Case Study: Organic Milk, Google, 19 minutes.
Today I want to run a very REVEALING case study by you. It was actually a case study that I did back in 2012, but it is still as relevant as it ever was and I have some brilliant data and insights into SEO and rankings to share with you.
The case study is walking you through the process of "ranking" in search engines using proper keyword and niche research.
The chosen topic: “organic milk”
For this case study, I have chosen a niche that I know nothing about but I find intriguing as I do try to eat healthy and health is an ongoing focus of mine. I am going to walk everyone through the process of getting content ranked in Google (albeit for someone else’s site).
Keywords come first....
The first thing I do when commencing my research for content is to start with keywords. There is no sense in trying to figure anything else out until you have some keywords to work with. I personally use Jaaxy (get 30 free searches here), but the keyword tool here at Wealthy Affiliate pulls the same sort of results.
The first thing I naturally type into Jaaxy is “organic milk”. This has instantly given me a ton of ideas. This has offered me several different ideas right away.
organic valley milk
organic goat milk
organic cow milk
organic powder milk
organic milk coupons
organic milk benefits
organic almond milk
organic milk production
I definitely don’t want to unravel the whole “organic” market because it is so massive, so I obviously want to keep focus to my initial concept of organic milk. In particular, the “benefits” niche seems quite promising as the competition looks quite low.
Competition is the FIRST THING...
Traffic for any given search term is meaningless if you cannot get a ranking in the search engines (primarily Google). That is why the competition is the absolute FIRST thing I look for when analyzing keyword data.
As you can see below, the term “benefits organic milk” has a very low competition...only 38 pages in Google have this exact term on it (which QSR indicates).
That is very low compared to many search terms, anything under 100 is what I tend to call the low hanging fruit. Whereas anything under 200 is more than achievable to get rankings under, in particular as your website starts to gain authority.
The one thing that I don’t love about the search term “benefits organic milk” is that it does not make all that much sense. One of the key qualifiers for a keyword when you choose it, is that it must make sense GRAMMATICALLY.
So I am going to fix this phrase and perform another search in Jaaxy.
benefits of organic milk
Benefits OF organic milk does, but there is 263 competing pages for that term so I will likely face a bit more competition than originally realized as Google will typically rank terms with and without terms like of, and, to, by, etc...as one.
So in reality the term “benefits organic milk” has just 263 competition which is quite a bit more competitive than (but still possible).
Instead I am going to chose the term “organic milk benefits”. It only has 62 competing pages and it makes a whole lot of sense to me. There is nothing worse than trying to target an awkward search term that doesn’t make sense within your content. I don’t recommend doing it. If I were to choose the first term, I would have added the ‘of’ to the phrase.
There we have it. I am going to aim to get “organic milk benefits” ranked...
Before I do so however, I want to do one more thing that can extend your keyword reach through the extension of a long term niche.
To do this, I type my keyword in Google. The cool thing about Google is that as you are typing in any given term, it will give you suggestions of longer tailed keywords.
Here is an example:
Google typically reveals the most popular sequence first, so I will assume that people are looking for organic milk benefits for their children. That term doesn’t make sense, so I am going to see if people are typing in:
“organic milk benefits for children”
I plug in “organic milk benefits for” to see what Google instant brings up.
Sure enough, children is first. It has also given me some more writing topics to come up with (for girls, pregnant women). I could definitely target those keywords at a later time.
I have a feeling this term does not have much competition, if any. I plug the term into Jaaxy and as you can see, this term has even less competition.
The kicker...it gets some decent traffic.
So my focal search term has evolved into the term:
organic milk benefits for children
That is my writing topic...I don’t know anything about it just yet, but wish me luck. :)
**Keyword Note: You may be wondering about traffic metrics and why I haven’t put much emphasis on that. For me, some traffic is the only thing that matters. To work in scale you need to be able to get rankings...and to do so, competition is the most important factor.
If you can get 10 rankings under 10 keywords that get 100 searches per month, that is far better than getting 3rd page rankings under 10 keywords that get 1,000 searches per month. That is my personal approach.
Creating the Actual Content
Since I don’t know a heck about “organic milk benefits for children” I am going to have to do a little bit of research and capture some main topics and themes that I am going to be writing about.
The beautiful part about the Internet is that there is an abundance of information out there on ANY topic and with a little research I know I can come to learn just about anything, including organic milk! :)
Some of the things I am going to focus on are:
- organic milk (what it is, what are the benefits)
- non organic (what it has in it that can hurt kids
- child health w/ organic (benefits and perhaps stats on kids that eat/drink organic
So off I go to tackle some research.
