Search Engine Optimization… as a chocolate chip cookie

Posted: September 11, 2009 in Search
Tags: ,

A chocolate-chip cookie.

Image via Wikipedia

I don’t know how often I hear people saying they want to be at the top.  They think it’s like magic.  (I lied.  I do have an idea as to how much I hear that.  It’s ALOT).

I make the best chocolate chip cookies in the world and I want people searching for chocolate chip cookies on Google to find me.  Have you ever done a search for chocolate chip cookies?  At this instant, there are 2,980,000 pages that come up.  Those are only the ones that have been indexed.  Google estimates that there are over a trillion different websites out there.  That was in July, 2008.  The web continues to grow in popularity and in size.  I cannot even fathom how many people out there also want to target chocolate chip cookies as a keyword.

Imagine putting yourself in the middle of the marketplace where you are the only baker there that sells chocolate chip cookies.  You’d be pretty easy to find (and probably the most popular booth at the market).  You could list yourself in the marketplace directory as the single source provider of chocolate chip cookies.  But what happens when people see how popular you are and more vendors come in to sell chocolate chip cookies?  All of a sudden, you’re harder to find.  Sure, you’ve been there longer, so more people at the market know about you, but after a few weeks, what if the new chocolate chip cookie makers start advertising?  Or what if they improve their recipe and now their chocolate chip cookies taste better than yours?  What do you do?  Well, you can try and compete by improving your recipe, throwing more and more money at the same product that the others guys are making…. or… you can make double chocolate chip cookies.  Now you’re the only one selling double chocolate chip cookies.  Anyone looking for double chocolate chip cookies will find you, because that’s what they were looking for.  And who doesn’t like the double chocolate variety?  So the other guy has spent hundreds of dollars in his gourmet one of a kind chocolate chip cookie.  And you’ve taken half the traffic now, because there wasn’t anyone making double chocolate chip cookies before.  You get them in the door for the double chocolate chip cookies and they automatically know that you also make chocolate chip cookies, two birds with one stone.

Say you continue to grow your product line to include oatmeal raisin cookies, then some Smarties cookies, maybe you throw in some peanut butter cookies.  All of a sudden, when people come looking for a particular kind of cookie, they find you.   Chances are, they’ve been looking for these cookies all along, just nobody’s really popped up before when they looked.  But what if they’ve been searching for these cookies all along?  So now that they find you, what happens when they start looking for other kinds of cookies?  They’re going to come to you.  Because you now look like the authority.  Maybe it’s not specifically on chocolate chip cookies.  But really, how many people are there just looking for chocolate chip cookies vs. the number looking for ALL the other kinds of cookies?

Now think of your keywords as a chocolate chip cookie (I know, I’m hungry too after all of this cookie talk).  Are you the single source provider of chocolate chip cookies?  Or do people come to you for all kinds of cookie questions?  Do you focus on one or two keywords?  Or a multitude of keywords in different areas of your site?

  1. John Tyler says:

    Great analogy!!!

    Yes, providing something unique combined with quality products and services is the best way to stand out and be noticed!!

    I remember looking in phone books at how companies would try to have their name start with the letter ‘A’ so it would show up first in the listings. Then the competition started by trying to add more A’s to be above everyone else eg. Aardvark Pizza in Banff or AAA Movers ( etc.

    But just because the company is named first in the directory does not mean that it provides the best products and services.

    I think focusing on several descriptive keywords would probably work the best- even if it doesn’t make top, it will would still more likely be found!

    Now I have to go find some chocolate chip cookies! 🙂

  2. Wendy Peters says:

    Well, when a person focuses on only a few descriptive keywords, those begin to make up the keywords they want most people to find them for and gets away from the idea of the ‘long tail’ keywords that get one or two visitors… maybe even 4-5 per month.

    I was looking at the stats today and what’s interesting is almost 20 visits yesterday and today to my blog where for search terms of ‘chocolate chip cookies’ or some variation. I thought that was pretty cool! So thinking outside the box, making analogies that relate to other fields… all these kinds of things can give you exposure to people who wouldn’t normally find you.

    Relevancy is a different topic all together. I’m not sure that the chocolate chip cookie searchers were looking for a web/social media blog. But who knows, maybe one of them learnt something new anyway. 🙂

  3. John Tyler says:

    You definitely make unique analogies!! It certainly makes it more memorial as well.

    I have never really looked into SEO and the importance of keywords- I had no idea what you meant by ‘long tail’ keywords, but it was an interesting read!

    I wonder when we will see a search engine powered by
    socmed 🙂

  4. Hi,

    Just Found this blogpost from my Technorati upcomming news event Story section. really interesting post , that’s why subscribed your RSS feeder, Hope you will add more usefull posts soon.

    Keep it Up.

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