There are some great tools available to help webmasters with their SEO. Unfortunately. Many tools require subscriptions and paying for them all can very expensive. However, there are also quite a lot of free tools available and many of the subscription services do offer valuable free tools as well. In this post, we’ll look at 8 of the most helpful and free SEO tools available.
1. Google PageSpeed Insights
The speed of your website is an important SEO ranking factor. The faster your website, the better chance it has of ranking higher. Faster websites also retain users longer and have superior conversion rates.
You can easily check the loading speed of your site on desktop and mobile devices by using the free Google PageSpeed Insights Tool. Simply type in your URL and the tool will measure the loading time and performance of your site. The results give you a mark out of a hundred for each device, identify the things which slow your loading time and present you with a list of useful suggestions to make your site even faster.
When it comes to SEO, getting the right keywords is vital if you want your site to rank for the right searches. Keywordtool.io is a very useful little tool that provides you with up to 750 keyword ideas based on a single keyword.
All you have to do is enter a keyword, such as ‘men’s shoes’ in the example above, and the tool will provide you with a detailed list of keywords and long-tail keywords to help you rank higher.
What’s particularly useful about this tool is that it finds keywords for particular types of searches. So, if you are looking for keywords that will do well on Google, you can narrow that down to find the best keywords for Google.co.uk. You can also search for the best keywords to use on a range of other sites such as Bing, Amazon, YouTube and the iTunes app store (each of these can be filtered by country too).
3. Google Analytics
Google Analytics remains one of the most powerful free tools at the fingertips of any webmaster, giving you a complete oversight of the traffic you get to your site. There’s pretty much everything you need to help you understand how well your site is performing and where its weaknesses lie.
Find out where your traffic comes from (location, device used and source), where they land, how long they stay, how they move from page to page, and which pages they exit from. You can track movement and dropout rates from landing pages to checkout pages and even set up goals to measure conversions and other events. Using Google Analytics is a no-brainer – there’s nothing else which is free that has anywhere near the capabilities.
4. Google Search Console
In conjunction with Google Analytics, you should also use Google Search Console, the webmaster tools it provides gives you highly detailed website analysis as well as important alerts and error reports.
Google Search Console enables you to understand how well your site is indexed and whether there are any problems that prevent your pages being found; it gives you vital information about whether your site has been given a manual penalty, and provides a wide range of useful information including letting you know what search terms you rank for, what your rank is for each search term and your click through rates for those terms. Also useful for SEO, it shows you which other sites link to yours.
5. Google Trends
Another excellent free tool from Google is Google Trends. This tool lets you compare up to four search terms to analyse changes in their search volumes over time. You can analyse over different periods of time, by location and by a range of other factors, too.
Google trends can give you very powerful insights. If you were thinking of selling a new product and noticed that, year by year, the number of searches were getting smaller, then it would be a clear indication that the product’s popularity was on the decline. It can also throw up some surprising results. Looking at the image above, it’s obvious that far more men in the UK go shopping for shoes online than women. It also shows that they key term ‘kids shoes’ is searched for much more than ‘children’s shoes’ – all very helpful information to have for online businesses.
Sussing out the competition is an important SEO strategy for any online business. Some companies pay hundreds of pounds per month to use the powerful, in-depth competitor analysis tools that are available. If you are looking for a free tool, then SimilarWeb can be very useful.
Although you need the pro version to use all its features, the free tool let lets you compare two different websites at the same time, giving you detailed information about their ranking, traffic numbers and sources as well as various other insights into their analytics.
7. Find Broken Links
Having broken links on your website can affect your ranking because by sending users to error pages you are offering a poor user experience, which neither search engines or visitors like. Links to internal pages or external websites can be broken if content is removed or the URL is changed.
Manually, it would be difficult to keep track of external links and sometimes it’s not easy to remember all the internal links on your own website (links in images tend to be the main source of broken links). However, the Find Broken Links tool can find them for you automatically.
All you have to do is type in the name of your homepage and leave it to run. It will crawl your entire site and provide you with a detailed list of every broken link it finds. You’ll then need to remove the broken links or replace them with working URLs.
Search engines have a serious dislike for duplicate content, so if another website has identical content to you, it may affect how well you rank. This is particularly important for eCommerce companies and bloggers.
eCommerce companies who simply cut and paste the product descriptions supplied from manufacturers may find that there are thousands of other websites with the same, word for word, content on their pages.
For bloggers, the problem is that content can be stolen. Another website wanting content on a subject you have written about can just copy it from your website onto theirs. It happens all the time.
Copyscape is an excellent tool for checking content duplication. Enter a URL for your website or blog and Copyscape will show you if the same content is found elsewhere.
As you can see from reading this post, there are many useful, free to use SEO tools for webmasters. They can help with everything from website analytics, to keyword research to finding duplicate content. Hopefully, there will be tools here which will be of benefit to you.
Niche keywords are the highly specific long-tail keywords that pertain to a narrow industry vertical. It’s important to optimize your site and your pay-per-click campaigns for niche keywords and not just broad, popular terms, which are often too difficult to rank for, especially as a new venture.
When you’re just getting started with a search marketing initiative—whether you’re a new affiliate marketer, new to an industry, or launching a new product—it can be very hard to predict the impact of a new search campaign, as well as to determine an attack plan for your industry niche.
This guide explains how to perform niche keyword research, using our Free Keyword Tool, in three easy steps. Read on to start finding industry-specific keyword opportunities that deliver high ROI.
Step 1: Use a Keyword Research Tool to Find Niche Keywords
Before you can get started in earnest, of course, you need to choose your niche. Let’s say you’ve decided to build an affiliate site offering organic baby product reviews. Regardless of how much you know about baby products, it’s challenging, if not impossible, to know ahead of time what keywords are going to be profitable for you.
Keyword research will help you identify a wide range of potential keyword opportunities including less obvious terms that could potentially drive traffic and sales. Since this site is a new endeavor, you don’t yet have historical data to leverage as a predictor of future performance. So you need a good basket of potential keywords to drill down on.
The Free Keyword Tool by WordStream is ideal for introductory niche keyword research:
Most keyword suggestion tools only generate a brief list of terms. But you’re trying to generate a broad portfolio of keywords, including keyword variations you might not be able to come up with on your own.
As you can see, WordStream’s niche keyword tool returns hundreds of keyword ideas for the phrase “organic baby.” This is a great start. But, unfortunately, it’s very unlikely that all of these keyword suggestions will ultimately be valuable to you.
Step 2: Refine Your Niche Keyword List
A list of keywords has no inherent value—they are, in fact, just suggestions. It’s what you do with your keywords that matters. So it’s key to find an effective method of refining your list.
There are several ways to refine your keywords using WordStream’s Free Keyword Tool.
When you add a keyword or URL, the Keyword Tool generates a comprehensive list of search queries along with their Google Search Volume:
Remember, your keyword list should be as specific to you, your site, and your business as possible. Keywords are only as valuable as they are relevant to you: you don’t have to adopt every suggested term, but you should be aware of them. After all, they might indicate behaviors or purchasing patterns that can be used to inform your Display or Facebook advertising.
Step 3: Determine How Competitive Your Niche Keyword Phrases Are
Finally, you’ll need to analyze how competitive each keyword phrase is—in other words, evaluable the relative difficulty of ranking for each niche keyword. Unfortunately, relative “competiton” alone isn’t enough to conduct this sort of analysis.
Luckily, we’ve developed a proprietary algorithm that exists within the Keyword Tool as WordStream Opportunity Score (the rightmost column in the image below):
Once you’ve connected your AdWords account to the Keyword Tool, our algorithm is able to assess the viability of a given search query within the context of your existing PPC strategy. You can use it to weed out superfluous (or overly competitive) terms, ensuring that you only implement keywords that relate to your business.
So Keyword Research for My Niche Site Is All Set Now?
Not quite. Don’t let your niche keyword research efforts come to a dead stop at step three. Successful keyword targeting requires constant monitoring and tweaking.
You’ve invested a lot of time and energy into identifying the best niche keyword opportunities—now you can collect on that investment by consistently tracking how those keywords perform on your site and in accordance with your specific business goals. It’s important to remember that just because a keyword tool returns a keyword doesn’t mean you’ll be able to rank for it, or that the traffic it sends from search engines will end up converting. Make continual keyword research a priority and be vigilant about analyzing and acting on keyword research to improve your results.
You DON’T need to be an expert at copywriting or SEO to increase your website traffic.
I’ll walk you through the whole process in a moment, but first… Why is getting traffic so dang hard?
The problem: most likely, you’re focusing on the wrong metrics and reading the wrong content…
You see, there’s a lot of content out there about how to increase website traffic. Some of it old, some of it okay, but none of it really that actionable…
Here is what’s lacking: a proven system. One that you can implement with your website right now, and see your website traffic skyrocket in a matter of weeks (or even less).
When you have the right system, it’s really not that difficult to increase website traffic.
At that point, it’s just about following the right steps and BOOM – before you know it you’ll see exponential growth in your traffic numbers.
So, what system am I referring to? It’s the same system that I (and many others) have already used to increase website traffic.
The system is comprised around three steps:
Step #1: Optimize Your Website Content (jump to step 1)
This is the foundation of the system. If you want to truly increase website traffic, you first need to make sure your website content is optimized. Otherwise, the traffic will be fleeting and only temporary.
Step #2: Crush It With Social Media (jump to step 2)
Once your website is prepared for more traffic, you must start driving traffic to it! You’ll discover how to do this with the unique social media strategies we’ll outline.
Step #3: Master Content Outreach (jump to step 3)
Social media is only one part of the puzzle. You must also get your content in front of new audiences. You’ll discover how to do this as well (even if you don’t have hours of extra time to write guest post after guest post)…
How’s all this sound? Let’s jump in and get started with the system!
Step 1: Optimize Your Website Content
1. Know Your Current Traffic Statistics
Before you start growing your website traffic, you need to know your current traffic stats. This is your baseline. From here, you can see how your efforts are affecting your traffic growth.
Once you have at least a few days of traffic under your belt, check your website traffic report on Google Analytics.
Here are some of the most important metrics you should note:
Pages per visit
Average time on site
Traffic sources (direct, search, and referral)
2. Check Website Traffic Often
You’ve probably heard of the old saying, “What gets measured, gets managed.”
Well, it’s true! You’ll be testing new traffic strategies, and you need to know how they’re performing.
So, check your website traffic often – at least a few times a week. This way, you’ll know what’s working, and what’s not, and you can double down on the good stuff to maximize your traffic growth.
3. Create a Better Content Marketing Strategy
Here’s where many businesses fall off the tracks. They either don’t have a content marketing strategy, or if they do, it’s seriously off the mark.
You can try all the SEO hacks, but without a solid content marketing strategy, you’ll be wasting your time.
So, how do you create a better content marketing strategy? Before we get into that, let’s talk about the types of content that should be included in your strategy:
A good content marketing strategy has a mix of all these different types of content. Now, as for your actual strategy…
It should include the following elements:
1) The primary goal of your content (i.e. Increase traffic, generate leads, etc.)
2) Your audience, defined (i.e. Who are they? What are their biggest pain points? How can you help them through your content?)
3) How you plan to add value and set your content apart from the competition
4) Frequency of posting
5) Content amplification (i.e. How will you get your content in front of more eyeballs?)
4. Write More Compelling Blog Headlines
A compelling headline is what sells the content. If you want your content to be read – and also to rank in search engines – then great headlines are key.
Now, there are two things you must optimize for with your headlines: Social traffic and search traffic.
To do so, your headlines should have the right keywords, the right length, and also be compelling enough for social media users to click on them.
To find the right keywords, use Google Keyword Planner. Plug in some possible search terms for your blog post idea. For example, if you’re writing a post about how to quit your job, you can plug in terms like, “How to quit your job,” “How to quit your 9-5 job,” “How to quit your job and travel,” and perhaps even “How to become an entrepreneur.”
Here are the results of that query:
From here, you know that “How to quit your job” and “How to become an entrepreneur” get the two highest average monthly searches, and you can choose which to include in your title.
From there, you can use some of these compelling headline templates so that the title is also compelling for social media:
(Note: just try and keep your title under 70 characters so it doesn’t get cut off in Google Search.)
“How X Can do X” (i.e. “How Employees Can Quit Their Jobs and Become Entrepreneurs”)
“X People/Things Who Are Doing X” (i.e. “15 Brands Who Are Crushing It on Instagram”)
“How to Do X (Even If [Obstacle])” (i.e. “How to Start Investing [Even if You Don’t Have Tons of Money Saved Up]”)
“How to X” (i.e. “How to Get More Followers on Instagram”)
And here are some general tips for writing better headlines:
Use list posts (i.e. “10 Ways to Do X in Record Time”)
A great content marketing strategy with catchy headlines won’t matter if you don’t have compelling content. Any readers who come to your site will just bounce out immediately – and that will make for an ugly traffic report.
So, how do you write more compelling content?
You can start by infusing these hacks into your writing…
Hack #1: Hook readers in from the beginning. People have low attention spans. If you don’t have a compelling “hook” at the beginning of your blogs, people will click off in seconds. You can hook them in by teasing the benefits of the article (see the intro to this article for example!), telling a story, or stating a common problem that your audience faces.
Hack #2: Use shorter paragraphs. Avoid long paragraphs and huge blocks of text. The more scannable your content, the better. So, try to keep paragraphs under 5-6 lines (ideally 2-3).
Hack #3: Read your writing aloud when editing. What looks good on paper doesn’t always sound good. So, by reading your content aloud, you can discover clunky phrases – and any errors will jump out to you.
Hack #4: Tell more stories. Stories connect with us emotionally and drive us to take action. Add stories into your content to prove arguments, hook readers in, explain a problem, and for whatever else you can think of. Stories are gold.
6. Use Eye-Catching Photos
Is a picture really worth a thousand words? We think so…
Eye-catching photos can do wonders for your traffic. They can make your blog more visually appealing so readers stay on your site longer, and they also make your content more shareable on social media.
In a study by Socialbakers, researches found that images on Facebook constituted 93% of the most engaging posts, compared with all other status updates.
When you combine your title with a strong image, you give it the best opportunity to generate traffic and clicks.
The best part? You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars paying for stock photos. You can use free stock photo sites like Unsplash to find hundreds of eye-catching images (without having to spend a dime).
7. Internal Linking (important!)
Internal linking refers to adding links from one page on your website to another page on your website. This can mean you’re adding links from one blog post to older posts, or from certain pages to other pages.
Most websites don’t use internal linking nearly enough. Sure, you shouldn’t overdo it with 40-50 internal links in each blog post – but there is a happy medium.
Why bother with internal linking? These types of links are useful because they help your readers navigate your website, help improve the search rank of the pages you link to, and help define the architecture and hierarchy of your website.
Here’s how you can get the most out of internal linking:
Create more content. The more quality content you create, the more quality content you can link to. It’s really that simple.
Use the right anchor text. Using our previous example: if you wanted to internally link to the “how to quit your job” blog post, you can write a sentence in another blog, like “Once you know [how to quit your job], you can start a business and travel the world.” In this case, the reader has a compelling case for clicking on the link because of both the anchor text (“how to quit your job”) and the context of the sentence. There is a clear benefit from clicking the link.
Link to relevant content. Don’t link for the sake of linking – always link to content that will add to your readers’ experience.
Don’t overdo it. Anywhere from 5-10 internal links can be used in a 1,000-word blog post. Any more than that and you’ll overdo it.
8. Conduct a Content Audit
What if you could delete and third of your content, and yet triple your website traffic? Well, that’s exactly what Todd Tresidder did.
You see, when you’ve had a website for several years, you can start running into problems like redundant and irrelevant content that no longer matches up with your message.
By conducting a content audit, you can solve these problems.
A content audit can also improve your SEO ranking. Think about it: quality is the new SEO. Google wants the best quality experience for their users, and by conducting a content audit, you signal that you’re trying to deliver the highest quality experience.
So, how do you conduct a content audit? Before we get into it, here’s what you need to do first…
Go through your entire archive of content and put it into a spreadsheet – every page and every post. Check off and categorize each one according to one of four categories:
1) Keep (good content that will stay on your site)
2) Improve (it’s on-brand, but needs updating)
3) Consolidate (for example, short content on a similar subject can be combined into a single post)
4) Remove (delete because it’s irrelevant or off-brand)
From there, use this step-by-step for conducting the content audit:
Step #1: Edit and improve the content in the “Keep” and “Improve” categories. Consider creating lead magnets for higher traffic articles.
When analyzing this content, use the following criteria:
Is the formatting on point?
Are the images SEO friendly?
Is the writing quality up to par?
Is it easy to scan and read?
Is the title optimized for search engines AND social media?
Are the affiliate links correct?
Are there enough internal links? Can older posts link to newer posts?
For posts that you update and consolidate, make sure to delete older comments that are no longer relevant, so as not to confuse readers.
Step #2: Consolidate the shorter, similar blogs into new blog posts.
You’ll probably have several groups of similar posts to consolidate. Once you consolidate them, you should:
1) Choose the most popular blog post of the consolidation grouping.
2) 301 redirect all of the other blog URLs of the consolidation group to the URL of the most popular blog.
(Note: A 301 redirect is a way to send users and search engines to a different URL than the one they originally requested. The redirect saves 90-99% of the link juice to the redirected page. Implementation of the 301 redirect depends on your web hosting – so contact your host for how to do this.)
Step #3: Delete content from the “Remove” category.
Simply delete the content you no longer see fit for your site!
Now, the content audit isn’t an easy process. But if you put in the work and actually do it, you can see some great results with your traffic numbers. So, we highly recommend giving it a shot.
Step 2: Crush It With Social Media
9. Share Your Content the Right Way
In terms of how to get traffic to your website, social media is the next big key. You need to make sure you share your content the right way so that you get highest increase in traffic.
Here are some tips for sharing your content so that you get the most engagement, shares, and traffic:
Tip #1: Optimize for each platform
Social media posts appear differently on different platforms. So, you need to optimize your posts so that each can be eye-catching and shareable.
For example, for Facebook, a great post constitutes the following:
A high quality photo (like we talked about earlier)
(Note: Snapchat isn’t listed here, but you should be posting throughout the day on that platform!)
Facebook: Weekends between 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.; Wednesdays between 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.; Thursdays and Fridays between 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Twitter: Mondays through Fridays between 12:00 – 3:00 p.m.; Wednesdays between 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
LinkedIn: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at: 7:30 – 8:30 a.m., 12:00 p.m., and 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Plus, Tuesdays between 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Pinterest: Evening hours everyday and 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.; Fridays at 5:00 p.m.; Saturdays from 8:00 – 11:00 p.m.
Instagram: Anytime Monday through Thursday, except between 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.
10. Dominate With Quora
Dominating with Quora is one of the best ways to become an authority in your industry and increase your website traffic.
If you haven’t used Quora yet, here’s a quick synopsis of the platform from its founder, Adam D’Angelo:
“Quora connects you to everything you want to know about. Quora aims to be the easiest place to write new content and share content from the web. We organize people and their interests so you can find, collect and share the information most valuable to you.”
The format is quite simple: People ask questions, and you post answers. And if you post good answers with relevant links back to your site, you can receive a big boost in traffic.
Here’s how can you start dominating with Quora:
1) Open a Quora account. Go to Quora.com and create an account.
2) Create and optimize Your Bio. Your bio is what people see when they click your profile. So, optimize it by adding a few sentences about yourself and your experience in your industry, as well as a link to your website.
3) Select relevant categories. Quora offers thousands of categories for you to choose from. Choose carefully, because your Quora feed will be filled with questions based on these categories. Aim to add at least 10-15 relevant categories.
4) Search for great questions. This is key. The better the question, the better the chance your answer will go viral and bring you thousands and thousands of visitors. What constitutes a great question? Look for the following:
Nice formatting (i.e. bold, italics, etc. Not just a giant block of hard-to-read text)
Relevance to your industry
Are fairly new (don’t have any great answers yet)
5) Post strong answers. You must follow up those great questions with strong answers of your own. Here’s how you can write a strong Quora answer:
Use the first few lines to hook them in. Users can only see the first 3-4 lines in their feed, so you need to hook them from the beginning so they’ll click on your answer.
Tell stories. Some of the best Quora answers contain personal stories of beating obstacles and figuring out problems
Use correct grammar and formatting. If your answer isn’t scannable and easy to read, users probably won’t bother reading it.
Add relevant links back to your site. Throughout your answer, sprinkle a few relevant links back to your website. The more relevant they are to the question, the more clicks and traffic they will generate. You can also end your answers with a link to your lead magnet, concluding with something like: “Want to know more about how to start a business? Check out my free checklist with 10 steps for starting your first business!” and link to the lead magnet (in this example, the checklist).
Used right, Quora can be a powerful traffic generator for your website. And unlike most other social media, a viral Quora answer can generate steady traffic to your website for a year or more. So, make sure not to overlook this platform.
11. Post and Promote on Reddit!
Reddit is another powerful, yet underused social media platform that can increase website traffic. If you can find where your audience hangs out on Reddit, and deliver the right content, you can generate tens of thousands of visits literally overnight.
(That’s right – you don’t have to hit the Reddit front page to make a big impact!)
So, how do you find your customers on Reddit and promote your content the right way?
Use this 2-step strategy:
Step #1: Find Your Relevant Subreddits
1) Once you go to Reddit.com, use the search box in the top right hand corner of the screen.
2) Search for a relevant keyword and hit “enter”.
3) From here, you’ll find a list of subreddits related to the keyword. Skim through each one and subscribe to those you think are a good match.
4) Repeat this process for the most relevant keywords related to your business.
Got it? These will be your target subreddits. These are the places your audience hangs out on Reddit.
Step #2: Post and Add Value
Once you know your target subreddits, it’s time to start posting.
(Note: before you post in a subreddit, make sure to look at the posting rules for that subreddit on the right sidebar.)
You should include a few elements in your posting strategy:
1) Answers questions and respond to comments in popular threads. This will build your reputation.
2) Post a link to one article per week in the most relevant subreddit (if you can get 100-200+ upvotes on the link, you can expect upwards of 2,000-3,000 visits depending on the subreddit)
3) Always focus on adding value. Balance your links with good advice so you don’t appear spammy.
4) Mix it up. Don’t just submit links to Reddit. Switch it up and add text versions of your blog posts or advice, then, add a link to your post at the end.
5) Post at the right time. Let’s say you want to post in the r/Entrepreneur/ subreddit, but there’s already a post in the #1 spot with 200 upvotes, and it was posted 4 hours ago. If you post then, you probably won’t overtake that #1 spot, and you’ll get less traffic. However, if you wait a day, check back, and see that the new #1 spot only has 12-15 upvotes, then you have a golden opportunity. It will be much easier for you to hit the #1 spot and get hundreds of upvotes.
Step 3: Content Outreach
12. Use Republishing to Get Featured on Large Websites
Your website and social media are optimized, but you still need the final step: get your content in front of new audiences.
One of the best ways to do that is to get your content republished on large publications. This is ideal because you won’t have to spend hours writing tons of guest posts every month – and you can also get the link juice from large publications with high rankings.
Now, you may have heard the myth that republishing is bad for SEO. However, Matt Cutts, Google’s “Head of webspam” dispelled this myth. In reference to republishing content, he said, “I wouldn’t stress about this unless the content that you have duplicated is spammy or keyword stuffing.”
So, you’re in the clear here.
As for how to get your content republished on larger publications, it’s a simple process:
Step #1: Find large publications in your industry that republish content.
Large publications have huge content needs. So, if they allow republishing, and you have good, relevant content, then you’ve got a good shot.
With a simple search through their “contribute,” “write for us,” or “guest posting” page, you can see if they allow republished content.
So, find 5-10 large publications in your industry and start this process.
Here are a few publications that republish content to get you started:
Step #2: Choose relevant content for the publication
What type of tone, style, and content is the publication looking for? Which one of your content pieces matches up with this tone, style, and content?
If you don’t have any content that matches up exactly, you can tweak it to make it a better fit.
