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The Keyword Research Matrix (Part 1) to Scale Your Influence

Scale Your Influence is a three-part series that begins with this post.

By the end of this series, you’ll have a completely new perspective on how to make money online so that you may grow your popularity quickly and do everything you set out to with a blogging business.

It’s like putting together a jigsaw puzzle, where no two pieces are fundamentally difficult to connect. But if you’re missing just one piece, no matter how hard you work, the entire puzzle will never be solved.

The issue is that there are much too many small parts and details for a single person to track down. “Blogging” is not a career path. A “professional influencer” does not have a guidebook in an encyclopedia or a research article.

Aside from a few self-proclaimed “gurus,” you’re left with nothing but “experts.” Those who tell you that you are incapable of doing anything except succeeding in your endeavors.

It’s all about finding your passion, helping others, and living a fulfilled life, all while working only four hours a week.

Rather than teaching you how to do anything, gurus sell you hope.

They aren’t difficult to understand; they just aren’t communicated in a clear and concise manner.

Today, I’m making a good living from my blog because I was able to put it all together after many failures, risk-taking, and a lot of learning.

To put it another way, my previous failures were not due to my inability to put up the effort; they were due to my lack of knowledge. I was unable to see the whole picture because the puzzle was obscured. Everything was broken. I didn’t know about the red pill.

So, I’ve put together a three-part series to help you find the missing parts of the puzzle.

This is the first principle you need to grasp in order to grow your internet presence.

Scaling Your Influence: The Keyword Money Matrix (Part 1)

I’m beginning my three-part series with a look at keyword analysis.

In the process of choosing a niche, keyword research is one of the most challenging and insanity-inducing blogging tasks.

You can’t get much better than that when it comes to marketing. There are a lot of articles on Google that were published over five years ago, mostly for SEO purposes and to provide basic information that would be of interest to a wide range of readers.

The same rules apply to keyword research.

Example: If I Google “keyword research,” the first-page results include articles from major SEO players like Ahrefs and Moz.

What exactly are they debating?

Ahrefs is here:

Keywords and Keywords Research
Keywords and Keywords Research

The content of Ahrefs is fairly simple and designed to rank well on search engines. Keyword research is explained in a way that is understandable to a wide range of novices.

What about Moz’s high-ranking article on keyword research?

Moz Pro
Moz Pro

Frankie and Jo’s Seattle-based vegan, gluten-free ice cream store is the subject of a short storey. The truth is, I’m not even exaggerating.

Hey, Moz, how are you doing? Customers are probably looking for “ice cream near me” when they visit our website. The dairy-free alternatives are also missing! It’s time to move on.

These articles aren’t necessarily awful, but they don’t go deep enough to change your perspective in a significant way. A layer of actionable clarity is what I’m going for with this basic information.

It’s clear that keyword research advice is convoluted, broad, and riddled with half-truths.

Half-truths, on the other hand, lead to individuals acting in a half-hearted manner.

The only way to regain control of your firm is to drive your Pontiac Aztek into two drug dealers, but unless you’re Walter White, you don’t have to.

In this post, I’ll explain how to get the most out of keyword research by focusing on the following:

  1. The process of conducting keyword research is straightforward.
  2. It is possible to write only two sorts of articles.
  3. Keywords fall into four categories.
  4. Keyword research and monetization go hand in hand.

Let’s get started now.

The Problem with “Keyword Research”

We’ve all heard the phrase, “do keyword research.”

It’s a cinch:

Think of anything in your head, type it into Google, and then click on something towards the top of the list when the search results come up.

Searches on Google have become an extension of the human psyche. Think it, write it. All is known to the Google Gods.

Disney Plus, Hurricane Dorian, the Area 51 raid, and my personal favorite, Baby Yoda, were some of the most popular searches of 2019.

*Disney would definitely sue me if I posted a photo of a baby Yoda on this page. Instead, I’ll go with this:


SEO parameters such as monthly search traffic, keyword difficulty, competitor scores, and cost-per-click (CPC) are used to come up with a “keyword research plan” when conducting keyword research.

