The MOST IMPORTANT THING about Internet Marketing is knowing the most popular search terms buyers use to find what you sell! These are your Top 20 KEYWORD PHRASES.

Once you know what exact KEYWORD PHRASES your customers are looking for, you can do everything you can to make your site come up as high as possible in the search results for those specific words and phrases in the directories, search engines, and pay-per-click results. You can also track these results and compare how well you rank with your traffic and sales. When you know what your Top 20 KEYWORD PHRASES are, you don't have to worry about every single word.

One of my clients is #1 on Google for her #1 keyword phrase, a brand name of a particular girls' toy. She was a little concerned when she wasn't on the first page of search results for a very specific keyword phrase, so she gave me a holler. We did a quick check and the GOTO/Overture tool said: "No suggestions for ___." No one was looking for this particular keyword phrase, so it didn't matter! The main thing is to be highly ranked for WORDS THAT COUNT. (how do you do that?)

"How do I discover my TOP 20 KEYWORD PHRASES?"

There are two place to look to find your TOP 20 KEYWORD PHRASES :

Look Inside - Look at your log files / references to see what phrases are already drawing traffic. These phrases are already working for you. Yahoo! Store owners should look at MANAGER > References > Details to see what the top KEYWORD PHRASES are in your existing Yahoo! Store. You can rank these by sales, orders, and traffic. Usually your top ten sources of traffic are the best to look at. You can get a pretty good idea of your better words in about 15 minutes, but I usually spend up to four or five hours to consolidate all of the data. [See KEYWORD DATAMINING]

Look Outside. Use whatever internet resources you can to find ALL relevant keyword phrases. This includes keyword databases, search engine "related results," related sites' meta tags & keywords, competitors' pay-per-click lists, industry-related sites, glossaries, manufacturer sites with brand and product names, synonym generators, and anything else you can think of using.

This new list will probably include your existing keyword phrases, and you will be able to see what words and phrases you might be missing and see where your current TOP 20 KEYWORD PHRASES rank in and around the big list.

In the old days (1997), it was hard to find out what people were looking for on the internet. There was one public list of most searched terms on Yahoo!, and half of those were for porn. Now there are a lot more resources to find out exactly WHAT people are looking for. The best free, public example is the GOTO / OVERTURE search suggestion tool (Ask me about this or look at my links page at We have access to many more, and we've learned a lot about how to put your site in front of this traffic to sell them stuff.