Step #3: Pitch the Publication
Your pitch is key. It’s best practice to submit an original piece of content first, so you get your foot in the door before pitching content from your site.
So, you should always be networking and trying to connect with influencers. The more influencers and connections you have, the easier it will be to get published on the larger publications.
As for the actual pitch, here’s how to do it right:
Craft a strong subject line
Make sure to pitch the right editor
A reference to a personal connection (if possible)
A quick explanation of how your content will add value to their audience
A link to the content (or a Word doc)
Step #4: Prepare your content
Once your pitch is accepted, you need to prepare your content for republishing. Here’s a process you can follow:
Review and follow the site’s publishing guidelines
Aim to include 3-4 backlinks to your blog posts, as well as a bio with a link to a lead magnet (if you have one)
Change the title (so Google doesn’t get confused when ranking the posts)
With this strategy, you can get 3-4+ posts a month republished, without much extra work on your part. And these can bring you a ton of traffic.
13. Get More Guest Posts With This Outreach Strategy
It’s nice to get your content republished, but you should still write 2-3 guest posts a month (or more, if possible). Guest posting helps improve your SEO rank, and it also introduces your content to new audiences.
Now, when it comes to guest posting, the outreach email is very important. But we have an outreach strategy that works well, and we recommend you try it out.
Here’s the basic format:
1) Introduce yourself and explain that you’re a huge fan of their work. Reference something you learned from a specific blog post, ideally one that is a few months old.
2) Explain aside from thanking them for the awesome content, you’re also reaching out because you’re interested in writing a guest post for them. Tell them you have 4 ideas you think their audience would love based on some of their most popular articles.
3) From here, go to Buzzsumo and type in their URL. Then, take a screenshot of their top results. Here’s an example below using Entrepreneur.com:
4) Send 4 related guest post ideas that are somewhat related to these most shared topics on Buzzsumo (include the title and a 1 sentence explanation for each idea).
5) Explain that you know they’re busy, and that you can write everything up and sent it in one Word document. Also explain that you’ll handle all the editing as well, so it’s all super easy for them.
6) Close it out by promising that it will be engaging content that their audience will love, and asking, “What do you think?”
7) Sign off with your name and website URL
That’s it! That’s all it takes to get more traffic.
You no longer have to wonder about how to increase website traffic.
If you take action and use this proven system, you will get more traffic to your website – and that traffic will stick around for the long haul.
Creating a steady legit income from your website isn’t a myth. It’s doable by everyone. In fact, turning a part-time, hobby blog into an income generating asset is fairly common with a bit of luck and some hard work. At the very least, you should be able to generate enough income to cover your basic expenses for a domain and hosting. You might even be able to replace your income (and then some). Keep in mind that the strategies listed below range from easy and passive, to ones that require a TON of on-going work (so make sure you pick something that suits your site and lifestyle preferences and creates a huge income you can live from).
There are 33 total tips in this guide, but let’s start with the ten most popular (and predictable) site monetization tips.
P.S. It doesn’t matter whether you’ve started a blog or created a website. It works for both. If you don’t have a blog or website, use the step-by-step guides below to create one:
10 Most Common Ways to Make Money with Your Website
Making money from your website isn’t easy. However, these ten tips are probably your best bet to get started.
1. Affiliate Marketing (.. and affiliate links)
Affiliate marketing is one of the most popular (not to mention quickest) ways to make money from your website or blog.
Start by finding a product you like and would recommend. Then on your website, you endorse the product and promote it to your website visitors and email subscribers. If the product or service resonates with these people, they’ll click on your affiliate link, purchasing the product (while you get a split of the sale price).
The commission might be anywhere from 30% of the product or service price, up to as high as 70%. So for example, if the split is 50% and you promote an e-book that costs $100, you’ll get $50 for simply referring the buyer. Pretty sweet deal, huh?!
ShareASale – mostly clothes, accessories, and other offline goods.
Clickbank – high percentage payouts, but there’s a lack of GOOD products to promote.
2. Pay Per Click Advertising (Google Adsense)
AdWords are the advertisements that show up on the top of Google search result pages.
AdSense is the reverse, allowing publishers (which includes bloggers and other website owners like yourself) to tap into Google’s immense advertising network so that other advertisers can run ads on their website.
The best part about this system is how simple everything is.
Once you sign up, Google will place a simple code on your website that will identify the content of your site and start displaying relevant advertisements. For example, if your site is about pets (dogs & cats), Google AdSense will start showing your visitors ads for cat food, dog training and more.
You get paid each time someone clicks on the ad. (Yes, it’s really that easy!)
Your cut might be anywhere from $0.50 to $5 per click. However, when your site has enough traffic, you can make hundreds (if not thousands of dollars) each month.
How to apply for for Google Adsense?
Apply for AdSense – Before applying, make sure you keep up with their latest Terms Of Service, though. Google has very strict rules, so it’s hard to get (and stay) approved.
3. Sell Ad Space
Incorporating Google’s AdSense on your website is just one way to make money from online advertisements.
Another is to simply sell your own ad space directly to companies looking to sponsor different blogs. For example, you can come up with a price for each space, like: “Sidebar banner ads will cost $xxx per month”.
You can get paid depending on how many visitors you get. Typically this is quoted as a dollar amount per one thousand impressions (or CPM). So for example, you might see it as: $5 CPM. If the website gets 100,000 visits a month, that ad price translates into $500 bucks.
The good thing about this approach is that if your site gets a ton of traffic from different sources, your simple banner ad pricing can go up to as high as $5000 per month! However, the obvious downside is that if your site doesn’t get a lot of traffic, you can’t expect to earn as much either.
The other common method when selling ad space directly from your website is a simple direct price. Here you simply name a price (based on what you think it’s worth, relative to what the competition might be charging), and get paid upfront at the beginning of each month. This pricing is also generally a simple flat fee, not tied to a Cost Per Click like AdSense.
Where can I let others know that my website is selling ad space?
AdvertiseSpace – I haven’t tried it, but it should be a good alternative.
4. Sell Your Own Digital Product (Ebook for Example)
You have the potential to make the most money on a per sale basis when you can sell your own directly.
That’s because there’s no middle-man or person in between you and the buyer that’s taking a ‘cut’ from the money earned.
This approach seems fairly straightforward because you can simply sell these products directly through your website and get paid immediately. Unfortunately, it’s not that simple in reality.
Creating good products that are well made and polished require a ton of time and additional resources (like design, content, etc.). So there’s a lot of ‘hidden costs’ in both time spent or contractors to collaborate with. Selling your own products on your site also bring up problematic issues like payment gateways (how are you going to collect payment?), shipping (how are you going to mail or distribute the products?) and taxes (oh man, don’t get me started).
And if that doesn’t sound like enough work already, you’ll also need a well designed, persuasive landing page to make sure your product has a strong conversion rate.
Don’t have a ton of monthly visits, but you do have a strong, engaged community? Simply ask your readers to donate!
Accepting one-off donations isn’t a fast road to wealth, however, it can help you cover expenses in the short-term if people like what you have to say and want to support your journey.
For example, PayPal offers little donation buttons that only take about ten minutes to add to your website, offering you a quick way to recoup what you might be spending on a good web hosting, new product creation, research, and all of the other costs to maintain a healthy, active blog.
For example, web.archive.org makes a lot of money from donations (most likely due to their millions of visitors per month).
For example, many companies go out of their way to look for blogs that will feature their sponsored content. ‘Native advertising‘ like this works well because it still lines up with your site’s primary content, so it comes across relevant and transparent.
You can also review the products from a company in an ‘advertorial’ that’s part content, part advertisement. For example, if your website is all about the latest iOS games for iPhones and iPads, the creator of one of those ads would LOVE to have you review and feature their app to your fans.
When done right, this can create a win/win scenario. However done poorly, with irrelevant or inauthentic site content, and it can erode all of the reader’s goodwill you’ve worked so hard to create in the first place.
Businesses thrive off new leads coming in their door to inquire about their products or services.
It’s no surprise then that they’re always on the lookout, searching for creative ways to find new sources of leads to help them grow.
Let’s say you have a website about teaching math skills. Your reader’s information (like their email address or phone number) would be of great value to different online schools who’re looking to sell their courses to eager, proactive students.
Basically, you’re connecting the dots; playing the matchmaker by introducing two parties who can benefit one another. While it’s similar to how affiliate marketing works, in this case it doesn’t actually matter if your reader ends up purchasing their product or not. They’re just looking for an introduction at this point.
Spend any amount of time reading blog growth tips, and you’re sure to come across people saying “the money’s in the list“.
They’re referring to your email list, which comprises your most loyal readers. The objective is to convert as many strangers who visit your site for the first time into passionate followers who want to stay up-to-date on your latest work or content.
Admittedly this is a long term strategy (and you definitely won’t get rich overnight). But it’s one of the best, long-term methods to profitably growing your blog into a full-fledged, money making enterprise.
Never lose sight of the importance in creating relationships with your followers, however. Offering great information or free help is a perfect way to start. Spamming people with unsolicited offers is one of the fastest ways to abuse reader’s trust and sabotage your long-term goals.
9. Set up an e-commerce site (hard work is required)
Websites don’t have to be just content. They can be centered around tools or products in an online store.
Be forewarned, though:
There are literally hundreds of thousands of eCommerce websites or online stores. Make sure that yours is filling a unique niche, with a detailed strategy and the latest marketing techniques to stand out from the crowd.
10. Flip Your Websites (Create -> Sell -> Reinvest)
Believe it or not, there’s almost always a market out there for your website.
That means if you’ve built up a following (or possibly even sold a few products or included advertising on your site), you might be able to sell it to someone else and make a quick buck.
To be honest, I typically don’t suggest people plan on flipping their website or blog. (I’m a bigger fan of creating something for the long term.)
But you can’t deny how lucrative it can be. For example, if your website is making $500 per/month through selling ad space, you might be able to sell the site for $5,000 – $10,000 (which is about 12x – 22x monthly income).
Another interesting option is to sell ready-made sites, These are MUCH cheaper, but there’s still some money to be made.
We’ve counted down some of the most popular ways to earn money from your website.
However, we’re only just scratching the surface.
Below are another 23 ways to make money with your website.
(Keep in mind that some of them are slightly connected with the ones above yet they are little ‘out of the box’.)
Another 23 ways to monetize your website
11.Sell text-link ads (NOT RECOMMENDED) – There’s still a demand for text-links ads (believe it or not). But please keep in mind that these violate Google’s Terms of Service (which means you run the risk of getting penalized).
To avoid it, simply keep the ‘nofollow‘.
12. Set up “infolinks” – Infolinks are a great alternative to AdSense advertisements, that are very easy to setup. However, the downside is that they aren’t high converting, and the payouts (on a per click basis) are also quite small.
13. Use monetization widgets – These are also very similar to Google Adsense, so they’re worth trying out as an alternative.
14.Set up RSS feed ads. – Exactly what they sound like. Ad space for sale in-line with content from an RSS feed.
15.Give away premium content for extra $$$ – If you are producing mind-blowing, awesome content that visitors can’t get enough of… you can always try asking them to pay for some of it! (Crazy concept, huh?!) I’m personally fine with paying for premium content. However, don’t ask people to pay right away. Instead, stay focused on growing an audience and visitors first.
16.Start a private forum or coaching class(es) – Most of us have unique skills that others can benefit from. Setting up a simple forum or classes is an easy way to (a) help others and (b) generate recurring income at the same time.
17. Create a job board– Setting up a job board on your website is another simple, easy way to collect additional money when people accepting different job offers from various companies or individuals.
18.Offer consulting – Offering consulting gigs and providing services can help you bring in decent sums of money while other forms of ‘passive’ revenue take a little time to build up. You can offer these services via email, forum and or even Skype.
19.Add “hire me” page on your website – Your new website or blog is also a perfect place to feature your freelancing services. Showcasing samples or evidence of past work will help greatly increase your chances of getting hired.
20.Sell or rent internal pages – These aren’t very common, however, you might be surprised at what people would be willing to rent or spend money on!
21.Display pop-ups advertisements – Pop-ups can be extremely annoying. However, they’re also another easy way to make some quick money.
22. Use content lockers – ‘Content locking’ is similar to hiding or protecting pieces of content until a visitor takes some action to redeem it. For example, maybe you want them to pay a small amount, or perhaps click on an advertisement.
23. Display audio ads – These are relatively new and are becoming increasingly more common. Personally, I haven’t tried it. But I have read some articles and it definitely looks promising.
24. Sell an e-book – This one is a no-brainer. Many people sell e-books through their site. Some examples: If you have a website about recipes and cooking, you can easily create and sell your own recipe book. The same applies in almost every single other niche.
25.Create a conference around your website – Lots of work, but a huge potential payoff as well.
26.Set up a teaching program – Kinda like a cross between selling your own content and offering consulting or services.
27.Host paid webinars – Similar to the last tip, which is largely a mix of consulting through content.
28.Create a membership site – Yet another tier on the ‘info-business’ model that has the added benefit of bringing in recurring revenue.
29.Offer coupons (with affiliate links) – People are eagerly looking for discount & promo codes for everything from clothes to travel vacations. If you can (find and) offer a valid one, you can also get a cut of the revenue too.
31.Offer writing gigs – You can easily make $20 – $30 per 500-word articles writing for other companies or individuals. There’s also a huge potential for fluent speakers of different languages, as many companies want their websites translated by those who speak the native language.
32.Create a paid directory/business page – You charge people for listing or submissions to the page.
33.Just copy what others are doing – My personal favourite! 😉
BUT MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL
DRIVE TRAFFIC TO YOUR WEBSITE
According to data referenced in a recent piece in the New York Times, titled “Blogs Falling in an Empty Forest”, approximately 95% of blogs fail; the piece, that analyzed several failed and “retired” bloggers, to understand why they quit, came to the conclusion that many blogs fail due to lack of readership.
Luckily, I’ve grown some blogs into 500,000+ monthly visitors (see image below) and I’ve literally tried every method on the the internet. However, I want to let you know that it didn’t happen overnight and it took a lot of testing, failing and starting all over again.
P.S. This article is VERY comprehensive at over 8,000 words; it contains 101 unique and practical ways to promote a blog and get traffic, with links to case studies, research, resources and tutorials when necessary. I believe this is the only guide you’ll need if you want to unleash an avalanche of traffic on your blog.
Publish More Articles: One of the most effective, but often ignored, ways to get traffic to a blog is by publishing more articles; research from Hubspot has shown that businesses that publish 16+ blog posts monthly get 3.5 times more traffic and 4.5 times more leads than businesses that publish between 0 – 5 blog posts monthly.
Seven-figure blogger Neil Patel also revealed that his monthly traffic went from 46,134 visitors to 59,787 visitors because he increased content frequency from 1 article to 2 articles weekly.
No matter your niche, research has shown that publishing more content will always lead to an increase in traffic for you; increase your content frequency to 2 or more articles a week, and you’ll notice a significant increase in traffic to your blog.
Publish Longer Content: Research has shown that Google and other search engines give preference to longer, comprehensive articles; research by serpIQ that analyzed top 10 results for over 20,000 keywords came to the conclusion that Google ranks content that have more than 2,000 words better than content with fewer words.
Research by Buzzsumo, in a partnership with Moz, which analyzed over 1 million articles, found that articles that are 3,000 – 10,000 words get twice as many shares and 3 times the links content that have fewer than 1,000 words get. The screenshot below shows the average shares and links articles analyzed get based on their word count:
In the Neil Patel article we referenced earlier, he also reveals that one of the top reasons why his blogs get a lot of traffic is because he writes in-depth and comprehensive articles; the average article on Neil’s blog ranges from 4,000 to 8,000 words, and the result is that he ranks for lots of long-tail keywords, which leads to significant traffic on the long run.
Start an Email List: Ask most successful bloggers what the top source of traffic to their blog is and they’ll tell you that email is in the top 3. Highly successful blogger Darren Rowse always record a traffic spike (the kind that almost doubles his blog traffic) whenever he sends an email to his list about a new blog post (see a screenshot of one of his traffic spikes below).
Email is such a powerful medium for generating traffic that many bloggers vouch for it; the reason is simple, all things being equal, your email list will only keep growing and rarely decrease. Even more, unlike your blog traffic that can fluctuate, you have access to a database of the people on your email list and can always email them.
The best email management tool is constant contact. I recommend you sign up and start building your list immediately. You can get a 20% discount if you purchase here. Don’t wait.
Here’s another screenshot from Neil Patel showing traffic to his new blog in 30 days from a list size of 3,612 visitors:
If you haven’t started building an email list, start now. Install the free SumoMe plugin and use their email list building options including the ScrollBar, Popup and Welcome Mat.
Guest Blog: One of the fastest ways to grow your blog is by writing for other people’s blogs; in other words, you can look for a blog that is much bigger than yours and write an article for that blog. You’ll be allowed to have a bio that includes a link to your site in your guest post. This can result in a lot of traffic for you.
To make guest blogging work, try to only guest blog on blogs that are more popular than yours; look for blogs with tens, or hundreds, of thousands of subscribers and submit your guest post to them.
Optimize Your Blog for Search Engines: Search engines are the #1 source of traffic for most established blogs. Just take a look at the below screenshot:
The above screenshot shows traffic to an authority blog in one month; you can see that out of 582,000 visitors, 476,000 came from search engines. That’s how powerful search traffic is; after all, Google is the biggest website in the world!
It’s important that you don’t ignore SEO; familiarize yourself with the concept of SEO and optimize your blog and your articles to rank well for relevant keywords in Google and other search engines.
Comment on Other Blogs: The right comment on a highly authoritative blog can send you lots of traffic; identify the top blogs in your niche and start interacting and commenting on blogs on a regular basis. This will get the blogger and members of his community to notice you and visit your blog, leading to more traffic for you; you might even get a link, or invitation to guest blog out of it.
Develop a Blogger Outreach Plan: Many bloggers fail to get traffic because they take a passive approach to blogging; if you simply publish your article, rest and wait for traffic to come then nothing will happen.
For every article you publish, make sure you have a solid blogger outreach plan; compile a list of dozens of relevant bloggers that you can email your article to and ask them to share or link to your article. This article is a good place to learn how to do blogger outreach.
Feature Other Bloggers in Your Articles and Ask them to Share: One of the techniques superstar blogger Neil Patel uses to grow his blog is that of linking to dozens of bloggers inside his articles (according to him, his articles usually contain 100+ links) and then reaching out to the bloggers who he linked to letting them know that he linked to them. The result is hundreds, sometimes thousands, of shares per article and eventually lots of traffic back to him.
Regularly link to other bloggers in your articles and email all of them to let them know about your article; many of them will share your article, resulting in lots of traffic for you.
Do “Expert Roundups” and Get Featured Experts to Share: How will you like to leverage the reach of 10, 20 or more experts in your niche to grow yours? Is this even possible? Yes, by doing “expert roundups” in which you interview a group of experts and ask them one or two questions to be compiled inside one article, you can massively boost your blog traffic.
Once your expert roundup has been published, ask all the bloggers featured to spread the word about it; the result of this will often be thousands of extra visitors to your blog.
Do Case Studies of Influencers and Get them to Share: Identify influencers in your niche with good reach, do a case study about these influencers and get them to share it. A good example is this case study of Quora influencer Oliver Emberton; Oliver shared the article on social media when it went live, eventually resulting in 100s of shares and thousands of views. The article also ranks on page 1 for his name in Google, bringing in long-term search traffic.
Publish a Resource Article: Resource articles are exceptionally effective for boosting traffic to your blog, much more than the average blog post; this article on Digital Current shows that it’s possible to get 100,000 views per article by publishing resource articles, and that resource articles can get up to 10,000% more views than the average article.
The screenshot below shows the kind of traffic you can get from a single resource article:
Feature or Interview Owners & Influencers of Popular Social Media Groups: There are several Facebook and LinkedIn groups with thousands and tens of thousands of followers; unfortunately, most people try to get traffic by spamming these social media groups, only to end up having their articles removed. A better way to get traffic from social media groups is to interview owners, or influencers, of these groups and ask them to share the article you feature them in. Even if they do not share your article, you can share it in the group yourself as a member of the group.
Feature/Interview Owners of Popular Forums: Compile a list of the biggest forum owners in your niche and interview them; if possible, get them to participate in a round up post on your blog. Send them a link after your article has been published and encourage them to share it.
Run a Blogging Contest: Host your own blogging contest and make it a condition that participants share your article on social media or blog about it; if possible, try to get some sponsors and have them blog about your contest as well. This will go a long way to boost your blog’s reach.
Develop and Execute a Social Media Strategy: Simply creating social media profiles and sharing your latest articles won’t cut it. Develop a social media strategy by focusing only on key social networks, engaging with influencers and top pages, and, interacting in groups to grow your social media reach. Also make sure you constantly post updates, and regularly recycle old articles on social media; simply sharing your article once, or once in a while, won’t cut it. Most popular bloggers share links to old articles on their blog for years. Posting frequency should vary depending on the social media site; research shows that it is optimal to post twice daily on Facebook, thrice daily on Twitter and Google+ and 5 times daily on Pinterest.
Syndicate Your Content to Top Blogs: Many top blogs and networks will allow you to republish your content on their site with credit back to you; most big blogs, including mega publications like Business Insider and Huffington Post, do it if they feel that your content is good enough.
Look for a list of publications and network sites in your industry that republish content and see if they’d like to republish your articles.
Do Cross-Promotion with Other Bloggers: Find a blogger with similar audience to yours and see if you can do a “shout out exchange”; in other words, you mention them on your blog and they mention you on theirs. You can also promote them to your email list while they promote you to theirs.
Submit Your Content to Blogging Communities: Blogging communities have existed for a long time and are a good place to get traffic; some notable examples are Bizsugar in the business niche, Blokube in the blogging and social media niche and DesignFloat in the design niche. Look for a blogging community in your niche that you can share interesting articles with and occasionally submit your articles.
Promote Your Blog on Top Forums in Your Niche: Forums can also be a good source of traffic; many of the top forums in your niche probably get millions of monthly visitors, and many have hundreds of thousands of members, but you can’t simply start spamming the forums with your links. Instead, focus on making valuable contributions to the forum in form of ideas, response to other people’s discussions and being active in popular discussions; make sure to have a link to your blog in your forum signature, and you’ll notice an increase in your traffic.
Create an Ultimate/Advanced Guide: An ultimate guide is designed to be the first and last article your readers read on a subject; due to their nature, ultimate guides are usually very comprehensive in nature. It isn’t unusual to see an ultimate guide that is 5,000 – 10,000 words.
As we saw earlier in this article, search engines favor comprehensive articles rank them better; people love them too, so they’ll share them massively. By publishing an ultimate guide, you’ll benefit from all angles.
Once you’ve published your ultimate guide, reach out to bloggers in your niche and ask them to spread the word about it.
Include Social Share Buttons on Your Blog: Many bloggers fail to include social sharing buttons on their blogs and this is costing these bloggers social shares, exposure and traffic. While it is not clear to what extent, research shows that adding social share buttons to your page will lead to more shares of your content and as a result increased traffic.
Publish Regular Infographics: Research shows that infographics shared on Twitter get 823% more retweets than images and articles. Neil Patel reveals that infographics have been so effective for him, often helping him catapult his blogs from no traffic to over 100,000 visitors monthly. In his words, old infographics generate more than 50,000 monthly visitors to one of his blogs.
You can promote your blog by creating good looking infographics, especially those that share important facts and statistics, and tell influencers in your niche to share it and republish it. You should also submit your infographics to several infographics directories.
Publish Slides to Slideshare: Do you know that Slideshare is popularly known as the sleeping giant of content marketing. The reason for this is simple; over 70 million professionals use Slideshare, and it is one of the 100 most visited websites in the world. The good news is that you can use it to promote your blog.
In a case study, Ana Hoffman revealed that by publishing 9 presentations on Slideshare she was able to generate 243,000 views to her slides and over 1,400 clicks to her blog in 30 days; as a result, Slideshare became her second largest referral traffic. Now, that’s one great way to promote a blog!
Create your own Slideshare presentations too, using fewer words and visually rich images to communicate your points, and watch your traffic grow.
