If you’re marketing your B2B company with Google Ads or other types of PPC advertising, it’s essential to identify the keywords that your knowledgeable prospects are searching for. The SaaS field is very competitive so you need to find long tail as well as popular keywords that cover as many of your customers’ concerns as possible. Let’s look at some of the best practices for B2B SaaS keyword research that are working in 2020.
It’s well known that one of the first tasks of marketing is to identify a problem and present a solution. Your software and services are designed to address specific issues. The businesses you’re targeting are less interested in features than in actual solutions. Here are some examples of problems common to someone seeking an SaaS, some leading companies that provide solutions, and a few potential keywords for these issues.
- Finding reliable and secure cloud storage —Dropbox, Google Drive. Keywords: “best cloud storage,” “most secure cloud storage,” “cheapest cloud storage.”
- The need to learn more about customers using polls and surveys — SurveyMonkey. Keywords: “best survey creation apps,” “best market research tools,” “how to research your target audience.”
- CRM and marketing automation solutions — MailChimp, Salesforce. Keywords: “email automation tools,” “best CRM software,” “lead tracking software.”
- User-friendly accounting solutions — QuickBooks, FreshBooks. Keywords: “best business accounting software,” time tracking software,” “invoice management software.”
- Flexible communication software— Slack, GoToMeeting. Keywords: “team communication software,” “video conferencing,” “best collaboration tools.”
Identify keywords that are directly connected to your customers’ needs. Keep in mind that they may not have your particular solution in mind as they search. For example, for a survey company, we listed keywords about the broader topic of market research.
KEYWORDS FOR BUYER’S JOURNEY STAGES
Neil Patel, in his informative article SEO Competitor Analysis, that you map out keywords for every stage in the buyer’s journey. Although Patel is talking specifically about targeting competitors’ keywords, this principle is actually vital for every aspect of keyword research. When planning your PPC campaigns, it’s important to know the stage of your target audience.
- Awareness — At this stage, people aren’t yet thinking about buying. This early stage is the optimal time to target prospects with keywords that guide them to helpful information. Depending on your content strategy, you might promote a blog post, white paper, e-book, or webinar. None of this requires keywords that mention any specific software or services. If you offer WordPress security solutions, for example, you might create a post, video, or report such as “Ways to Keep Your WordPress Site Safe From Hackers.”
- Consideration -Prospects are now thinking about possible solutions, which includes your competition. At this point, your competitors are fair game as keywords. You might write up a comparison guide such as “Brand X vs. Brand Y: Which is the Better CRM Solution?” “Pros and Cons of Brand X CRM” and “Best alternatives to Brand X.”
- Conversion — At this stage, people are using buyer-related keywords that might include “affordable,” “best deals,” “where to buy,” and “where to download.”
- Loyalty — The loyalty phase is also very important. Remember, even existing customers can still shop and compare your service with others. This works both ways. You can target keywords related to your competitors’ loyalty strategy such as “Brand X customer service,” or “Brand X complaints.”
STUDY THE COMPETITION
Your competition provides many valuable insights into your keyword strategy. Here are some ways to spy on your competitors’ keywords or to use competitors as a springboard for your own keyword strategy.
- Type in popular keywords in your niche and see which Google Ads show up. This will reveal who is advertising aggressively for these keywords.
- Study competitors’ website and content. This provides clues on which keywords your competitors are targeting. Pay particular attention to the titles of their blog posts, videos, and other content.
- Use Google Keyword Planner or another keyword tool. Type in your competitors’ names and click on “get ideas.”
- Tools such as Keyword Spy, SpyFu, or Alexa’s Competitive Analysis Tools help you identify your competitors’ keywords for both SEO and PPC campaigns.
TRACK YOUR KEYWORD STRATEGY
Keyword research is a dynamic process that must be constantly tested and revisited. Keywords become more or less competitive and popular from one month to the next. It’s essential to track your results so you can make appropriate changes. You should consistently perform A/B tests between ads to see which perform best. Google Analytics provides some useful tools for tracking your PPC campaigns. With tools such as In-Market Segments Report, Site Search Report, and Referrals Report, you can fine-tune your PPC strategy.
KEYWORDS ARE ESSENTIAL TO YOUR RESULTS
Keywords are a fundamental element of digital marketing. B2B companies need to be especially diligent in finding the term their potential clients are searching for. Your customers are generally quite knowledgeable about their industries and have a clear idea about the problems they need to solve. You need to do adequate research or work with an agency that can help you with tasks such as keyword research. If you’re looking for help with keyword research or managing your Google Ads campaigns, TA Monroe provides a wide range of results-driven digital marketing services.