I am going to just use Google search to simplify my research and you will be able to reveal more than.
First, I want to capture some benefits of organic milk. Here is what I came up with by searching “benefits of organic milk” and looking at the first couple of rankings:
(1) It lasts longer (3-4 weeks versus 1) because of the distances and distribution time of organic milk, it is put through a process called Ultra High Temperature (UHT for short) which kills the bacteria and will also will sweeten the milk slightly.
(2) Not produced without antibiotics. 90% of organic farms do not use pesticides which
(3) No residual pesticide exposure. All organic milk has very low exposure to pesticides which are common within non-organic milk because of the food that is fed to the cows on non-organic farms.
(4) Higher Omega 3 content. Omega 3 fatty acids are critical fats to brain development in children and although both conventional and organic milk types are both excellent sources of “good fats”, organic milk contains higher levels of these fats.
(5) Animal Welfare. The cows on organic farms live longer, healthier and happier lives than those that are within the mass production farms that house sometimes 100,000’s of cows. The practices are far more ethical and take feeding, housing and managing disease into consideration.
(6) A study done by the British Journal of Nutrition showed that the rates of ezcema in children was reduced by up to 36% when consuming organic milk and other dairy products.
In just a few minutes I have articulated (in my own words) 6 potential benefits of drinking organic milk, all of which can be applied to children as well.
This is where most of my data and information was captured from:
http://www.cdr.wisc.edu/news/pdf/SCIENCE BEHIND REPORTED BENEFITS OF ORGANIC MILK.pdf
Now I want to structure what my actual article will look like. There is no “one way” to write an article, so you do not have to follow this technique exactly. Here is what I want my article to look like.
- Introduction to Organic Milk and Child health
- Outline the benefits of organic milk
- Where you can get organic milk
- My conclusion on the overall concept.
That is it. Now I am going to take these ideas and just write my article naturally (unstructured writing). Remember, I have no prior knowledge on this topic but within a few minutes of research and some recording of my findings, I am going to be able to put together a quality article.
Writing the Article Out.
When I write, I try to do so naturally. Although this topic is not one of main interests nor is it my passion, I did my best to make my article personal and aimed to connect with my audience.
When I wrote this article back in 2002, StreetArticles.com was a popular article directory that I submitted my article too. You will be submitting all of your content that you create directly to your website and using SiteContent to write your actual content (the ultimate writing platform) This particular article took me about 15 minutes to elaborate on and is just over 400 words, these days though I would try to hit the 1,000 or so word mark.
Here is the article if you want to have a read (which still ranks #1 overall in Google 6 years later and has received over 10,000 unique visitors!)...
I didn’t spend 2 hours making it perfect and it probably isn’t.
However, I personally would rather get my content out there and adjust after the fact than to try to make it perfect on the very first attempt. In other words, I would rather submit a post in 2 hours that is not quite perfect than to submit one that I have tried to make perfect and spent days trying to perfect.
A few quick “socialize” tasks...
The next things that I did was to share the on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and Facebook.
This literally took me less than a couple of minutes to socially share my post on all of them.
This is important though as it can lead to quicker indexing of your content, more traffic, better rankings, and more conversations and sharing within your actual article (which can further boost rankings).
Fast forward 19 Minutes...
Some of you may find this hard to believe, so I am going to provide you with some conclusive proof as to how quickly you can get ranked.
Would you believe me if I told you that I was able to get the #1 ranking under my target search term in a mere 19 minutes and to this day, it is ranking #1 overall?
Believe me, it happened. I have PROOF.
As you can see, June 5th, 2012 at 4:02 it was ranking #5 overall in Google within 19 minutes.
Now let’s look at the actual Google ranking today, and see where it is ranked.
It is ranked #1 overall in Google.ca, Google.com, & Google.co.uk under the term:
organic milk benefits for children
Here is where it gets really awesome; Mass Search Engine Exposure!
Google.com (#1 Overall Ranking)
Bing.com (#2 Overall Ranking)
Yahoo.com (#2 Overall Ranking)
If my calculations are correct, that is a 99% search engine market reach still 6 years later. These SEO techniques worked then, they work today, and they will continue to work 6 years from now.
No backlinks required. No focus on keyword density. No tricks or illusions.
I simply chose a low competition topic, I wrote about it, I published it, I got ranked.
This has lead to $1,000's in free traffic and although I am not monetizing this, it could have lead to $1,000's in income (and likely daily sales) from writing ONE article.
Now it is your turn. Get out there and show me what you got. Research a keyword within your niche and submit an article and see what sort of rankings you can get. I think you will be warmly surprised.