Facebook Groups: Facebook groups can also be a good source of traffic and exposure for your blog but, unfortunately, many people fail to get results because they approach these groups in a wrong way and can barely be differentiated from spammers.
In a case study analyzing how he increased traffic from Facebook groups by 3,000%, Bruce Zhang revealed that the best way to get traffic from Facebook groups isn’t just to post your links; instead, make sure to use catchy text images as well as a compelling message that shows how people will benefit by reading your article.
LinkedIn Groups: Similar to Facebook Groups, LinkedIn groups are a good source of traffic. Sharing your content with just your LinkedIn connections won’t send you traffic; instead, look for the top LinkedIn groups in your niche, join them and occasionally submit your best articles to them.
Promote Your Blog on Quora: Exactly how powerful is Quora for promoting your blog? Quora superstar Oliver Emberton used Quora to launch a popular blog. Within 7 month of start his blog, he was already getting millions of views monthly. Oliver did this by contributing great value and being very active on Quora; eventually, this paid off in quality traffic that led to articles on his blog going viral.
Look for Interview Opportunities: There are blogs and websites that are dedicated to interviewing successful people and showcasing their stories; if you have an exciting story or have a success that you can showcase, you can reach out to these websites and ask them to interview you. A good example is IdeaMensch, and there many more similar sites.
Ask Podcasts to Interview You: Similar to being interviewed on sites, you can ask podcast shows to interview you; many podcasters will happily oblige if they find that you have an exciting story.
Look for Opportunities to be Included in Link Roundups: Every niche has at least a dozen blogs that do weekly or monthly roundups; at the end of the week, or month, these blogs will publish an article with a summary of the most interesting content they read in a particular month. You can get some nice exposure by emailing these bloggers and asking them to include your article in their next roundup.
Key into Major Events: A major election, death, birth, sports event, etc? Smart bloggers are creative, and as a result they know how to leverage happenings around them to boost their reach and influence.
When major events happen, lots of people tend to get interested and start searching for it on search engines and social media; by capitalizing on this and using an angle relevant to your niche, you can get quality traffic. Example: “What the Superbowl Can Teach Us About Successful Blogging” or “What the Election Debates Can Teach You About Success”, etc. You get the idea? No matter the event, you can tie it to your blog’s topic and capitalize on it to boost traffic.
Write Controversial Posts: Writing controversial posts, or attacking sacred cows in your niche, can be very powerful for generating traffic and boosting your exposure; this article on Shopify showed how publishing a controversial post can help skyrocket a blogger’s fame and traffic.
Include Elements of Transparency: If done right, transparency can be a very powerful weapon for promoting your blog. Several top blogs and startups can testify to this; seven-figure blogger Pat Flynn is a good example; one of the techniques he used to accelerate his blog growth was publishing income reports. People were excited about his income reports, so they visited it en mass and shared it a lot; it is also widely linked to across the web. Startups like Buffer and Groove are also using this principle to grow their blogs and business; by being transparent, they get people excited about what they are doing and this leads to more exposure for them.
Reduce the Number of Share Buttons on Your Blog: While we earlier noticed that including social sharing buttons on your blog can help increase traffic and social shares, there’s the paradox of choice factor to consider as well; research shows that giving people too many choices will ensure that they do not make any. In other words, having 10 social sharing buttons on your blog will make sure that your readers use none.
Smashing Magazine also noted that removing Facebook share buttons led to more traffic from Facebook, since readers now directly share their articles on their Facebook timeline instead of liking it (and shares result in more traffic than likes). So that’s consideration for a button you might want to remove.
Promote Your Blog on Pinterest: Pinterest can be a great source of traffic to your blog and many bloggers have leveraged it with great source to massively boost their blog traffic; Mandy Wallace was able to take her new blog to 1,000 daily visitors hugely thanks to Pinterest.
Look for quality interesting images, and focus on using irresistible headlines and you’ll be getting quality Pinterest traffic in no time.
Leverage Sound Bites to Increase Social Shares: According to successful blogger and psychology expert, Derek Halpern, “a sound bite is a short message, often no longer than 10 words, that describes the main idea of your content or sales message.”
Essentially, a sound bite is a persuasive summary of the message of your article that is easy to remember and easy to quote; because it is short and persuasive, people can, and will, share it, leading to more traffic for you. Mainly due to using this technique, Derek Halpern was able to generate 300 shares and around 9,000 hits for one of his article.
Tweetables and Shareables: Similar to sound bites, Tweetables and Shareables help you get more traffic by encouraging people to share your content; a “Tweetable” is a message you highlight from your article and design to be shared on Twitter while a “Sharable” can be shared on any social network.
You’ve probably visited your favorite blogs to see “Click to tweet” embedded inside the article? Well, that’s a Tweetable.
Pursue Media Syndication Opportunities: Many top publications and media sites thrive on publishing a lot of content, and it isn’t unusual to see these sites publish 50 or more articles in a single day; of course, this is difficult to pull off and they have to rely on content from guests and other sources to meet their content schedule. To get around this, top media sites like Lifehacker and Business Insider republish quality content on other sites; often, they only feature content from experts but you can try to reach out to them to see if you can be a part of their content syndication program.
Convert Your Blog Posts into PDFs and Submit to PDF/Document Sharing Sites: Convert your blog posts into a PDF and submit it to PDF sharing sites; make sure that the final PDF file includes your bio and a link to your site so that people know how to find your blog after they finish reading the PDF. Here’s a list of PDF/document sharing sites to start with.
Start a Podcast: Data from Edison Research shows that there are more than 46 million podcast listeners in America; podcasts are quickly becoming the best way people consume content, because it makes it easy to consume content on a commute, while exercising and in a lot of comfortable positions. Boost your blog traffic today by starting your own podcast.
Here’s a good case study from someone who created a podcast that was downloaded by over 1,000,000 people; screenshot of his stats below.
Convert Your Blog Posts into Presentations and Share Them on Presentation Sites: Turn your blog posts into Presentations and submit them to top presentation sites. Here’s a list of presentation sites to get you started.
Publish a List of Power Users in an Industry or on a Social Media Site: Many of these power users will get an ego boost from this and will share your content on social media.
Advertise on Reddit: Reddit is one of the biggest online communities, with an estimated 17 million monthly users. While many people are familiar with advertising on Facebook, Google Adwords and other PPC options, very few people pay attention to Reddit; surprisingly, Reddit’s CPM, at $0.75 CPM, is much lower compared to bunch of other social media sites.
Advertise on Facebook: Facebook is increasingly becoming most brand’s favorite advertising platform, and rightfully so. Facebook has in-depth understanding of your audience and allows you to target your content to them; also, advertising on Facebook is 3 times cheaper than Google Ads.
Advertise on Stumbleupon: With over 25 million users, StumbleUpon is one of the web’s biggest community as well as one of the cheapest places to advertise online. In a case study on his blog, Stefan Maescher revealed that he got 60,275 visitors to his blog by spending just $128.90.
The key to success with StumbleUpon ads lies in having shareworthy content, promoting it with a few dollars and letting it go viral on Stumbleupon.
Sponsor a Blogging Contest: Blogging contests are being run every day, and sponsoring one can result in some nice traffic and quality backlinks for you; most contests will make it a requirement to blog about the contest and link to the website of their sponsors and this is where you benefit. Look for blogging contests of this nature and see how you can participate.
Run a Viral Giveaway: Viral giveaways can have massive impact on your bottomline, and a good case study to this effect is Josh Earl, who was able to get 482,044 people to visit his blog and 187,991 people to subscribe to his blog in just 11 days. Now, that’s a phenomenal result!
If you’re struggling to get traffic to your blog, perhaps it’s time to start your own viral giveaway; look for a product that is in high demand in your niche and offer people an opportunity to win it by joining your giveaway. Let their chances of winning increase by inviting more people to join your giveaway.
Join H.A.R.O: H.A.R.O, also known as Help A Reporter Out, is a platform that brings reporters and “sources” together; when looking for sources to quote in an article, reporters often visit H.A.R.O to find people to interview. If you have a relevant story that a reporter needs, then you might be mentioned as a source when the reporter publishes their article; just tell the reporter to mention your website in the article if relevant/possible.
Join Communities where Bloggers Support Each Other (or Communities Where Bloggers Exchange Shares): There are secret bloggers club and websites that foster a community where members promote themselves; in short, every community member promotes each other’s content and benefit from the support of a massive community. Two good examples are JustRetweet and Triberr.
Create a Viral FREE Report eBook: Create a high-value, concise ebook and make it available for free, no strings attached (don’t even ask for an email). Now, share that ebook everywhere you can and encourage readers to share it as well, be sure to include a bio inside the ebook. Corbett Barr did this in 2010 with his ebook “18 Months, 2 Blogs, Six Figures”. The result was that this ebook led to a massive increase in traffic to his blog, and lots of new subscribers.
Run a Blogging Challenge: In 2013, Natalie Sisson was about to do a book launch and decided to run a blogging challenge; the challenge was a 30 Day Blog Challenge designed to coincide with the launch of her book, and she reports it to be the most successful initiative she’s ever ran on her blog. The blogging challenge led to a 100% increase in traffic, 1,000 new subscribers to her list and her book becoming a #1 bestseller the week it was published.
Blogging challenges can unite your community and make them passionately involved in your project, and this will always lead to more traffic to your blog.
Run a Traffic Contest: Invite members of your community to promote your blog and do their best to send traffic to your blog for a whole month, award the people who send the most traffic a price.
Publish Your Own 101 List: Earlier on we examined research that shows that Google favors articles that are above 2,000 words. Top lists of 101 items are usually very in-depth and comprehensive, and as a result they generate a lot of traffic; the fact that list posts get a lot of shares and traffic is backed up by data, and the Buzzsumo/Moz study that we referenced earlier shows that List posts get significantly more shares and links than other types of content. This is indicated in the screenshot below:
Publish an Ultimate Link/List Roundup: Compile and publish an ultimate list of resources/articles on a particular topic; include as many relevant resources as possible and email all the bloggers you featured on your list and ask them to share your article.
Here’s a good example of an ultimate list/roundup of articles on how to get traffic from Mark Trueman, featuring case studies from 124 experts, which ended up generating thousands of shares.
Leverage “Social Locker” Technology: One of the most creative ways to promote your blog is by restricting part of your content and making people share your article to access it; Will Franco did this by creating an article and adding a “social locker” to his article; the result of this was 11X more shares compared to the average article on his blog. The table below shows his results:
Give Viral List Building a Shot: Prepare a series of incentives and design a viral list building system; start with a basic incentive that will be your opt in incentive, then offer people more attractive incentives if they share your content or invite a number of people to join your list.
Convert Your Blog Posts into Podcast and Distribute to Podcast and Audio Sites: Research shows that an estimated 33% of Americans have listened to a podcast, and that a total of 2.6 billion podcast download requests were made in 2014. Seven-figure blogger Pat Flynn credits his podcast to be one of the top ways new users find his blog.
Create Your Own Website Theme: Create your own website theme with a link back to your website in the footer; there’ll be a link to visit your blog on every website that uses your theme. Be sure to make the link nofollow so that it doesn’t give you problems with Google and other search engines. If you don’t want to create your own themes (can be a bit complicated), you can get some awesome themes from here and here.
Create Your Own Website Plugins: Similar to having your own theme, create your own plugins and give people that use it an option to link back to your blog.
Leverage Image Sharing Sites to Grow Your Reach: Image sharing sites like Flickr have millions of users, and this presents you with a great opportunity to increase your reach; take cool pictures around you that you own a copyright to, and publish them on these sites with a Creative Commons license on the condition that those who use them link to you. This will result in bloggers using your images and linking to you, and occasionally top media sites will use your images and send you some quality traffic.
Effectively Leverage Email Signatures: Many of us interact with hundreds or even thousands of emails every month; these are some nice eyeballs for your blog, and you can convert them to readers by including a link to your blog in your email signature.
Focus on the Mobile Experience: Research shows that the number of mobile internet users has now exceeded the number of desktop internet users. Google also recently made an upgrade to their algorithm that favored sites that were optimized for mobile users and that penalized sites that were not optimized for mobile users. Some sites lost as much as 46.6% of their search traffic due to not having a mobile-optimized site while some gained as much as 30.1% traffic by having a mobile-friendly website.
Something as simple as optimizing your blog for mobile users can give you a traffic boost, so make sure you have a website that is focused on a better mobile experience for your readers.
Leverage User Generated Content: Forums, comments and other types of user-generated content can be big wins for your blog; Mizzou Alumni Association was able to boost their site traffic by 15% while Chobani experienced a 225.9% increase in revenue by leveraging the power of User Generated Content.
Have a Keyword Research Strategy: Many bloggers enjoy lackluster search rankings and, as a result, poor search traffic due to not having a keyword research strategy; do you research keywords before publishing article on your blog, or do you just publish new articles? Incorporating a keyword research strategy into your content marketing strategy will go a long way to boost traffic to your blog.
Publish a Controversial Response to Top Bloggers and Thought Leaders: When an industry leader publishes an article, or says something, that you disagree with; publish a response on your blog explaining why you disagree with the industry leader. Most industry leaders will share your article, especially if your response is well-thought out and informative.
Be an Influential Blogger’s Success Story: While most bloggers struggle to get traffic, authority bloggers with hundreds of thousands of readers go over and beyond to send traffic to people who can validate them; if you take the advice of a popular blogger and get results from it, he will happily showcase you to his audience and send traffic back to you.
Ask Experts to Contribute Advice to Your Article: One very effective way to unleash an avalanche of traffic on your blog is by asking experts to contribute their advice to your articles; this is especially effective if you’ve written an ultimate guide to a subject, or a long list of article with a lot of points. Identify key experts in your niche for various points and ask them to give you their input; include their input inside your article and let them know when it goes live so that they can share.
This technique is highly underutilized, but it’s so powerful that Jimmy Daly of GetVero was able to get 36,282 people to read a single article on his blog.
Constantly Refresh Old Posts: One of Google’s ranking factors is content freshness, and this reportedly affects as much as 35% of Google searches; this supports research from Hubspot that shows that blogs that publish 16+ articles monthly get 3.5X more traffic than blogs that publish less than 4 articles monthly.
One way to benefit from Google’s freshness algorithm is by publishing more articles on your blog, while another way is by updating old articles; review articles you published months and years ago, eliminate outdated information and bring them forward. This will impact your blog’s search rankings and lead to more traffic.
Proper SEO Slug/Permalink Structure: Do you know that your blog’s SEO slug/permalink structure can go a long way to influence your search rankings and traffic to your blog. The best SEO slug is the one that includes your title in a descriptive way, while removing unnecessary words like verbs.
Proper Site Structure: Just as a good SEO slug is important, it’s also important to have a proper site structure; make sure your site structure makes it easy for search engines to index your content. Make sure that every page on your blog is indexable, and have an archives page or sitemap that will make it easy for search engines to crawl your content.
This KISSMetrics article shares practical tips to help you create a site structure that will enhance your blog’s SEO.
Deep Internal Links: Internal links are an essential part of your on-page SEO, and quality internal links will impact your rankings in the search engines. Make sure you regularly link to relevant pages and articles on your blog.
Improve Your Headlines: Do you know that a simple headline change can result in a massive boost in traffic to your blog? According to Copyblogger, on average, 8 out of 10 people will read your headline but only 2 out of 10 will read your content. This is why it is very important to learn how to write better headlines and put serious effort into your headlines.
A case study that demonstrates how much of a difference the right headline can make was featured on Lifehacker; a New York Times article was originally titled “How Companies Learn Your Secrets” and it only managed to get 12,902 views. The very same article was republished on Forbes and retitled “How Target Figured out a Teen Girl Was Pregnant before Her Father Did” and got a whopping 680,000 views. That’s over 600,000 more views than the original articles, and that’s interesting considering that The New York Times is a much bigger site than Forbes. The difference in traffic was solely due to the headline.
In revealing why their articles go viral, Upworthy revealed that they write at least 25 headlines for every post they publish, they test the best ones and go with the very best one; if Upworthy, a site that gets over 87 million visitors monthly, does this, you have no reason not to.
Enable Trackbacks on Your Blog: Anytime you publish a new article on a blog hosted with WordPress, it gives you an option to enable comments and trackbacks; a “trackback” is an automatic notification sent to any website you link to, allowing your link to be featured in their comments section as well if approved.
If you link to top blogs in your article and you and the blogs you linked to both have trackbacks enabled, a link to your article will appear in their comments section; this will ensure people seeing comments on their blog can see a link to your articles, and it’ll eventually lead to more traffic for you.
Link to A Lot of Authoritative Sources: Google uses a lot of factors to rank websites, including how many links points to a website, but very few people know that Google also ranks you based on how many people you link to.
If your website constantly links to authoritative websites and resources that are relevant to your niche, Google will assume that you’re a good and authoritative resource in your niche, and they’ll rank you better as a result; this, in turn, will lead to more traffic for you.
Invite Others to Guest Post on Your Blog: Guest blogging on other blogs is indeed a powerful way to get traffic and gain exposure to your blog, but inviting others to guest post for your own blog can be equally powerful.
If you invite others to write for you, especially if they have a much bigger reach than you do, they are more likely to share their guest post with their readers. The result of this will be more traffic to your blog.
Start Paying People to Write for You: There are websites that regularly publish lists of sites that pay writers, and these lists occasionally get tens of thousands of views and hundreds of links thus making them highly authoritative. By offering to pay people to write articles on your blog, and emailing the publishers of these lists to include your website, you’ll be getting an instant boost in traffic and an authoritative backlink.
Offer Incentives to People Writing for You: A technique that can give you a massive boost in traffic to your blog is incentivizing contributions to your blog; whether you pay writers for articles or accept guest posts, you’ll be able to get more traffic by compensating people whose articles become your most popular post or get a certain number of views in a month.
Below is a screenshot showing how The Penny Hoarder does it; for a blog that gets about 2 million unique visitors monthly, they definitely know what they are doing.
Email People With Lists of Blogs that Accept Guest Posts: There are hundreds of lists of different blogs that accept guest posts online, and many of these lists are read by thousands of people weekly; if you accept guest posts on your blog, email these bloggers and ask them to include your blog on their list. This won’t just result in some nice traffic and potentially quality contributions to your blog, but it will also yield an authoritative backlink that can help your search traffic.
Listen to Your Readers: Sometimes, you’ll notice that certain articles on your blog will become big hits while some will barely get read by anybody; oftentimes, the reason for this has to do with demand for the topic an article covers. If an article is in high demand, it’ll do a great job of promoting itself and traffic will only keep increasing; if an article has low demand, promotion you do will yield minimal results.
Ask your readers what content they want to read about the most, and create your content based on popular demand.
Analyze Your Blog Traffic: The key to blogging success lies in identifying what’s working and doing more of it; once your blog starts to gain traction and get some readership, start paying special attention to your blog traffic to see what kind of content is getting the most views. If you notice a trend with a certain type of content, do more of that type of content and you can be assured of increased traffic.
Don’t Ignore Basic SEO: Many bloggers ignore basic SEO, and they eventually suffer from it. Most successful bloggers get as much as 50% or more of their traffic from search engines; taking the right measures when it comes to SEO can double your blog traffic within a short period of time.
Things like using the right title tags, having a catchy description, ensuring that your site is easy to navigate, etc, can lead to a significant increase in traffic to your blog.
Write for the Scanner: Research shows that on average, most web users won’t read more than 28% of words on a website; in other words, while having longer, comprehensive articles will help your search engine rankings it won’t increase the chances of your content being read; the more people read your content, the more people will share it and the more traffic you will get. The solution to this problem is to write your content for scanners.
Using headings and sub headings, bold, italics, numberings and bullets, you can make your blog content more presentable and scannable, and as a result boost traffic to your blog.
Only Offer Partial Blog Feed, or Customize Your Feed: If you own a blog, you’re most probably allowing people to consume your blog content through feed readers; a great way to capitalize on this to boost blog traffic is either by offering partial feeds, or by customizing your feeds in such a way that you can include a note and link to your blog/article below the feed. The benefit to doing this is two-fold:
It gets readers to come directly to your blog; this increases the likelihood of them sharing your article, thereby leading to more traffic for you.
It ensures that you get attribution when your content is being scraped; a lot of sites scrape content via feeds without attribution, and this isn’t good if there’s no way for you to get credit back to your blog.
Use Images in ALL Your Blog Posts: Research shows that articles with images get 94% more views compared to articles without images. Make sure every article on your blog include one or more relevant and appealing image, and this will significantly boost traffic to your blog.
Retweet Old Articles: Research shows that only 1.4% (and I suspect that the actual number is much lower) of your Twitter followers will engage with your Tweet; the question is, what happens to the remaining 98.6% of your followers who will not see your Tweet? How do you get their attention? The answer to this is to constantly retweet old blog posts.
Many successful bloggers routinely share old articles, and it isn’t unusual to see a blogger sharing the same article 30 – 50 times in the span of a few months; this ensures that people who did not see your content at first will see it later down the line.
Master the Best Time to Post: Research shows that the success of a viral campaign can be influenced by the time that campaign is started as well; a study by BuzzSumo that analyzed over 100 million articles came to the conclusion that the best day to publish an article is on a Tuesday, and that articles published on a Tuesday generally get up to 3X more views than articles published on Sundays.
Find out the best time to post an article on your blog and use this knowledge to effectively promote your content.
Join Bundle Offers to Expand Your Reach: Occasionally, there are events such as Only72 that offer a bundle of products for a limited period of time at a discount price; the time limit and discount is the appeal of this, and it isn’t unusual to see hundreds of thousands of people hearing about the offer and thousands of people taking advantage of it.
If you have a product, reach out to organizers of these events and ask them to include your product; you’ll be increasing your reach due to the cross-promotion other, often more influential, participants and affiliates will do.
Do Solo Ads: A “solo ad” is an email newsletter that only contains an ad; so if someone emails their list and a recommendation of your blog or product is the only thing in that email, that’s a solo ad. Solo ads can be great for boosting blog traffic; find relevant bloggers in your niche with good email lists and offer them a fee in exchange for sending an ad to their list about your blog/email list.
Take Advantage of Local Media: The online and blogging craze is so high that many people now fail to realize the power of offline media. Seek out radio presenters, TV presenters, local magazines and newspapers in your country and ask them if they want an expert in your capacity. Due to the blogging craze, fewer people are disturbing them than used to be; this increases your chances of actually getting coverage, resulting in a boost in your brand image and blog traffic.
Give Affiliates 100% Commission to Your Products: If you have a product, it’s much easier to get traffic to your blog. Identify influencers with a big blog and email list, especially if they have no product, and offer them 100% commissions for every sale of your products that they make. Make sure you get all buyers of your product to subscribe to your email list, and you win; you win because those buyers might not otherwise know about you, but now they are readers who have bought a product you created.
Sell Your Products on Promo Sites at a Massive Discount: While it might not look like a win to sell your products on sites that offer products at a massive discount, it can be a big win if this suddenly exposes you to thousands of new people; find sites of this nature and offer your product at a discount. Make sure people are required to sign up to your email list before they can access your product.
Leverage Hashtags When Promoting Your Articles on Social Media: You can also boost your readership by using #hashtags when promoting your articles on social media; by using relevant hashtags, you’ll make your content discoverable when people search for content in your niche, and you’ll also benefit should an hashtag you use become trending around the time you used it.
Submit Your Blog to Blog/Website Directories: While not as effective as they used to be, blog and website directories can still be a good source of traffic. Being listed in some blog and website directories can also boost traffic to your blog. Here’s a list of free website directories you can submit your blog to.
Rewrite Some of Your Articles and Post them on Article Directories: Article directories are not as effective as they used to be, but you can rewrite some of your articles in minutes and have them distributed to article directories. Make sure you include links to your blog in these articles.
Identify Top Community and Q&A Sites in Your Niche and Participate Regularly: Sites like Quora, Yahoo! Answers and other niche-specific communities and Q&A sites can be a good source of traffic. Participate in relevant popular discussions and occasionally include a link back to learn more on your blog.
