That’s obviously changed over the years, because to be a true super affiliate, you need some fantastic keyword lists.
So, for all the marketers out there who don’t know where to start with their keyword research or who do but dread doing it, here are some tips that I’ve been using for some
time now to great effect.
To get started, you need to do some basic research. You probably have a very rough idea of what people are searching for–the simple keywords that every good
marketer pinpoints early on.
However, that initial list is the same as brainstorming for a novel. Sure, you have a rough outline, but you still need to sit down and write the thing.
I like to get started in the Google Keyword Tool–it’s free, easy to use and has a decent amount of data to draw from.
Like most free keyword tools, it’s not 100% accurate and is based on PPC data. If you’re working on an organic campaign, it’s not going to be exactly what you’re looking for, but it’s a good start.
To get started, visit http://adwords.google.com/keywordplanner, sign into your
Google account, and enter a basic term or phrase into the search tool. You can enter multiple terms, but for now, just one will do.
I’ll use “lose weight” as an example. The top level of search results will be terms that use the basic term, and will include things like:
* How to lose weight
* Lose weight fast
* Lose belly weight
These terms are all directly related to the term and give you more options for building your list. Look for the Global Monthly Search Volume to get an idea of how many searches this term gets each month.
Unless you’re developing a PPC campaign, ignore any local search volume data that Google gives you. Also ignore the competition data, as this relates to advertising. You just
want to know how many people are searching.
Next, scroll down a bit and see what additional keywords Google has selected. These are syntax-related terms and might include phrases like:
* How to burn fat
* Weight loss tips
* Get thin fast
* Muscle-building tips
Basically, terms that tend to show up with the phrase you searched for originally will appear here. You won’t necessarily use all of these terms, but you can get a lot
of ideas this way.
Your goal should be to create a list of any terms you think someone would search for while trying to solve the weight loss problem. Later, we’ll narrow down to specific
keywords that help you.
Forums and In-depth Research
Another great way to find keywords is to go to industry-specific pages, like forums, and search for terms that relate to questions or problems that people have in
Forums are good because they represent a hub of data where users will search for solutions to particular problems.
For example, if you were to visit a weight loss and dieting forum, you might find specific body locations and muscle groups that people are targeting, like:
* Pectoral fat burning
* Get rid of fat on obliques
* Build bigger quads
These terms may not have popped up immediately because they are a bit too specific.
Another great way to create lists of more specific industry terms is to analyze competitor pages. Which keywords are your competitors using to boost their own
Tools like Traffic Travis allow you to input URLs and get keyword reports on how a site is optimized. You can also search for sites or keywords in the ad analyzer to see
which terms are being used with Google AdWords.
You can get Traffic Travis here.
Best Kinds of Keywords
Okay, so now you have a good general idea of what keywords you’ll be using. What about the actual terms you should be targeting?
I have a small listing of terms I like to use as often as possible. How you optimize will depend on your strategy, but if you’re doing PPC, you pretty much have to have lists for these particular terms:
* Author Names – If you’re promoting info products on weight-loss products, you can find keywords related to the authors of those info products.
Check your affiliate program’s rules to determine if you’re allowed to do this. Most vendors will be perfectly happy to let you. More commissions for you means more
profits for them.
* Product Names – Along the same lines, product names are highly successful conversion tools. Most people, when searching for a specific product name, are looking for
reviews or final justification before a purchase.
The search volume is lower, but you’re getting leads that are much more likely to convert.
* Buy Phrases – Find keywords with terms like “buy,” “order,” “purchase,” or “download.” If you have that, plus a product name or author name, you can almost guarantee
the prospect is ready to make a purchase.
These keywords have far fewer searches, but are worth 10-100 times more than a standard product-related keyword.
* Crisis Keywords – These are keywords related to a crisis that your searcher may be in. For example, many people search for gardening advice, but if they’re in a crisis,
their search will be much more urgent.
Keywords then might include “cure blight,” “kill pests on tomatoes,” or “tomatoes won’t grow.” These are specific, immediate problems that they’ll buy a product to solve.
* Product-Related Keywords – General keywords related to a product niche are still valuable, but can be a little more dangerous. You need to be more careful here in general.
Here you’ll find things like “how to,” “lessons,” “online,” etc.–terms that relate to getting advice, but with less urgency.
* Long-tails – Finally, if you’re doing PPC or creating an authority site, using long-tail keywords can really boost your performance.
For example, if you’re writing about dog training, you can add the dog breeds to the beginning of each keyword–instantly creating 200 long-tails for each base
keyword you have.
For example, someone might search for “fix golden retriever aggression” and someone else might search for “fix poodle aggression.” Those are both specific long-tails and can be extended as much as is needed to get your traffic.
Keywords are the currency of any good affiliate marketer. You want traffic? You need to find the words people are searching for and become competitive for them.
Before you ever start marketing any of your new niche products, spend some time researching, building lists, and analyzing the keywords.
Using tools like Google and Traffic Travis, check to make sure there is volume, and always check your competitors to see what they’re optimized for.
If you do it right, you should be able to create a huge list of potentially golden keywords.