SEO Tips to Find Competitors’ Keywords

Looking for a quick way to data mine competitors keywords to determine if they are worth the hassle to optimize? After reading this quick SEO tip and using a few revealing SEO tools, uncovering their precious keyword treasure troves and dethroning them will not be a problem.

How to Dethrone Competitors using SEMRush, Compete, SpyFu and Alexa.

How to Dethrone Competitors using SEMRush, Compete, SpyFu and Alexa to Extract Their Keywords.

Did you know that most websites receive the majority of visitors from a small range of keywords? These keywords often have a disproportionate amount of traffic when compared to other keywords.

The most trafficked keywords are not always the most lucrative, but tend to contain the seed phrases that when combined yield the sites most lucrative secondary or tertiary keyword combinations; which is why it is important to look for these clusters.

When you have the ability to observe which keywords are delivering the most business to your competitors, it allows you to assess if your keyword funnel is to narrow, or if you wish to expand your keyword conquest even further.

Enough Already, Just Show Me the Technique?

To discover what those keywords are, you can use a few free resources to triangulate data to ascertain validity of which keyword is worth the hassle.

  1. Alexa.com – Now before you balk and say, ah shucks, Alexa’s data is skewed, keep in mind it is only one of a few metrics that you can use to dial-in traffic metrics for extracting or rather data mining keywords. Just visit Alexa.com and type the domain in question, then you can select the keywords tab or asses the sites at upstream or downstream data (who refers the most traffic to that online property and where they come from).
  2. Compete.com – Once again, this site is predicated on aggregate data from various sources (which they acquire from hosting companies, Google search engine fairies and other magical online methods) and at times the accuracy can be somewhat alarming. Even though they are not psychics, what they can dig up from the trail that the web leaves behind is pretty accurate. Just visit compete.com and type in the competitors domain or domains of choice, follow the link and then observe the referrer percentages with the keywords that yield the most traffic.
  3. SEMRush.com – This by far is the easiest of all. This is a great tool that does more than most since it allows you to see the correlation between landing pages, keywords and estimated traffic percentages. Just visit SEMRush.com and type in the domain name and off you go, where for a nominal fee you can unlock the keys to your competitions keywords for about $20 per month. Even in freebie mode, you can still glean the highlights of the main keywords to get the gist and determine if it’s worth unlocking the rest of the landing page/keyword puzzle.
  4. SpyFu.com – This is also a great tool which allows you to not only see a slightly different skew on which keywords have traction in search engines, but it also provides a snapshot of the ads they are using for PPC. SpyFu.com offers ingenious metrics, but the emphasis here is on quick tools you can use in a pinch to unlock hints on which keywords are worthy of pursuit. It just depends on your level of commitment and budget to pay the fee for all of the above mentioned competitive analysis tools.

The method is simple:

  1. Pick the keyword or keyword(s) you are targeting.
  2. Find the competitor(s) ranking in the top 3 positions of Google.
  3. Add their domain to the four SEO data mining tools (Compete, Alexa, Spyfu and SEM Rush – in three tabs) and see what percentage of traffic they get per month based on the divisible traffic metrics displayed by compete.com and / or Spyfu’s traction % of traffic / metrics.

    If the competitor gets 100K visitors per month at 15% of their traffic comes from “Keyword X”, then you know that “Keyword X” represents a healthy target for acquisition 15,000 estimated visitors per month or approximately 500 visitors per day.

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5 Comments

  1. Rick Falls
    Posted December 7, 2009 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    What you do is very cool.

    I was familiar with semrush it’s excellent, and thanks for the other references too.

  2. garage makeover
    Posted December 8, 2009 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Thank you very much for sharing the amazing tips to find competitor’s keywords.

  3. Online Success Blog
    Posted January 29, 2010 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Great post,thanks. Gives me insight into what i don’t know about keyword research.

  4. Annuity Rates
    Posted February 1, 2010 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Thanks these great tips, I read your blog posts every day and I learn so much about SEO.

  5. weblanta
    Posted November 6, 2010 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    I wish I could find better tools for smaller market websites. Some of my competitors have zero information on quantcast and sketchy info on alexa.

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