You know the importance of keywords and keyword research. You have likely spent a good deal of time pinpointing those sweet keywords and keyword groups that help you rank and build focused content. However, are you digging into suitable niche keywords? If you are not, you are doing yourself and your business a disservice. Here is what you need to know about niche keywords.
What is a Niche Keyword
Generally speaking, niche keywords are highly focused long-tail keywords. Or, to say it a different way, a niche keyword is a long-tail keyword within a niche. Just as the name implies, niche keywords represent a very narrow set of keyword phrases that tie intimately into a particular vertical of a particular industry. These are the types of things that people looking for a very specific product or service will search for.
For example, say you offer a WordPress to HTML site conversion tool. You will likely look at keywords such as “wordpress to html,” “converting wordpress to html,” and other keyword phrases. But what is your niche? Who will most likely seek out your service? And most importantly, what kind of wording will they use to seek out a service like yours?
By contrast, your niche keywords may look something like: “converting wordpress PHP to HTML for small business,” or “change WordPress page to regular HTML website.”
As you can tell, niche keywords will have a far more narrow focus. They won’t have as many people searching for them as your more generic keywords would. They also will not have much competition. They will have a far higher conversion rate, as they will bring in highly relevant leads.
Using niche keywords will become increasingly important as you discover just how much leverage your competition is already getting out of the shorter keywords associated with your industry. They give you a way to target individuals, rather than groups. They offer you that quality over quantity aspect that marketers and businesses often seek.
More about long-tail keywords
Since your niche keywords are really narrow long-tail keywords, it helps to spend some time learning and mastering long-tail keywords. It is hard to rank in many markets. Often, you are up against well-established, deep-pocketed corporations. You simply cannot compete with them if you try to rank for generic industry terms.
In some cases, that competitor can own the entirety of the first page of search results. While you cannot compete directly, you can certainly compete indirectly. That is where long-tail keywords come into play.
Long-tail keywords exist near the tail end of the search results of related keywords. These are the phrases that people type in that tend to have more specificity to them. They are not very popular, occasionally they might not even have any relevant data attached to them. However, it is there at the tail end of the popularity scale you will find your treasure trove.
Related, high relevancy keywords for scented candles
Say your industry is something like scented candles. If you are just getting started, there is no way you can compete in ranking for “scented candles.” You will need to find a niche within the scented candle field and use long-tail keywords to set you apart from the completion.
In this case, a long tail keyword may represent something like “scented candles for pregnant mothers,” or “scented candles that create a chill mood.” In fact, the longer the keyword phrase, the more likely it will turn into a conversation.
The “tail end” of related keywords for scented candles
You can go even further down the tail. You will notice the terms growing far more specific and longer. Consider something like “soothing scented candles for pregnant mothers in their third trimester.” Someone who types all of that into a search engine is almost definitely looking to make a purchase.
Long-tail keywords are powerful, and they are the key to success of any niche marketing campaign. If you are not familiar with them, you should definitely put some effort into learning more about them and what they can do for you. Understanding them will help you a great deal when it comes to drilling deeper into them to find a niche and niche keywords.
How to Find Niche Keywords
Finding niche keywords begins just like any other keyword research endeavor. And, as with anything else, it is best to take it step by step.
Define your niche
You cannot have niche keywords without a niche, right? Maybe you already have a niche, or maybe you are looking for your next potentially profitable niche. No matter what avenue you choose, it is important to have a position to start from. For this example, let us say your niche is “natural energy drinks.”
No niche? No problem
If you do not have a niche, there are a number of things you can do to find a niche that appeals to you. You can jump right in and find an aspect of something you are already passionate about you can focus on. You can also use a keyword tool to find underserved or very low competition keywords you can turn into your niche. Trust there is always something, even if you think everything under the sun has already been covered.
What is keyword competition?
Keyword competition, in this case, refers to how difficult it is for your site to rank for a particular keyword. There are several tools out there to give you competition analysis and statistics. Many of them use wildly different algorithms to come up with results. So it is a good idea to put in a little extra work to see how a keyword is doing. The price of keywords in ad campaigns often ties directly into the competition level of the keyword in question.