To put it another way, we hunt for terms that fall under a given set of parameters.

Moreover, there are 3.8 million terms searched per minute, so we have a lot of alternatives.

Hence, what’s regarded as good?

5,000 searches a month? Does difficulty score less than 50? No, it’s not.

Keywords with a high search volume and low difficulty are the ones we’re looking for.

In order to make money on the internet, how can we conduct keyword research when there are so many possibilities?

Only a portion of the story can be gleaned from the numbers.

Because they don’t help us think about the reason why we’re trying to rank for the keyword.

What drives entrepreneurs is usually money.

Side note: $$$ is not only money in your bank account but a vehicle to expand your online impact and brand authority faster. More on that in the second part.

Based on search volume, difficulty, and competitiveness, I might potentially rank for a large number of terms. That does not, however, imply that I should do so.

“How to pet a cat” isn’t exactly a household name.

(Maybe if I sold cat gloves, you cat glove hater! :D)

A pet Cat
A pet Cat

Add an extra layer to your keyword research if you want it to be accurate:

The intent of the keyword.

Understanding Purchase Intent.

You have complete freedom as a blogger to write about anything you choose once you’ve selected a niche. Anything you can think of, from Crossfit workouts to dog training to BBQ grilling and golfing to camping to financial services to the story of Jeffrey Epstein not taking his own life.

As soon as you’ve decided on a niche, you’ll need to come up with a number of blog post ideas—maybe five or ten at the beginning, then 10, or even more if you’re consistent.

Then, what are you writing about, anyway?

Doing keyword research without thinking about profit is a common blunder.

As you know, I’m a big fan of running my site like a business and prioritizing profit over all else.

Identifying the buyer’s purpose is critical to making sales.

To put it another way, the transactional value of a keyword is how much money you can make from it.

To put it succinctly:

Bloggers need to focus on phrases that have a high level of buy intent and a high level of affiliate earnings.

The good news is that finding one is a piece of cake.

A Quick Primer on How Websites Make Money

When you think about it, there are just four ways that websites can make money:


  • Selling things made by you.
  • Digital items, e-commerce brands, and courses are all examples of this.
  • Marketing through affiliates.
  • For profiting from other people’s goods
  • Affiliate links and text advertisements are two examples.


  • Selling your time for money.
  • Consulting, coaching, and hourly labour are all examples of this type of work.
  • Revenue from advertising.
  • The sale of your eyesight.
  • Banner advertisements and sponsored articles are two examples.
  • If you’re running an online business, you’re either selling yourself or someone else’s product, your own time, or your own eyes.

That’s all there is to it.

When it comes to keyword research, keep in mind that the goal is to drive traffic to your website from people performing Google searches. Not through interacting with your site via social media or by navigating between pages, but rather from a search engine.

Additionally, we are able to grasp the searcher’s intention because we have access to Google’s vast database of queries. A transactional term is one that individuals use when they’re seeking for a product or service they can buy.

Consequently, transactional affiliate marketing keywords should be your primary keyword research emphasis.

It’s the best way to monetize keywords, and here’s why:

  • There are many items that can’t be profited from in a more lucrative method, and advertising revenue serves as a catch-all.
  • First, bloggers have nothing to sell, and even if they do sell anything, their sales funnel doesn’t include boosting the sales page in Google rankings.
  • Low-volume search phrases like “services” are common. It’s important to note that the sales funnel doesn’t typically include ranking your service pages on search engines like Google.

What do you write about if affiliate marketing is the greatest way to monetize your blog?

The Only Two Blog Post Formats You Need

A successful blog requires only two sorts of content:

Reviews of products.

Step-by-by-step instructions.

That’s all there is to it. With only these two post kinds, you could build a multi-million-dollar blog.

The most important thing to remember while conducting keyword research is to uncover terms that can create money. Period. It’s better to rank for keywords that can be monetized rather than ones that can’t be monetized at all.

