How to Uncover Profitable Keywords

January 4, 2011 Posted by Alex Papa

The following is a guest post by Alex Papa of

The wide array of keywords that users key into search engines everyday is like a large dictionary filled with millions of different variations of words and phrases; some of these words could help you increase your sales significantly, but others could cripple your business fairly rapidly.

The keywords you choose to target directly impacts your online business. Today I will reveal a series of little known strategies that I have successfully used to uncover profitable keywords, and build a solid keyword list.

1. Analyze Your Target Market

In general, for you to be an effective marketer you need to immerse yourself into your chosen market. You need to be aware of the habits and preferences of your market. Your level of understanding of your target market will assist you in choosing keywords that are the most appropriate to your buyers. To be able to educate yourself on who your buyers are, you can do the following:

  • Join a forum specific to your chosen niche and become an active member
  • Get involved in online and offline groups that are focused toward your niche
  • Subscribe to email lists and newsletters that deal with the subject matter
  • Read books, newspapers, articles and any other information at your disposal

As you research you should keep a mental note of all the information you have gathered, and allow your mind to absorb the new knowledge you have gained.

2. Formulate a List of Keywords

Now that you have acquired a fair amount of new knowledge on your target market, your mind is now prepared to brainstorm keywords that you would have never thought of had you skipped step one. Take a pen and paper and allow your mind to work for you. Write down all the keyword ideas that filter through your mind, and do not limit yourself to just single words, write down longer phrases and all the different variations you can think of.

3. Expand Your List

A few clever techniques exist for you to expand your keyword list and uncover many lucrative keywords that have not been targeted by your competitors.

  • Misspelled Words: Typo’s and misspelled words provide an opportunity for you to find keywords that are obscure but also profitable. For instance a phrase like “cheap accommodation” is often mistakenly spelt as “cheap accomodation”. You should include commonly misspelled words when drawing up your list.
  • Solution-Based Keywords: Any market that offers a solution to a problem has commercial potential. People are willing to pay for appropriate solutions that “repair,” “fix,” “stop,” “treat,” or “help,” solve their problems. Words of this nature must be added to your keyword phrases.
  • Product Names: The names of products that have gained popularity over time are remembered by potential buyers. Including product names in your list ensures you target customers who are on the verge of buying.
  • Informational Keywords: Many search engine users are information seekers, but even information seekers can be converted into buyers or they can opt-in to your email list which will increase the likelihood of making a future sale. Include informational words such as, “tips,” “how to…,” “how much is…,” or “the best way to…”

4. Divide Your Keywords into User Groups

Every search engine user can be categorized into the following groups:

  • Buyer Groups: This group is the highest converting traffic you can find as they have gone through the buying cycle and are ready to make a purchase. Keywords that are “buyer hungry” are the most profitable but the search volume is low. These keywords contain words such as, “buy,” “where to buy,” “cheap,” “discount,” or they may contain product names as mentioned above.
  • Product Seekers: There is a larger volume of traffic in this category but the conversions are usually lower. These types of keywords are used by people who are not brand conscience, and they do not have a great deal of knowledge on what types of products are available to fulfill their needs. Often the word “products” are included in the search phrase, such as “hair loss products” or “weight loss products”. Solution-based keywords normally fall into this category as well.
  • Information Seekers: This group is the largest search engine user group but the conversion rates from information seekers are also the lowest. Broader keywords of a general nature fall into this category.

Before targeting any keyword you must examine the keyword’s marketability. To gauge the potential profitability of each keyword you must analyze the “Average Cost-per-Click” for the keyword using Google’s keyword tool. The higher the CPC competition the higher the market value is for that keyword. Companies will not bid on keywords that are not converting regularly.

Every so often you will find a keyword that has a high CPC competition but the first page of the search engine results or the organic results contain pages that are not optimized for that specific keyword. In a case like this, you can easily secure a first page position by optimizing your site for that keyword.

