4 Steps to Finding Untapped, Low Competition Keywords

The overall success of SEO is heavily related to keywords.

The fact is that most digital marketers are using the same arsenal of tools to research and select their keywords, such as Google Keyword Planner or SEMRush, resulting in the same words being targeted for multiple companies and higher difficulty in ranking for popular industry terms.

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Keyword tools are incredibly useful and can provide a wide range of options for keyword ideas. However, an experienced SEO marketer must understand that these tools should be used for industries that are in a broad niche where there is a multitude of subtopics that each will have hundreds of word and phrase suggestions for.

For example, “health” has many relevant subtopics all brimming with their own sets of keywords, such as nutrition, fitness, wellness or exercise.

So what is a savvy digital marketer to do when they are working in a narrow niche such as “used tyres”?

If the popular, juicy keywords are filled with industry competitors that are fighting for rank, it’s time to get a little creative and the best place to start is by deep diving into your target audience and understanding how they speak and search.

This action will result in finding some truly hidden keyword gems that have not yet been uncovered by competitors and will improve SEO ranking for your business.

Keywords always need to be analyzed for their ranking difficulty and competition as well as what their overall traffic potential is. There is not much sense in throwing multiple resources, not to mention time and hard work into a term that may only receive a handful of searches per month.

To get into the heads of your customers and uncover keywords that will support your SEO success, there are four steps that should be followed. Take a look below and get ready to get started.

Talk to your Target Audience and Listen

We all know how easy it can be to lose touch with customers, especially when working in an industry or niche for a substantial amount of time.

That is not to be used as an excuse – marketers need customer feedback to optimize and improve. While it isn’t always possible or feasible to speak to clients in person, there are a number of simple methods and tools that can be used to gather valuable feedback.

Think subscription forms, autoresponders or on-site search data and how these can be better designed to capture the essential feedback that you need.

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For example, using the “used tyres” niche, what if a pop-up form was placed on a website asking for a quick minute of someone’s time to provide some feedback and suggestions? It can ask questions such as what their goals are for when they shop for used tyres or any struggles that they have encountered in their purchase journey. Even better, once you read the responses, you may find some keywords that had never even crossed your mind.

If you are not yet using on-site search tracking, set it up in your Google Analytics account. It will extract the most commonly searched terms and phrases that users enter on your website that did not return a result.

Get Into Your Customers’ Heads

Yes, brainstorming is a great way to start a list of keywords and topics; however, as SEO marketers, we generally unconsciously think of keywords that will have high search volumes – which usually translates into high competition.

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With the boom of mobile search and more and more people from all walks of life using the internet, how people search is changing. Consider this – some experts have estimated that up to 20% of Google searches have never been performed before. That is why it is so essential to get inside the heads of your customers and discover all the counterintuitive ways that they may be searching for something that you offer.

If you think carefully, you will start to generate a different, creative keyword list that is more than likely untapped by the competition and easy to rank for. Using the “used tyres” niche, your list may look something like this:

• Used tyres with warranty
• Used tyres free installation
• Where should I buy used tyres

Monitor Social Media Users’ Language

Where do people go when they need advice or recommendations? Usually, social media.

Facebook and LinkedIn are good places to find keywords. Why? Because when most people post, they do so with very little editing and often write the way that they would speak. Search Facebook groups, LinkedIn profiles, etc. and start extracting interesting keywords and topics from user posts.

You will find that many users post topics in the form of a question, which can become great ideas for new keywords to target.

For example:

• How to find the best used tyres
• How long will used tyres last?
• Should I remove used tyres myself?

Take these, write content, optimize, and rank for answers to questions that your customers are searching for.

UGC (User Generated Content and Communities)

To take the social media step even further and really find questions that your customers are having a hard time answering or finding helpful, related content to, start paying attention to UGC. There are always industry-specific ones, but social communities such as Quora and Reddit are a fantastic resource.

Throw the term “used tyres” into Quora and you will see pages upon pages of detailed queries like:

• Would you recommend buying used tyres
• Is buying used tyres safe?
• Are used tyres worth the savings?
• Where do used tyre shops get the used tyres in such good condition?

Search these forums frequently and fresh keywords and subjects will continue to pop out.

One thing to keep in mind about keywords and questions found on community forums is that they most likely will not have a huge amount of search traffic, but they may belong to similar topics that have hundreds more searches and even better traffic potential.

Get Started!

If you are sick of trying to compete with enormous competition and large, deep-pocketed brands for popular keywords, give the above steps a try.

Any keyword tool worth its salt can come up with lists of high volume keywords, but what they can’t do is get into the minds of your customers and target audiences to understand the topics that they are actively searching for.

These untapped keywords that you will begin to locate will be easier to rank for, will increase your online visibility and reach, as well as boost your overall SEO success.

Note: The opinions expressed in this article are the views of the author, and not necessarily the views of Caphyon, its staff, or its partners.

Author: Jamie FitzHenry

Jamie FitzHenry is the founder of Grizzly, a Bristol based digital agency focussing on helping businesses enhance their online presence. You can reach out to them on Twitter @wearegrizzly.

3 thoughts on “4 Steps to Finding Untapped, Low Competition Keywords”

  1. Just got amazing nuggets here. Thinking, how much I can instantly improve, is making me jump in the chair. Completely pumped up. Thanks for sharing this article Jamie.

  2. I always say this. Just because a term isn’t showing search volume in the Keyword Planner it doesn’t mean that nobody is searching for it. If you know it’s a relevant industry term, there’s going to be searches for it. They might be few, but your competition is way less.

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