One of the most important aspects of making money online is keyword selection. If you don’t pick the right keyword you run two risks:
- You won’t be able to rank for it
- If you do rank for it, you won’t make any money
As you can imagine either of these scenarios can be extremely frustrating. Even the best of us can run into a keyword the ends up being far harder than it should be, but people new to SEO often choose to go after search terms that they will never rank for. There are some pretty basic ‘guidelines’ that you can use to help you go after terms that you can be successful in ranking your site for (and I say guidelines because keyword selection is more of an art than a science).
- If the keyword isn’t in the title, you can beat it
- The lower the PR the better (While PR isn’t conclusive it is certainly indicative of page strength)… as an easy guideline if the site is PR 3 or less you can beat it
Really if you find a keyword that satisfies both of those guidelines then you should have little trouble getting your site to rank.
The next part of your consideration is will the term get my site traffic, and more to the point will the term make me money? I know what your thinking… my god this guy is going to give me more guidelines. Well think again. This time it will be a formula :)
First thing you want to do is go look at a keyword tool and see how many EXACT searches the keyword get per month. The next thing you need to look at is what the CPC of the keyword is. With that information you can figure out if the keyword will make you money. Here is what you do:
Exact Searches * .4 *.05 * CPC * .25 = Keyword Income Potential
The .4 is because 1st place in the serps gets around 40% of the traffic for that search, the .05 is because a typical site can count on converting 5% of visitors to ad clicks, and the .25 is because google will generally pay you are 25% of what they pay advertisers. For those of you who aren’t that good at math I’ll simplify that a bit down to this formula, but it doesn’t make as much sense to look at:
Exact Searches * CPC * 0.005 = Keyword Income Potential
Generally if I am building a small niche site I am looking for a keyword with income potential of around $50 or more.
So now you know how to choose a keyword that will both make you money and will pay you something too. Best of luck!