Get Your Blog Listed in Google News: Being included in Google news can result in a massive boost in traffic to your blog, especially if you’re first to cover major events. If you cover news-related stuffs, be sure to apply for inclusion in Google News.
Translate Your Blog Posts into Other Languages: Translating your blog into another language is an effective but little-known way to boost traffic to your blog; this works because translated versions of your blog will start to rank in the country-specific search engines of the languages you translate into. Neil Patel reported a 47% increase in traffic to his blog by translating his blog into 82 languages (screenshot below); translating his blog didn’t cost Neil anything as he used the Transposh plugin.
Create an App for Your Blog: Create an app for your blog and submit it to Google store and Apple store; regularly invite your readers to download your app and feature it on relevant app sites. If more people download your app, Google will start showcasing it to more of their readers and this will boost your traffic.
Organize Events in Your Area and Tell Attendees to Visit Your Blog: Organize offline education events in your area in partnership with schools, churches and communities. Make your events entertaining and educative, and invite attendees to read your blog.
Create an Industry Survey and Make the Results Public: Invite your readers to answer a survey about topics of major interest to your niche, publish your survey results and create an infographic about it. Email bloggers in your niche to notify them about your survey results and ask them to write about it.
BONUS: Make your website faster: Research shows that a one second delay in website loading time will result in a 7 percent loss in conversion, and that slow websites cost the U.S. e-commerce market $500 billion annually. Not just this, but you’ll also lose 40 percent of visitors to your website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. If your website is slow, then you’re already losing half your visitors. Make your website faster and watch your traffic increase significantly.
How many Facebook Likes does your business Page have? If you’re immersed in social media marketing, you probably know this number off the top of your head. With more than two billion users, Facebook offers a huge potential audience for your business. But with more than 60 million active Facebook business Pages on the network, there’s also a lot of competition for those all-important Likes. There’s no getting around it: getting more Likes is a critical part of your Facebook marketing strategy. But you can’t get so focused on Likes that you lose sight of what Facebook is all about.
Getting more Likes requires you to share content that is truly likeable—and engage in ways that make your brand likable, too. You won’t find any underhanded gimmicks in this post. It’s about getting more likes by being a good Facebook citizen and working to create content that has real value for an audience that will provide plenty of value for your brand in return.
Click any of the tips below to jump ahead, or keep scrolling and read the guide in its entirety.
10 clever ways to get more Facebook likes to your Website / Blog
1. Develop a smart Facebook marketing strategy
As with any marketing platform, you’ll only get out of Facebook what you put into it. A well-defined, smart Facebook strategy based on your business goals will help you craft a cohesive brand presence on Facebook that speaks to your brand personality and values.
Define your target audience
Your strategy should aim to collect Likes from the followers who have the most potential to bring value to your business through regular engagement, rather than one-off Likes from online passers-by. Defining your audience personas can be a great place to start. After all, you need to know who you’re talking to in order to use the right tools and tone, rather than trying to appeal to all two billion Facebook users.
Research the competition
Keeping an eye on what key competitors are up to will help you spot techniques that work, and that don’t, so you can model the competition’s success while avoiding their missteps. You’ll also start to get a sense of how many Facebook Likes you can aim for—both for your Page and for individual posts.
Social listening is a great research strategy that can help you gather information about both your target audience and your competition.
Simply aiming for “more Likes” is not really a great Facebook marketing goal—how will you know when you’ve achieved it? Instead, you should create goals based on S.M.A.R.T. principles, meaning they’re specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely.
This allows you to circle back on a regular basis to see whether you’re meeting your targets, and either celebrate your success and develop new stretch goals, or consider strategic shifts to get you back on track.
2. Craft a great Page
This may sound obvious, but sometimes the most important points can be easy to overlook: If you want to collect Likes, you’ve got to have a great Page and consistently great posts. Your Facebook Page is made up of many parts, and it’s important to make sure they are all complete, professional, and on-brand. Here are some key components to consider.
Use all elements of the About section
The About section of your Facebook Page allows you to provide key business details to people who are scanning for specific information. In addition to your contact information, you can add the date your business was founded, provide a company overview, or even add a list of brand milestones.
All of this information helps build your credibility and convince potential followers that your Page is worthy of a Like. It also helps you appear in searches outside of Facebook, directing users to your Page when they’re using search engines to look for information about your product or business.
Visit California uses their About section to tell the story of travel in the state, and manages to get a number of important keywords into their Story section without keyword stuffing.
Facebook also views a Page with a complete profile as more credible, which gives you an advantage in the Facebook algorithm (more on that below) and will help ensure more people see your posts.
Choose compelling cover and profile photos
Your profile and cover photos create the first visual impression of your business on Facebook, so it’s important to choose wisely. Your logo is usually the best choice for your profile photo, but you can get quite creative with your cover photo selection.
Put some thought into how you can convey what your business is all about in one compelling image. Do you have a great-looking product you can feature? Maybe you want to showcase a photo of your friendly team. Whatever you choose, make sure it captures the essence of your brand so potential followers have reason to dive into your Page content.
Iced tea might not be the most exciting product, but Nestea does a great job of making both their Page and their product look appealing with a compelling cover image.
In terms of the technical details, your profile photo displays on your Page as 170 x 170 pixels on computers and 128 x 128 pixels on smartphones. You cover photo displays on your Page at 820 pixels x 312 pixels on computers and 640 pixels by 340 pixels on smartphones. Facebook recommends you use a cover photo that’s 851 x 315 pixels and less than 100KB.
A newer and more dynamic option for business Pages is to use a cover video instead of a cover photo. Your cover video can be up to 20 seconds long, and has the same dimensions as a cover photo.
Pin a top-performing post
If you have a post that’s garnering a particularly high number of Likes, you can pin it to maximize its lifespan. When you choose to pin a post, it remains at the top of your Page, so people see it before any of your other posts. You can change your pinned post as often as you like, so make sure to keep it fresh, always featuring your best-performing content in this high-visibility location.
3. Make your Facebook Page easy to find
This is a simple concept that deserves repeating: people can’t like your Facebook Page if they can’t find it. Here are some things you can do to increase your visibility.
Choose an easy-to-discover Page name
People looking for your brand on Facebook will be searching for your brand name. Keep things simple and make it easy for them to find you by using your brand name as your Page name. Don’t add unnecessary keywords—these will just make your Page look spammy rather than like a legitimate business presence for your brand.
Select a memorable and consistent username
Your username—sometimes called a vanity URL—appears in your brand’s Facebook Page web address. A username that’s consistent with your handle on other social channels will make it easier for people who already follow you elsewhere to track you down on Facebook. Like your Page name, your username should be closely related to the name of your business.
Add Facebook follow and Like buttons to your website or blog
Someone who has just discovered a valuable tip or strategy on your website or blog is primed to want to hear more from you. Make it easy for them to connect with you on Facebook by adding Facebook follow and Like buttons to your site, like these:
Embed a Facebook Post on your website or blog
This option provides even more visibility for your Facebook Page on your website or blog. Rather than a simple button, you can embed an entire post by copy and pasting some simple code. Just navigate to the post you want to embed, click the three dots in the top right corner, and click Embed. Then copy and paste the code into your HTML. Here’s an example from the Hootsuite Facebook Page:
Any visitors who click on your embedded post to learn more will be taken to the post as it appears on your Facebook Page, creating an opportunity for a new Page Like. And viewers can like the post itself directly from the embedded post, without leaving your website or blog.
Include a link to your Facebook Page in your newsletter or email signature
The people you already communicate with through channels like email or an opt-in newsletter are a great potential audience for your Facebook Page. Make sure it’s easy for them to find and connect with you by including links to your Facebook Page in all of your electronic communications.
Cross-promote your Facebook page on other social channels
Take advantage of the following you’ve built on other social channels by cross-promoting your Facebook content. Don’t just post a link to your Facebook Page and ask people to follow you. Instead, choose a great piece of Facebook-specific content—like an infographic or short video—to promote so that you can highlight the value of your Facebook Page, rather than just letting people know it exists.
The NFL, for example, used Twitter to cross-promote a Facebook Live video, driving Twitter followers to its Facebook page:
Aim for shares
Shared Facebook posts increase your organic reach, giving you a better chance of getting more facebook Likes. A share also indicates that someone felt strongly enough about your content that they were motivated to share it with their personal network, giving you additional credibility with an audience that may not already be familiar with your brand.
Invite existing contacts and employees to like your Facebook page
Facebook makes it easy to invite personal Facebook connections to like your business Page, but be careful about how you use this feature. Simply sending out mass invites is more likely to get you unfriended than to bring in Facebook Likes for your Business Page.
Instead, create a message explaining what value you think your contacts might gain from liking your Page. Make it about them, not about you.
You should also encourage employees to like your Facebook Page—both so that they can stay up-to-date with what you’re promoting as a brand, and as part of a larger employee advocacy strategy.
Promote your Facebook Page in real life
Don’t limit your promotion of your Facebook Page to the online world. Include your Page address on your business cards and corporate stationery. Designer Ana Bermejo uses the same handle across social networks and includes the icons on her business cards so contacts know where to find and Like her on social, including Facebook.
Or, if you host events, include the address on your signage.
People who are already interacting with your brand in real life understand the value you have to offer—make it easy for them to connect with you on Facebook to access more of that value.
4. Post relevant, high-quality content
Facebook recommends you share “short, fun-to-read copy and eye-catching images to get attention.” What does that look like in practice? Incorporate these strategies to develop posts that are inherently likeable.
Include compelling visuals
A study published in the journal Management Science found that posts with photos receive significantly more Facebook Likes than text-only posts. If you don’t have a photo library of your own, there are plenty of free stock photo sites you can use. You could also try creating a unique infographic that conveys valuable information relevant to your niche, or even something humorous, like this graphic from WIRED that got 1,500 Facebook Likes.
Write great headlines
A compelling headline is key to getting attention for your post—but don’t veer into the realm of clickbait. Facebook offers these tips for crafting a great headline:
Make your headlines informative
Use your headline to set appropriate expectations about what the post contains
Be clear and accurate
Don’t be too promotional
Sure, you’re trying to promote your brand on Facebook—but people want their feeds to be entertaining and informative, not pushy and packed with sales pitches. In particular, Facebook found in a survey that followers do not like posts that:
Direct people to purchase a product or download an app (without offering any other valuable content or information)
Direct people to enter a contest without providing any context about why it’s relevant to the Page or followers’ interests
Reuse content from ads
That means these posts are less likely to generate Facebook Likes from the followers who see them. But they are also less likely to be seen in the first place, since Facebook specifically limits organic reach for Pages that are too promotional.
Give followers what they want
How do you know what type of content people want from you on Facebook? By listening to them. If the majority of the comments on your Page are customer service inquiries, try creating content that focuses on helping followers use your product better. For example, try a short video featuring “hacks” or alternative uses for your product, or a series of “how-to” videos or photos. Experiment, and pay attention to what people respond to.
Invest in video
On that note, if you seriously want to increase Facebook Likes and you don’t already have a Facebook video strategy, it’s time to create one. Our post outlining the 4 key ingredients of a perfect social media video is a great place to start. Once you’ve got those principles nailed, check out our post with six types of video social media marketers need to try, including live video and 360 video.
5. Engage consistently and at the right times
Facebook itself notes that “being consistent in the quality and types of posts you create can help people know what kinds of messages to expect from you and how they tie into your business.” Create a content calendar and schedule posts in advance to help keep your Facebook content organized and consistent.
Post at the right time
Hootsuite’s social media marketing specialists have found that doing so increases engagement, including Facebook Likes. You’ll need to do your own research to determine what works best for your audience, but we’ve found the optimal times to be 12–3 p.m. weekdays and 12–1 p.m. on weekends.
Be responsive and human
If you want more people to like your Facebook Page, you need to engage with those who already do. Unanswered comments or questions on a Facebook Page can be a huge deterrent for potential new fans. Remember, Facebook is a social network, and being sociable is a key way to make your brand—and your Page—more likeable.
6. Host a Facebook contest
In a poll by the Content Marketing Institute, 81 percent of marketers said that interactive content (like contests) is better for grabbing readers’ attention than static content.
Even better, liking a post is a popular form of contest entry—and one that’s allowed under Facebook’s contest rules (unlike “share to win” contests, which, while popular, are technically prohibited). For example, Funko got nearly 7,000 Facebook Likes on this like-to-enter contest:
To start collecting more Facebook Likes with a contest of your own, check out our post on how to run a successful Facebook contest.
7. Engage with other brands and communities on Facebook
Remember that Facebook is primarily a social network—so get social and start engaging with other brands that are relevant to your niche but not your direct competitors. A simple Like or comment on another brand’s post can help draw their attention and open up opportunities to work together to cross-promote your businesses so you both gain more Facebook Likes. Tagging other brands may also expose your Page to a new audience (that other brand’s followers)—but only use tags in relevant posts.
Look for communities of potential followers to engage with, too. Facebook Groups are a great place to find people who are passionate about subjects related to your niche, and offer you the opportunity to highlight your expertise. Just make sure your participation in Facebook Groups is helpful, rather than promotional, or you might find yourself kicked out of the group.
8. Use the Facebook algorithm to your advantage
Understanding the Facebook algorithm is key to increasing your organic reach—in other words, getting your Page and your posts in front of more people who could potentially give you a Like. At its core, the Facebook algorithm prioritizes the types of content we’ve already talked about: Quality content that is not overly promotional.
This should really come as no surprise. Facebook wants people to enjoy browsing their News Feeds, which means it wants to surface the best content to the top. Invest the time to produce valuable posts, and don’t be a spammy jerk. Facebook specifically highlights authentic posts that inform and entertain as having value recognized by the algorithm.
One additional way to take advantage of the Facebook algorithm is to try live video. The algorithm prioritizes live broadcasts, bumping them higher in the News Feed. If you have an event or presentation that would work live, give it a try. Check out our complete guide to Facebook live video for important tips before your first broadcast.
9. Run Facebook ads to expand your reach
Facebook offers very detailed ad targeting, so you can laser-focus your advertising efforts and make the most of your ad spend. Putting your brand in front of your ideal audience is a great way to pick up more Facebook Likes. There are two different types of Facebook advertising: boosted posts and ad campaigns.
Boost a post
By boosting a post, you can extend the audience beyond people who already like your Page. This can be a great option for a post that’s already proved to be compelling by bringing in a large number of Facebook Likes from people who already follow your Page.
Run a campaign
Facebook offers campaign objectives relevant to every type of business. Since this post is about how to get Facebook Likes, we’ll focus on the Engagement objective, which is designed to expose your ad to a wide audience to increase the number of post or Page Likes. For example, this ad from WealthSimple offers the option to like the Page with just one click.
10. Learn from Facebook Insights
Analyzing Facebook Page Insights can give you a clear view of who your current fans are, which will help you better target future Facebook efforts. You’ll also be able to identify the kinds of posts that have the highest average reach and engagement, and use that information to create more of the content your audience wants from you on Facebook.
After all, learning from your mistakes, amplifying your successes, and giving your followers content you know they’ll enjoy are key ways to boost the quality of your content, and lead to—you guessed it—more Facebook Likes.
Afterward, other factors like on-page optimization, quality of content, a good site UI, and some other factors come into the picture.
Many companies invest thousands of dollars to pay for keyword research to get such targeted content.
But you don’t need to do that. Just follow this guide…
The keywords you choose to focus on for your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts are critical to the success of your website’s rank.
Choosing the right keywords isn’t always easy or intuitive and you need a lot of data to know whether a given keyword will work for you.
If you are completely new to keyword research tools and the process of keyword research, here are some guides from the past which will help you understand the basics:
• Importance of Keywords in SEO
• Keyword Research for Beginner’s Using the Google Keyword Planner Tool
So now you know the basics of keyword research and you have an understanding of how valuable it can be.
Fortunately, there are many tools available that can help you figure out which keywords workthe best for your overall web strategy. There are mostly two types of Keyword research tool:
1 Basic Keyword research: Use the seed Keyword to find profitable Keywords
2 Competitor based Keyword research: Find proven keywords which are helping other sites to drive traffic.
Personally, I find Competitor based Keyword research to be more effective as the purpose of the Keyword research is to find profitable Keywords. What could be more profitable than something which is already working for someone?
All you need to do after that is to create a page targeting that profitable keyword & reap the benefit of keyword research.
In this exclusive guide, I have covered both the type of Keywords. Most of these keyword research tools are paid and only a few of them are free.
“What is the easiest keyword research tool for a blogger?”
SEMRUSH is not a typical keyword research tool; it offers so much more than just researching keywords.
Unlike other tools where you need to add seed keywords to start your research, here you just need to add your URL (or your competitor’s URL) and it will show you all of the keywords that are ranking for that site.
This makes it easier for you to find short-tail and long-tail keywords that you can target and beat out your competition.
Ahrefs is one of the most popular keyword tool out there. What I really like about them is extensive detail including the keyword difficulty. Ahrefs uses clickstream data to also show how many clicks you will get from the search engine. This is very useful after knowledge graph integration, as many keywords may have huge traffic but they hardly get any clicks from search engine. Reason being, they get answers directly from the Google search result. Example of one such query is: “birthdate of any celebrity”
Another thing which makes Ahrefs Keyword research tool stand out is the great UI & the amount of data they provide. You can also create a list of keywords to target directly from Ahrefs dashboard. You don’t need to use excel & this is a huge time saving.
LongTailPro is a cloud based software for keyword research and one of the most popular in this list.
This is a paid keyword research tool which will help you find amazing keywords for your niche/micro-niche sites. With their “platinum” version, you can get a really amazing and really detailed keyword analysis feature.
They also have a competition checker, which will make it easier for you to pick the right keyword.
If you are looking for one tool which is completely dedicated to Keyword research only, KWFinder is your best bet. They are new in the market yet they are one of the fastest growing SEO tool company.
KWFinder helps you get the Keyword that will help you drive highly targeted traffic. Using Questions based Keyword research option you can quickly find long tail keywords that are related to problem solving. It’s no brainer that problem solving content helps us get more targeted traffic & conversion.
KWFinder offers both free & paid plans. For most of the users basic plan is the best. However do use the free account to see the effectiveness of KWFinder keyword research app.
I would not recommend you pick up all of the tools listed above, but instead stick to one or two and get used to its system.
If you have been using the Google Keyword Planner tool for a while, you have a good basis for getting started with any of the paid and professional tools listed here. Take a look at some of these tools and decide which works bestfor your business strategy.
• If you are looking for an easy, yet a great solution, go for SEMRUSH.
Fail to optimize your website (seo) for search engines, and thereby fail to get new leads, customers and traffic to your site. That’s how it goes in today’s modern world of SEO and digital marketing on the web.
SEO stands for search engine optimization—it’s the process of making your website and all its webpages easier for your customers to find on search engine results pages (SERPs). Your business will rank for a keyword—let’s say “dog food”—and successful SEO aims to make your site rank as high as possible (at least the first page of the SERPs) for said keyword.
This process can be very complicated and involved, but there are basic things you can do right now to make your site rank higher for your specific keyword. This applies if you’re a startup, a small business, or even a Fortune 500 company.
Here are 10 SEO tactics to get you there fast:
Tactic 1. Understand Your Business Model
SEO won’t help you unless you’re 100% clear on your business model.
You need to decide on a few important things before beginning any SEO project and set attainable goals. This is true whether you’re a startup looking to launch a new website, a small business in need of a redesign, or a Fortune 500 company aiming to focus your site better.
First, determine your target market and your target audience. Settling on these two important issues will streamline your keyword selection for your SEO process. Begin by learning everything you can about the market you’re competing in and who your target audience is: their wants, needs, and desires that will drive them to purchase your products.
Once you arrive at greater clarity on whom you want to sell to and what sorts of conversions you’re after, you can brainstorm your keywords accordingly.
For instance, if you’re selling fine Italian suits for men, then your keyword would have to be more specific than just “men’s suits” for it to really bring your site more qualified leads. After all, you want conversions from people really interested in buying fine Italian men’s suits (and who’d likely spend a lot more money) instead of just people looking to buy any men’s suit in general.
Tactic 2. Find Your Keywords to Target
This is where your SEO process becomes super-crucial: Here’s where you settle on the long-tail keyword that you firmly believe your customers are searching for on the web. If they’re looking for this keyword, you want your site to be at the top of the list in the SERPs!
Use a tool like Google Keyword Planner to find the keyword that suits your business model best. Or research a set of related keywords to target.
After you’ve decided on your target keywords, that’s not enough to stay on top of your SEO game. You have to make a concerted effort to constantly track the rankings of your most important keywords if you want to maintain their positioning. Keep in mind that your keyword rankings will fluctuate as time goes on and may not be as strong as they once were. It’s important that you take action when needed to maintain their positioning.
A tool like Tiny Ranker is just the solution you’re looking for to ensure that your visibility on search engines is always the best it can be.
Tactic 3. Monitor Your Keyword Rankings
Monitoring your keyword rankings is critical since they never stay the same. SEO is in constant flux. There is no guarantee that just because your site ranked highly for a specific keyword last month, it will be the same story this month.
Tiny Ranker offers a great rank tracking tool that lets you get around this uncertainty and figure out exactly if your keywords are still performing for you the way you want them to. Once you know this information, you can keep tweaking your keywords to improve your search engine rankings to get better business prospects visiting your site.
Tiny Ranker gives you up-to-the-minute SEO data, such as:
Daily updated Google rankings
Keyword ranking comparisons with the previous day, week, or month
There’s also the ability to track your SEO keyword rankings on mobile devices and even in several different languages, meaning that there’s a lot of depth to what you can do with this tool in order to always keep your SEO rankings as strong as they can be.
Tactic 4. Publish High-Quality Content
High-quality content gets rewarded by Google’s algorithms in terms of ranking factors for SEO. That’s why you should make it your mission to publish only high-quality content on your site, if you have a blog, for example.
There’s a direct link between longer content (2,000 words and up) and what Google considers “high-quality.” There’s even research that confirms this:
Neil Patel looked at what lengths of content Google puts on its top 10 results in SERPs—unsurprisingly, it was content that was at least 2,000 words. Neil even suggests 3,000 words; why not go for broke and create even super-long content? It can’t hurt, according to SERP results for content for any given keyword.
So the next time you’re feeling like just publishing short filler content of 500 or so words on your site, think twice. Your search rankings could seriously be penalized by Google and other search engines for creating inadequate content that they don’t consider high-quality.
Tactic 5. Manage Your On-Page SEO
Every page on your site can and should also be managed effectively for proper SEO. Remember, it’s not just your entire site that you want to surface highly in the SERPs; it’s also individual webpages, which also appear on search engines.
To achieve this, have one of Tiny Tracker’s main features come to your assistance. Its on-page SEO analysis/optimization tool is ideal for giving anyone from startups and small businesses to Fortune 500 companies deep insight into how exactly they can optimize their landing pages for increased, overall Google visibility.
Here’s how it works: Straightforward icons in its user interface tell you specifically which of your keywords require improvement and which are already optimal the way they are.
Vital SEO ranking factors like title tags, meta descriptions, and texts are carefully checked through this analysis, and helpful suggestions are offered, so you can optimize your pages and get the rankings you want.
First, visitors are going to bounce from your website if your site’s slow because they don’t want to wait.
Second, your SEO rankings are now also going to get penalized if your site’s speed isn’t up to par!
But what is fast enough for today’s users and visitors?
According to SEMrush, nothing slower than 2 seconds. I’ll stress that again: If your site loads at an average page slower than 2 seconds, chances are great that your visitors will bounce and your SEO rankings will take a hit.
Steer clear of the SEO tactics that Google frowns on, and your rankings will be a lot healthier. Not everything that looks as if it can help your SEO rankings will actually do so, especially since Google is the final arbiter on what constitutes SEO tactics that are legitimate for ranking in its search results.
Not every SEO tactic is legitimate. Let’s look at the ones that are condemnable as “black hat” and that you should avoid:
Keyword Stuffing: This is when you excessively use your keywords in your content in a way that hampers natural readability.