Among beginning bloggers, this is one of the most common mistakes. Because they write the first ten posts that have no value, they question why they aren’t making money.

Transactional searches, such as those for products, are the lifeblood of affiliate marketing. You can acquire a lot of traffic, create trust, and build an email list for future purchases by writing how-to tutorials.

Here’s why you just need two sorts of articles: (and how keyword research is easy.)

Type 1 of Blogger’s Keywords: Product Reviews

First and foremost, bloggers should undertake keyword research in their area by identifying product-specific phrases. These are terms that people use when they’re seeking evaluations of products, and the word “best” is often included in the search.

They’re looking to buy something.

You can see this for yourself by searching for “best credit card” on Google:

Best Credit Cards Google Search
Best Credit Cards Google Search

Nerd Wallet, Bankrate,, US News, and WalletHub are all affiliates. There is no such thing as a Visa, Capital One, or Chase.

Affiliates rule the roost.

Affiliates get commissions each time a credit card account is opened through one of their links.

Another example of the term “best running shoes” is used:

Best Running Shoes Google Search
Best Running Shoes Google Search

Runner’s World, Fleet Feet, and Running Shoes Guru are all featured in this list again. Running brands such as Nike, Adidas and Brooks are not mentioned.

Let’s try one more time. A corporate word like “webinar software” could be more appropriate:

Webinar Software Google Search
Webinar Software Google Search

Once again, bloggers are in charge. After G2 and GoToMeeting, Capterra is the last of the popular review blogs that I’ve mentioned in this post

Why does this happen?

Users looking for information about product categories on the internet are looking for third-party reviews they can trust. The searchers in these cases aren’t ready to be routed directly to a brand’s product page; instead, they’re looking for more detailed information from a blog first.

To go to the product page, for example, they would type in “Brooks Adrenaline GTS 20” in the search bar because they have done their homework and know exactly what the product is (and probably first read about it on a blog)

The ultimate goal is to rank for the term without the word “best” in it and then to rank for the keyword without the word “best” in it.

According to Runner’s World, the greatest running shoes are. However, they are also the most popular search term for “running shoes.” Search for products that don’t have the word “best,” such as credit cards or webinar software. On the first page, you’ll find a greater number of legitimate eCommerce companies, although affiliates are still a significant factor.

There is a chance you may eventually rank for the core term without “best” if your material is linked to frequently.

During my time as an affiliate manager, a wise individual once said the following to my face:

You can think of them as an “indirect sales force.”

See if you can get high rankings for any products sold in your niche (and sell). In this way, you can outrank the brands and take a piece of their earnings.

In the case of “running shoes,” even if Nike is on the first page of Google’s results, they can’t take up all 10 spots. To reach a wider audience, they must collaborate with other websites. As a result, the affiliate model is essential.

It’s one of my favorite ways to monetize my blog and earns me more than $70,000 a month. Using your own brand in this way is the only way to truly reclaim your power as an individual.

How to find product review keywords:

If you want to know how much money a keyword is worth, you should use the Ahrefs Keyword Explorer Tool instead. This is the tool I use to come up with new keywords.

You can use the example of golf as an example.

Enter “best golf” into the Ahrefs Keyword Explorer.

Ahrefs Keyword Explorer Example
Ahrefs Keyword Explorer Example

With only 150 monthly searches, the term “best golf” no longer makes much sense on its own.

For transactional product keywords, you can see all keyword variations that include “best golf” by clicking “Having same phrases,” which is on the left side of the screen.

Keywords with same terms
Keywords with same terms

There are columns for the term, difficulty, monthly search volume, and expected clicks, as well as the cost per click in this list.

In only one search, we uncovered a plethora of prospective review posts:

  • Golf balls of the highest quality
  • Shoes for the golf course
  • The best golf rangefinder and the best golf gloves
  • The best golf clubs and luggage
  • The best hybrid golf clubs available on the market today.
  • The best clubs for novices in the game
  • In terms of golf simulators and GPS systems, which is better?
  • The best GPS watch for golf

There is a lot of traffic and little competition for these keywords. Using Ahrefs, we’ve just discovered 11 new product review blog post topics.

