When you operate a business on the internet, you should have a good understanding of keywords. Keywords help people find your website and, when used properly, they can help your website rank better in search results. Since Google handles approximately 70% of the search engine market, it's a good idea to start your keyword research using the Google Keyword Tool.
Before you start using the tool, be sure that you understand the match types that you can choose from. There are 3 match types you can choose from when you run searches; broad, exact, and phrase. Each one has its pros and cons. Remember, even though it is important to use keywords properly, always create your content for people first, and search engines second. If it doesn't make sense when people read your content, it doesn't matter how much traffic your site gets.
BROAD MATCH TYPE
Broad will give you very high search volume results, since the results will include any and all variations of the keyword you type in. For example, if you run a search on "pepperoni pizza," the monthly search volume includes any searches with the word "pepperoni," or "pizza." It's not a very accurate reflection of the volume that you could expect when you choose to target a specific keyword phrase.
PHRASE MATCH TYPE
When you run a search using "phrase," the results will include the exact phrase with variations. For example, if you type in "pepperoni pizza," the monthly search volume will include the exact keyword phrase, as well as variations, such as "good pepperoni pizza," or "best pepperoni pizza." For one-word keywords, the results will be the same as "broad" searches.
EXACT MATCH TYPE
If you use "exact" match type, it's a much better indication of the traffic you might receive if your web page shows up on the first page of Google search results. Exact match type includes only the search volume for the exact phrase, with no variations. So, when you type in "pepperoni pizza," you only get the search volume results for that exact phrase. If you get on the first page of Google for a specific phrase, you might get additional traffic for similar keywords, but it's better to be pleasantly surprised, rather than very disappointed.
For a free video walkthrough on how to set up the Google Keyword Tool and use it to find keywords, click on the link.
If you want more information on choosing keywords, check out Superbad Internet Marketing.