Are you frustrated by Keywords Research? You are not alone, it’s because most people don’t understand how to do it properly. The biggest mistake they make is to just rush out and look for keywords that get the most traffic. This is a bad idea because a keyword with a lot of traffic may be either too broad or too competitive for you to use in your marketing campaigns.
The next biggest mistake is for people to rush to look for “high paying” keywords. What does that mean really? It means that some advertiser is willing to spend a lot of money to gain a lead. Does this really help you if you just focus on high paying keywords? NO! Why? Because if you are going to compete with that person/company you are going to spend a ton of money buy your traffic. And if you are an affiliate marketer you may be surprised to learn that just because a keyword costs a lot doesn’t mean it pays a lot! And again you are dealing with a ton of competition.
So lets talk about the Adwords Keyword Tool now!
Why should you use the Adwords Keyword Tool and not some other Keyword Research Tool?
Answer: Because Google has the most Search Engine Traffic they have the largest pool of keyword research data. So as you “dig deep” into your industry niche you’ll find that Google’s numbers provide you with the most accurate data and the data is World Wide!
No matter how elaborate or sophisticated the tool, the bottom line is it is only as good as the data set it accesses. People use Google to find what they are looking for and this provides you as a marketer with a wealth of information.
How to use the Adwords Keyword Tool
Almost every Online Marketer knows about this free tool, but few really know how to dig in and use it. For my example I am going to use Keyword Research Pro which is a nice piece of software that makes accessing the Adwords Keyword Tool very simple.
Now here is what you want to do… in my example I chose the word “Keyword”… remember this is just an example. What you want to do is type in a keyword you believe is used to find your product or service.
Start with just one keyword. Remember what you think people use to find your product is NOT what is important, what they actually type into the search engines is… but you have to start somewhere.
Keyword Research takes time! You may spend all afternoon, or even a day or two to get to the real gems that if used properly will really make you money. Don’t be in a hurry, this is the most important thing you can do in the Online Marketing equation.
So you type in your keyword. it’s time to analyze the keyword…
Here is what you want to know:
1. Number of keyword variations – including related keywords (Synonyms)
2. The amount of Searches for each Variation
3. The Number of Competitors *
* Just typing in a keyword phase in a broad search in Google will tell you the number of “Instances” a keyword appears in the Google Database in any order. This is not your competition. Putting the phrase in quotes will tell you the number of instances a keyword appears in exactly the order you typed it within the quotes. But this is also not your competition. Your competition is the number of people who are actively trying to rank for a particular phrase. This is where you use “allintitle” and “allinanchor”. If a keyword phrase appears in a Title Tag then that person is likely trying to compete for that phrase. This may not be true in Broad Niche Phrases… which is why you want to dig deep for what is called the “longtail” keyword pharse. If a keyword phrase of 4 words or more appears in exact order in the Title Tag you can bet that didn’t happen by accident. The “allinanchor” is also a good indicator, but probably not as reliable.
So should you search for “broad” or “exact”. That is the million dollar question. And in my view it’s best to use the “broad” search when doing keyword research because this is a better indicator of people looking for products. If you use the “exact” phrase you may go too narrow and miss part of your market. Use both and see what kind of results you get. Just putting an exact keyword phrase on your webpage doesn’t mean that Google is going to give you magic ranking points.
Calculating KEI From Adwords Keyword Results
One indicator used to determine if a Keyword will be easy or difficult to rank for is called KEI or Keyword Effectiveness Indicator. And here is basically what KEI does and how it is calculated. KEI compares the number of searches for a keyword with the number of search results and returns a ratio.
KEI is calculated like this:
Seaches x Searches divided by # of results
Example using numbers from the Keyword Graphic Above:
If Google Adwords Tool says there are 1,600 searches per month for your keyword and 3,370 results (Pages with the Phrase) you would calculate the KEI like this:
1,600 x 1,600 = 2,560,000
now divide this by the number of results
2,560,000/3,370 = 759.64
So your KEI in this example is 759.64
If you look in the Graphic Picture I uploaded above you can actually see this is a real world example for the Keyword phrase “Most Searched Keywords”.
So a high KEI is an indicator of a keyword that has higher searches and less competition. Remember this is just an indicator but helpful in picking a phrase with the potential to rank better than another.
You still have to beat out the guys on page one for that phrase, but KEI will help you determine if this is really possible. If the top 10 results for that phrase are large companies with 1,000’s of backlinks, reputation, high PR, etc. Then you may still want to skip that phrase. KEI is a quantity indicator not a quality indicator.
You can do all these calculations using the Adwords Tool and a Spreadsheet that reads the CSV files, but it’s very time consuming which is why I use Keyword Research Pro.
What to do with Your Basic Keyword List
Once you have selected your basic keyword list it’s time to dig deeper to see if there are related keywords or keyword phrases between 3 to 9 words. These will often bring you in even more targeted and valuable traffic. So essentially you repeat the process until you have a list that meets your own marketing goals.
I’d suggest that most people in most niches focus on phrases that are 3 words or longer and have less than 10,000 competing sites. This is not a rule, it’s a suggestion.
Once you have that list of keywords go get the Firefox Plug in SEO Quake or the Free SEO Tools plug in from SEO Book.
You want to now take your keywords and type them directly into Google and analyze your competition. I actually use a product called SEO Elite to do this faster, but both of the free plugins should work just fine for you.
What you want to know now is the Page Rank and number of Back Links pointing to your competitions site. SEO Elite allows me to quickly and easily dig into the same data the plugins dig up but in an easy to read report format.
Look at your competitors, and determine if you can beat them. If you can then you have done your research correctly, if not… start the cycle over for new keywords and niches.
Good luck and keep at it!