Keyword analysis services: Our strategy for reliable conversions

Over the years, we've built content strategies for clients like Mergify and VeryCreatives, and found that the most reliable way to generate conversions is to target high-buying intent keywords first.

This is how our keyword analysis services work:

  1. We import the keywords that your competitors are ranking for into a spreadsheet
  2. We filter out the keywords that you already rank for
  3. We sort these keywords by highest buying intent and lowest keyword difficulty

This strategy works so well because it targets keywords that readers search for when they want to make a purchase. These readers already understand the value of your product; they don’t need nurturing. We aren’t targeting top-of-the-funnel, high-volume keywords that may increase traffic and other vanity metrics but do little for conversions.

For example, when we started working with Belighted, a software development agency located in Brussels, we could’ve easily targeted keywords like “What is software development” that have thousands of searches per month.

We could’ve shown Belighted, “Look, we drove several thousand readers to this article; our strategy is working.”
However, someone searching for “What is software development” isn’t planning on buying Belighted’s services. They are still learning about the industry.

Instead, we targeted long-tail, high-buying intent keywords like “bespoke software development company” and “hire bespoke software development firm.”

These keywords might only have a couple of monthly searches, but Google search intent shows that people typing in “hire bespoke software development firm” are ready to buy. They are just looking for the best company to partner with. 

So targeting these keywords allowed us to generate conversions quicker than if we prioritized high volume keywords.

Below, we'll dive deeper into our keyword analysis services and show you how we bring in reliable conversions for our clients.

Note: If you’re looking for an SEO agency that prioritizes keywords that bring in conversions, you can reach out to us here.

Step 1: Importing competitor keywords from Ahrefs into a spreadsheet

The first step involves typing your website URL into Ahrefs and pulling a website overview report.

In the toolbar on the left-hand side, we’ll click on "Organic Competitors," and Ahrefs will use keyword overlap data to find websites similar to yours.

We like to pick between three and five competitors depending on how many keywords these competitors are ranking for. For example, when we did keyword gap analysis for Belighted, we found competitors like Trig, Mintbit, and GMI Software.

From here, we'll export the keywords these three competitors rank for into our spreadsheet. To do this, we'll go to the "Top Pages" tab and select "Export" in the upper right-hand corner.

Once we've exported these pages, we'll paste them into our spreadsheet, which looks something like this:

Step 2: Removing the keywords that you already rank for

The problem now is that we don't know which keywords you already rank for.

What we used to do is type [ "target keyword"] into Google, and this would show if your website already ranks for a keyword or not.

However, this was very time-consuming as we had to run thousands of Google searches.

So, instead, we built an application into our Google Sheets that would compare the keywords you rank for against your competitors' and remove any duplicates. 

This automates the manual work since all we have to do is paste your Ahrefs keyword report and run it against your competitors.

Step 3: Cleaning this data

We're now left with thousands of links that your competitors are targeting and you aren’t.

But we're also left with links pointing to WordPress files, JavaScript files, images, and other backend pages, so we want to remove them before continuing.

We’ll also use our SEO experience to flush out keywords that we feel like the client doesn't want to rank for.

When doing this for Belighted, we found keywords like "is software development a good career." We don't want to rank for these keywords because our client is selling software development services to companies, and they don’t care about ranking for keywords that software developers are searching for.

We also found branded keywords from other software development agencies like Airdev. We'll usually remove these search terms as well because the search intent of someone typing “Airdev” into Google is that they probably want to navigate to Airdev’s website.

The only exception is if these branded keywords have alternative or versus variants; think “Airdev alternatives” or “Airdev vs Belighted.” These then become high-priority keywords that we want to target because they show high buying intent.

Step 4: Importing keywords from The SaaSpirin Audit

Now that we have a clean file of keywords, it's time to import the existing articles that we identified needed improvement during The SaaSpirin Audit.

These existing articles are high priority because you’re already ranking for them. They just need a little boost in the form of an update to rank higher.

For example, if we find that you’re ranking sixth for a certain keyword, but the content on that page is slightly outdated, and there are SEO mistakes like no meta description and incorrect formatting, we'll focus on rewriting and fixing these pieces.

Think about it: These pieces are already doing well despite making critical SEO mistakes. So, if we can fix these mistakes, we'll be able to jump up Google's ranking faster than if we "started from scratch.”

Step 5: Prioritizing long-tail, high-buying intent keywords

Instead of going after keywords with the highest traffic, we target high-buying intent low keyword difficulty keywords because they convert better.

As we mentioned in the introduction, someone searching for “hire bespoke software development firm” is more likely to convert than someone searching for “what is software development.”

After interviewing hundreds of SaaS founders, we know that you don't care about traffic, comments, social shares, and other vanity metrics. You care about conversions.

Step 6: Importing this into a content workbook

Now that we have all these keywords in a spreadsheet, we'll import them into a content workbook and forward this workbook to you. This content workbook contains your SEO strategy for the next six to 12 months.

Our content workbook looks something like this:

On top, you'll find a bunch of headings that will give you an idea of which topics we're targeting and why, the headlines of these blog posts, the angle we plan to use, and when you can expect these articles published.

Next steps

If you’re looking for an SEO team to conduct keyword analysis and build a conversion-based SEO strategy for your website, consider booking a call with us.

After we’ve conducted keyword analysis, the next step in Our Methodology is creating expert-level articles that’ll get you to rank for these keywords.

We’ll begin by updating existing content and then publishing the articles in the content workbook, prioritized by highest buying intent and lowest keyword difficulty.

If you’re interested in learning more about how we write articles, head to our SaaS content marketing services page.