Put on your thinking cap
Finding a good niche may require you to put a lot of extra thought into your search. This is especially true if you start with a broad topic.
For example, you may have an interest in bottled water. But your niche cannot be just bottled water. You may do some research and find that bottled water has other related terms that can help you narrow down your niche search.
You could discover that most search terms featuring bottled water indicate people are always trying to figure out if it is any different from tap water. Well, you can find that out.
From there you can narrow down to a bottled water vertical you can use to specifically serve those people. Interestingly enough, finding niche keywords for that vertical will work in a similar fashion.
Start researching keywords
There are tons of keyword research tools out there. You can use them to produce a healthy list of relevant keywords related to your niche. You can also start by checking out the keywords used by the competition, if any.
Which of the keywords do you think will work best for you? It is hard to tell from the outset, but eventually, you will start to drill down to those keywords that may offer you the best reach.
Niche keywords exist in a vertical of your industry. You may even want to look at a vertical of that vertical to find good niche keywords to run with.
For example, if your industry is energy drinks, and your vertical is natural energy drinks, then you may have to drill down even further to separate your content from the competition’s. Your keyword list may show you things like
- natural energy drink distributors,
- or natural energy drinks that do not contain caffeine.
The key here is to find the terms you can work with in your marketing and ad campaigns. Starting from scratch may come with some trial and error. Finding those off-the-beaten-path terms that relate to your niche can help you figure it all out. All without needing to go head to head with a national natural energy drink chain.
Other ways to find long-tail keywords
There are a few more ways to find long-tail keywords that are easy to do and will not cost you anything. Try entering your industry or vertical into encyclopedias and other resources like Wikipedia. These places tend to have whole sections devoted to specific verticals associated with the main topic. This can give you some ideas on which direction to go in with your niche keywords.
Try entering a term into a search engine with an autofill option. Those autofill options will give you a look at what people are actually searching for. The bottom of search results will also have frequently searched for related terms. See what people are talking about in relation to your search terms.
Check out forums and question sites and see what comes up most. These can help a great deal because people usually make use of these resources when they cannot find what they are looking for elsewhere. So you will know immediately there is an underserved vertical you can make use of.
Refine your keywords
You will probably find dozens, if not hundreds, of keywords, keyword phrases and alternative terms. Do not let them overwhelm you. You will want to pick out keywords you can use. This should not represent too great of a challenge.
If you are marketing content, then you are looking for things you can write about. If you are selling a product, you are looking to put together phrases that can directly complement that product.
Just because a keyword shows up in relation to your niche, it does not mean you have to use it. If it is too generic, it will not help. If it is specific, but not relevant, it will not help.
Look for keywords with low competition
These keywords will likely have fewer searches as well. That is what you want. Not only will these niche keywords make for cheaper ad campaigns, they also target the kind of people who are likely looking for exactly what you are offering.
Remember that people doing searches with long-tail keyword are usually at the end of their search cycle. For example, the person looking for “natural energy drinks” is likely just checking out what the world of natural energy drinks has to offer. The person searching for “natural energy drinks no caffeine” is probably ready to buy something.
Knowing how niche keywords can work for you will allow you to cut out all the overly competitive keywords immediately. What you are left with are those terms you can start putting to work.
Track your progress
As stated, you will likely have to go through some trial and error. Do not fret, that is an important aspect of refining your methods and figuring out what works best for you.
- Pay attention to how your niche keywords perform
- Stay proactive about your keyword research and refinement
If something is not working, then try another approach. Take what you learned from researching your niche keywords and attack the project fresh. Keep in mind you should have a number of niche keywords, not just a handful. Keep an ongoing, updated portfolio of niche keywords you can play with at any given time.
Even when something is working for you, do not become complacent. Always test and tweak to see if you can eke a little more performance out of your niche keywords. No matter what, stay focused on your goals.
If you are not meeting your goals with your niche keywords, then switch tactics. The keyword game is always changing. So what is working for you today might not work for you in the future. That is why it is important to stay proactive with your niche keyword research and refinement.