The process of conducting keyword research is straightforward. If you know what to look for, you’ll find it.

How can the affiliate revenue potential of a keyword be determined?

Follow your instincts.

When it comes to affiliate marketing, this is exactly what I do. When advertising a brand and evaluating products, there are a lot of variables to take into account.

How much money you can make as an affiliate depends on the following factors:

  • The product’s cost: There is a trade-off between higher commissions and lower conversion rates.
  • The brand’s reputation: Well-known brands have a substantially higher conversion rate than lesser-known ones.
  • In the case of subscription-based SaaS companies: the trial experience has a huge impact on conversion rates and the amount of money you earn.
  • It could be a one-time or ongoing payment, depending on the commission rate.
  • After someone clicks your affiliate link, the cookie length is how long you earn credit for the sale. Typically, this is between 30 and 90 days.
  • Take it all in, it’s a lot to digest. For new bloggers, it’s nearly hard to tell which post will perform better than the others.

When it comes to product review keywords if you’re just starting out, go for it.

Don’t get bogged down in the planning process by pursuing all 11 of the aforementioned keywords. If you aim for every product review, you’ll get a handful that stands out.

Bonus #1:

It’s my goal to focus on things that sell for under $150, have a strong brand name, and have high commission rates. In my guide to the 105 greatest high-paying affiliate programs, you can find some average commission rates per industry.

Tips #2:

Search for the term, then visit a competitor’s site, then click on their affiliate links to find out more. You may see the product’s pricing if you click the link at the top of a competitor’s post, which is usually the one making the most money.

Why product review keywords are important:

The majority of your affiliate marketing earnings will come from these transactional words.

Consider it in this light.

So, for example, you might write: “13 Best Golf Bags of 2020 (Ranked and Reviewed)”.

This post lists 13 various golf bags, each with an in-depth evaluation, as well as advantages and downsides. It’s hard to go wrong with a TaylorMade 2020 Supreme Cart Golf Bag as your top pick.

The affiliate link should be used at all times when mentioning the brand and directing readers to their product page.

If the product is sold on Amazon, this could be an Amazon Associates affiliate link. TaylorMade has an affiliate program on Viglink, and it appears to pay 10% commissions for every sale that is made through the link you acquire by joining up for the program.

One of my product review entries on the greatest website builders can be seen here. There are affiliate links for a large number of the listed companies.

  • Ahead of time.
  • Throughout the article.
  • In the form of a button.

You should add three affiliate links per product or company in your list entries. And if possible, include affiliate links for all 13 of the products.

It’s a numbers game when it comes to making money through blogging. The more people see your content and click on your affiliate links, the more money you make.

As an illustration, consider how much money your article on the “best golf bags” may make in a month using the following math:

  • You get 2,500 visitors a month to your post on golf bags.
  • 50% of the 2,500 people who visited your site did so via an affiliate link.
  • There were 1,250 visitors to an affiliate link, and just 2% of them purchased the product.
  • This group of 25 customers has an average order value of $200.
  • In total, you make $5,000 in sales and earn $500 in affiliate commissions as a result of your efforts.
  • For a single blog article on golf bags, $500 a month in passive revenue isn’t a bad deal.

Affiliate marketing is a great way to make money, and here are some of the reasons why:

The CPM (cost per 1,000 impressions) on this page would be as low as $10 or $25 a month if you were to use ads instead of affiliate links to monetize it. Affiliate marketing yields a 20-fold increase in revenue when compared to a $25 investment.

Ad networks have a worse ROI than affiliate marketing.

It narrows the scope of your keyword research to the most relevant transactional terms.

As a result, it is imperative that you write about products that people actually purchase while selecting a niche and brainstorming content ideas.

This is something I cannot emphasize enough.