Aggravating Ads: Too many ads on your pages are a problem. They’re intrusive and ruin the user experience for your audience.
Buying Links: When you buy a link that’s likely not relevant to your content just to get a backlink, it’ll hurt your SEO rankings.
Tactic 8. Surveil Your SEO Competition
You’re not the only business in your industry. In fact, you’re probably not the market leader in your industry, which further heightens the need for you to keep tabs on what your competitors are doing, SEO-wise.
Another very useful feature of Tiny Ranker is its competitor surveillance option, which lets you see whom you’re competing against for rankings on search engines. You aren’t the only business competing for your target keywords.
By checking your competitors’ rankings, you’re empowered to figure out who your strongest competition is. This means you can make adjustments and improvements to your own keywords to more positively affect your rankings.
This feature also allows you to add your own competitors, if you know of a specific competitor in your industry that you should follow really closely.
Tactic 9. Tag Your Images Properly
How you tag your images can have a dramatic impact on your SEO rankings.
Unfortunately, a lot of businesses simply neglect this vital aspect of SEO by completely forgetting to include the all-important ALT attribute as they upload various images for their content. However, search engines can’t effectively see your images; all they can do is actually read the ALT text in order to understand exactly what the image is about!
When you accurately describe your images, it’ll go a long way to having them surface in Google Image searches, thereby helping your entire site’s SEO visibility.
For example, an image of a juicy and mouth-watering steak shouldn’t merely be tagged as “food.” That’s nowhere near specific enough for SEO visibility. Tag an image like this with something quite descriptive like “a big steak with butter served on a white plate.”
It’s 2017. No one wants to navigate a site that looks as if it was built with GeoCities from the late 90s.
Another significant SEO ranking factor is your web design because web design impacts important factors like the user experience, overall usability, and the information architecture (read: how logically and efficiently a page’s information is laid out to support the goal of said page).
Plainly put, if your site is hard to navigate, makes it difficult for visitors to find what they want, and looks unaesthetic, it’ll drop in the SEO rankings.
To create a site with great design, do this:
Use good information architecture.
Use white space.
Chunk your content for easier reading.
Use color contrast to highlight calls to action.
Display your contact info where it’s easy to see.
Create usable navigation.
Prioritize the user experience.
When you incorporate all these design elements, you’re designing a site that’s up to date with what people expect when they visit any site on the web today. As a result, you’re only helping your own cause of optimizing your site’s SEO!
Creating an SEO-Optimized Website Is Easier Than You Think
If you’re completely new to SEO and the web, then it may seem daunting to look after all these specifics to ensure that your business gets found on the Internet. In reality, it’s not all that challenging to optimize your business site for search engines.
Simply prioritize what your business is about and who your target audience is, get a smart tool like Tiny Ranker to do some of the heavy lifting for you, and be meticulous in your SEO monitoring and improvements.
Over time, you’ll see real, beneficial results of your site climbing in the rankings for your chosen keyword(s)—the palpable fruits of your SEO labor!
Unlike some of the other resources we’ve looked at here, it’s a single-page article. That means you don’t have to do a lot of clicking to read everything.
6. Neil Patel’s Step-by-Step Guide to SEO
Neil Patel has redefined content marketing by continually producing longform content that’s relevant to digital marketers. One of his finest works is the step-by-step guide to SEO.
Although it takes longer to get through that article than some of the others (note the word “longform” above), it’s definitely a “one-stop shop” for basic SEO knowledge. If you have a little extra time that you’d like to put into your education, be sure to visit Patel’s guide.
To rank on the topmost page of search engines, it is necessary to find low competition keywords with high traffic.
As these keywords are not covered by most of the websites So, it’s a great opportunity for you to rank on keywords having low competition. These are the best source to increase your website’s organic traffic.
When I started my blogging journey, I was not much aware of the keyword analysis and that was the only reason I failed to get even a 50 organic visitors a day. But, as soon as I started learning, I get to know how important the keyword research for a blog.
A blog having proper keyword optimization can rank easily on top search pages without any link building.
If you have started a blog and want to rank with your targeted keyword to increase your online presence, you must consider these five important factors.
Use of Long Tail Keywords
Blog Post Promotion
By implementing all the above-mentioned strategies, you not only improve your organic traffic but you can also attract a few authoritative and natural backlinks too.
In this guide, I’m going to show how to find low competition keywords with high traffic and easy to rank on them.
You’re going to learn following things here:
How to find profitable low competition keywords
How to use tools to find keywords with low competition
How to write a successful blog post that people want to read
How to Find Low Competition Keywords with High Traffic Volume
Sometimes, searching for profitable keywords with low competition becomes difficult when you analyze some specific keywords because many high authoritative sites are already ranking for those keywords.
So, what you have to do for your keyword research? Well, you don’t need to worry about here I have discussed some important techniques to find and optimize your website for ‘Low competition keywords’.
What are the low competition keywords?
Low competition keywords are those keywords that have an average amount of search volume with low competition.
A good searches volume depend on the type of your niche. For some niches, even 40 to 50 average monthly searches are sufficient to rank well in search engine. In other niches, average monthly search volume between 1,000 to 3000 is good.
High Search Volume + High Competition = SEO Failure
A Good Search Volume + Low Competition = SEO Success
Here are some steps to need to follow to find profitable low competition keywords.
Step 1: Do a Proper Keyword Research
This is the very first and important step to succeed in your goal. There are various tools (free as well as paid) available to find keywords with low competition and high search volumes.
You can use these tools to find your keywords have low competition. I’ll show you how to use them to identify profitable keywords.
a. Google Search
Type your main keyword in Google and make a note of the results appear there. For example, I search for a keyword “best keyboard for typing” and note the total returned results in a spreadsheet.
If the search results return less than or nearby 1,000,000 pages, then there are good chances for ranking on the 1st Page.
The next step is to perform the following search on Google.
‘allinurl: best keyboard for typing’, note the number of results containing ‘best keyboard for typing’ in URL. It shows all results with keyword appearing in URL. If the results are less than or nearby 1000 then you have high chances of ranking on the 1st page with a high-quality content.
‘allintitle: best keyboard for typing’, note the number of results containing ‘best keyboard for typing’ in the title. It shows all results with keyword appearing in the title. A result of under 1,000 or nearby is good and you have high chances of ranking on the 1st page with a high-quality content.
‘allintext:best keyboard for typing’, note the number of results containing ‘best keyboard for typing’ inside the article. It shows all results with keyword appearing in the article. Don’t try for a keyword where ‘Results with allintext’ is 50% more than the ‘Total Results’. In our case, the percentage is very different, so it’s not good to work on this keyword.
b. Find the long tail keywords
Now, you have analyzed the competition of your main keyword so it’s time to find some long tail keywords that match with your main keyword.
Long tail keywords are the best way to get more organic visitors, more leads and more affiliate sales.
They are less competitive as compared to your main keyword and get some decent amount of traffic too from google search.
These are the kind of keyword that appears when a user types into the Google search for what he is looking for. For example, a keyword “start a blog” can have a long tail keyword like “start a blog on WordPress’.
There are various tools to find long tail keywords such as:
# Google Auto Suggest
You may have noticed sometime when you type something on Google, it shows you some suggested keywords that are completing the search term.
But why Google does it?
Google is able to display all those keywords because people search them often. It means they are in high demand but you don’t need to jump up on them yet. You’ll have to do more work before choosing them.
# Google Searches Related Terms
This is another great way to find long tail keywords. Unlike Google auto-suggest, these keywords are also often searched by people.
When you search for a keyword on Google and scroll down the end of the page, you’ll see some related terms of what you have typed.
These are the golden keywords that can help to rank your article on top pages of search engines.
# Use KeywordTool.io
KeywordTool.io is one of the best free tools to find long tail keywords for a long time. This is also the best alternative to Google Keyword Planner and other keyword research tools.
To find long tail keywords you have to enter a keyword and select which country to target e.g. google.com (US), google.co.in (India) etc.
With the free version, you can generate up to 750+ long-tail keyword suggestions for every search term.
# Use SEMrush Tool
To analyze the keywords, I recommend you to use SEMrush which is my favorite SEO tool. SEMrush is a professional SEO tool for digital marketers and for bloggers. With the help of SEMrush, you can find Keyword Difficulty, Keyword Research, Competitors Analysis and Backlink Opportunities.
You can use SEMrush free trial for your keyword research.
Just go to SEMrush, enter your keyword in the search box under Keyword Analytics section and you will see a brief keyword overview for your entered keyword something like this:
Here, you will find the phrase match keywords and Related Keywords around a Targeted Keyword. Click on “View full report” button to expand the list.
After expanding the list, you’ll see the entire list of keywords around “Adsense alternatives” as shown below.
Now, from this list, choose the keywords having following metrics
Keyword Difficulty less than 60.
Number of Words more than 3
Volume more than 200
You can also select some related keywords by expanding related keyword list. These keywords are semantically related to your main keyword. From select keywords, you can keep up to 25 keywords that are relevant, less competitive and have high search volume and remove the rest from the list.
Step 3. Analyze top 10 websites for your keyword
Just because you have done keyword research and have optimized your content for the right keywords doesn’t mean you will automatically get ranks. You will have to work
After finding the long tail keywords with good search volume, the next step is to analyze the strength of top 10 websites for your keyword.
The strength means you need to find information about the Domain authority, Page authority, number of high authority backlinks, their top ranking keywords and number of social shares etc. To check these metrics, I’d suggest you use the Chrome Extensions called as SEOQuake or MozBar.
To rank in the top position of the search engine, it is necessary to analyze what strategy your competitors are using and you can use the same strategy (here I’m not telling you to steal their content) or even better than them to place yourself on top ranking.
Check Competitors strength For Specific Keywords
1. To analyze your competitors and to find low competition keywords, just go to SEMrush dashboard and from the left menu select SEO Toolkit >> Domain Overview >> Enter your website URL >> Monitor your website performance.
Note: You can also use the SEMrush navigation system to find other SEO tools.
2. On the same page, you’ll find the competitor’s analysis section where you’ll see your main organic competitors and competitive positioning map that showing their strength and weakness in SERP ranking.
3. Click on the competitor’s website to find their traffic reports. Here I’m looking to check traffic report of a great SEO blog “bloggersideas.com”
With SEMrush, you can check competitors keywords, their site search traffic, backlinks and top anchor texts as seen below:
By monitoring your competitor’s strategy, you can easily find out the profitable keywords and backlinks to generate more traffic from search engines.
As I already mentioned in this post, do not copy the exact keywords of your competitors, because their targeted audience may be different from your audience. So, it is better to be smart and select the relevant and profitable low competition keywords with high traffic for your website or blog.
Step 4. Write a content that search engines (and people) will love
Now you have collected your low competition keywords list and organic competitor’s details. After analyzing this information, you will be able to come to a conclusion as to what needs to be done so that you can rank in top pages of search engine for your desired keyword.
The next step is to write an engaging content for your readers using this information. You should write a content that can give the satisfactory answer to a reader’s query for what he is searching.
Here are some important points you should remember while creating your content:
Try to create a long-term content having more than 2000 words. A long-term content with high-quality rank high than the short-term content. Include relevant images, screenshots or infographics rather than the just heavy block of text.
Keep your paragraphs short and use numbers or bullets to increase reader’s attention on your article.
Use attractive headings and subheadings to grab the reader’s attention on the page.
Write unique content that means do not copy from other sites. A site having plagiarised content have more chances of being penalized by Google. You can use these free plagiarism checker tools to check your content.
Keep your content grammatical error free. A content with poor grammar can have a negative impression on readers and it directly affects your ranking. (I’m personally using Grammarly to correct my online grammatical mistakes which is the best tool).
Make sure you have written SEO optimized content
To rank on the top page of search engines, you must have to perform proper On-page SEO for your content. This step is something you can never rank without it.
Having On-page SEO means you need to include your targeted keywords in title tag, meta-description, h2 tag, image alt tag and in between your content.
All you have to do is just enter keywords that you want to target with your content within a specified country and hit on “Create SEO Template button” to get SEO-friendly content ideas such as backlink sources, semantically related keywords (for page title, meta description, H1, text), readability and much more.
SEMrush provides you some keywords recommendations and basic recommendations (based on your Google top 10 rivals). It also shows you how your competitors use your target keywords. You can save this result template as a doc file. These ideas help to create a well-optimized SEO content for your website.
You can’t create more than one SEO Content Template with SEMrush free plan. So, I would recommend you to upgrade it to one of their premium plans. And believe me, you will not regret later.
After creating a well-optimized content, make sure you reviewed your content several times (check grammatical mistakes etc.) before hitting the publish button.
Lastly, promote your blog post to all popular social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Medium, Slideshare and with your email subscribers too.
Ranking in the search engine is not a difficult work if you how to do keyword research effectively.
You can rank easily ahead of your competitors if you find the right keywords with low competition and high search volume.
Did you like this post on how to find low competition keywords with high traffic? Do you have any questions?
What tools are you using for keyword research?
Leave a comment below and I will be happy to answer your doubts.
Keyword research is one of the best ways to understand what your readers want and then decide how you can provide value for them through your articles.
Blog posts that target a primary keyword has more chances to get more traffic, leads and sales.
However, choosing the perfect keyword isn’t easy.
You need to perform keyword research to find the right keywords with right intent and even more importantly, profitable keywords with good search volume.
In today’s article, I will show you how to do keyword research with SEMrush, take the maximum advantage of this SEO tool and also a 30-day free trial coupon so that you can use SEMrush to your heart’s content without having to worry about paying.
While this article talks about how to do keyword research using SEMrush, you can typically use the info and insights I give here in any keyword research tool of your choice. I just used SEMrush because it is by far the best and gives results that works.
After you login to the SEMrush dashboard, click on the overview tab under the keyword analytics options (on the left hand sidebar).
You’ll find a search bar in the next screen where you need to enter your broad topic of which you want to find keywords.
You can also select the country (which I highly recommend) for which you are targeting the keyword or preferring an audience of.
For this particular example, I chose the keyword indoor plants. After all is said and done you’ll have a result page as follows.
In the above screen, you can see 4 different reports for my preferred parent keyword “indoor plants”. Let me explain them to you:
1. Organic Search:
It gives you an idea of how many people actually search for the keyword in Google (22.2K in this example) and how many web pages are ranking for that term (28.7M). That’s pretty tough (but we will see how to tackle such tough keywords in some time).
2. Paid Search:
This part reveals if any websites or brands are bidding for that term using paid ads. And what is the average cost per click, in case you wanted to bid for the term too.
3. CPC Distribution:
This section shows the average CPC based on country you would target.
This is something interesting and a key factor to analyze. It shows you the monthly distribution of your target keyword and hence you know if a keyword will bring you traffic all the year round or only on specific months (example, Halloween costumes)
This basic info is important to give you an insight of what elephant you are rearing as your keyword. But, you shouldn’t just shoot for these keywords, that would be foolish.
You can also use the “overview” option to research and find 5-6 key topics around your blog.
These topics can be used as your broad categories. If you already have broad categories, use the above option to research more about your category topics.
The search trend in them and how SERPs are changing with time. This will help you to build a relevancy score for your blog which can help you build authority.
For further digging into the gold rush for more profitable keywords you need to dig deeper.
That’s where we meet…
Phrase Match and Related Keywords
Right below the keywords overview tab, you’ll find option for phrase match and related keywords.
This is where the most technical keyword research happens.
What we did in the first phase was actually find a few parent keywords which could form the pillar of our content strategy.
Targeting them or any similar parent keywords is nearly impossible, not at least if you’re just starting.
For that, you have to find the low-hanging fruits (keywords that have very less competition) and leverage them to first build a strong ranking profile for your blog.
We are targeting low competition keywords because they are often left abandoned by authority sites who already have the resources to rank for much broader and profitable keywords.
Hence they mostly don’t target or rather optimize their content for keywords with very less search volume like 60 searches per month (country specific) or even 20 searches per month.
Aren’t we wasting our time by concentrating on something not fruitful?
Not at all.
In fact these low-hanging keywords are easier to rank because you have dedicated blog posts for these unlike the authority sites.
This way, you have far more chances of ranking and thus more click-through rates in the SERPs.
Eventually these blog posts will also rank for a ton of LSI keywords which will bring more cumulative traffic.
How to Use SEMrush Phrase Match Option for Keyword Research?
Phrase match is a great option when you know you have a product or topic to target but it is too broad.
Phrase match gives you the option to find all possible keywords that are closely related (have the exact phrase you searched) to your target keywords along with alternative words.
You can also use phrase match to find long tail keywords and alternatives to product names (alternative terms used by users to search a product).
In the above image, you can clearly see two profitable keywords with good buyer intent.
This is only half the screenshot, if you actually search it has 2,641 keywords that match your target keyword.
I would say even the two keywords I selected inside say just half of the story, use these keywords (indoor plant stands, grow light for indoor plants) and enter them separately again as you did to the parent keyword to reveal for easier to rank long tail keywords.
How to Use SEMrush Related Keywords Option?
Are you working on a niche you don’t have any idea of?
Many times we come across a keyword that we’d like to rank for but we don’t have any idea for related keywords to write next.
With related keywords, you can easily enter a specific keyword and find all related keywords that might not have the same terms but belong to the same industry.
This time I entered a keyword as vague as “shoes”.
To be honest this is a keyword that is literally impossible to rank and maybe unprofitable too.
But, suppose you thought of working in the shoe niche but you have absolutely no idea about this niche.
This is where Google’s related searches also fail because they will only show you closely knit related searches like shoes for men and shoes online shopping.
To actually save time, digging deeper, you can use SEMrush’s related search feature which easily unlocked me to many keywords like orange coral shoes, gold women sneakers, all black womens tennis shoes, etc.
You could rinse and repeat the same procedure to further refine into more keywords worth targeting.
Now that you found keyword these keywords, I’d suggest to use the same rinse and repeat formula with these to uncover more related keywords to your key topics.
How to Use SEMrush Keyword Difficulty Tool?
Imagine you found a keyword (shoes) with 673,000 searches per month.
Isn’t that the ultimate zen thing to happen for your content strategy?
Most keywords already have content published around them (I hope you know internet’s been there from a long time and much before you’re a blogger).
Often times, these keywords have brands or high authority sites ranking for them.
You wouldn’t even want to mess with their keywords because, well, this is nearly impossible to achieve.
That is why keyword research tools are used to give you an idea of how easy or difficult a keyword is to rank.
These tools use a lot of data like ranking domains’ DA, PA, backlinks, social shares, word count, trust and citation flow based on the tool you’re using.
Most tools are machine algorithms after all.
They do give you an idea (which is correct most of the time) but do not guarantee their accuracy.
This is a matter with every keyword research tool out there, leave alone SEMrush.
So, it is always good to use these tools to get an idea of the game and then perform a check of your own manually.
The keyword difficulty tool shows you a count from 1-100% in which a count higher than 1 towards 100 shows the increasing difficulty of the keyword to rank where 100 is next to impossible to rank for.
SEMrush Keyword Magic Tool
SEMrush’s keyword magic tool is an all in one yet more feature-rich and advanced keyword research tool where you can literally enter a single worded keyword tool and build an entire empire of related long tail keywords to rank for.
With the keyword magic tool, you can enter a single word and then find the most related terms along with their keyword details under one tab.
You can then select these keywords (by pressing the + button) to dump them into the advanced keyword analyzer tool.
Check the image below:
After you’ve done that, you can now refresh the stats in the keyword analyzer to find detailed stats for each keyword like the keyword difficulty, click data, estimated search volume and the top competitors that are already ranking for the terms.
This is all you need to have a bird’s eye view over your whole keyword bucket.
Now select the ones that are the most relevant to your content strategy and use them accordingly.
Wrapping up with a Free Gift:
With this I hope you have had a good idea of how to use the SEMrush keyword research tool to uncover hidden profitable and easier to rank keywords.
Not only that, we also saw how to build an empire of keywords (from a single word) in a niche we have no idea of.
This can be quite useful, not only when you’re building a new website but also in Amazon sites where we often have no idea about the profitable niches we want to target.
our aim with these tutorials is to help you start stronger and win your blogging game.
And no, we don’t want you to spend a dime on keyword research or any such thing from day 1.
That is why, we have partnered with SEMrush to bring you a 30-day free trial coupon so that you can use it to find a year full of blog posts and keyword ideas.
Content is the present and future of marketing. Think about it! Strong content is fundamental to all forms of marketing – social media marketing, SEO, PPC, PR, and email marketing. Traditional marketing is losing its steam, becoming less effective by the day. Customers no longer prefer to be bombarded by product pitches all the time. Instead, they would like brands to focus on delivering relevant, valuable, and consistent content that helps solve their problems. In other words, they’d like brands to focus less on pitching their products and more on providing solutions to the issues they are facing. This is why content marketing is so important in today’s business environment.
In order to achieve your content marketing goals, you need a reliable platform that lets you perform a detailed analysis and assessment of your existing content assets, and provides recommendations to improve the quality of content on your site to maximize its impact. SEMrush is one such platform which can help you amplify your content marketing strategy, specifically 3 tools within SEMrush:
SEO Content Template
In this article, we’ll evaluate the key features of these lesser-known SEMrush tools in detail and examine ways to improve your content marketing strategy.
The SEMrush Content Audit tool lets you quickly audit the content on all the webpages of your website, based on the sitemap data. With this tool, you can determine which pages are effective and which ones are not.
This tool provides you with various data such as social signals from Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and LinkedIn, backlinks, and user signals, such as number of sessions, average session duration, and bounce rate. It also automatically collects metadata, content authors, and content length for each URL. These metrics help you identify pages on your website that are not getting the recognition they deserve and could be improved with an update.
RELATEDGoogle’s Latest Update: Is Google Prioritizing Mobile Over Desktop?
To access this tool, go to Content Analyzer –> Content Audit, enter your domain and hit ‘Start Audit’. Wait for a few minutes while SEMrush gathers the data for you.
Pro Tip: To get a more accurate data, I highly recommend you connect your Google Analytics and Google Search Console accounts with the Content Audit tool. You can do this once SEMrush generates the content audit report.
Once the report is generated, it’s time to identify loopholes and weak spots on your website. The quickest way to do this is by sorting the table by quality metrics such as:
Social shares or backlinks – to find content that is not as popular across the web as some of your other pages.
Content update – to find pages on your site that are the oldest and need an update.
Word count – to find content that could be expanded into longer posts.
You can even manage your work flow within the Content Audit tool and track progress of each of your pages. Your options are ‘Not Done’, ‘In Progress’, and ‘Done’. Use these options to assign priorities to each of the pages that you’d like to improve.
You could also take the URLs that you want to improve and enter them into the On Page SEO Checker (formerly SEO Ideas). With this tool, you’ll receive actionable ideas to improve your strategy, on-page SEO, technical SEO, and more.
With the SEMrush Post Tracking tool, you can analyze and measure the performance of any article by tracking its backlinks, keyword rankings, and social shares. You can use the Post Tracking tool to track the performance of your guest posts on different sites or review any article from your competitors’ sites.
To access this tool, go to Content Analyzer –> Post Tracking, and enter the URL of the article. By default, the tool comes with a ‘demo mode’ with 3 example URLs. So before you proceed, you can check the demo to see how the tool operates.
Within a few seconds, SEMrush will analyze the URL you’ve entered and return with a report showing the article’s keywords, total backlinks, and social shares.
RELATEDHow to Speed Up Your Website (8 Actionable Tips)
Under social shares, you’ll also be able to view the top contributors on Twitter i.e., a list of Twitter influencers who shared or retweeted the article. With this data, you can perform an influencer outreach while promoting your own content that rivals that of your competitor.
The SEO Content Template is a standalone tool that helps SEOs and marketers develop SEO-friendly content. The main goal of this tool is to help you create content that outranks your rivals on the SERPs for your target keywords.
This tool can also help you uncover link building opportunities and discover how your top competitors are using target keywords within their content.
To access this tool, click on SEO Content Template on the left hand navigation menu just below Gap Analysis Tool.
