Finding Profitable Keyword Phrases

Jul 27
12:31

2005

Michael Lawrence

Michael Lawrence

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So you have a site concept developed that you are ready to start writing great content for.

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So what's the next step?

It's time to develop your "master keyword list" which you will use to craft your webpages. Theseare the words or phrases you would like to get ranked high in the search engine's for and get the free targeted traffic that this will bring to your website.

It is not enough to simply "pluck" words from the air and start writing your web pages. You need to carefully select which words and phrases to target.

Food for thought:

What if there are already 10 billion web pages about your chosen keyword(s)?

Do you think a small business owner can compete with large companies who invest millions of dollars into their SEO strategies for highly competitive,Finding Profitable Keyword Phrases Articles high traffic keywords?

Obviously the answer is no but there is a bright side to the equation if you are willing to invest time into researching your keyword phrases carefully. You will want to choose "niche" keywords that offer a combination of high traffic and low competition.

This of course is easier said than done but it can be accomplished as long as you use some of the help that is available on the internet.

Here are a couple of first steps, tips and tools you can use to put together a list of niche keywords for the website topic that you have developed.

1. Keyword Brainstorming and Research

Think of throwing out a "wide net" here and try to write down as many keywords and phrases (consisting of 2-4 words) that are related to your Website Concept as you can.

Take each one of these words/phrases and visit:

http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/

Type the first keyword phrase into the "Get suggestions for:" box and hit the search button.

This will return you a list of words and phrases that are similiar to your keyword phrase and also provide you with the number of searches for each of these results on the Yahoo-Overture network for the month.

Copy all of the keyword phrases that you think best suit your site concept along with the search data into a text file or spreadsheet. Save this file as your "master keyword list".

Note: Some of the results will be totally unrelated to your site concept you do not need to copy these into your "master keyword list".

Repeat this process for all of the keyword phrases that you initially brainstormed. By the end of this process you should have a "master keyword list" of several hundred or thousand words and phrases.

Google provides a free keyword research tool as well but does not provide the search statistics that Yahoo-Overture does. Augment your keyword list with any results that you find relevant using this tool.

https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordSandbox

2. Refine Your Keyword List Part 1

We need to shorten your keyword list to a tightly targeted and highly profitable subset of your master keyword list. These are going to be the words we use when crafting our web pages for the search engines.

Start by performing searches for each keyword phrase in your master keyword list at:

http://www.google.com

Google will tell you the total number of sites it has indexed for the keyword phrase that you are searching for. Copy this number into your master keyword list for each keyword phrase.

You will now have the data for the number of searches on the Yahoo-Overture network for the month and the number of competing websites for each keyword phrase in your list.

Think of these numbers as supply(websites) and demand(# of searches). Finding the supply/demand number for each keyword phrase will help you decide which one's you want to target.

You will have to use your own judgement here depending on your goals and the amount of traffic you would like to generate. Make sure you have a nice mix high traffic and niche keyword phrases in your master keyword list.

It's not that useful to be ranked #1 for a keyword that only gets 5 searches a month. Similiarly, it is very hard to achieve high rankings for high traffic keyphrases because there is going to be a lot of competition.

Trim your keyword phrase list down to 50-100 entries and get ready for step 3.

3. Analyze the Competitor's Backlinks

While I will walk you through how to do all of the required analysis tasks using free tools I highly recommend investment in some form of SEO software or service. The tasks you will have to perform today can be time consuming and a little monotonous so the help of an outside resource may prove invaluable to you.

The purpose of this analysis is to find potential link partners (to be used in a later lesson), and to trim our "master keyword list" down to our 15-20 keywords that we want to get high rankings for.

Take each of the 50-100 keyphrases in your master keyword list and perform a search on google.com for each term.

We are only going to be interested in the "top 10" results for each keyword phrase since our goal is to get listed on the first page of results for our target keywords.

Traffic to your site will drop dramatically if your listing does not appear on the first page of search engine results.

Our goal from this analysis is to find out how "established" your competition is. This can be accomplished by analyzing the number of websites that link to your competitor's website.

To find the number of incoming links for any website perform the following search from yahoo.com (Please note I have chosen Yahoo because Google no longer reports accurate back link results).

http://www.yahoo.com

linkdomain:www.competitordomain.com

Note: you could use http://www.uptimebot.com for a more comprehensive listing which includes results from all major search engines.

This will tell you how many websites link to the domain "competitordomain.com". Search engine's use this "link popularity" number to gauge how important a website is. A site with a lot of links to it must be an information hub and therefore very important.

Perform this linkdomain command for all of the "top 10" competitors you have identified for each your chosen keyword phrases in your master keyword list.

If you find that the sites in the search results have several 1000 backlinks to them you will know right away that you are going to have a hard time getting a high ranking for that keyword since a large number of links suggests that the site is already well established.

Make 10 columns in your master keyword list for each keyword that you analyze indicating what the number of backlinks are for each of the top 10 search results.

Also copy any URL's that offer services that would be complimentary (not a competitor) for what you will be promoting on your website into your keyword list as well.

We will use this information in a future lesson to help boost your seach engine positioning by requesting to trade links with these complimentary sites.

Simply noting them down in your keyword list will be sufficient for our purposes today.

4. Refine Your Keyword List Part 2

Based on your backlink analysis trim your keyword list down to 15-20 keywords you think you will be able to compete for. If there are already a number of established "hubs" for a particular keyword you may have to drop it from your list.

Using these tips you should now be able to tell which market's you will be able to compete in and which one's already have too many established information hubs to make it worth your while. You will also have a list of "complimentary" websites that we will be requesting links from in a future lesson to help boost our own "link popularity".