- Posted by Guest Post
- On December 13, 2016
- 0 Comments
The first blog post in this series gave you an idea on how to use Google AdWords’ Keyword Planner to effectively build a list of relevant and moderately searched keywords and phrases that you can try to rank for. This week we’re going to prepare for your competition.
So that list we made with AdWords last week: still got it? Good. We’re going to take that list of terms you picked out and put them into Moz Pro.
Well, not just yet. First, we’re going to do a bit of competitive research. We’re going to start by picking the most important keywords out of your list and running a SERP Analysis on them. Your list may be a few hundred long – and that’s okay – but for this task, we suggest picking the 20-30 most relevant keywords that are applicable to your website; I mean, unless you’ve already finished Black Mirror and have an abundance of time on your hands, then go wild.
Phase Two: Competitive Research
That micro-list of 20-30 we just made from your giant list: still got it? Good. Enter: Keyword Explorer.
You’ve now picked your most relevant list of applicable keywords. One-by-one, type them into that giant search bar you see in front of you and select your destination. Right away you’ll see a breakdown of the Difficulty, Opportunity, and Potential that will be very useful information, but that’s not what I’m not going to focus on right now so let’s not burn any more daylight discussing them.
In here, you’re going to use the SERP Analysis feature. Another obvious: click on “SERP Analysis,” and this is where you’ll learn about who’s already ranking for your particular keyword. This is very helpful information because you can see the Page and Domain Authority of all the sites you’ll be competing with, so you can have an even better idea as to how difficult it will be to get in that coveted top 10. Sites with Authorities in the 80-90 range are going to be hard to knock off their pedestal; we’re not saying it’s impossible, it will just a take a lot of hard work and patience. Now that you’re finished analyzing your first keyword, rinse and repeat for the rest of your list.
So you might be thinking: “why did I waste all my time with Google AdWords when Moz Pro has keyword suggestions built in?” To be honest, it may be a matter of personal opinion. We tend to use Google AdWords to develop our keyword list because it offers a more comprehensive set of details in terms of the data surrounding each keyword and, once you see the spreadsheets produced by each tool, you’ll see what I’m talking about. But that isn’t to say Moz Pro’s suggestions aren’t helpful. They can be a valuable source of inspiration when trying to come up with and track additional keywords.
Phase Three: Internal Research
High five! Your keyword list has been generated and you have an idea as to the competition you may be facing. Now, we’re going to evaluate how well your current pages are optimized for particular keywords.
This Moz Pro tool offers insight into some of the factors that determine the ranking of your pages, and it lets you see what you’re doing right and what you might be doing not-so-right. It’s probably best to give a brief example of this, so let’s say you work for Apple and you want to rank for the term “oranges” (pretty unlikely, right?). We’ll start by entering Apple’s URL and the term “oranges” into the search bars.
We got a C! That’s fully expected because ranking for “oranges” probably isn’t very high on Apple’s priority list, but it works great for this example. We can then scroll down the page to examine the list of factors that Moz considers to be important when trying to rank for a particular keyword. It also lists the Importance of each factor, and the level of Difficulty it would take to fix issues revolving around each specific factor. You’ll see green checkmarks beside each thing you’re already doing correctly, and all of the rest are things that you can do to improve the rank of your page for that particular keyword.