As you’ve know, I joined Pat Flynn’s Niche Site Duel project (NSD) and today, I want to talk to you about keywords.
When creating a new site be it a niche or an authority site, choosing the right topic is always the most vital part of the process. Your site’s name, the appearance, what you writes, etc. are all determined by the name or topic you chose.
Specifically, when building a niche site, the keyword you chose to target can ultimately mean the difference between your success and failure.
However, it is very much possible to compete with any keyword out there depending on the amount of time and money you have to outrank the existing competition.
A very higher volume search combined with high volume of competition means that you will have to spend a lot of money on your ads campaign before you can see any meaningful result because, there will be some bigger brands that are already competing with each other on that same keyword.
So, it is very much better to for those of us with limited budget and less time to try and dominate a niche with lesser competition.
All we have to do is, niche down, targets a market in a sub-market and, you’re going to rank higher in the search engines. Like Pat Flynn said, I’ll rather be in the first page for a keyword that gets 3000 exact local searches than be on the 5th page for a keyword with 300,000 exact searches.
For the rest of this article, I will be sharing with you the criteria that I’m going to use while conducting keyword research for my website based on my experience on this project, you can also follow along with these same criteria.
The tool I will be using to do my keyword research and the same tool that has been doing lots of wonders to other niche site marketers out there is LONG TAIL PRO.
Long Tail Pro is the best and most simple keyword research tool out there. It’s not free but, it’s worth whatever they are selling it. You can also use the free Google keyword research tool but, Long Tail Pro will certainly make your keyword research process a breeze, very simple and accurate. It’s a tool that will give you all you need to know about any keyword within a twinkle of an eye. I will write more about it later.
Click Here to Purchase Long Tail Pro now (Aff Link), you can also download and try it for 10 days free of charge :).
My Keyword Research Criteria
1. Helping People
I will make sure that whatever topic, whatever keyword I’m going to target and build my website around, that it will be a topic I’m sure that I will be able to help people through my skill or knowledge of that topic. It’s not going to be about the money alone but, I must be able to help people too.
2. Search Volume [Exact]: Min of 3,000 Local Monthly Searches
Search volume is the number of times a particular keyword is searched for in Google, and it’s usually reported in per monthly basis. It’s an indication of how many potential visitors you expect to be getting per month if you land in the number one position in Google for that particular keyword.
NOTE: Always perform your keyword research using Exact Match. Most keyword research tools always default on Broad Match but, it’s advisable to always set it to Exact Match as this will give you a true data of how many times a particular keyword alone is searched for in Google.
3. SEO Competition: Is there room in the top 10 of Google?
This is another thing that is of utmost important after we found our keyword using the criteria above. You need to know what existing competition for that keyword is in Google. This is to find out how difficult it will be to get to the first page.
In my own case, I will be looking at the following factors….
*Is the keyword used in the URL of the pages listed in the top 10 of Google for that keyword?
*Is the keyword used in the Title of the page
*Is the keyword used in the description of the page?
*The number of incoming links to those pages, and the quality of those links.
*Anchor text distribution
*Content on the competing pages
Using Spencer Haw’s tool….. Long Tail Pro (Aff Link) can really make all these easy for you, you can easily use it to find all the data’s above without doing it manually.
3. Is there money to be made on this Niche?
By now, you must have found a keyword with a decent search volume and has lower competition, the next thing now is to ask yourself the question……. Can I make money on this niche?
Researching your monetization before choosing any niche is just as essential as performing key word research. You don’t want to waste all these time only to realize later that there is no earning potential for the keyword you selected so; it’s of utmost important that you research your monetization strategy before deciding on any keyword.
In this case, some of the things I will be looking at include:
*The average cost per click (CPC) in Google adwords
*The advertisements that shows up when I perform a search on Google using that keyword
*If I also perform a search on Amazon.com, are there books or products that show up?
*What products are other sites promoting related to the keyword?
There are many other factors to look at, you just need to know what you want as, i may not be looking for the same thing as you and, getting a keyword that passes the above criteria will not guarantee your earning on that niche, it also depends on your efforts and the performance of your site.
4. The Grandma Test
I learnt this one from Pat Flynn :). It goes like this……
When I’ve selected a keyword based on all the criteria above, I will then ask myself the following question:
If I created a website in this niche and it became incredibly successful, would I be comfortable sharing my success with my grandma?
If the answer is no, then I may have to think twice about getting into this particular niche, isn’t that fun :)?
This is it for now.
Now, follow up on my next post about how to brainstorm and select the perfect keyword for your niche sites. Join my email list or, subscribe to my feed so that you won’t miss any of the posts.
Feel free to comment and ask me any question based on this post and, I will be here to answer you.
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Cheers and happy new month.
Photo Credit: Page rank