Though i strongly believe that one should blog only on the topics that he is passionate about, you might have already learned that if you are looking for traffic and popularity, you just cant hold on to your favorite topics all the time.
You need to keep track of what people around the world are searching on google and other search engines. It’s impossible to blog on all the topics that are being searched, instead it would be a better idea to pick your topics of interest from the whole lot.
Suppose on Google, the top searches for this week are for Paris Hilton, Search Engine Optimisation, Sipderman 3 movie and George Bush – You can probably select Spiderman 3, because you’ve seen it the other day, and writing a review on it would be a cakewalk, right?
Now, the important factor is to find out the “hot spots” where you can actually find what people are searching for. Here are some tools that i use.
1 – AdWords keyword tool
This one comes from the Google stable – so you can rely on it very much. It is a neat tool that gives you suggestions on searches made on google relating to a keyword you suggest.
Example – you suggest the word mp3, it would give you – mp3 downloads, mp3 streaming, mp3 cd burning etc based on what people have searched on google.
- Go to this page and type in the keyword that you are interested in.
- Then select the “Choose data to display” pull down menu. In the menu there are four choices -
Sort by “keyword Search Volume”, “Cost and Ad Position Estimates”, “Search Volume Trends” and “Possible negative keywords”.
- Select the third option “Search Volume Trends” and click on “Get more keywords”.
A list of keywords will be generated that will be related to your original term.
You can sort the keywords by two parameters – Search volume(current month) and Advertiser competition.
When you click on “Search volume” the keywords will be arranged in descending order of number of searches made on it. So the top keyword is the one that was searched most and the last one the least. This can be visually made out from the page rank like green bar seen next to the keyword.
The second parameter by which you can sort the keywords is the advertiser competition. This shows how many advertisers are currently competing for the keyword on google.
Example – For the keyword “Free mp3″, the advertiser competition is full or maximum – meaning that the number of advertisers bidding for that keyword is high.
Thought the figures can be tempting, one can easily go by the first keyword (maximum searches and maximum advertisers bid), I wouldn’t actually recommend it. Because, those are the keywords that have the highest competition, there are many other bloggers and website that may have already optimized their content on it (probably MFA’s for a keyword like Free Mp3), so it’s meaning less to enter that arena with your little starter blog(unless if you are sure you can cut the competition).
The idea is to find a niche keyword. So, you may want to select a keyword with lesser advertiser bid but a pretty good search volume. It’s up to you to select which one, i’m hoping that these can be found within the first Top 10 keywords. In this example probably “Mp3 converter”.
Before you zero in on the keyword, goto Google.com and search for the keyword, see how many results it brings up, would your blog be in a position to cut the first 10 sites? If yes, please go ahead otherwise try tweaking the keyword to fit another niche. Example – Mp3 converter review, Mp3 converter download etc.
Google allows you to save the keywords list in a CSV file ot TXT file, so that you can do your research on them.
2 – Now the second method of finding keywords is using a tiny program called “Good keywords“.
You can download it here.
This program helps you get an idea of the number of keywords searched on Yahoo (Not Google) related to a particular keyword you suggest, and it’s volume. For example if you suggest the word “cheap hotels” – It would show you the related keywords searched for the last month on Yahoo and the search volume in numbers.Pretty much the same way as it worked with the AdWords tool. One difference here to be noted is that – the figures are ONLY relating to Yahoo! So, in order to get an idea of the same keywords on Google, you can simply multiply the search number by 4 or 5, because considering the traffic on Google, Yahoo comes only upto 1/4th of the total search volume on google.
More information on where and how to find topics for blogging will follow in the next days.