Here, you need to enter your target keywords, select the location, and then hit ‘Create SEO Template’. Within a few seconds, SEMrush will generate a report which will contain the following data:
Key recommendations (based on your Google top 10 rivals) – Semantically related words, backlinks, readability, video content, text length, etc.
See how your competitors use your target keywords
Basic recommendations – Page Title, Meta description, H1, text, etc.
You can also export your template to a Word document to access it offline. This Word doc will list your recommendations for Page title, meta description, text, backlinks, and your rivals’ URLs.
Hands down, keyword research is the secret recipe of any successful website that makes a ton of money.
If you’re still thinking, just analyse the top sites like Neil Patel, Copyblogger, Smart Passive Income, Backlinko etc. What do you notice? They all get a TON of traffic from search engines every single day. In fact, Neil Patel gets almost 2 million visitors every single year to his personal blog which was launched just 3 years ago.
So what they are doing right? They all are dominating SEO with proper keyword research.
Why focus on keyword research?
Without knowing and targeting the keywords that your target audience are typing on Google to reach your products or website pages, you can NEVER attract the right people who’re interested to buy your stuff. That’s the reason why you need to dominate keyword research and try to rank #1 for your desired keywords on Google search results.
How to do keyword research in 2018 and beyond
If you’re wondering about how to do keyword research like a pro, this awesome post is a treat for you. In this detailed post on how to dominate keyword research, you will find two main pillars to boost your traffic from search engines.
One is: finding high ranking keywords with less traffic
Second is: creating “long form of content” (so you can use your targeted keywords within your content to get massive search traffic really quickly).
Let’s get started with the first part on how to dominate keyword research first.
How to find “low competition” keywords with “high traffic”?
Let me give you a quick tip if you want to dominate keyword research like a pro: find low competitive keywords with high traffic.
For instance, when I fire up keywords like “SEO services”, Google shows me a ton of competition for the keyword.
So it’s almost impossible to get #1 rankings for such a competitive keyword. Although it’s a great keyword to target but it takes a ton of time and lots of quality links to get traffic for that keyword.
Here’s why you need to find low competition (and most often) long tail keywords to master the art of doing keyword research.
In the above image you can notice that, 1 word phrases like “shoes” have really high competition and they are of high cost. So don’t compete for those tough keywords.
Instead compete for long tail keywords so you can quickly boost your search traffic (a long tail keyword usually contains 4 or 5 more words in it). Did you know that 70% of search traffic comes from long tail keywords? Yes, that’s the reason why you need to focus on them more often.
So what can you do to get better rankings more quickly?
Target low competition keywords with better traffic. If you’re wondering how to dominate keyword research and how to find low competitive keywords, let me show you how with my favorite SEO tool SEMrush.
You need to use the best keywords if you are just starting to dominate keyword research. You should focus on finding what your competitors are doing. Find out how they have already ranked on the first page of a search engine results page. Then, figure out ways on how to beat your competitors. Let me show you how.
Choose low competition keywords. It boosts your website’s rank. Here is how can you find them.
#1. Build a list of SEED keywords
Let me quickly define what are seed keywords.
Seed keywords are also known as head keywords. For instance, “SEO” is a seed keyword. These seed keywords should always be relevant to your overall website topics. Once you build a list of seed keywords that are relevant to your industry, it is easier to expand them to dominate keyword research and rank #1 for almost any keyword.
You need to find the most relevant search terms that will drive to your website. The easiest way to find out the best seed keywords in your industry is to check your competitors’ websites.
Go to SEMrush, click on “Organic Research”. Under that click on “Positions”.
Now, enter a domain name and click “Search”. It will display list of keywords your competitor’s website is ranking for in Google’s top 20 organic search results.
You can apply “filters” to find keywords that are most relevant to your business.
You can generate an “Organic Search Positions” report for multiple domains.
To view unique keywords per domain, use the Domain vs. Domain tool and export your results.
#2. Expand your keyword list
Now, once you have a list of your seed keywords, you can continue keyword expansion. You can use your initial keyword research with search terms and phrases that suit your blog topics.
Go to SEMrush, click on “Keyword Research” and under that click on “View full report” to find phrase match keywords. Enter a term from your initial list of search terms and click Search. It displays the list of keyword phrases that include an indicated term.
You can also use the Related Keywords report to find related keywords. This will list phrases that are semantically related to a particular queried search term.
Alternatively, apart from SEMrush, you can also use Google suggestion tool.
Have a look at the following screenshot to better understand about what I’m talking.
In the above image, you can see that I used the seed keyword as “SEO tips”, for that keyword, Google suggestion tool (that you find at the end of the search results page) is showing the above keyword ideas. That’s how you normally elaborate your seed keywords list.
You can also export your results with all the other keywords you would like to target to dominate keyword research in 2018 and beyond.
#3. Find high-volume keywords that have less competition
To know how much potential traffic your website can receive, you need to know your keywords’ search volume and also average monthly searches for each keyword.
Always remember that the higher your rankings for high-volume search terms are, the more traffic will be driven to your website. Obviously, competition for these keywords is very high.
And there is no point in trying to rank for keywords as you will have no chance of ranking for. So, you need to find the right balance between a keyword’s search volume and its competition level.
1. Make sure you estimate competition level
To view both metrics for each keyword, use the SEMrush Organic Positions report:
Volume: It is the average number of search queries for a keyword in the last 12 months.
Competition: It is the density of advertisers using a particular search phrase for their ads.
Find out your competitor keywords
The quickest way to find profitable keywords and dominate keyword research is to spy on your competitors. Find out what all the keywords that your competitors are using to generate more traffic and sales to their sites.
That’s how you can easily find traffic generating blog post ideas and topics to increase your overall website traffic from search engines like Google. So the first and most important step that you should do to know your competitor’s marketing strategies is finding out their keywords.
Make sure NOT to copy all your competitors keywords because your target audience will be entirely different from your competitors, right? So be smart while doing competitor analysis if you want to dominate keyword research in 2018 and beyond. Here are few quick tips to do keyword research easily by spying on your competitors using SEMrush:
Examine which keywords and pages drive organic traffic using SEMrush. You can use SEMrush, to view a site search traffic and keywords. This tool shows you great data about sites’ search engine traffic based on estimates of keyword traffic and rankings.
Apart from SEMrush, you can also use tools like Google Adwords keyword tool, Alexa, SpyFu for doing keyword research quickly.
To find competitors backlinks you can use some backlink checkers like Ahrefs, Majestic SEO, Monitor backlinks, Open Site Explorer. Backlink analysis will be so much helpful to boost your overall website’s SEO. When you want to dominate keyword research and rank #1 for any keyword, make sure to find ways to build as many quality backlinks as possible. That’s how you can score big in SEO.
2. Find out the competitiveness for a particular keyword
For this purpose, you can use the SEMrush Keyword Difficulty tool. Using this tool, you can view the keyword difficulty of up to 100 keywords at once. Just enter one search term per line and click the “Show Difficulty” button.
The range from 1 to 100% keyword difficulty shows you an estimate of how difficult it would be to seize your competitors’ positions in the Google top 20 with a particular keyword. The higher the percentage, the more effort you will need to outrank your competition for targeted keywords.
If the percentage is above 80%, it means they are the most difficult keywords. If you have a new site, you should not focus on highly competitive keywords.
If the percentage is between 60 and 80%, then it means those are the keywords with average difficulty. With high-quality content and relevant backlinks, you will be able to seize your competitors’ positions in time.
If the percentage is below 60% then those keywords are the easiest to rank for. But, these are most difficult to find. Discovering low-competition, high-volume keywords will require hard work and patience.
If you can find a strong list of these search terms and implement them throughout your site, then you will have a very good chance of ranking high for these high-volume search terms.
3. Extend your keyword research
Let’s say, you are working in a highly competitive industry, such as insurance or fitness. Then all of the keywords you are targeting have a difficulty of more than 80 or even 90%. However, for every keyword, you can see your top 20 strongest competitors.
With the help of “Organic Positions” report, you can analyze every domain’s keywords and find your competitors’ weaknesses. To get more keywords with less competition, extend your research by generating the “Organic Competitors” report for each of the top 20 domains with the highest domain strength.
Finding low competition keywords with Keyword Planner
Let’s now talk for a while about the widely used keyword research tool called Google’s Keyword Planner.
It’s used by millions of SEO’s all around the globe and it’s a fantastic tool. Not only it’s free but it also a great tool to begin with to dominate keyword research.
Google Keyword tool gives you a traffic estimation of your target Keywords and also helps in finding more relevant and related Keywords of your niche. To use Google Keyword Planner tool, you need to have a Google Adwords account. And did I say that it’s free.
With the help of Google search and Google keyword research tool, you can find some low competitive but high-medium traffic keyword. To analyze the competition of a keyword, you can then use SEMrush or Long Tail Pro. It will also help you to determine how easy or difficult it is to rank for a certain keyword.
Remember, getting 20 targeted users is always better than getting 200 untargeted users. So, don’t leave those keywords with low traffic. Make sure that you check “Google traffic trend” as it will help you to check your target keyword traffic pattern over the time.
#1. Use Google Instant search to discover Keyword
With Google instant search, you can find a perfect keyword. You can generate tons of ideas. Put any keyword related to your niche. Google Instant search will suggest search results. Depending upon your post type, you can pick a couple of them which make sense to you.
Start adding it to Google Keyword suggestion tool once you have found 3-4 such keywords and then perform a search. Pick any two keywords. Now next step is, find if those two keywords are going to do any benefit regarding traffic.
#2. Keyword search analysis
Put those two keywords in search tool and perform a search. It will show relevant keyword ideas and also will let you find many relevant keywords that you can target. You can create your SEO strategy depending upon your post quality and length. Now, check which one of them is less competitive using SEMrush.
Your job is NOT yet done with keyword research. There’s one more essential thing you need to do start getting more search engine traffic.
The importance of long form content and how to create it easily?
As I said above, dominating keyword research and finding great keywords is NOT enough to get more search traffic.
You need to create “great content” and use your keywords within it to start ranking for them.
So what do I mean by great content?
Great content = Long form of content (with typically 2000 or even more words)
Long form of content is NOT any other buzz-phrase.
Long form of content is the content that is 10 times better than anything else out there. In other words, it means content that stands out and outranks other content on the same topic in search.
Now, you may be wondering how to create something 10 times better than others. With just five attributes, you can identify 10x and long form of content.
It provides great user experience
It solves a problem
It evokes an emotional response
It is well-written
It is delivered in a unique way
You need to strive to create something original and worthwhile rather than spinning what’s already out there. To give you even more clarity about long form of content, you should start by asking yourself what you think about when you look for an answer to a question on the web.
Here’s a great image of the importance of long form of content.
Obviously, you will look for an answer to a specific question and you want to understand a topic more deeply. If you find something that really solves your problem that you will bookmark it or share it with friends, then that’s the long form of content.
Brainstorm and choose a tempting topics
With just a single post, you can’t solve all of your audience problems. So, take up one aspect of one problem where you can offer immediate solution that helps audience. Brainstorm for ideas to come up with tempting topics.
For example, instead of writing about “make money online”, write “earn your first $100 online ” or instead of writing about “six abs”, write about “six abs for busy people”.
Once you write down all those blog post ideas, make sure whether readers are interested in in your topic or not. How?
Use keyword research tools like Google keyword planner, Moz keyword explorer to check search volume. Check whether the topics you chose has at least 1k searches per month for relevant keywords.
To know the topics you chose are popular on social media, you can use social media tools like Buzzsumo. Check how many shares a particular post has to determine popularity.
To know whether the topics you chose already exists on the web or not, use Google search. If there is low competition then it means readers are not interested.
Dig into the topic and provide unique content
So, once you have decided on what topic to write. Do as much research as you can. Start by learning everything that’s out there on your topic that you are going to address.
Take a look at the content that’s already been created. How is the user experience? Is there any way that you can improve that content and create a piece of content that tops it. Gain a deep insight into the core of why people are interested in this subject.
Analyze yourself, what’s missing? Once you can identify a gap, that’s where your 10x content will fit in.
Perform your own original research or create a powerful infographic. It’s the content that offers a unique view and singular experience that will be most successful. In addition to maintaining uniqueness, being exceptional and different from everyone else out there, is really important.
Turn your content into visually appealing
Long form of content you create should be complete and should give seamless experience that’s enjoyable for your audience.
If your content has a heavy block of text, then no one is going to read it, no matter how well it is written. It must be visually appealing and easily accessible.
Rather giving emphasis on “readability”, you need to look for ways to make your content easier for your audience. For example, SEO WordPress plugins such as Yoast have a number of recommendations to improve the readability of your content.
However, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to make content easier to read. Here is how you can improve your content’s flow and keep readers on the page:
Always keep your paragraphs short and sweet, three or four sentences makes one paragraph.
Use bullet points to break up your content and keep your readers’ attention on the page.
Format your posts as lists. Use headings and subheadings to help direct readers’ attention and give your content a sense of flow.
In addition to the above points, you should also consider diversifying your format. Instead of relying on some rigid formatting guidelines, do what is natural for your respective audience.
Use attractive headlines
Your topic headline should tempt the readers to click through and read your content. So, you need to take time to craft a headline that makes readers desperate to learn. Your crafted headline should use these 4 methods to convince readers to click:
Useful. Whether it gives any practical use to readers.
Urgent. It should make them to read immediately.
Ultra-specific. They should understand what benefit they will get by reading the content.
Unique. It should give them a feeling that they haven’t read this anywhere else.
In addition to the above methods, use power words that enhances the emotional impact. Before making a final decision, brainstorm at least 10 headlines for your post. Keep in mind that headlines represent your reader’s’ first impression of your content. Ask yourself whether headlines you kept are compelling or not.
For example, rather than simply focusing on a “traditional” headline, consider…
Phrasing the title of your post as a question
Presenting your post as a list.
Use a controversial title.
Let’s say you run an ecommerce site that sells clothes, accessories, laptops, all gadgets and you are trying to spice up your underperforming content. How could you apply the above points to your content?
“Are You Looking To Buy Budget Laptop? The Ultimate Guide to Choose The best One”.
“7 Fashioned Clothes That Suits For Several Occasions”.
“Stop Wasting Money and Grab The Offer Now, Save Up To 60%”
Of the titles above, which are more compelling at first glance?
There is a lot of competition around witty headlines as it represents the ultimate way to stand out from the crowd before your content even gets clicked.
Organize content and give enough polish
The way you organize your content is also very important. To bring structure to your ideas, create an outline while writing your epic post. To structure your content effectively, make sure you consider these while organizing content.
Promise: Whether your content fulfill the promise of the headline you kept.
Flow: Check whether the information you present has a natural flow. Don’t stuff keywords unnecessarily as it spoils the meaning in the sentence.
Objections: Did you address the questions that audience may have?
Completeness: Check whether you provided enough information to your readers through your content or not.
To organize your thoughts, you can use mind-mapping map. Use your outline and few guiding questions to create a truly epic content. Ask yourself these questions while creating killer content.
Do you have a powerful closing that inspires your readers to take an immediate next step?
Have you used short paragraphs and bullet points to improve readability?
Did you use simple and easy language that can be understood by your audience?
Have you used headings and subheadings that helps readers to understand the content?
Before publishing your content, make sure you reviewed your content several times to improve its clarity and flow. Don’t use jargon words, replace those words with simple words. To check the grammatical errors and spelling mistakes, read you post aloud.
Lastly, without promotion and without reaching to audience, even though it is of great content it is of no use. Use smart promotion to give boost to your content. Share your post on social media using relevant hashtags. If you mentioned any blogger in your post, then make sure you inform them.
Repurpose your posts in other platforms like Medium, Slideshare. Reach out to influencers and ask them to share. Email the post to your subscribers.
3 tools that help you dominate keyword research in 2018
#1. SEMrush: This is always my favorite SEO tool. Not only helpful to dominate keyword research but it also helpful for competitor analysis, backlink analysis, site audits and so many more. You can grab their 30 day free trial using this link and I absolutely recommend everyone using this tool to get better at SEO.
Although it has so many features, as we’re only talking about how to do keyword research in this post, so let’s only talk about keyword research related features that you get along with SEMrush. Here are few of them.
Find rankings for a specific keyword
Find keyword suggestions for keyword research
Find keywords with a specific number of search results on Google
Find keywords with or without a specific word
Find keywords with a specific word count
Find a site’s estimated organic traffic history and many more
#2.Keywordtool.io: This is one of the best alternatives to Google’s keyword planner. Not only it’s free to use but it also gives you a ton of keyword ideas to grow your overall search engine traffic.
If you are wondering why you should use this tool over keyword planner, here are few reasons.
It provides you up to 750+ long-tail keyword suggestions for every search term
Unlike Keyword Planner or other tools, this tool is extremely reliable as it works 99.99% of the time
You can use Keyword Tool absolutely for free, even without creating an account (again, unlike Google where you need to sign in to start using their free keyword research tool).
#3. KW Finder: Do you want to find really good long tail keywords that have less traffic? Then, this keyword research tool is for you. It also has a free version which is enough for most SEO users to dominate keyword research in 2018 and beyond.
All you need to do is to just enter a keyword of your choice on their tool and it will immediately gives you a ton of keyword ideas along with the metrics like search volume, keyword difficulty and so many other metrics.
Final thoughts on dominating keyword research & rank #1 for any keyword on Google
If you are looking to grow your website’s search traffic and sales, focus on keyword research. If you know how to do keyword research like a pro, you will be way ahead of your competitors.
You can easily outrank your competitors if you find and use the RIGHT keywords (low volume and high traffic).
Ever wondered how you can get your website to the top position in Google without spending a fortune? Ranking a website to the top of Google requires concerted effort and wealth of SEO experience especially for highly competitive keywords.
Nevertheless, it is possible to effortlessly outrank your competition, when you build your SEO strategies based on competition data. Acquiring your competitors’ ranking and keywords data; allows you create winning SEO strategies.
Your journey to the top position in search engine results depends on how you make use of the data you obtain from intelligence competition tools like SEMRush. You can create content marketing, backlink, and social media marketing ideas that will help you rank better in search results and increase your traffic.
In this guide, we will endeavor to guide you step by step, on how you can enhance your website’s performance and improve your online brand using SEMRush.
Just Looking For A SEMrush Coupon Code?
Click Below and Get the Free Trial of SEMrush for 14 Days!!
2. Creating New Projects & Managing Reports on SEMRush (5)
3. Identify Your Competitors and Outrank them (5)
4. Using SEMRush for Advanced Keyword Research (13)
5. Link Building like a Ninja! – Data Driven Link Building (10)
6. Paid Search Data Analysis (6)
7. Take Social Media Marketing by Storm (4)
8. SEMRush in Mobile Marketing (2)
9. Mining Tactical Organic Ranking Data (13)
10. Traffic Analysis Gets Better with SEMRush (2)
11. Bonus SEMRush Tools that Take You to Next SEO Level (6)
12. Conclusion – Final Thoughts
What is SEMRush ?
SEMRush is a powerful all-in-one search engine optimization and marketing suite that comprises of several tools that are very useful for digital marketing professionals.
You can use SEMRush for several tasks that include: Position Tracking, Backlink Analysis, Keyword Research, PPC Research, Site Audit, Social Media Monitoring and Content Planning.
SEMRush is the most complete SEO competition intelligence tool you will ever come across. There are many other SEO tools out there, but SEMRush is above board.
In this review, I will cover all SEMRush features in details, and also guide you on how to use each of its tools for specific tasks.
SEMRush provides users with the most detailed and innovative SEO and digital marketing metrics.
Very comprehensive SEO reports that are ideal for marketing agencies, clients, individual digital marketers and large organizations.
You can generate reports that can be sent directly to clients or for future reference – the reports are available in PDF and branded White Label reports can be created too.
You can generate up to 10,000 reports per day with the business subscription and you can have multiple logins. You can generate 3,000 and 5,000 reports per day respectively with the other subscription plans.
SEMRush Integrates seamlessly with Google Analytics and Google Webmaster console enabling you to track your site performance proficiently.
It comes with great customer support, a large community of users and a comprehensive knowledge base available to all subscribers.
SEMRush contains several SEO tools included in one suite and is accessible on all subscription plans. The difference is in the number of reports you can generate, the number of projects and other advanced features that are not necessary for basic subscribers.
The SEMRush team is continually improving and adding more features to enhance its performance.
Some discrepancies have been reported in SEMRush data.
The monthly subscription is expensive for digital marketers with a limited marketing budget.
Is SEMRush Right for You?
Whether you are running a small niche blog or a large corporate website, ranking high in the search results is the ultimate goal for every webmaster. For this reason, SEMRush resonates with the SEO needs of every site owner irrespective of the size or niche of the site.
You will find SEMRush to be very resourceful in generating content marketing ideas and improving your online brand presence.
Before we get into specific details of how each SEMRush tool works, here is a quick summary of its features and why you should consider it for your day-to-day digital marketing needs.
7 Features that Make SEMRush an Incredible SEO Tool
SEMRush is an great SEO tool since it combines all the features needed to create a solid SEO strategy. The following are some of the features you will find very useful in SEMRush:
1. Complete Site Audit – SEMRush allows you to quickly and accurately carry out an SEO audit of your site and easily find out where improvements are needed.
2. Competition Analysis – You can quickly identify your competitors and have an in-depth analysis of their strength and use this data to compete with them fiercely.
3. Advanced Keyword Research – Unlike other Keyword research tools, SEMRush keyword research tool is very comprehensive. You can not only carry out basic keyword research, but also find out which keywords your competitors are ranking for and their strength. You can also use the feature ‘Related Keywords’ to find new keywords in your niche that you did not know existed.
4. Tactical Organic Research – With SEMRush you can generate a detailed organic research report based on a keyword phrase or domain. This organic research has all the parameters needed to build a strategic search engine marketing plan.
5. Link Building like a Pro – Linking building never becomes easier than when you use SEMRush because you get to see all your competitor’s backlinks. Instead of guessing your competitor’s strength, you get the valuable backlink data and act on it. This backlink profile data not only saves you time but guarantees you success.
6. PPC Advertising Insight – PPC advertising can be very frustrating especially when you do not target the right keywords. The results can be poor, and you can sink thousands of dollars with little success. SEMRush allows you to peep into competitor’s campaign ads keywords and use this data to your advantage.
7. Social Media Marketing – Social media can be a goldmine, and you can increase your traffic from social sites when you use SEMRush to measure your social media reach and match it with your competitors.
Start With Website Health & Off-Page Optimization
When you are working towards improving your organic ranking, it’s helpful to begin by looking at your site’s SEO health. Before you can start off-page SEO, ensure your on-page SEO is perfect. SEMRush site audit tool and the SEO ideas are the best tools to help improve your website.
With SEO ideas tool you can check how your site pages appear in SERPs on Google. You can compare your site with competitors using specific target keywords.
The recommendations given are very useful for improved optimization and make it easier to outrank your competitors. You can also discover new keywords ideas that you have potential to rank.
What We Will Cover In This Section
Creating New Projects & Managing Reports on SEMRush
There are three ways you can create a new project on SEMRush:
a) From the search bar – Use the Create Projects button to create a new project for a new keyword or domain. See the illustration on the image below:
b) From Project Menu – On the left sidebar menu under projects you can click to view existing projects as well as create a new project. Below is an illustration of how to create a new project from the sidebar menu:
c) From Tools’ Menu on the Dashboard – You can use a tool drop-down menu like the SEO ideas or backlink audit to create a new project as shown in the mage below.
