This article was written by Daniela Furtado, the founder of Findable Digital Marketing.

The kind of keywords you choose depends on the kind of traffic you want.


The most common mistake I see small businesses make is creating content for keywords that attracts the wrong kind of people. They may get a steady flow of traffic, but none of that traffic converts into sales. 


Sounds like you?


In this article, I’ll walk you through 3 steps to understanding how content converts and choosing the right keywords. 


Step 1. Decide If You Want DIYers or DIFMers

Not all traffic is equal.


At Findable Digital Marketing, we like to say there are 2 kinds of website visitors: 

  1. DIYers, and 
  2. DIFMers.


DIYers, or do-it-yourself readers, are looking for information that will help them do a task themselves. These readers have more time than money and they’re not in the mindset of outsourcing work. They’re on the look out for step-by-step guides and tutorials. 


If you’re selling courses, digital products or affiliate commissions, DIYers are your ideal readers. You want to use keywords and create guides, reviews and tutorials that get these readers onto your website so that you can introduce them to your product.


On the other end of the spectrum, we have DIFMers or do-it-for-me readers. These readers couldn’t be bothered to research and figure out to do a task. They have the budget to hire someone that can do the work faster and better than they can.


If you’re providing a one-on-one service, DIFMers are your bread and butter. You want to choose keywords and create content that will attract these readers.


So, what kind of content are DIFMers interested in?


In short, they want to know that you not only understand their problem intimately – but you can also solve it. They want to see a proven track record through your service page and case studies. They want to know your unique approach and understand why you take that approach.


Take a moment to think about the content you’ve created up to now. Have you been attracting mostly DIYers or DIFMers?

Step 2. Understand the Search Engine User Journey

Not all DIFMers start out that way. In fact, most of them start out as DIYers.


We call it the search engine user journey. 


Let me walk you through it.


There are 3 stages to the search engine user journey.

  1. Awareness,
  2. Consideration, and 
  3. Purchase.

The Awareness Stage

The awareness stage is made up website visitors that are brainstorming ideas and educating themselves on a topic. For instance, a new homeowner might go to Google searching for …


  • “how to redesign my kitchen”
  • “minimalist kitchen design ideas”
  • “kitchen design trends”


As SEO professionals, we read into the intent behind these search queries or keywords. These keywords suggest that the homeowner is figuring out what they want for their new kitchen and might remodel it themselves. 


Keywords in the awareness stage get the most traffic but their vagueness tells us that they are DIYers. They’ll be open to buying an affordable e-book or course about kitchen design but not a custom service.

The Consideration Stage

The next stage is consideration. These website visitors have read dozens of articles and tried to do the work themselves but they’re frustrated. 


It’s taking them too long. They’re making too many costly mistakes. Whatever the reason, they’re playing with the idea of investing in a professional. 


Using the new homeowner example, here are some keywords they search:


  • “difference between interior designer and decorator”
  • “how much does an interior designer cost?”


Keywords in this stage don’t get as much traffic. However, if you want to choose the right keywords to get DIFMers, the consideration stage gets you closer to conversions.

The Purchase Stage

Finally, we have the purchase stage and it’s purely made up of DIFMers. These website visitors have decided to hire a professional but now it’s a matter of finding the right one. Here are examples of keywords:


  • “interior designers near me”
  • “best interior designers in [city]”
  • “hire interior designers”


This stage gets the least amount of traffic but the keywords are highly competitive. You’ll most likely see ads for them.


Note – if you’re targeting DIYers, you probably got your conversions in the awareness or consideration stages.

Step 3. Research Keywords for Each Stage

Now that you have a clear idea of what kind of website visitors you want and you understand how they use search engines, you can reverse engineer your content.


Check out Findable Digital’s how-to video on keyword research:


Illustrate the search engine user journey for your specific website visitors and brainstorm the search queries they are making at each stage.


Use a keyword research tool like SEMRush or KWFinder to get the monthly search volume and shortlist the keywords. You want to choose keywords that have low competition but some steady traffic. 


Ideally, you want to create content that targets keywords in every stage of the user journey but if your resources are limited, prioritize the stage that is going to get you the most conversions.


Don’t let numbers stray you away from quality. Choosing the right keywords comes down to traffic that is going to convert into sales.


Daniela Furtado is the owner of Findable Digital Marketing, a boutique SEO agency. She provides SEO services in Canada and specializes in service-based businesses. When she isn’t working, you can find her learning a new language, salsa dancing, or cooking up a storm.

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