Don’t just look at vanity metrics when doing keyword research. Look for keywords with a high likelihood of conversion and a high likelihood of generating affiliate revenue.

If you’re merely doing keyword research, start by looking for “best” product review keywords that are monetizable.

Blogger Keyword Type 2: How-To Guides

Product reviews aren’t enough to sustain a site. Many product review websites exist, but they all lack personality. People don’t just want to read about items; they want to learn more about the subject.

As a blogger, you must be a teacher and build an audience around the problems you answer for your readers.

What do you do to help them?

Useful “how-to” manuals can be found here.

A search for “how to start a blog” is an example:

How to Start a Blog Google Search
How to Start a Blog Google Search

All of these individuals are affiliate bloggers who provide guidance on how to get started with a blog.

A lot of work goes into getting a blog up and running. For starters, there’s a lot of planning, niche selection, web hosting, WordPress theme selection, and content creation to learn.

How do these how-to articles get paid for?

In a similar fashion to posts on product reviews.

Bluehost is the only web hosting company that these bloggers promote and urge their viewers to click on their affiliate links.

  • Do you want to begin a blog? Hosting for your website is a must. To help support this site, I’ve created an affiliate connection for Bluehost.
  • So, you’ve decided to start a blog. Now what? Sign up for a Bluehost account and then figure out how to use it later.
  • Got a blog of your own yet? My Bluehost link is there for your convenience.
  • No, I don’t want to create a blog. You have no idea what a blog is, have you? Click on my Bluehost link nonetheless and make a purchase! Unlike everyone else, I have a unique discount code that’s completely different from the others.
  • There are many different ways to create a blog, but I prefer to focus on planning and niche selection rather than web hosting, therefore I don’t mention Bluehost until the 765th word of my piece.

As a blogger, how-to tutorials are one of the most important ways you can help your readers.

And the most important thing to remember is that you’re trying to find a solution to their problem by providing them with information and a product.

Whether you’re selling your own course or an affiliate offer, you’re teaching your readers how to accomplish something.

Let’s return to our golfing analogy.

The Ahrefs Keyword Explorer can be used to find how-to articles for your target audience. Instead of searching for “the finest golf,” type “how to play golf.”

How to Golf Ahrefs Keyword Explorer Example
How to Golf Ahrefs Keyword Explorer Example

You can narrow down your search for “How to golf” by clicking on the “Having the same phrases” link, which will show you all keyword variations that use “How to golf.”

How to Golf Ahrefs Having Same Terms Example
How to Golf Ahrefs Having Same Terms Example

A wealth of amazing ideas for golfing how-to guides may be found here, including:

  • Golf club swinging technique
  • How to hold a golf club in your hands
  • how to hit a straight and long golf ball
  • How to swing a golf club correctly.
  • Golf ball chipping technique
  • How to make a golf ball spin backwards

For our fictional golfing blog, there are six more good blog post ideas.

Why “how-to” keywords are important:

Traffic and trust are two of the most crucial things that how-to articles build.

To begin, a large number of people turn to the internet in search of tutorials and how-to guides. How-to content generates a large number of searches, which can have a significant impact on your blog traffic.

Second, they help to establish trust by demonstrating your knowledge and competence while also benefiting your readers.

After searching “how to swing a golf club,” a Google user may come across your site and read your product reviews before clicking an affiliate link or subscribing to your email list and purchasing a course.

The two most significant types of content for bloggers are reviews and how-to instructions.

Examples of These Post Types in Action

It’s easy to see how popular blogs are organized by looking at them.

Nomadic On the other hand, Matt’s guidebooks and other products may be necessary to learn how to save money when travelling the world.

Nomadic Matt Homepage
Nomadic Matt Homepage

Yes, NerdWallet has a wealth of information on how to invest and save for retirement, but the majority of their revenue comes from listings of credit cards and loans.

