Welcome to aaron chua make money blog

Hi, welcome to my blog. In this part of my world, I talked about how to achieve financial freedom by learning how to make money online through creating sites and earning from them.

Below are some current and past make money projects that details my learning journey.

My current experiment in making 50 amazon site niches. If you have not been following this challenge, best place to start is this resource page for the amazon challenge, that lists all the articles that I have written so far.

My experiment in making 1000 a month through adsense in 9 months.

If you came here looking for low cost startup ideas, here are 140 startup ideas that you can browse through.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Tools and tips for keyword research

I have been relatively quiet these part weeks, focusing on building my niche blogs and learning all the SEO tricks I can find. I am quite surprise at some of the creative ways and useful tools that one can use in their SEO. So, rather than keeping it to myself, I thought of sharing it here in case you are interested in such things.

Before moving to the tools and tips, I want to put on record saying my first niche blog is a complete failure. If you google for fish oil effects, you can see that one of my niche site for this keyword (fish oil effects) is on page one of Google. That might seem like something to celebrate, given my short stink at SEO but closer examinations reveal otherwise.

At first, it seems strange to me that after following the SEO techniques and achieving what I set out to do, the adsense revenue is not coming in. This prompted me to delve deeper, which is when I realise I made a fundamentally error in my understanding of keyword research.

I thought fish oil effects has a monthly search volume of 27,100 based on google keyword tool, until I realise Google sums all the relevant searches that contain these words. For example, keywords like fish oil side effects will also contribute to the search volume for fish oil effects, even though they are 2 separate keywords. The right approach is actually to view the 'exact' results, rather than the 'broad' results of the google keyword research tool. When I switch to the 'exact' mode, guess what? The monthly search volume of fish oil side effects is only 170. That explains my pathetic adsense revenue for this particular niche blog.

Anyway, to cut the long story short. I decided to relearn many things and that is how I discover these new tools and tips that I am to share right now for those that want to do more effective keyword research:

#Tip 1: Calculating your earnings potential
Beyond the low search volume, one other mistake I made in choosing keywords is not knowing their full earning potential. It is like a startup not doing his financial modeling before launching his business. Anyway, I now used a simple formula to calculate the earnings potential for a niche site, relying on adsense alone

Number of monthly EXACT search*
Probability of these searches coming to your site*
Probability of those coming to your side will click of your adsense*
Average CPC*
Your share of your CPC.

How you get these numbers? Here are the definitions:

Number of monthly EXACT search: these are numbers you can get from the Google keyword tool

Probability of these searches coming to your site: This will depend on your ranking on Google's first page. I have listed the percentages in my previous post

Probability of those coming to your side will click of your adsense: I assume 5%

Average CPC: Again, use google keyword to get the average CPC

Your share of your CPC: I assume Google takes 75% while I take 25%

#Tip 2: Know you competition well
I used a variety of tools to derive my competition levels.

I initially only use plain Google search to know the number of competing sites. After a while, I find that that is not really enough as I don't know the quality or pagerank for these sites. I then discover and use this free tool called SEO for firefox, which allows you to see the pr ranks of the Google result page. Using this, I then decided to only choose keywords if the top sites in the result page doesn't have any sites that are pr4 and above.

Finally, I used the following link to determine the number of backlinks each site on Google's result page has.
This helps me to know how many backlinks I need to build before being able to be rank #1 on the search result of the keyword that I desired. If the number of backlinks is too many, I will start all over again and choose another keyword to target.

All in all, these steps have helped me greatly in selecting good income potential keywords with minimal competition. So far, the results look promising. I will talk more about what exact sites am I working on if they turn out to be successful.