If you are anything like me, I live and die by the spellchecker on my computer. I personally believe I have the largest custom dictionary in the world as I seem to be continually adding new words and phrases to it on an almost daily basis. But what if I told you that you can use these misspellings to your website's advantage? And in so doing, generate hundreds of extra monthly visitors to your site that you may not have realized you were ever missing? It's easier than you think and, trust me, your competitors are already doing it. Here is why and how you should implement the practice on your site today! If you have ever misspelled "accommodate," or "definitely," or even "license," don't feel bad. These are among some of the most commonly misspelled words in the English language.
In fact, on average, misspellings happen about 10% of the time when people query a particular search phrase. Obviously misspellings in your own web copy are quite embarrassing; even I have been guilty of missing one or two in my work. Further, frequent copy mistakes can subject you to questions of credibility and professional scrutiny and should be avoided at all costs. So how can you turn your own poor spelling habits and those of your online target audience to your advantage? Follow the seven-step plan below and use the Internet's worst spellers to your advantage today: STEP ONE: DO YOUR RESEARCH ? Look up the keywords used by your competitors in the yellow pages, online articles, industry trade journals, site directories, outdoor advertising posters, and online. Make sure to right-click competitor sites and choose "view source" in your chosen browser to see what keywords your competitors are using in their META Tags.
Compare these keywords to your own site keyword list and start putting together a larger, more comprehensive list. This will be very important for future steps. STEP TWO: BRING IN THE FAMILY ? Present your keyword target list to friends and family for review. Ask this group how they have or would misspell these keyword phrases.
Children especially are a wealth of information when looking for new variations on words as they often come up with novel new ways to butcher words that you had never considered. Use these insights to expand the master list and don't be shy with the less well known variations you include here. Even the least obvious of keyword variations can generate noticeable traffic and should not be overlooked.
STEP THREE: CHECK YOUR WEB LOGS ? If you are really serious about succeeding online, then you should already be using web analytic software to analyze your site incoming keyword traffic. If you aren't doing this, stop reading this article immediately and have Urchin, WebSideStory, Omniture or some other analytics software installed on your server immediately. These pieces of software are indispensable in recording all keyword queries to your website on a daily and monthly basis. Use this information to find new keyword phrases to add to your master list on a regular basis.
I still routinely find dozens of new keyword phrases every month that I did not previously have as part of my client's marketing plan. STEP FOUR: USE A KEYWORD TYPO TOOL ? Now that you have researched and formatted a comprehensive keyword list (containing some typos already) now is the time to generate your final list of target misspellings to be used for future campaigns. Running a search on Google for "free keyword typo tool" will return a plethora of options to generate this list. However, for the purposes of this article, I strongly suggest the use of SEO Chat's Keyword Typo Tool which you can find at this link: http://www.
seochat.com/seo-tools/keyword-typo-generator/. Because the results of this tool are based on the proximity of the characters on a QWERTY keyboard, and a database of common spelling/typo mistakes (and a few other factors), the results for this tool are fairly accurate and likely to occur in a real-world situation. STEP FIVE: USE TYPOS IN META TAGS ? As of this email, YAHOO and ASK are the only two major search engines that still give relevance to the Keyword META tag.
However, these engines are still significant sources of traffic and should not be overlooked. Thus, If there is not much competition for these represented misspellings, they may show up just by having them placed there even if they exist no where else on your site. This is a strategy we have implemented successfully for several clients and should be implemented on your site immediately. STEP SIX: SET UP PPC CAMPAIGNS WITH MISSPELLINGS ? Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaign marketing is by far the most effective way to generate traffic to a website these days. Obviously, if you are paying for the keyword "ice cream" online it would stand to reason that the most common misspelling of this keyword phrase "ice craem" should also be part of your PPC marketing campaign.
Surprisingly, including misspellings in current PPC campaigns is not always done and this can cause an advertiser to miss out on hundreds, if not thousands, of extra click-thrus each month. Because many clicks from misspellings cost but a fraction of what the correctly spelled word may cost, adding these variations into any PPC keyword list can have a noticeable, immediate result for your online marketing efforts. STEP SEVEN: USE CUSTOM 404 ERROR PAGES ? Creating custom spelling 404 Error pages for many of your site's most commonly recorded misspelled keyword phrases is an effective way to target misplaced typo traffic. This method has been effectively implemented for many past clients as a way to create pages with limited targeted content that can in turn be readily indexed by search engines. Having misspellings on your regular website is not something you want to do.
But putting together simple page templates built around 1-2 popular keyword typos allows you to provide a indexable page to the search engines on keywords you would not otherwise want to appear on your main content site. Using the "ice cream" example here, you would build a 404 error page targeting "ice craem" that would read simply as "The keyword phrase 'ice craem' is similar to our keyword phrase 'ice cream.' Please CLICK HERE if this is what you were looking for." These seven steps above are far from an exhaustive list but will succeed in making your site highly visible online, even to the internet's worst spellers.
In the meantime, according to YourDictionary.com, mastering the orthography of just the 100 most commonly misspelled words can cut down your use of automated spelling tools by over 50%. Certainly something I could use; how about you? To view a list of these words visit this link: http://www.
Casey Markee is president of San Diego SEO firm Media Wyse and is slowly becoming a better speller. Contact him today at http://www.MediaWyse.com with your SEO questions or assistance on your upcoming campaign.