Use of autosuggest in a marketing strategy

Anyone who’s searched a major search engine has seen the auto suggestions pop up as you enter even the first few characters of your intended query. In marketing, the information provided by these most popular search terms can be extremely valuable. Luckily, there is a free tool that collects this data for easy analysis: . This can be a means of identifying potential customers intent, as well as how your competition might be showing up in places that give them an advantage over you.

Through the use of, a couple simple strategies can provide you with useful information.


Firstly, a search of a keyword you already know is highly relevant to your business or organization will show you how that word (or words) is used in internet searches. For example, if I owned a sailboat manufacturer, by plugging in the somewhat obvious term with, “sailboats,” I will see what people are really looking for when that word is plugged into a search engine. My “sailboats” search turns up the following results:


sailboats better


As can be seen, keywordtool returns the top ten searches containing the word sailboats, and then the top searches containing each letter of the alphabet (A thru Z) and numbers as well. As a Sailboat manufacturer I’ve likely already targeted the search terms “Sailboats,” and Sailboats for Sale, but as I scroll through the most common searches, I may be able to find new keywords and search terms that my company can target. For example, it may turn out that  “42 ft sailboat” is an extremely common search term, and I consider my 42 ft. model to be the best in the business, yet didn’t know how to identify and access a market for it.

Secondly, a quick look at the top searches will allow me to identify new competition. For example, a new manufacturer may have been written up in last month’s sailing magazine, giving them a lot of buzz.

Third, by plugging in one’s own website, one can find out people’s most common queries in relation to your business or organization. It may turn out that the most common query about my company is whether we sell sails, which we don’t at the moment. This, of course, is an excellent discovery, but all kinds of information reflecting on one’s business/organization through using keywordtool.

Finally, when optimizing one’s online presence, the creation of content that truly meets the needs, desires, or curiosity of the searcher is key. A tip suggested to me was to add the five W’s (who, what, when, why, where) to the search term that most closely relates to your company’s product or service. It may be that many people are curious about “whensailboat yields,” suggesting that the “rules of right-of-way at sea and in harbor” would be an informative, engaging piece of content for many on the internet. Although reders of type of content may be indirect to sales, establishing oneself as a long-term authority within your industry is crucial to optimization.

As a last small tip, you’ll notice that Keywordtool provides options to search not only multiple search engines and youtube, but also allows for narrowing by country and language– useful if your company has an international presence and needs to optimize locally.


Beginners link maintenance / Monitoring 404 errors

Your website’s links represent fundamental building blocks of your online presence and visibility. Both routing traffic in from outside, as well as internally within your site, a non-functional link can be extremely harmful to one’s business—Just as one who seeks out a physical address only to find an empty lot, so a 404 file-not-found page is likely to turn away someone who had the intention of engaging with your web site. By accessing your website through Webmaster tools and Google Analytics, one can identify and begin to resolve such errors.


Firstly, by accessing one’s site through Webmaster Tools (in this case Astral Web Taiwan), one can see the links that google has been unable to find as it crawls the web. Below, one can see that this information is accessed by selecting Crawl > Crawl Errors and entering 404 in the drop-down box above and to the right of the list of errors.


webmaster tools
This is your first list of non-functional links that may need to be addressed.


Google Analytics offers a more detailed, customizable display of link errors. Following the steps outlined below, one is able to access a list of 404 errors that have been encountered through external links, which can be particularly undesirable to a websites effective presence.
Once in Analytics, select Behaviors > Site ContentLanding Pages:


.Google Analytics Menu
This results in a list of landing pages for your website, which are ranked by frequency. Secondly, you’ll want to add a Secondary Dimension defined by Page Title:


analytics secondary dimension
Once this is done, click on the advanced search option:


advanced search
Enter 404 to delineate your search to instances of 404 errors:


404 advanced search

At this point you should be left with a comprehensive list of all 404 errors that have occurred within your domain, appearing something like this:


analytics list 404

By identifying these non-functioning  external links, you have the opportunity to resolve potentially significant numbers of 404s that each represent someone’s intention to access your site’s services or content. Addressing such issues has equally significant potential to affect your site positively. Utilizing Webmaster Tools and Google Analytics, you can maintain your link functionality, taking a significant step in the maintenance of an effective web presence.