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Keyword Research For Mobile Marketing | A Quick Guide

The importance of mobile keyword research in 2013

– According to a digital marketing report compiled by RKG for the first quarter of 2013, consumers completed 25% of online searches from their mobile devices.

– Google’s New Multi-Screen World Study on the other hand suggests that 90% of all consumer interactions are today screen-based (including smartphones, tablets and television).

Clearly, mobile SEO is becoming an increasingly important concept for businesses. In this post, we are going to focus on mobile keyword research and the tools available for mobile keyword research today but first, let’s see why mobile keyword research is important in the first place.


One of the most obvious reasons for investing in mobile keyword research is that consumers who complete searches from their mobile devices use different keywords than those they would normally use on a desktop.  In some niches, for example, if you own a local restaurant, not targeting the right keywords can make you lose out on a lot of business.

Because mobile keyword research is so important for business owners, many tools are available to make the process more efficient and accurate.Many things make mobile keyword research different from desktop keyword research including the tools you should use and the metrics you should monitor.

1. Successful Mobile Keyword Research Starts with Clear Goals and Metrics

identify goalsLike is the case with desktop keyword research, successful mobile keyword research is not possible if you don’t define your end goals and metrics in advance.

For instance, if your site is responsive and your content device-agnostic, your mobile keyword research is going to be different than if you are doing the research for a site whose URLs are specific for searches completed from mobile devices.

In both cases, the focus is put on keywords that consumers use. If your content is device-agnostic, makes sure you compile a list of mobile-specific keywords to target mobile searchers as well as desktop users. If your content is mobile-specific, find keywords that match your business goals.

2. Next, you Need to Know What Tools to Use for Mobile Keyword Research keyword research tools

Once you know what your mobile SEO endgame is, the next step is to identify the tools available to business owners for mobile keyword research.

Google Webmaster Tools

Google Webmaster Tools provides businesses with an excellent platform for collecting data concerning their site. Note that if you are not using the most appropriate keywords, Google Webmaster Tools won’t help you with identifying the most popular keywords for your niche but you will see how you are doing in the SERPs.

At the “Search Queries” interface of Google Webmaster Tools, filter the search for only mobile data. The subsequent report is useful for businesses to collect data on the most popular keywords, rankings and click-through rate of the mobile-specific keywords.

Google Analytics

To identify popular mobile-specific keywords using Google analytics:

Go to Audience —>  Mobile —> Overview

Filter the results: Include —> Mobile. The other two fields are filled as follows: Exclude: (not set) and Exclude: (not provided) respectively.

The purpose of doing this is to generate a list of keywords used by consumers on mobile devices.

Google Keyword Tool

The Google Keyword Tool is very useful for mobile keyword research being the only tool available to business owners that generates mobile-specific keywords your pages are not already optimized for. As is the case with traditional SEO keyword research, when collecting the most appropriate keywords, think about your audience first but don’t restrict yourself to a desktop context.

Bing Ads Intelligence

Bing Ads Intelligence is the only mobile keyword research tool available for the estimation of the volume of tablet search queries. Unlike the Google Keyword Tool, it does not generate mobile keywords but this tool can go a long way in helping you streamline your compiled list of mobile-specific keywords by running a specific traffic report for the different mobile devices. Bing Ads Intelligence also allows users to access demographic data, which can be useful for building buyer personas.

3. Finally Pick the Best Keywords from your Compiled List of Keywords

Following step 2, you will probably have a long list of mobile-specific keywords that you will then need to sort through to choose the best keywords for your pages.

So How to Choose the Best Mobile Keywords?

Desktop queries v/z mobile queries: The search queries report on Google Webmaster Tools is one of the few useful tools available to website owners for the purpose of comparing, side by side, desktop queries versus mobile queries. This report is very useful in comprehending the behavior of consumers. Based on the report, you can gain a better perspective as to what kind of site you should be running to match your business goals.

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