Marketers looking for an edge over their rivals could find that search engine results provide a useful source of keyword research, according to one analyst.

Writing on Search Engine Land, Aaron Wall said that looking at Google results quickly provides users of internet marketing services with the phrases that potential customers are searching for, the related keywords their competitors are optimising for and the keywords preferred by the search engine itself.

For example, Google Suggest will attempt to complete queries with common keywords – and as they are chosen by Google, it shows that some people are entering these phrases and some will pick what is being suggested.

This feature could therefore provide a mine of keywords that marketers could include in their page title or content to boost their online profile, Mr Hill said.

He added that search engine results will often include competitors’ sites that include keywords or keyword modifiers in their page titles.

"Let their research guide your own," Mr Hill commented.

According to Eric Enge of Search Engine Watch, keyword selection should be guided by the competitiveness of a company’s particular industry, as well as the breadth of audience they are trying to reach.

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