Methods of Keyword Research – The Foundation Of Your Website – – Site Review – Part 2

Last year I setup 10 different SEO test sites. This was my first attempt to target niches and try to rank for related keywords. Some of the sites did exceptionally well. Others, not so much. With a year of experience under my belt, I've determined my keyword research was flawed.

Targeting the right keywords is the foundation for any site. If you make a mistake, you'll be competing for keywords with no traffic or keywords that are so competitive you never have a chance at ranking for them.

When I took a look at, I think there are some improvements that could be made with regards to the targeted keywords. Below, I've detailed my keyword strategy and provided a list of keywords that I feel should be targeted by

My keyword research starts off with the Google Keyword Tool. Google's keyword tool provides two options for discovering keywords.

You can either enter the url of a site in the same niche and Google will examine the site and offer some keyword suggestions and traffic stats based on the content. If you choose this option be sure to check "Include other pages on my site linked from this URL", otherwise Google will only examine the home page of the site. The other option for locating keywords is to enter some descriptive words and phrases and have Google provide a list of suggestions.

When using Google's Keyword Tool, I always choose exact match for my keywords.

When Google finally gives me a list of keywords and search stats, I export the data by clicking the export button in the lower right corner of the table. I choose to export the data in a format that can be easily imported into Microsoft Excel. This makes sorting the data easier. If you don't have a copy of Microsoft Excel, try downloading which is the free alternative. I haven't used it myself, but the internet is full of rave reviews.

Now you should have a list of keywords imported into Excel. Not all of the keywords will be useful for our purpose. Google will sometimes give suggestions of keywords that have little or no traffic. I use the sort feature of Excel to remove keywords with less than 100 searches a month.

Now that we have a list of related keywords with traffic, we are only halfway done. This is where the true art of keyword research comes into play. Some guys and gals will take each keyword one by one and research the competition to determine which keywords will be easy to compete for. If you have a list of 100 or more keywords, that could literally take days to do.

Instead, I use a tool called Micro Niche Finder. I import my list of keywords into MNF and perform SOC (Strength of Competition) research. MNF uses an algorithm to assign a number to each keyword. The lower the number, the easier the keyword should be to compete for. That's the way it works in theory at least.

I like to target keywords with a SOC of 10 or less for new sites and 30 or less for sites that have been around for a while and have some decent back links.

When performing research for, I found some 49 keywords with a minimum of 100 searches a month that have a SOC of 30 or less. Below are a few gems worth targeting.

"do subliminal messages work"
This keyword had 320 searches in October and has a very low SOC of 3.

"how to make subliminal messages"
This keyword had 260 searches in October and has a very low SOC of 1.

"subliminal messages songs"
This keyword gets an average of 480 searches and has a SOC of 0.

"subliminal mp3s"
This keyword gets an average of 390 searches and has a SOC of 10.

"subliminal weight loss"
This keyword gets an average of 480 searches and has a SOC of 25.

Download the entire keyword report here.

If any of you feel like you would benefit from a video showing step by step how I perform my keyword research, just drop me an email and I'll see what I can do.

Disclaimer: I’m in no way claiming to be an expert where SEO is concerned. I’m reading all I can and testing as much as possible, but I’m a long way from being considered an authority. However, there are a few things I feel confident about that I’ll be offering my advice on, but if you disagree, leave a comment and lets discuss it.


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One Response to “Methods of Keyword Research – The Foundation Of Your Website – – Site Review – Part 2”

  1. Elena Says:

    I downloaded your excel file and I am looking at keywords. Thank you so much for your help. You are great person.

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