAQs and audience pain points, to devise a winning keyword strategy.
SEMrush (an SEO tool) recently updated their keyword difficulty algorithm and published a post on keyword difficulty. If you try the SEO tool (they have a free version), here's a nifty breakdown of how challenging it could be to rank for keywords with certain KD scores:
- 0-14 = Very easy
- 15-29 = Easy
- 30-49 = Possible
- 50-69 = Difficult
- 70-84 = Hard
- 85-100 = Very hard
It may not be worth expending your time and resources targeting super high-competition keywords (KD of 85 and above). They will require substantial on-page SEO, link building and content promotion, according to SEMrush. If you're just starting out and want to move the needle in a shorter period of time, you may want to stick with keywords with a KD score up to 49. After a KD score of 50, you'll need to put in much more effort to rank over time.
Shameless plug 🔌 Check out our blog post, "4 Common SEO Challenges for Enrollment Marketers and How to Overcome Them."
🎁 BONUS TOPIC 🎁
IDEAS TO SHAKE UP YOUR ENROLLMENT STRATEGY: Those who have been in enrollment management for a long time know what it's like when your student recruitment tactics start to feel stale. Summer is a great opportunity to shake things up and try something new. Here are a few ideas:
- Replace your traditional, tired email comm flow with a video-first comm flow to infuse personality and uniqueness into your emails
- Tell a unified story on Instagram over time in a series of posts, like Humans of New York, instead of a PSA approach (app reminders, one-hit announcements)
Shameless plug 🔌 Listen to two enrollment marketing natives noodle about these ideas in this two part series: Episode 87: Reaching Beyond the Familiar — Inspiration for Enrollment Marketers Part 1 and Fanatical Fridays Episode 35: Reaching Beyond the Familiar — Inspiration for Enrollment Marketers Part 2.
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