In this section, we will also cover the important steps you should take while using SEMRush to audit your site. Here is a quick summary:
a) Site Audit Tool – You can access the tool under – Dashboard > Site Audit Tool, you should then create a project and begin your audit. It’s worth noting, the Site audit report should be the starting point and a future reference point. Also note that WordPress as the most preferred platform for building SEO friendly sites, comes with two different versions. We recommend you to use the WordPress.org version as it gives you more room to handle the SEO of your website.
b) SEO Ideas Tool – This is a handy tool that gives you meticulous insights on where you need to improve your on-page SEO. You can check for HTML validation errors, content ideas, semantic ideas and overall backlink ideas with perfect action plans. This is the most comprehensive SEO ideas suggestion you will ever come across.
c) Domain Profiling Tool – Very easy and quick way to determine how Google and other search engines view your site. This tool gives you the domain overview including backlinks, organic results and lists your main organic competitors. You can quickly make use of this tool to swiftly assess and analyze any domain.
d) Backlink Audit Tool – With this tool, you have every information you need to know about who is linking to your site. The backlink audit tool augments the role played by Google Webmaster Console, but it displays the data in a very easy format. You can use this tool to edit all the bad links pointing to your site.
e) Brand Monitoring Tool – This is a tool that helps you determine the strength of your brand depending on the number of social mentions. You can use it to track and analyze your social reach.
All these tools can be accessed on your SEMRush dashboard as highlighted on the image below:
Collectively these tools can be used to help improve the general on-page SEO before you can embark on the off-page SEO.
1 SEO Audit Tool
The value of SEO audit of your site cannot be overlooked, the first step before you start ranking your site is to determine your current status. Nothing does it better than the SEMRush site audit tool. Here is how to access and use site audit tool:
Log in to view the SEMRush dashboard
Locate the site audit tool on the dashboard
Create a new project to get started:
After creating the project, as shown above, you should now see a new screen that shows your new project and the site audit settings as shown below:
Click to start the site audit and wait for a few minutes to see the results. In the background, SEMRush bots will crawl your site and generate a report. This is a comprehensive report that you can save as PDF for further analysis and future tracking of your site’s improvement.
The report shows all the critical issues on your site like missing ALT tags, duplicate content, no-follow links, missing Meta descriptions and fundamental HTML errors like missing Doctype. You can certainly improve your website by looking at the audit report.
2 SEO ideas Tool
SEO ideas tool is similar to the site audit tool as it helps you identify potential ranking ideas for your site. Using this tool requires you to be logged in first, then navigate to – Projects > SEO Ideas. You can use the existing project you don’t have to create a new one:
You can save and collect the SEO ideas, and this will give you a complete report on the potential keyword, your highest ranking pages and where you can improve. The report you generate should have the following details:
Potential Backlink ideas – this are broken down to a detailed report that entails very specific actions that should be taken to improve.
Content & Sematic Ideas – These are ideas that can be implemented to improve the content and the general structure of the site.
There is thorough page by page analysis with amazing results on what action needs to be taken to improve your on-page SEO.
3 Domain Profiling
SEMRush allows you to quickly determine how your site is performing using all ranking indicators. This combines your backlink profile, organic search, and paid search.
This is data you can quickly use for benchmarking and determining the necessary strategies to improve your SERPs.
To check your site, type the main site URL on the SEMRush search bar and select the option ‘Domain Overview.’
The comprehensive results are as shown in the image below:
4 Backlink Profile Audit Tool
Backlinks remain one of the most important ranking factors that have not changed over the years. The number of backlinks and the quality determines how well your website ranks in search results.
SEMRush provides the best backlink audit tool allowing you to check and weed out backlinks pointing to your site. Bad links have been known to cause a negative impact on the overall ranking of a website.
To audit your backlinks, you should navigate to – Dashboard > Backlink Audit Tool > Select Your Project (on the drop down menu)
When you select the project you would wish to have a backlink audit you will be prompted to set your preferred settings.
You can set the scope of your audit, branding settings, choose a category for your domain and even target a specific country. The country targeting feature is ideal for local SEOs.
The results of this audit display all the information you need to find out which toxic links are having an adverse impact on your SERPs. Here are the results of my backlink audit:
From the report, you can see there are numerous links that need to be edited in order to clean up the backlink profile. Cleaning this backlink profile will have a significant impact on the ranking.
5 Brand Monitoring Tool
Several SEO pundits concur with the notion that Google and other search engines are increasingly paying more attention to branding. A while ago the Google update that slammed exact-match-domains ranking sent shockwaves in the entire industry.
Beside the fact that search engines are paying attention to branding, a good brand stands to gain increased direct traffic. To audit or monitor your brand with SEMRush, you can use the Brand monitoring tool.
To begin monitoring your brand, you should navigate the SEMRush dashboard and select the Brand Monitoring Tool.
When you select the project you will get a prompt to fill in the details you would like to monitor. You can add keywords related to your brand, and you will get notified when there are brand mentions. You can also choose the option to get emailed every week with the report.
This brand monitoring tool can help guide your content marketing plan since you get the feedback on which content performs well.
Find Your Competitors and Outrank them
In a cut throat, SEO competition it becomes apparent that competitors’ ranking data is all the power you need to outrank them. If you had a magic wand and got all your competitors’ secrets, you would definitely outrank them.
SEMRush is that magic wand that serves you with all the competition data you would wish for. In a few steps, you can quickly determine your competitor’s Achilles heel and when you attack you fall like thunder!
In this section, we will be looking at the different approaches of checking you competitor’s strength.
Here are the basic steps that we will learn to implement in detail:
a) Find Your Competitors – This is the first step and can be implemented by expanding the main competitor’s list on your domain overview report. This list can be exported to a PDF or CSV and slowly analyzed.
b) Check Organic Trend, Top Keywords, and Top PagesThe main aim is to outrank your competitors, in this regard you should look at their organic trend, identify the top keywords and pages they rank for.
You should use this information to build content on your site that is better than their top pages.
Here is how to spy, strategize and implement these tactics:
6 Identify Your Real Organic Competitors
Identifying your real organic competitors is the first step of competition analysis. You can check your competitors under the main domain overview tool, or you can click on organic search on the left sidebar to display organic search data.
To check the organic competitors, type your domain on the top search bar in your dashboard and select domain overview.
Pro Tip: Learn how to choose a perfect Domain Name
Below the top organic keywords you are ranking, you will see the main competitors section. You should now click on view full report to view the list of all your organic competitors. If possible, you can also export this list for further analysis.
As you can see the results above, the organic competition analysis is well illustrated. The competition level column scores your opponent based on a percentile. The more the bar is full, the higher the percentage.
7 Check Your Competitors Domain Overview Report
To determine the strength of a specific competitor, you can choose them from the list and check their domain overview report. The process is similar like you carried out on your domain on step #3.
The simplest way is clicking on the URL as listed in the report above and you will see all their organic data. You should now begin analyzing every section, paying keen attention to the backlink profile since it largely determines how sites rank.
8 Organic Search Trend
Equally important is the organic search trend that is directly below the domain overview. This trend should help you judge the age of your competitor, top keywords and both organic and paid keywords.
SEMRush makes it very easy to mine specific data since you can click on any link and generate a PDF report.
9 Top Organic Keywords
If you can identify the keywords they are ranking for; you can easily target the same keywords. Below the charts, there is a section on the top performing keywords that you can expand to view all your competitor keywords.
SEMRush is an awesome tool since it also shows you the approximate traffic they are receiving with a specific keyword. You can also see the position and the keyword difficulty.
If you have found an interesting keyword you want to rank for too, you can quickly click on the SERP to view the search engine results.
On the screenshot above is an example of a keyword I have selected and clicked on the SERPs to view how it appears in the search results.
10 Competitor Top Ranking Pages
You can determine which pages your competitor ranks better. With this information, you can visit the page and see evaluate the content and implement on your website too.
To view the top ranking pages, navigate to Organic Research > Pages
You can repeat this procedure for a number of competitors and find out their top performing pages that you can outrank.
It is advisable you begin by those offering you the least competition and build your stamina and strategy to tackle the fiercest competitors too.
Using SEMRush for Advanced Keyword Research
Keyword research is the first step for the success or failure of any SEO plan. The significance of keyword research cannot be overlooked especially for people starting new websites.
Keyword research techniques explored here are also very useful for an established websites since they can be used to develop new content ideas. SEMRush offers the most comprehensive keyword research tool. From basic keyword research to advanced competitive, SEMRush is simply a ‘Swiss Knife.’
In this section, we will be covering nearly everything you need to know about keyword research using SEMRush. Let’s look at the important points that we will be covering:
a) Keyword Overview – This section will give you the basic information that includes: organic search, paid search, trend, CPC distribution by country, related keywords, and quick organic search results. It will also show you some basic ads related to the keyword. This will help you to get a quick glimpse of the ranking data.
b) Phrase Match – In this, you will learn to generate the keywords list by volume, keyword difficulty, CPC, search results, trend and advertising competition.
c) Advanced Filter – This filter will allow you to delve deep into keyword analysis. This feature is available on all the tabs and helps to sort the keywords quickly based on the following parameters:
Number of words
Related relevance for related keywords tab.
d) Keyword Magic – This is a tool that you can use to quickly generate up to 1 million keywords and save in one single file.
e) Ads History – It shows the keyword data that has been used in PPC ads and the possible ad traffic price.
f) Mobile Keyword Research – SEMRush has this mobile feature that lets you view the same results for mobile traffic.
g) Reports Generation Tools – SEMRush has elaborate tools to help generate PDF, CSV and white label reports for advanced users. These tools work seamlessly and can be scheduled or directly emailed to clients.
Let’s now dive deep and learn to use these features.
11 Basic SEMRush Keyword Research
The most basic keyword research using SEMRush can be done by typing the keyword phrase on the top search bar and selecting the keyword research option. Below is a quick illustration:
Alternatively, you can click on the ‘Keyword Analytics’ menu on the left sidebar and select overview. You can now type your keyword and check the results as shown in the image below:
You will now view the basic keyword data that include CPC, related keyword, keyword trend, paid search and organic search. This is a general overview of the specific keyword, and it gives you a rough estimate of the keyword data. There is also a tab for related keywords that is very useful for identifying other keywords you may also want to rank for.
In general, you get as much data as possible for a specific keyword from SEMRush. This allows you to make a quick decision on whether a specific keyword is worth your attention or not.
Finally, with the basic keyword research, it is possible to select a specific country. This allows local SEOs to find data that is relevant to their specific country. There are several countries listed, and you can select your preferred country and search the keyword data.
12 Keyword Magic Tool
On the left side menu under ‘keyword analytics,’ there is a menu for the magic keyword, which provides you with advanced keyword data. When you click on the ‘keyword magic’ menu, you will see a search bar where you can type and search
Keyword Magic makes research of the best keywords to be very easy. You can get extensive reports and has the ability to generate up to 1 million keywords within a single file.
The bulk research not only saves time but also delivers efficiency since the keywords can be arranged and grouped in different niches. For this reason, the tool does the magic like no other keyword research tool.
You can also focus on a single keyword within a group for deep keyword analysis.
The keyword magic tool has a top bar that allows users to sort out the keywords based on; words count, competition, keyword difficulty, CPC and SERP features. You can also choose to include or exclude certain words in the list that you generate.
On the sidebar, there is a list of matching words that you can use to refine your search results. From the keyword magic tool, you can add keywords to ‘Keyword Analyzer’ generate lists and save them as CSV.
The magic tool is tabbed at the top to allow users to add new keywords. The tabs allow for multiple types of research to be carrying out simultaneously.
13 Keyword Difficulty Tool
This tool allows you to estimate how difficult it is to rank a given keyword. This keyword difficulty tool is located on the left side menu under ‘Keyword Analytics.’ It works in four simple steps:
Type in the keyword you have in mind in the search box or more than on keyword each on a different line, then click the button to show the difficulty.
The results of keyword difficult analysis include; the volume, trend competition, and the SERP source. You can easily sort the keywords using the ascending and descending arrows on top.
To find out the domains used to calculate the keyword difficulty, you can click on the percentage in the difficulty column and reveal the domains.
Finally, you can export this keyword difficulty data using the export button and save as XLS or CSV.
14 Related Keyword Research
If you find that ranking for a certain keyword will be a daunting task, you can consider a related keyword that has a relatively large volume of searches and low competition. SEMRush will assist you to get millions of related keywords that can be the best alternatives.
The ‘Related Keyword’ tool is a smart tool that accurately produces a list of other keywords that are close to your seed keyword. The Related Keyword tool is located under the main ‘Keyword Analytics’ menu.
The results for the related keyword research as a column that indicates in percentage their relation. Other parameters are keyword difficulty, search volume, CPC, competition, trend, and SERP.
15 Find Specific Long Tail Keywords
Most long tail keywords tend to have low competition and attract valuable traffic. Finding the good long tail keywords is very easy with SEMRush. You can begin with a long-term phrase on the basic research tool.
Use the related keyword tab to find other long tail keywords that you can target for your campaign. Each of those keywords can be used to generate more specific long tail keywords. A more elaborate technique of using SEMRush to get long tail keywords is through the advanced filter.
Here are the steps to use advanced filter to locate long tail keywords:
The first option ‘include.’
Second option select ‘no of words’ this will ensure you filter the keywords based on the number of words in the phrase.
The third option select ‘equal’ or ‘greater than.’
Type in the number of words you want in the keyword phrase
This shows all the keyword phrases that have at least 5 or more.
16 Find Keywords Competitors Use in Ads
Finding the best keywords for your ad campaigns on Google Adwords or other Pay per Click advertising platform should be very easy with SEMRush. Under the Keyword Analytics menu, there is a menu for Ad History. The ad history feature allows you to peep into the past keywords competitors have used in ads.
The ad history chart also displays the approximate ad traffic price in dollars.
To check a specific keyword for ad history, begin by searching the keyword normally. Navigate to the ads History tab to view the ad chart. Choose a specific competitor and click the URL to view the ads keywords they are targeting in their PPC campaigns.
17 Find Keyword for Local SEO
If you are running a local SEO campaign, it helps to localize your Keyword research to your country. With SEMRush this is very easy. Under the country, tab selects the country of your choice as shown in the image below.
18 Mobile vs. Desktop Keyword Research
With the increase in the number of smartphones, more people are accessing websites through mobile devices. SEMRush allows you to filter your keyword research based on the gadget. You can compare the keyword data for mobile and desktop searches with one click.
The feature allows you to switch from desktop results to mobile results.
19 Find Keywords Based on Cost per Click
If you are developing content for a website that is monetized with CPC ads like Google AdSense, it is helpful to target your keyword research based on the cost per click.
As you may have seen in the images above, there is a prominent column for CPC value on the results. You can drill down to specific and set your own CPC. This allows you to quickly view all the keywords with a Cost per Click equal to your value, greater than your value or less than your value.
Below is an image illustrating how to setup advanced filters research parameters by on cost per click:
20 Search Keywords Based on Volume
Most times when ranking a keyword, it is advisable you don’t go for a keyword with high volume. It is easier to rank for a lower volume keyword than higher volume.
In specific cases, you may want to target keywords with only a volume of 1000 and below.
SEMRush provides you with a very easy filter to get all those keywords within seconds.
On the advanced filter choose to ‘include.’
The second option select ‘volume.’
The third option select ‘less than or equal.’
As you can see in the results below, this feature quickly sorts your keywords according to the volume.
21 Find Keywords Based on Multiple Parameters
SEMRush leaves no room for guesswork since it simplifies your works and delivers results within the shortest time possible. One feature that you can exploit to get in-depth keyword analysis is the ‘multiple parameter features.’
Under advanced filters, you can see a button to add more. This button allows you to pass to the filter several parameters and refine your keyword research results.
Example: You can search a keyword based on the number of words and combine it with the CPC budget, volume, keyword difficulty, results in the search engine and competition among advertisers.
Here is the example illustrated below:
You can choose to combine two or more keyword parameters.
As you can see in the results above, the keywords are each 3 words in length, and each has a volume below 1000.
22 Include or Exclude Specific Word
With the advanced filter, you can choose to refine your results further by either including or excluding certain words. This feature is ideal for researching on exact match keywords
23 Sort Keywords by Keyword Difficulty, competition and search results
Sorting keywords by the competition for advertisers, select it ‘com ‘as shown in the image below:
Sorting keywords by keyword difficulty, you should select it in the second column as shown below:
Sorting keywords by search engine results select it as shown below:
Link Building like a Ninja! – Data Driven Link Building
SEMRush is among the best SEO tools that provide you with accurate and insightful competitor’s backlinks data. Backlink data is helpful when you are trying to build links to your site that match with your competitors.
Viewing your competitor’s backlink is the first most important step in outranking them. The backlink profile of competing sites can also be used to estimate the difficulty of ranking a competitor before you decide to take on a niche.
In this section, we will comprehensively outline the various tricks that will help you spy on your competitors’ backlinks. Gathering this information will help you to plan a solid backlink strategy since you will get all the backlink data you need from SEMRush.
Let’s look at some major points that we will be covering in this section:
a) Backlink Profiling Checking competitor’s backlinks from SEMRush would be very easy in 3 quick steps, you will simply need to:
Type their URL or domain on the search bar
Click on the backlinks
Analyze the backlinks using the various parameters provided on the advanced filter.
b) Domains Backlinks Comparison Comparing your site with competitors will never get easier than using SEMRush. You can add up to 5 domains and compare them simultaneously.
Click on the Backlinks
Choose backlink comparisons
Type in your domains and click compare
Analyze your comparison data by clicking on each link on the comparison chart.
c) Sort Backlinks by Age, No-follow, Images & Sub-domains Nothing will save you a great deal of time than a quick SEMRush sort. This tool will help you sort the backlinks based on the number of factors that include; age, type, suffix, subdomain among others. It is recommended that you learn to use the advanced filter to effectively sort the backlinks.
Now, let’s look in detail how to beat our competitors using these features on SEMRush.
24 How to View Competitor’s Backlinks
Checking competing sites backlinks on SEMRush is very simple. You should enter the competitor URL or domain in the main search bar, and you will see the main page with all the organic ranking information.
Click on the backlinks, and you now can weed out every link that is pointing to that domain. This report allows you to quickly build similar links to match with your competitor and outrank them.
25 Competitors Referring Domains
After checking your website’s backlinks, it becomes easier if you navigate to the next column of referring domains.
The referring domains column helps you to weed out repetitive backlinks, and you can have a clear picture on which domains the links are coming from. The main objective is to find out the sites linking to competing sites then figure out how to create similar links too.
To begin your link by link analysis is helpful if you can export the backlink report on a spreadsheet.
26 Identify Subdomain Backlinks
Sometimes it is helpful to know the performance of the entire site of a competitor. You may want to also check subdomain backlinks especially in situations where such a subdomain is ranking higher than your site.
SEMRush allows you to not only check domain backlinks but also subdomains. To check the subdomain backlinks type in the search bar the full URL including the subdomain. Below is an elaborate image on how to check subdomain backlinks.
You can use this backlink information on a subdomain to create superior content on your site that attracts link baits.
27 Backlink Comparison for Different Domains up to 5 Domains
One of the most important tools I regularly use on SEMRush is the backlink comparison. This tool has no match in the industry; it allows you to quickly compare your site to the other competitors saving you time and helps you avoid guess work in your link building.
Navigate to Backlinks > Backlink Comparison
Choose the domains you want to compare
Then click on Compare
This will show you color-coded results on the performance of each of the domains you are comparing.
You can also check on each of the links for in-depth analysis of each result. They are ranked from best to the worst.
You can quickly identify your weakness and improve to gain better search engine ranking.
28 Age of Backlinks
In SEO the age of links matters and therefore knowing how old your competitor’s backlinks is vital. Luckily SEMRush shows you the approximate age of a link in a column on the right. Though most industry experts argue that this data is not 100% accurate nonetheless, it gives you the best estimate of the link age.
29 Competitor Anchor Text Analysis
The value of Anchor Text is SEO remains very important and cannot be overlooked. You can quickly check and know what anchor text have been used in backlinks and use them too. Though it is recommended that you do not over optimize the anchor text, this information can be a good guide. The anchor text can be viewed as shown in the image below:
30 Take Advantage of Image Backlinks
Image backlinks are very easy to build, and they are preferred by a large number of SEOs. Finding a quality site with high domain and page authority to post images for backlinks can be a daunting task.
You can quickly use your competitor’s data to find image backlinks and replicate them. In the search filter choose ‘Include’ then ‘Type’ then ‘Image,’ see the image below:
You can also choose to exclude all the image backlinks by choosing to exclude as shown in the image below:
31 Quickly Identify Dofollow Backlinks
When you are link building, you are certainly going to pay more attention to the links that are do-follow. It becomes more fulfilling if you can sort out the competition do-follow backlinks from the no-follow.
To quickly sort those out you have the no-follow choice. You should begin by ‘Exclude’ option, then ‘Type’ then select ‘No Follow.’ The results will exclude all the no-follow backlinks. Below is an illustration on how to sort the links:
32 Find Backlinks from Specific Domain
You can easily sort links from a certain domain from the long list of backlinks using the exactly matching parameter on the advanced filter.
You can choose to either include or exclude, then select the option ’Referring Domain’ followed by ‘ Exactly Matching’ option then you type on the search bar to filter the results. Below is an elaborate illustration:
33 How to Sort Backlinks by Domain Extensions
This feature is very useful when you are looking for easy to link .edu domains. I often use this feature to quickly check where competitors are getting their ‘.edu.’ or ‘.gov ‘domains.
Under advanced filter, you should select to include or exclude then ‘Zone ‘as your second option and ‘Suffix’ as your third option. You can use the image below to guide you.
Paid Search Data Analysis
Many people have sunk millions of dollars in Pay per Click advertising since they operate with guesswork. SEMRush data on the paid advertising is the best guide you need to save you from headaches and frustrations resulting from failed PPC campaigns. This information can also help you save money that you would otherwise pay a copywriter to entice your audience with catchy headlines.
In this section, we will be covering how to use SEMRush for Pay per Click advertising.
Here are the main points to ponder in this section: a) Find Your PPC Competitors Learn how to use the Domain Analytics tool under Advertising > Competition to determine who is competing with you for paid searches and their paid performance.
b) View Competitors Ads For insights on how to create your PPC ads, it never gets better than learning from competition. In this section, we will learn how to use SEMRush to see the ads they are running and identify opportunities to exploit and improve our ads.
c) New PPC Keyword Ideas There is no better place to find profitable keywords than your competitors PPC ad campaigns. These keywords that you will see on the ads will give you a better insight on how to develop your PPC keyword strategy.
d) Ad Titles & Ideas that Work You can get ideas on how to write your ad titles from competitor’s ads. You can also check the history to see previous ads that have been tried and tested. This saves you time and the money you would otherwise spend on copywriting.
Let’s learn more in details.
34 Identify Your Paid Search Competitors
Paid search competitors at times present a serious challenge since they may be targeting your keywords, but they are not certainly in the same niche.
To check your competitors, you should go to domain analytics, choose ‘View Entire Menu’ then select advertising and competition. You should now add the competing domain for the paid ads and see the results.
Paid search results will show you the following:
The number of keywords that you are competing for
The number of competitors for this keyword (in order)
The traffic that has been driven by the ad
The approximate cost that they are spending on the ad
The following is the illustration of how to check your paid ads, competitors:
You can choose to export this data so that you use it when you are creating your ads on a PPC network like Google AdWords.
35 View Paid Ads that Competitors are Running
You can check the ads that have been displayed in the previous step one by one looking at the domain overview information. Check the section on the page >Sample Ads to see the ad sample as shown in the image below:
Click on the option to View Full Report button to check details of each of the competitor’s ads.
36 Get PPC Keyword Ideas
Finding keywords that are profitable to use in paid advertisements can be very difficult but not with SEMRush. When you check your competitor’s ads, you can get keyword ideas to use in your PPC campaigns too. Check for the relevant ads and click on it then check the drop-down menu as shown below:
You can see the results of the keywords that you can use in your PPC campaigns. These long tail keywords can be very insightful and can help you increase your paid ads conversions.
37 Write Catchy Ads Titles from Competitors Ideas
Good ad headlines play a very important role in determining if your ads get clicked or not. Most people will hire a copywriter to get the ads titles, nevertheless with SEMRush you can check the variety of competitor’s ads and get title ideas. Here is an example of how you can repurpose competitor’s ads to create your ad titles.
38 PPC Ads Tracking
Another common headache that plagues most PPC campaigns is tracking the performance of ads both own ads and competitors for comparison. SEMRush has an ingenious tool that is purposely made for ad position tracking.
