Although, English is a global language, the number of people who speak and write good quality English may be still a very small percentage. According to statistics, hardly 8% of the world population use English as their first language. There are dialects and colloquial usages that cause the languages to be twisted and tweaked and sometimes shortened as well.
Wrong spelling in Internet search is a pretty common thing due to the above mentioned reasons, overuse of text messaging (SMS lingo) or mere typing mistakes. Search engines like Google tries to correct the users by providing ‘suggestions’ (Did you mean?, AJAX autofill, top search phrases etc) but typos cannot be totally avoided. In this case, on top of your keywords, optimizing for misspelled search keywords may make sense if you want to maximize your search hits.
Scenarios where misspelled keywords can be handy
The following are some of the places where misspelled keywords can bring in additional value if used in moderation (and after good homework & research).
Blog posts/Web content
If you search Google for ‘bloging tips’, you will still get ProBlogger as the first item on the SERP. I am sure, Darren hasn’t done anything to optimize for the misspelled keywords but his fan following with typos in their comments has helped his cause. The learning here is that, you don’t need to forcibly make typos in the most visible parts (title or post content) of your web pages but could add them in comments, meta keyword list etc.
Some examples of misspelled keywords that are high on search volume are: ‘diabeties’, ‘accomodation’, ‘morgage’ etc.
Needless to say, in order to maximize your click through rates and hence conversions it is a must to optimize (SEO) for these misspelled keywords – especially when you have a niche blog that thrives on search traffic based on niche keywords.
As you know, PPC advertising products such as Google AdWords charge you a certain amount per click and this amount varies depending on the competition among advertisers for certain keywords. For example, if Google charges your $10 for the keyword ‘diabetes’, the bid for its misspelled alternative will be a lot lesser (something like $2 or so per click). This is an excellent mechanism to tap into a percentage of search users who make typos at a much lower cost.
Hence optimizing for misspelled keywords is a must for effective PPC campaigns.
Social Networks – fan pages
In my opinion, the social network crowd – especially mobile/gadget users and youngsters – possesses the worst quality language among all web users. It is just my inference after reading several comments, photo tags etc on various profiles. However, sometimes silly typos & short words on tweets and comments can be really handy to find your profiles and fan pages on search faster. This is because many directories and aggregators (e.g twitter directories) are indexed by search engines a lot faster than your blog post or web page itself. I need to do more research on this topic before deriving a proper strategy.
On top of your meta keywords, you have a chance to add more tags and keywords on to your blog’s RSS feed. RSS aggregators are a major source of traffic these days. Adding some keywords (including misspelled ones) can be handy if you are able to do so via a suitable RSS footer plugin or via custom coding.
How to use them Optimally?
The secondary keywords and misspelled ones are something that need to be used moderately and very carefully. If used in excess, especially in visible areas, this can affect the reputation of the blog and the blogger behind it. However, PPC campaigns, meta keywords, blog tags, All-in-one SEO keywords list (and sometimes even comments) etc are safer places to experiment with your misspelled keywords that could potentially bring in traffic.
In order to find your most effective misspelled keywords, you could use either your Google AdWords keyword tools or one of the premium (paid) keyword research tools. You could also check out some of the free keyword tools (like keyword discovery free tool) to find your right ‘wrong keywords’.
Happy Search Engine Optimization!