Nerd Wallet Home Page
Nerd Wallet Home Page

While One Stroke Golf ranks highly for “how to swing a golf club,” you’ll notice their menu steers users to product and equipment reviews:

How to swing a golf club for beginners
How to swing a golf club for beginners

All three of these instances provide their target audience with both educational how-to guides and transactional product reviews to assist them to find the products they need to address their problems.

It’s a breeze to set up, and the results are stunning.

You help an audience solve an issue by providing them with information.

In order to help them learn how to fix their problem, you offer them a transactional product as the answer.

Performing keyword research should not be a mystery; it’s simple.” Start creating product reviews and how-to articles based on the keywords you’ve identified in your field.

Instead of reading postings that say “do keyword research,” focus on finding ways to produce a return on the keywords you target. Focus on keywords like “the best” and “how-to.”

The Keyword Research Matrix

Having established that product reviews and how-tos are the two most common sorts of blog entries, let’s take it a step further.

There are additionally four buckets for blog entries based on the volume and intent of the keywords they contain:

  • Builders of brands.
  • Tickets to the races in the form of precious metals.
  • It’s a diamond in the rough!
  • You’re the only one who can pull it off.

This is what I refer to as the “Keyword Research Matrix” (CRM).

Keyword Research Matrix
Keyword Research Matrix

It’s a basic math rule: the more people who search for a keyword, the more money you can make, and vice versa.

The primary purpose of a user’s search is to find what they’re looking for. A search might be instructional (like how to swing a golf club) or transactional (like how to buy something) (best putters for beginners).

Your keywords should fall into one of four categories:

  1. Golden Tickets (High Volume, High Intent)

Search volume (over 5,000), high CPC (over $5), high competition, and high affiliate earning potential are just some of the features that make these keywords attractive.

These keywords are very valuable due to their high search volume and strong search intent.

To put it another way, there is a lot of demand for a solution that can solve a specific problem.

These are the key phrases that every blogger hopes to rank for in search results. If you want to be a successful blogger, you must incorporate them into your plan.

  • The greatest credit cards and the best business loans are instances of this in finance.
  • It could be how to start a blog or how to build a website in the field of marketing.
  • Web hosting and website building are two of the most sought-after keywords in the computer industry.
  • Others use terms like “best VPNs,” “best password managers,” or “best antiviral software” in their titles.
  1. Brand Builders (High Volume, Low Intent)

Poor CPC (under $5), moderate competition, and low affiliate earning potential are some of the features.

Brand builders are the second sort of keyword. Most of your how-to articles will fall into this category. But despite their popularity, there is no easy way to make money through affiliate marketing using these keywords.

For example, “how to make money online” is one of these keywords.

Keyword Overview
Keyword Overview

It receives an average of 296,000 searches every month, which is quite a bit. In spite of this, the CPC is only $2. Because the keyword is so broad and difficult to monetize with a direct offer, it has a lower value.

It’s difficult to decipher the searcher’s aim. Many people are interested in making money online in a variety of methods, including doing online surveys, launching an e-commerce business, coupon-clipping, and so on.

In the absence of a defined product, brand builder keywords improve traffic, position you as an expert in your industry, attract email sign-ups, and funnel readers to additional high-value blog posts that you’ve already written.

Traffic, email list, and course sales are the primary objectives.

  1. Diamonds in the Rough (Low Volume, High Intent)

Low monthly search volume (under 5,000), high CPC (over $5), moderate to high competition, and moderate to high affiliate earning potential.

Diamonds in the rough are very lucrative keywords that aren’t commonly searched for. With extremely high CPCs, they can be quite competitive.

Consider the term “marketing automation software” as an example:

Marketing Automation Software Keyword Explorer
Marketing Automation Software Keyword Explorer

This keyword is searched 4,000 times each month on average around the world. The insanely high CPC of $50 is the outstanding metric here.

Brands bidding on PPC advertising for the term may expect to pay roughly $50 for a single click. This is an important keyword to rank for. And I’m sure there are a few affiliate programs in that field.

  1. Uniquely You (No Keyword Research Necessary)

Keyword research isn’t always something you should perform.

