I see people trying crazy “formulas” for getting found online and developing content, keywords, and dividing it by competition and throwing in some LSI and then finding out – it really doesn’t work in the long run. Clients give me lists of keywords they want to rank for by next week. It doesn’t work like that.
Yes, it’s smart to do keyword research.
Yes, it’s smart to size up how much competition you have. Then outdo your competition in quality.
Give more information, have better content. Keywords only go so far. You need to engage your audience and really give them something valuable and unique for the time they are spending on your site. Especially since Google basically said that the Penguin update will continue indefinitely. Remember since the main goal of Penguin is to eliminate as much spam content as possible, this makes your site being unique and informative more important than ever.
Remember the meltdown when Google changed their Keyword Tool? It is now called Google Keyword Planner, and I have to say, after test driving it and learning its nuances – I like it.
How I Do Keyword Research
When I am personally doing keyword research, I don’t automatically pick the keywords with the top monthly search amounts. I pick the keywords most relevant to my topic or niche and then additional keywords that relate to the topic and I never honestly look at what the reported competition is. I don’t care. I know I can write good content and make it engaging so my sites get found for the keywords I want to target.
I like anywhere from 1000 searches to 50,000 searches per month per keyword.
But that’s just me. I have a friend that is a fantastic IM-er, and he likes to go as high as 500,000 per month in searches and he does a dandy business online with his niche market sites.
Then, I gather related keywords and I draft article titles using those keywords. One main keyword per article. As far as content creation, I either write it myself or have them written by one of our word ninjas.
In Case I Wasn’t Clear : Be Unique and Trustworthy in Your Content
I cannot stress enough, use unique content. PLR (Private Label Rights) content is everywhere and available on every topic under the sun, but it won’t do diddly to drive search engine traffic to you. Plus most of the PLR, even so-called “high quality” articles usually are not engaging in the slightest. We stopped selling PLR years ago. It’s great money but we never felt good about putting duplicate content online and we made the decision to just not do it.
Last word: make your audience want to share your content! I want something people will post to their Facebook or tag someone with because the article made them think. Start looking at your content, keyword research a little differently.
Ask yourself who your ideal audience is. Write for them. Make it a goal to provide quality to your visitors first and choose keywords you can build interesting content around for that audience. It will pay off for you in terms of earning trust of your repeat visitors.
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