Short keywords are more competitive, larger industry players dominate these markets. But gaps in the market can always be uncovered, longer-tail keywords are where many internet marketers find success, and this should be your focus when you are just starting out as an internet marketer. If you are not sure what a long tail keyword is, here is a typical example: a short keyword is something like “Diabetes Treatment” and a long-tail keyword will be “Diabetes treatment that works” or “Diabetes treatment and its effects”.

As your keyword research experience grows your ability to identify the “golden nuggets” also increases significantly. But this game is all about numbers and statistics – you should constantly analyze the relevant data, and tweak your search engine marketing campaigns to extract the highest ROI.

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Posted: January 4th, 2011 under Guest Posts  

29 Responses to “How to Uncover Profitable Keywords”

  1. Dino says:

    Profitable keywords are hard to find, but when you do it makes the time and tears worth it!! 😉

    • Actually they are not that hard to find, everyone knows profitable keywords 🙂 It’s about finding keywords that have not much competition!

      • Really it’s a mix of both low competition and profitability. Just because a keyword has low competition, it does not mean that keyword is profitable. Usually lower profitability results in lower competition. This is why it is crucial to really analyze your potential keywords to figure out what keywords are best to target.

  2. great post I never new that technique thanks

  3. Jimvesting says:

    Nowadays, there is are a lot of great pieces of software that can help you out in the process… any you’d recommend? It’s clearly better to work with software just for time’s sake.

  4. Good post. Another thing to remember is localization if you’re targeting a region in particular that doesn’t speak English as a primary language. In that case, it might be a good idea to use the local language’s nomenclature when thinking of keywords to use.

  5. poorblogger says:

    Profitable keyword ain’t easy to find. I agree with short keyword but the competitive is huge.. need to find something new keyword.

  6. Paul says:

    Great keyword tips.

  7. Wow, amazing but unfortunately I dont think there is such a thing as profitable keyword anymore. Just my opinion guys

    • Well that’s a pretty ignorant comment. Keywords are still very profitable. While keywords remain a central element of search engines, companies will continue to profit from those keywords. Perhaps you just meant that it is no longer easy to rank well for the keyword of your choice with a limited budget.

    • If there are profitable online businesses around then I can guarantee that they have some profitable keywords. Yes, it is becoming harder to uncover them and you do need an effective sales funnel but they are still out there.

  8. Those are great tips, but since Google instant has come out people are less likely to misspell things.

  9. Long tail keywords are much easier to rank for, but you have to pay attention to search volume, it should not be too low.

  10. suzie says:

    Can you please write a post on complete seo of a blog. I have a blog for past 6 months but I am hardly making $30 per month from it. I used the method mentioned for ehow articles to look for my keywords but I am sure its not working out. I feel there is a different method one needs to use which I am aware of. It would be great of if you can write a tutorial about the subject.

    • Good luck on that. You can’t expect to learn SEO from a single blogpost. There is a lot to learn and it cannot all be covered in a blogpost. There is plenty of articles and tutorials available on the subject though. So if you do some research, you’ll be sure to learn enough to get started.

    • If you are in top ten of Google for some keywords and you are getting traffic to your website then you may be targeting the wrong type of keyword. Make sure the keywords you are going after have people who are ready to buy not just information browsers.

  11. Finding profitable keywords is becoming an art form and quite time consuming but putting in that initial effort can reap excellent long term benefits.

  12. I think everyone has their own way of looking for the right keyword that has little competition yet profitable.

  13. Motos says:

    Using Google adwords is the best way to choose.

  14. Do you know how long I’ve searched for keyword tips like these for my home theater website? Thank you!

  15. These are great tips, It can be really hard to choose the correct keywords to use, you really broke it down more.

  16. According to me, first decide a niche and then reasearch the keywords in that niche to fulfill your needs.

  17. Another awesome post from you. Most internet marketers kill their own businesses by using the wrong choice of key words. The tips you have shared here are just what any internet marketer needs. These tips if followed correctly can lead to increase in traffic and income.


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