No one can take away the uniqueness of your identity from you. If you want to be of service to your audience, you must use all of the tools at your disposal to make yourself stand out from the crowd. Experiment to the hilt. Try something new.

That’s usually not related to keyword research. To help your readers, share your experiences, and have a good time, just make an article. This post you’re currently reading serves as a case study.

It’s unlikely that these articles will receive any traffic from Google. You should, however, put them prominently on your content silos and category sites so that new readers can find them, read them, and become ardent fans of your writing style and material.

Priority Aims: Course sales have risen as a result of raving fans.

To summarize, each of your keywords will fall into one of four categories, just as there are two sorts of blog entries to produce.

Keyword Research Matrix
Keyword Research Matrix

The First 4 Blog Posts You’ll Need to Write

Begin by writing a post in each of these categories if you are just starting out.

There are a few things to keep in mind when starting a photography blog for profit.

Your first four blog entries could look like this (bolding the goal keywords):

  • DSLR Cameras to Look Out For in 2020 (Ranked and Reviewed).
  • Type of review: Product.
  • The Golden Ticket is in the Bucket.
  • In terms of affiliate sales, this is a high-volume keyword.
  • This is an instruction manual of the how-to variety.
  • Bucket is a brand builder.
  • A lot of people search for this term, however it isn’t directly monetizable. In addition, it could help you establish yourself as a thought leader and expand your email list. In addition, there may be affiliate products to advertise.
  • 2020’s best alternatives to PhotoShop (Compared).
  • Review of a product.
  • “Diamond in the Rough,” as the saying goes.
  • Notes: This is a less popular phrase, but it has the potential to bring in a lot of money for affiliates.
  • How I Captured the Milky Way Using My iPhone’s Camera.
  • This is an instruction manual of the how-to variety.
  • Bucket: Your Own Personality.
  • The focus here is not on keyword research but rather on developing raving followers by expressing your unique story.

Getting some practice under your belt by writing a few product reviews, how-to instructions, and creative posts for kicks is a terrific way to kick off your blogging career.

In-Depth Research of Keyword Difficulty: A New Approach to Expert Research

Quite a bit of ground has been covered already.

Using just two post styles and four keyword categories, we’ve made it easier for bloggers to conduct keyword research. Our research has revealed the relevance of finding transactional and informative keywords based on the buyer’s buying intent.

Finally, let’s debunk the mystery of keyword difficulty so you can better grasp what you can rank for.

The most common statistic used in keyword research is keyword difficulty (KD).

An SEO tool like SEMrush or Moz may call this a different name but the underlying concept is identical. Based on how difficult it is to rank for a certain keyword, the figure ranges from 0 to 100 – with 0 being the most difficult.

If you want to know why I don’t think it’s a good metric, here’s why:

  • It’s possible to rank for a low-difficulty keyword even if it’s difficult.
  • Some keywords with a high difficulty score, on the other hand, are far more straightforward to rank for.
  • A single figure doesn’t tell the whole story when it comes to keyword research.

Doing this is the most important thing you can do right now.

Who’s at the top of the page?

And it’s a cinch, as well.

Consider the DR and UR scores for the top 10 ranking pages to get an idea of how tough it is to rank for a certain keyword.

To put it another way, they are Ahrefs measurements.

  • An individual site’s Domain Rating (DR) is calculated based on its backlink profile and ranking potential. Google and Facebook are 99.9% reliable. New blogs start at zero.
  • Similar to DR, URL Rating (UR) assigns a score to a single blog post (URL) rather than the full site.

To begin, we have the Domain Rating (DR).

Forbes, with a DR of 93, has a better chance of ranking swiftly than my blog, which has a DR of 78. Why? Because it has more backlinks and authority than my own blog.

In the beginning, you have no DR. If you’re willing to put in the time and effort, you can increase your domain authority (DR) in the 30-50 range between three to six months.

But DR isn’t the only factor.

