Last week I introduced you to the big bad world of SEO and this week I want to step it up a level and talk about keyword research. And why you should stay away from paid keyword research tools and how easy it is to outsource this typically time consuming task.
Just think of it like this – I mentioned last week that SEO is not effective if everyone else is doing the same thing. Well the same thing applies to keyword research too. And forget the Google tool as I have found a lot of rubbish come up when searching. And many keywords that I get 100 new visitors a day for that I am on the first page of Google come up with zero results on the different paid tools.
Like a lot of online marketing tools sometimes it is better to do things manually. And thats exactly what I do!
Many of the keywords I end up going with from my research rank on the first page of Google without any real work. I don’t need backlinking because my keyword research and a small amount of blog promotion does the work for me.
So here is now you do it….
The first thing you need to do is open a free account with Wordtracker.com. Don’t bother with the paid account as it is really not needed and a waste of your money. However you do only get 5 searches a day with it. So if you need any more than that just open another free account with a free email provider such as Yahoo. If they won’t let you simply clear your cookies. When we are doing our Wordtracker work it will probably involve about 10 searches over a period of a month.
And once signed in you will see a screen like this:
And you enter your keyword in the blue section and hit search. I have used the keyword “weight loss” as an example:
And as you can see the screenshot above shows the top 10 searches. Now what you want to do is to catalogue in excel the top 50 searches and the amount of monthly traffic those keywords get. So its simply column A and Column B.
Then when you have done this you would do seperate searches on any of them that gets more than 100 visitors a month. So your top 50 would turn into 50 separate searches so that you have a large amount of keywords.
So if you were working off the weight loss keyword your next search would then be “quick weight loss diet” and you would record all the searches that you get.
The idea is that you will find lots of good quality keywords, many of them long tail keyword phrases and that you will be spoilt for choice.
Remember these searches are just based on the US and I have found that ones that state that they get 2 hits a month that nobody bothers with will actually bring me in 150 unique visitors a month from worldwide traffic.
The question many of my mentoring clients actually ask me is how many should I end up with on my spreadsheet and the answer is 3000+. When I did it for my weight loss site I found that I had 10,000 different keywords to choose from.
Now this is the next part and that is to see how many pages are already indexed for that keyword on Google.com.
To do this first of all make sure you are not logged into Google and then simply search for the keyword like you would if you were a potential customer.
Just like this:
And as you can see from the search above there are 345 million competing sites and you would do that for all of the keywords you have created.
And then enter this information into column C in your spreadsheet.
This is the worst bit as it is very time consuming but then you can get the true competition of your pages and get some very good keywords.
3. Ditch The Competition
Now this is the best part and this is what removes the competition from the easy keywords and is very quick and painless. And this is also the main reason why in the beginning you have created your keyword research in excel. You are now going to sort your data by lowest competition.
To do it simply highlight the rows and click Data > Sort and then search in ascending by column C and it will put your keywords in order for you like i have shown you to the left.
Then what you do next depends on how big you want the competition in your niche to be. If you are in a micro niche you may have a smaller amount of keywords so everything up to 10,000,000 will be fine.
However with how big the diet industry is you would never want to go above a million.
On the other hand if you were in the food niche and wanted to become one of many food bloggers then 500,000 would be better for you.
So what you would do now is scroll down to the bottom of your spreadsheet and delete any out of your threshold so for me that it all searches that result in a competition of over a million.
For a typical niche this will take about 25% off your list so if you have around the 3000 keywords then you will be looking at around 2250 keywords still to go at.
4. Ditch The Spam
Like with any part of internet marketing you will be left with a fair share of spam and you now need to use the edit > find feature to delete any spam keywords:
I find that i get a lot of ones that end with “leave a comment” and other spam related words that have come up so the find box is a great way to find any of them and get rid of them very quickly.
And this will then take off about 10% of your results and after this you should still have about 2000 keywords to target left.
And there is your keyword research sat there waiting for you to use and we will show you the best and quickest ways to get results on Google for all of these keywords over the next 12 months. Just by what you are learning right now and what I plan to blog about over the next few weeks you will learn that SEO is simple.
And how over a month you can easily have built a 1000 unique visitor rate a day just through simple do it yourself SEO. In the next installment I talk about blogging your way to number one and you can read it here.