How to Avoid Targeting the Wrong Keywords
One of the biggest dangers when you’re starting an Internet business is targeting the wrong keywords.
Many beginners and even experienced marketers sometimes fall into the trap of targeting incomplete keyword phrases or phrases with keywords in the wrong order. This can lead to many weeks or months of wasted time and effort.
In this video we’ll be taking a look at how to avoid this trap by using keyword phrase permutations.
Specifically, we’ll be covering:
What phrase permutations are
Why they are important
How to investigate permutations using Market Samurai
Definition of a Permutation
In the context of using Market Samurai, a keyword phrase permutation is simply a rearrangement of the words that make up the phrase.
The easiest way to understand this is to take a look at an example.
The phrase ‘dog training collar’ has 6 possible permutations:
(1) dog training collar
(2) dog collar training
(3) training dog collar
(4) training collar dog
(5) collar dog training
(6) collar training dog
As you can see each of these permutations is simply a rearrangement of the words in the original phrase.
Why Permutations Are Important
Let’s now take a look at why these permutations are important.
Occasionally Google returns keyword phrases in a misleading word order. You can identify these phrases in Market Samurai by their low Phrase to Broad Match Ratio values. For example the phrase ‘dog train’ shown here has a very low PBR value which indicates that these words are not commonly searched for in this order.
If you mistakenly target one of these misleading phrases, you can fall into the trap of spending weeks or months optimizing your website only to find that you receive little or no traffic. This is why we usually filter out terms with a low PBR value.
However, if you’re interested in digging a little deeper, you can sometimes uncover some great keyword phrases to target by investigating phrases that have a high level of SEO traffic and a low PBR.
Example Using Market Samurai
Let’s take a look at an example to illustrate how this strategy works.
Once again I’ll start with the example of ‘dog training’.
Access Keyword Research Module
First of all, I’ll access the keyword research module...
...and click the 'Generate Keywords' button to generate a list of related phrases.
I’ll then come down and click the ‘Keyword Analysis’ button...
Display SEO Traffic and Phrase to Broad Match Ratio
...and as you can see, I’ve chosen to display only the SEO traffic and the PBR columns, and have chosen 'No Filters' as my filter setting.
Sort Data By Low To High PBR
Now this time I’ll click on the PBR column heading TWICE in order to display the PBR values from lowest to highest.
As I scan down this list, what I’m looking for is a phrase that has a high SEOT value and a low PBR value. Let’s say - under 10%.
For example, let’s take a look at ‘dog training obedience’.
Create New Keyword Tab
To examine this phrase in more detail, I’ll begin by coming over here and clicking this key icon, which gives me a new tab with the term ‘dog training obedience’ as the new seed keyword.
Access New Tab
I’ll click on this tab and then...
Access Keyword Research Module
...access the Keyword Research module again...
...and this time I’ll click the ‘Add Permutations’ button.
Market Samurai then generates all the permutations of the phrase I’m investigating.
Having generated these permutations, I can come down and click the Keyword Analysis button.
And with the SEOT and PBR columns being displayed, I can click the Analyze Keywords button to get my data.
In this example I can see that one of my permutations has a high PBR, and it seems to make logical sense that people would be searching for ‘dog obedience training’ rather than ‘dog training obedience’.
Check Exact Match Type
You’ll also notice that with the match type set to ‘broad’, all my permutations have the same SEO Traffic value, however, if I change the match type to exact, I can see the difference in traffic potential for each of my permutations.
Identify High Traffic, High PBR Permutation
The reason this is so important is that it allows me to identify the high traffic permutation and avoid these other low traffic permutations.
So let me just recap what we’ve done here.
We started with the seed keyword ‘dog training’ and generated a list of related phrases. Next, we dug a little deeper and identified a phrase that had high traffic and a low PBR value which was ‘dog training obedience’.
We then explored the permutations of this phrase and discovered that one of these permutations had a much higher PBR.
By doing this analysis we were able to identify that the phrase ‘dog obedience training’ would be a much better phrase to target than any of the other permutations.