Better content can still outrank lower-ranking competitors even if you have a lower domain authority (DR).

If you’re a new blogger, one of the most important things you can do is work on increasing your domain authority (DR).

In addition, there is a ‘URL Rating’ (UR).

The URL Rating, on the other hand, is the best metric for conducting keyword research (UR).

It is usual for a new blog post to begin with a new UR of 10. It is possible to enhance the UR of a post by gaining more high-quality links to it over time.

A high UR is regarded to be between 30 and 40, whereas DR is between 80 and 90.

Look at the difficulty score, but also the DR and UR of the top 10 results to evaluate whether you can rank for a keyword.

To delve even deeper, follow these steps.

Low Difficulty Score, But Hard to Rank For

Assume you have a website dedicated to outdoor cooking. Smoking meat is one of your specialties, but you also sell books on the subject, as well as grilling supplies and equipment that you recommend.

In the Ahrefs Keyword Explorer, you look for the keyword “grill accessories.”

Grill Accessories Keyword Explorer
Grill Accessories Keyword Explorer

Metrics suggest that the following keyword is a suitable choice:

  • There are 7.6k global monthly searches for this topic.
  • The difficulty level of this keyword is just 13.

Yes, that seems like a simple approach to gain more visitors, right?

Slow down a bit.

After looking at the top 10 most popular websites, it appears more competitive:

Grill Accessories Keyword Explorer Top 10 Results
Grill Accessories Keyword Explorer Top 10 Results

Sites in the top ten positions have domain ratings (DRs) that range from 60 to 95. Ahrefs provides you a low difficulty number to compete with Amazon, Home Depot Weber, NBC News, Good Housekeeping and Taste of Home despite the fact that you’d have to compete with them.

Not a single site with a low DR is in the top 10.

It doesn’t get much better on page 2, as you’d have to beat out Lowes,, NY Magazine, Walmart Crate & Barrel, and Target.

You might certainly rank on page one with a DR in the 50s, but the keyword is considerably more competitive than its keyword difficulty score of 13 suggests.

High Difficulty, but Easier to Get a Ranking for

Even though the difficulty of the keyword is high, it can be easier to rank for one that has a lower difficulty score.

A search for “how to make money blogging” yielded the following results:

How to make money blogging Keyword Explorer
How to make money blogging Keyword Explorer

With a global monthly search volume of 11,000 and a keyword difficulty score of 68, this one is a little more challenging to rank for.

Viewing the SERP overview, on the other hand, paints a slightly different picture.

These are the top ten most popular domains based on their Domain Ratings (DRs). Two lower DR sites (41 and 58) are still ranked on the first page of search results this time around.

How to Make Money Blogging Keyword Explorer Example
How to Make Money Blogging Keyword Explorer Example

How to make money blogging appears to be easier to rank for than “grilling accessories” with a keyword difficulty of 13 from a Domain Rating and competition perspective.

Even if it’s not quite that straightforward, and URL Rating does play a factor in how these postings are ranked, one thing is very evident.

“Keyword difficulty” is a term that should be taken with a grain of salt.

New bloggers should seek the following items to increase their chances of ranking well on search engines:

  • There must be at least one DR site in the top ten.
  • Top 10 results should have at least one under-20-page result.

It’s essential to be aware of who’s on page one.

The Executive Summary

it’s important to conduct keyword research and plan a blog’s niche

  1. It’s simple to conduct keyword research.
  2. It is possible to write only two sorts of articles.
  3. It’s possible to target just four keyword groups.
  4. To make money from your blog, you must conduct keyword research.
  5. What’s on the first page matters.

It’s time to put an end to “keyword research,” which is nothing more than a dark box full of uncertainties. Use transactional keywords that solve an issue for your audience, such as “best” and “how-to.”

Scale Your Influence was the first in a three-part series.

Check out Part 2: The Leverage Flywheel in link building 2.0.

The purpose of this series is to change your mindset about making money online so that you may grow your business at startup speed and achieve whatever you want with your online business.

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