You can easily use this tool to track your competitor’s ads and understand their advertising habits. This can identify the best time to place your ads when the competition is low, and they have not placed the ads for maximum exposure.
To check the competitor’s ads position changes, go to the main menu click on Advertising > Position Changes, you should see a chart like the one shown below:
The chart above shows the competitors advertising habits, and you can use it for competitive ads placement.
As shown by the chart key, the blue bars show new keywords while the red shows keywords that are becoming popular because of reduced exposure.
When you click on the ‘lost’ tab, you will see more keywords data that include: lost keyword, position, volume, CPC, traffic and competition that are important indicators of the viability of a given keyword.
With these results, you can identify the lowest ranking keywords that are easy to compete for. Ideally, the keywords should have enough volume, sustainable cost per click and low competition.
You should repeat this process with different competitors and mine for those ‘gold’ keywords and run a successful PPC campaign.
39 Check Ad History for Keywords and Title Ideas
I have learned that history can never be ignored, most importantly in PPC. Though not all keyword that has worked in the past will pass as ‘Gold keywords’ most do. Click on Advertising > Ad History to view the previous ads:
As you can see in the image above, the ads are displayed by the month, and you can get the keywords or and the title ideas too.
Take Social Media Marketing by Storm
Social Media marketing remains a thorn in the flesh for many internet marketers who have a limited budget to hire social media marketing experts.
With SEMRush you can track your social media growth, learn how to post content at the right time, compare your social media performance with competitors and intelligently reverse engineer the social media techniques that are working for others.
a) Step 1 – Here is a quick way to get started with social media tool on SEMRush
Go to Projects and click on the specific project
Click on the social media tool
Begin linking the accounts that you want to track
Once you have set up the social media tracking tool and linked the accounts, you should now get ready for the next step.
b) Step 2 – We will also be outlining the important steps you can take to monitor and grow your social media reach using SEMRush. Here are some of the important things that you need to remember about social media tracking when using SEMRush.
Setup of social media tracking – You need to start by setting up your social media monitoring and ensure you link up your accounts.
Monitor your social engagement – The report you get from this tool helps you to analyze social engagement statistics and take action to improve.
Social media comparison with competitors – You can find out how well your other people you are competing are doing on social media. This is particularly useful for those websites that rely on social media to drive traffic.
Know When to Post and Get Viral Ideas from Competitors – It has been proven that ideas that go viral work when they are replicated in a creative way. You can repurpose competitors’ posts, titles, and images that have a high engagement for your social media marketing.
Now that you have seen the overview, let’s dive deep to learn more in depth.
40 Tracking Social Media Growth
Tracking your social media growth is the best way to improve your brand online presence across all social media platforms. SEMRush provides you with important metrics that help you determine the trajectory your social media reach is taking.
You can track your audience for each social media platform and determine if the audience is growing or reducing. SEMRush also lets you track the activity you have on social media and the trajectory. You can also measure the activity of your audiences like the comments, mentions, and likes.
The tracking is done on a weekly basis and is reported in intervals of 30, 60 and 90 days, but you can also set your custom reporting period or dates. One of the most interesting facts about SEMRush social media tracking tool is the fact that the data is real time.
The data is presented in charts, and you can easily understand the social engagement figures and identify opportunities for growth.
41 Social Media Performance Competition Comparison
Growing a brand online is tough and requires you also compare your brand strength with what other competitors are doing. SEMRush the best tool you can use to compare your social media performance with other competitors.
To set up the competition analysis, set your competitors then update the report as shown in the image below:
Important note, you should not use your competitor’s social media accounts but the domain. This will show you the data of their connected accounts. With this comparison, you can track all your competitors’ social media gains and use the same tricks to grow your brand’s social media reach.
42 Get Content Marketing Ideas
Content marketing is the new way to promote your brand not only on your website but also on social media platforms. Content marketing requires strategic timing for maximum exposure on the social platforms. SEMRush social media tracking tool, helps you understand the niche dynamics and know when to post content for the best engagement.
To get content marketing ideas, you should click on the Activity Tab. Pay attention to the posts that have been performing well based on the total engagement and the rate of engagement. Adjust the date range so that you compare content, social engagement performance based on the time it was posted.
Follow all these posts to the respective social platform like Facebook and examine the Metadata. Check the time and date to give you a good perspective on when to post for maximum engagement.
43 Get Ideas on Social Media Marketing Titles and Images
When you evaluate competitors’ social media engagement data and choose the best posts, check the titles and images used. You can now tell what strategies work for maximum engagement on a given niche.
You should take advantage of this information and reproduce your competitor’s success by creating more valuable social posts with the same strategies.
SEMRush in Mobile Marketing
Mobile marketing is increasingly becoming important since more people are accessing the web via smartphones. It’s no-brainer that SEMRush includes resourceful mobile tools to help you understand the mobile data in your niche. SEMRush mobile tools should help leverage your SEO and mobile marketing efforts.
Here is a quick summary of what you can achieve with SEMRush mobile tools.
a) Mobile Organic Data Research – SEMRush provides you with both the desktop traffic and mobile traffic data. You can switch between the two with one click. Mobile data gives you insights on how well you rank for mobile traffic.
b) Mobile Responsiveness – SEMRush helps you to check your site for responsiveness and also point out any validation HTML errors that need to be corrected.
Let’s learn more about using mobile features on SEMRush.
44 Mobile Data – Organic Research and Keywords
You can get data for both desktop and mobile for every search you make. The most important data is the keyword research, and you can check the difference between desktop and mobile search data.
It is very easy to switch from desktop results to mobile, use the mobile button and desktop to switch in between. Below is an image illustration:
45 Mobile Responsiveness Test
Though there are dozens of tools out there to test whether your website is mobile friendly, SEMRush gives you useful data.
This is presented as a percentage of the pages that are responsive and those that are not mobile friendly. Click on the mobile tab to see the responsive or click on the percentage of the mobile-unfriendly results to see a comprehensive report:
You can click on every page that has text that is not mobile friendly and devise ways to improve the page.
Mining Tactical Organic Ranking Data
SEMRush is a handy tool for ‘mining’ organic research data to use in your SEO strategies. You can track the organic ranking of competitors for the entire site or page by page. This gives you the best information to identify the opportunities that you can exploit and rank for the same keywords.
In this section, we will be covering the variety of techniques to use when you are analyzing the organic research positions.This will include:
a) Comprehensive Site Ranking Research – This is the first step that includes analyzing all pages on the given site to find their ranking positions. Check the sidebar menu and click on Organic Research > Positions > Type the domain name without the ‘www’ or ‘http’ prefixes.
b) Checking Ranking for Specific Pages, Subdomains and Folders – SEMRush allows you to check the ranking position for every page, subfolder, and subdomain. This tactic can be very useful for finding the pages to improve on your site as well as the competitor’s pages to outrank.
c) Sorting Organic Ranking Data using Advanced Filters – SEMRush advanced filters allow you to sort the results by specific position, suffix, and specific keyword. This specific data will give you an insight on how to outrank your competitors by improving your website.
Lets now learn how to track the important data of competitors.
46 Tracking Whole Site Ranking
With SEMRush you can track the whole ranking of a site even for large sites; this tool lets you track the performance of each page by the position and the keywords. To check the organic ranking data for a site, you should navigate to Sidebar > Organic Research > Positions
As shown in the image above, there is a list of keywords and the position your site is ranking as well as the volume of the keyword. You can check every keyword to see other sites that are competing for the same. SEMRush lists all the keywords you are ranking for unlike, Google Webmaster console the data is very easy to understand and make a quick reference.
47 Tracking Subdomain Ranking
You can use SEMRush to also check the ranking position for subdomains on your site. Most of these subdomains can be products that you want to increase conversions by ranking high in search results. To search rankings for a subdomain, use the advanced filters;
Select to include
Select URL for the second option
Select containing for the third option
Type your subdomain URL on the
Use the image below to set the subdomain organic research:
These tactics can also be useful for analyzing the ranking for competitor sites and subdomains.
48 Check Specific Page Ranking
For a deep analysis of a specific page ranking, SEMRush comes in handy. You can track the ranking of a given page as you build links to rank higher and increase page authority. Using the previous step, when you click on the specific keyword it leads you to the page that is ranking for that keyword in your site. You can also type the specific page URL on the main search bar, and you will see the same results.
49 Check Subfolder Ranking
SEMRush lets you to also track the ranking for a subfolder in your site. You can check the subfolder ranking by using the advanced filters; choose include option, URL, Containing then type the domain followed by the subfolder as illustrated in the screenshot below:
50 Check Ranking for URL with a Certain Keyword
Again, using the advanced filters options, you can find domains that have a given keyword and the ranking. Under the advanced filter choose Include > URL > Containing > Type the keyword as shown in the image below:
51 Finding Ranking for Pages with HTTPS protocol
This proves to be a little difficult to accomplish with SEMRush alone. You can do this by exporting the data to an excel sheet where you will analyze the data.
52 Checking Ranking by the Domain Suffix
Finding the ranking of domains based suffix is very easy with SEMRush. Use the same advanced filters as in the steps above to filter the ranking by ‘Suffix.’ Choose Include > URL > Containing > Type the suffix as shown in the image below:
53 Find Ranking Position of Specific Pages on Your Site
If you want to know the pages ranking on a specific position like ‘3’ you can use the advanced filters as follows: Include > Pos > Equal > Type Number in this case ‘3.’
This trick can also work like a charm when you are spying on the ranking pages for your competitors.
54 Searching for Low Ranking Competitors Pages
You can use the previous step to check the pages that are ranking low on a given domain. Select Include > Pos > Less Than > Type the Position like in step above.
55 Searching for High Ranking Competitors Pages
As shown in step above, the procedure is the same, but you change the last choice to greater than. Select Include > Pos > Greater Than > Type the Position as shown in the image below:
56 Search Organic Ranking Data for Different Countries
As mentioned above in the keyword research step, you can set the data for different countries by selecting the country on the top search bar.
This also works seamlessly for organic ranking data, and you can switch the ranking data from country to country with this option. There are more than 20 countries listed on SEMRush as shown in the image below:
57 Check Bing Organic Ranking Data
Bing is the second biggest search engine and can be a good source of traffic for your website. You can check the same organic ranking data specifically on Bing. Not all countries have the Bing option; you are also likely to see a large drop on the volume compared to Google organic data.
58 Find Ranking Historic Data
I find the SEMRush historic ranking data to be a goldmine because you can easily determine the trend of a given niche by looking at the historic data. You should click on the live data to choose from the dropdown menu the ranking history based on dates.
Traffic Analysis Gets Better with SEMRush
SEMRush newest tool is the traffic analytics tool that allows you to check your traffic and make the comparison with competitors. This is a tool that is still in the beta version but is very useful and worth checking out.
Unlike the Google Analytics, SEMRush traffic analytic tool takes the game to another level. Though the traffic analytic tool is still in the Beta version, it has received rave reviews as a great addition to the existing SEMRush tools.Here is what you can do with this traffic tool:
a) Traffic Analytics – You can analyze the traffic on your site and generate reports of different traffic sources and use it to improve your site.
b)Traffic Comparison Analytics – You can compare up to 5 domains and view several traffic metrics comparison. This feature helps you develop better ways of driving traffic to your site.
59 Get Quick and Detailed Traffic Analytics
To check your traffic analytics on SEMRush, you should navigate to the left sidebar menu and click on Traffic Analytics as shown in the image below:
Type your domain name in the search bar to begin the traffic analysis. You should see the general overview of your traffic data that includes: visits, unique visits, visitors per page, duration of visitors among others, as shown in the image below:
SEMRush traffic analysis presents data in a very easy to read and understand format. As you can see you can quickly know the traffic, you get from search engines, social networks, and other referring sites. Additionally, on the section below you can see the traffic by the geographical location which is very useful for marketing.
60 Traffic Competition Analysis
Analyzing your traffic in comparison with your competitor can never get any better than using SEMRush traffic analytics tool. On the main overview there is a button to add competitors as shown in the image below:
The results of the competition traffic analysis are spectacular since it shows the two sites in with traffic by month illustrated in graphs as shown in the screenshot below:
You can quickly know how your competitors are performing compared to you based on the amount of traffic they receive. It gets better since the traffic is also compared based on the country.
This tool not only proves useful for organic competition analysis but can be handy when you intend to by direct ads on competing sites. It is also worth noting that the advanced traffic analysis reports are only available on the advanced subscription.
Bonus SEMRush Tools that Take You to Next SEO Level
SEMRush has several additional tools that you can use to create SEO reports and also to improve your on-page SEO and for marketing. a) SEO Templates – You can use this tool to quickly create and implement a well optimized on-page SEO template. You can incorporate your keywords and generate the well optimized template for your site.
b) Video Advertising Tool This tool helps you improve your video advertising by researching for competitors videos and the strategies they are using to rank better.
c) PLA Research Tool – This is an ingenuous tool for analyzing the Google shopping ads that appear in search engines results. You can get all the data you need for you to place a competitive ad in the Google Shopping Ads.
d) SEOQuake Add-on – This is a simplified version of SEO tools that is based on your browser allowing you to peep at the organic ranking date for every Google result.
Lets look in details at how to make the best use of these tools.
61 Create SEO Content Templates
SEMRush helps you create SEO content template that can be implemented on your on-page SEO for best results. These well-crafted templates are based on keywords and analysis of the top 10 ranking competitors for that keyword.
The tool simply analyzes the content on rival sites and helps you develop the best ideas for content on your site. Ideally, the tool uses your suggested keyword to analyze the top 10 ranking site for that target keyword and develops recommendations.
To create an SEO template, you should navigate to the main menu and select > SEO Content Template
Type in your keyword in SEMRush main search bar, select country and click on Create Template Button
Check the recommendations and export the recommendations to in a .doc file so that you can use them when building your content.
62 Video Advertising Tool
Creating an effective video ad campaign can be very challenging since video marketing is very competitive. With the Video Advertising Tool on SEMRush, you can quickly discover the strategies that are working for your competitors and employ them in your video marketing campaigns.
Video Advertising tool uniquely aggregates data from YouTube in-stream video advertisements as well as channels. You can use this data if you are a channel owner or YouTube advertiser.
This tool allows you to quickly see the videos and the keyword data and the top advertisers. To begin using Video Advertising Tool, you need to navigate to the main sidebar menu > Domain Analytics > Video Advertising Tool
63 PLA Research Tool
SEMRush PLA research tool is an advanced tool that allows users to analyze the product listing ads data based on the performance of Google Shopping Ads. These are the ads that are displayed when some searches for a certain keyword and are listed under the shopping tab on Google. Below is an example of Samsung watch ads:
PLA research tools allow you to check the ranking of competitors for certain keywords in the Google Shopping Ads. The data from this tool is useful if you are placing an ad on Google Shopping and will be the best guide on outranking competitors for certain keywords. To access the PLA research tool, navigate to the sidebar menu > Domain Analytics > PLA Research, as shown in the image below:
Types on the search bar the domain you want to check the Product Listing Ads, like in this case I have used eBay and the following are the results:
As you can see the product listing ads websites are displayed with the keywords and the position, volume, ad titles, price, trend, and SERPS. You can click on each of these columns to analyze the data further. This data also relates to the organic search for each keyword and it’s very helpful for paid advertising strategies.
64 SEOQuake Add-on
One of the oldest tricks I have used to estimate competition of different sites is this little tool that is the same company behind SEMRush.
SEOQuake is an add-on on your browser, and it has proven useful for millions of SEO to quickly analyze web pages as you visit them. You can download the plugin on both Firefox and Chrome.
When you have SEOQuake enabled you can quickly take a glance at the variety of live data regarding a certain website directly on the search results.
SEOQuake shows you the following data:
Number of backlinks in Google and Bing
Approximate age of the domain from web archive
65 Reporting Tools
SEMRush makes it very easy for a marketing agency or independent SEO experts to generate quick, insightful reports for clients. Under My Reports menu on the sidebar, you can quickly generate SEO report; you will like this report generation tool.
You can create personalized reports that that have a professional layout ideal for clients as well as SEO team with SEMRush. You have control over what appears on the reports, and the interface is very easy to use and to create detailed SEO reports within minutes.
You can also get reports in your email by scheduling email reports for specific data like keywords or organic ranking. The reports allow you to track the progress of your ranking and keep improving.
66 SEMRush Customer Support
Before you subscribe to any monthly subscription tool, it may be important to find out how it is supported. SEMRush is a very well supported tool, and this comes as a great benefit for all subscribers.
They are continually updating the tools to make them better. Not only do they create new tools, but also enhance the existing tools to make them better and improve data accuracy.
If you want to learn more about SEMRush updates and the changes on SEMRush, the team provides regular webinars and blogs to enlighten the subscribers. There is also toll-free numbers for US and Europe clients that you can call for support. You can also get in touch with SEMRush support team if you have any problems with your subscription.
Finally, there is an extensive knowledge base that you can use to find answers to the most common questions about SEMRush. This includes quick start videos that get you started quickly on how to use this incredible SEO tool.
SEMRush Plans and Pricing
SEMRush comes in three plans that vary in features offered, the subscription plans are:
SEMRush Pro – For this version the monthly subscription fee is $99.95 and you can generate up to 3000 reports per day. This plan is ideal for starters or individual SEO experts and internet marketers.
SEMRush Guru – For Guru Plan, the monthly subscription fee is $199.95 which entitles you to generate a maximum of 5000 reports per day. This plan is the best value plan and is suitable for advanced SEO experts, marketing agencies and internet marketers too.
SEMRush Business – The business plan is the ultimate and allows you to have API access that is not found in the lower plans. You can also generate up to 10,000 reports per day and the monthly subscription fee is $399.95. This plan is ideal for large SEO companies and large online marketing agencies.
The annual billing saves you a few dollars since the annual subscription fees are $999.40, $1999.40, $3999.40 for respective packages.
We have got you SEMRush 30 Days Free Trial to help you get started with all the techniques outlined in this article. You can sign up immediately, there are no strings attached, you can always cancel anytime by sending an email to SEMRush team.
Conclusion – Final Thoughts
After this comprehensive review of SEMRush, we can sum up this review in a few words – SEMRush is a ‘Samurai sword.’ It is hard to come across a tool that does all these SEO tasks and saves you money, time and energy like SEMRush does. Although SEMRush has many merits, there are a few things that people point out as its cons.
These are the monthly subscription plan, its sophistication, and some data is not 100% accurate. If you would like to get started with SEMRush there is a free 14 days trial that you can try to see how it works.
There are a lot of articles on featured snippets being published lately but they fail to explain how to easily identify featured snippet opportunities.
The most common methods are using keyword research tools to find common questions on your topic, or reviewing Search Console data to find questions that you are ranking on the first page for. There’s no doubt this will help you find opportunities, but it’s tedious and just because the search query is a question, there’s no guarantee that Google will be displaying a featured snippet for that query. There’s a lot of manual work involved.
And what about all those featured snippet opportunities that aren’t questions?
This article will go through the process of identifying your current featured snippets (if you have any) and performing keyword research to find terms that are known to display featured snippets. I will then show you how to identify some potential quick wins to help get you ranking in position 0 in no time.
How to find your Featured Snippets
The easiest way to find your current featured snippets is with SEMrush (affiliate). I’m using Moz.com in my examples.
Step 1. In the menu on the left, go to Domain Analytics > Organic Research and enter your domain in the search box.
Step 2. On the right hand side of the dashboard, under ‘SERP Features‘, click ‘Featured snippet‘.
Step 3. What you are left with are keywords that your site has featured snippets for. Export your list of featured snippet keywords to Excel – we’ll use it later.
Finding NEW Featured Snippet opportunities for your site
SEO Keyword Magic (Beta) by SEMrush has one of my favorite keyword research features at the moment and I can’t recall seeing it mentioned anywhere.
SEO Keyword Magic performs all of the standard tasks you’d expect in any keyword tool, but the thing that sets SEO Keyword Magic apart from the rest in a big way is its ability to filter keywords by SERP features – more specifically, Featured Snippets.
In SEMrush, you will find SEO Keyword Magic under Keyword Analytics in the left-hand menu.
Once you’re at the SEO Keyword Magic page, enter your starting keyword. In this example for Moz I’ll start with ‘seo’.
Hit ‘Search’ and it will take you to the dashboard.
You’ll find everything you’d expect in a keyword research tool here, as well as a few unique features, but we’ll stick to featured snippets in this post.
In the ‘SERP Features’ drop down, check the ‘Featured Snippet’ box.
You are now left with a list of keywords that are known to display featured snippets!
This is a good start, but let’s build on it. Click the green ‘Export to submarine’ button and we’ll store those keywords for later (I don’t know why it’s called ‘submarine’).
Please note: if you are doing more general keyword research, eg. ‘cars’, you’ll be left with a list of featured snippet keywords that’s too big for the submarine – over 20,000 for ‘cars’. In that case, export your keyword list to Excel at this step.
Click the ‘+ New keyword’ button and we’ll go through the same process for another related keyword topic. I added ‘link building’ in this example.
Be aware that you need to select ‘Featured snippet’ for each new keyword you add.
In the ‘link building’ keyword example above, I’ve excluded featured snippet keywords containing ‘chain’ because there were a few relating to ‘how to build a chain link fence’. Export this list to your submarine.
Keep adding featured snippet keywords to your submarine until you think you have enough (the submarine can hold a maximum of 1000 keywords). In this example I continued to add ‘content marketing’ and ‘keywords’.
Go to your ‘submarine’ and export all your featured snippet keywords to a single spreadsheet.
Now you have two spreadsheets; one containing your existing featured snippets and one containing your SEO Keyword Magic featured snippet keywords known to display featured snippets.
This is great, but your site may already be getting featured snippets for some of these keywords so we’ll need to filter out those results so you can identify your new opportunities.
We’ll also go one step further and identify which keywords from the opportunities list you are already ranking in the top 10 for – this is your low-hanging featured snippet fruit.
Identifying your EASY Featured Snippet opportunities
Firstly, we need to get a list of keywords that the site is ranking in the top 10 for.
Step 1. Go to back SEMrush ‘Organic Research’, enter your domain, exclude branded keywords, and include only keywords in positions less than 10.
Export to Excel and open the spreadsheet. I’ll rename this first tab ‘Top 10’.
Step 2. Open the spreadsheet you exported earlier with all your existing Featured Snippets. Copy and paste this data into a new tab in your Top 10 spreadsheet. Let’s call this tab ‘My Snippets’.
Step 3. Open the spreadsheet you exported from SEO Keyword Magic. Copy and paste this data into another new tab in your Top 10 spreadsheet. Let’s call this tab ‘Opportunities’.
Now you have a single Excel workbook with three tabs; Top 10, My Snippets, and Opportunities.
Step 4. In the ‘My Snippets’ and ‘Opportunities’ tabs, insert a new column B and fill each cell in this row with ‘Yes’. These columns will be used in the VLOOKUP formula and will allow us to easily filter the ‘Top 10’ tab and find the new featured snippet opportunities we are looking for.
Step 5. In the ‘Top 10’ tab, insert a new column at B. This column will be used to check if we already have a featured snippet for the keywords that are already ranking on the first page. I labelled this column ‘Current Featured Snippet?’
Paste the following VLOOKUP into B2 and apply to all cells below:
Step 6. In the ‘Top 10’ tab, insert a new column at C. This column will be used to check if we already have keywords from our ‘Opportunities’ tab that we are already ranking on the first page for. I labelled this column ‘Featured Snippet Opportunity’
Paste the following VLOOKUP into C2 and apply to all cells below:
I hope you find this process helpful in identifying new featured snippet opportunities for your website.
There is absolutely no doubt that we’ll continue to see keyword research tools evolve in 2017 and I’d love SEO Keyword Magic to automate the process outlined in this post. All the data is obviously there and it would be extremely beneficial if the dots were joined and users were able export a list of featured snippet keywords you are ranking on the first page for, but not getting the featured snippet for.
I’d also love it to go one step further and identify the type of featured snippet that is displaying for each keyword – that would be a real time saver.