We also avoided the trap of building our business around one of the low traffic permutations which might have been disastrous.
A Second Way to Use Permutations
OK - Let’s now take a look at a second way to use the keyword permutations feature in Market Samurai.
Sometimes when you conduct a permutation analysis, you will discover that ALL of your permutations have a low PBR.
One possible reason for this is that there is a word missing in the phrase you are analyzing.
Targeting a partial keyword phrase can be just as bad as optimizing for the wrong keyword combination. Once again, you can spend lots of time, energy and money to build a website only to discover later that you’ve overlooked an important word.
Let’s take a look at an example so you can see exactly how this works.
In this example, I’m going to analyze the phrase ‘solid metal’.
Access Keyword Research Module
So to begin with, I’ll access the Keyword Research module...
...and this time I’ll come over here and click the ‘Add Permutations’ button, and then click ‘Keyword Analysis’.
And now with the SEOT and PBR columns being displayed, I’ll click the ‘Analyze Keywords’ button to obtain my data.
As you can see this search term has an incredibly high SEO Traffic value but both permutations have an extremely low PBR.
High SEOT + Low PBR on ALL Permutations
Whenever you see this pattern of a high SEO Traffic value combined with a low PBR on ALL permutations, it is worth checking whether there is a word missing in your search phrase.
Return To Generate Keywords Screen
A good way to search for missing words is to generate other keywords using your search phrase as the seed keyword. To do this, I"ll click 'Keyword Generation' to go back to the Generate Keywords screen...
Generate Related and Long Tail Keywords
...and I'll then click the ‘Generate Keywords’ button. This will allow me to generate longer tail keywords associated with my original seed keyword ‘solid metal’.
And when the keywords come back, I’ll click the ‘Keyword Analysis’ button.
Sort by SEOT
If I sort these results by SEO traffic, I can see that the phrase ‘metal gear solid’ has an even higher SEO Traffic value than my original seed keyword and more importantly a very high PBR which means this is a term that people are actually searching for.
This also suggests that the high SEOT values for the phrase ‘solid metal’ are actually due to the large number of people searching for the computer game ‘Metal Gear Solid’.
Check Exact Type Data
I can verify this by changing the match type from broad to exact.
Review SEOT of Seed Keyword
And if I scroll down you’ll see that the SEOT value for the term ‘solid metal’ has dropped quite significantly!
Now if I’d targeted the term ‘solid metal’ thinking that I’d discovered an untapped niche, I could have easily spent a lot of time, effort and money optimizing my website around a phrase that was missing a critical keyword. But thankfully by investigating phrase permutations I can avoid making this kind of costly mistake.
The concepts we’ve covered in this video can be a little tricky to understand so let’s just take a moment to clarify the strategies that we’ve looked at and explain when you should actually use them.
If you come across a phrase that has a high SEO Traffic value and a low PBR, the first thing you should do is generate all the permutations of the phrase and analyze them to see if one of these permutations has a high PBR. This will allow you to identify the best word order of a particular phrase.
If when you generate these phase permutations, you discover that they ALL have a low PBR, then the next step is to check for missing words using the Keyword Generation feature which generates longer tail derivative phrases.
It’s important to realize that Market Samurai is a very powerful and open ended tool. By understanding concepts such as keyword phrase permutations, you will gradually develop the skill and intuition you need to explore a niche and find the best opportunities to target.
You’ll also be able to avoid the traps of optimizing for keywords in the wrong word order or targeting incomplete phrases, and this will give you a much better chance of long term success.
More Keyword Research Lessons
- Introduction to Keyword Research
- Golden Rule #1: How to Find Relevant Keywords
- Golden Rule #2: How to Find High Traffic Keywords
- Golden Rule #3: How to Assess Market Competition
- Golden Rule #4: How to Assess Commerciality
- Golden Rules Case Study
- Finding Long Tail Keywords
- Understanding Match Type Data
- How to Avoid Targeting the Wrong Keywords
- How to add your Google Adwords account details into Market Samurai
- How to Signup for a Google Adwords Account
- How to Use Preset Filters