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Selecting Keywords to Target August 12, 2009

Posted by datasheetreference in SEO Notes, Uncategorized.
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OK, now that some basics are out of the way, I need to figure out what I’m going to target with DatasheetReference.com.

I followed this basic process to pick my keywords.

1. Look at competitive sites and extract their keyword targets.   These can often be found on their home pages so its not too hard to build lists.  I went for large lists.  From several sites I gathered 50-70 keywords.  Entering some of these into Google reveals more competitive sites and new keyword lists.

2. Find correlative words.  Knowing this is a competitive SEO market and my site is brand spanking new, maybe more important is that my domain is very new, I want to target top keyword combinations that are 2-3 keywords long.   The reason is that getting top rank for the key words is going to be hard, if not impossible, against established sites that have been around for 5-10 years.

The way I do this is to use Google.  Suprise! Google reveals all.   Type in some keywords you are considering and look at the bottom of the page.  Google often provides common phrases that were used in search.  Nice.

Google’s keyword tool also gives back synonyms and related common phrases.   A gold mine.

Gather them all and put them in Excel as a single column.

3. Determine which keywords are the Top of the Top.   The goal here is to find high volume keywords with lower competition.  The exact number is not the issue, it’s relative volume.  Now that I have a list of about 400 keywords, I started the analysis.  Simply copy them in batches of 20 from Excel and paste into Google’s keyword tool.  Now sort the results by Global Monthly Search Volume traffic (I want the entire planet, you might care about more local results and use the Local Search Volume list).   Download all these gems into Excel and just keep the columns Google spit back.   Repeat for your entire list.   (yes, a bit mind numbing so teach your little sister to do it while you go watch TV).  Copy and paste your many Excel spreadsheets into one (each right below the next, don’t include the column headers except for the first one).

4. Picking the Cream of the List.  You have the data now, it’s time to figure out where to focus your effort.  Now select the single row with the Column headers Data>Filter>Autofilter.   Now pull down the little arrow next to Global Monthly Search Volume and pick Descending order.   Voila!   You want to study this for a while, the top of this list is juicy but you probably can’t realistically expect to win there.   Look down it and keep special notice for combinations of the top phrases.   Example “Nikon” might be hard to get top position, but “Nikon support”, “Nikon lenses”, “Nikon help” might be more attainable.

Great.  I now have a list of 30 items that should be pretty juicy.  I think that’s big enough to get Googles attention if the content is great.  I think its also small enough that I can build a fast static site to do it.  If it get’s bigger I’ll have to learn how to use a database to populate the site.   I will start with the Top Top 7 in Phase I of my site.

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