As I have mentioned the Keyword Strategy Tool aka the Fraser Method already several times on this blog, without explaining it much, I thought it might be a good idea to write a proper review about it and use that to point people to instead of repeating myself over and over again in the comments or on Facebook … So here you go and, as nearly always, pour yourself something nice to sip as this will be a longish blog post 😉 BTW, if your approach to website building is to find a keyword that might pay well, build a website with a few dozen posts / pages about it that consist mainly of content you found on the internet and have re-written to make it ‘unique’ and then to build back links to your site until you die, this method is not for you. Have a look at some of my older posts instead and see if you find something that interests you more, like my Market Samurai Review or read about what I think of Build My Rank. If, on the other hand, you want to build a site you are not only proud of enough to put your name and reputation on it and that makes you money, read on …
For the impatient
Keyword Strategy is a web based tool that helps you to discover keywords / topics to write about, provides a WordPress plugin to do the internal linking of said keywords for you and keeps track of your rankings, visitors, social links, back links etc. At first sight, this sounds pretty basic and not really ‘cool’. If you just want to try it out for free, you only need to sign up for their 30 day free trial (no credit card required, nor a Paypal subscription, just a valid email address) you can do so here via my friendly affiliate link 😉
Even shorter said, the Fraser method consists of finding keywords for a topic you are an expert in, writing an expert article about it on your own site, interlinking your articles (on your own site!) as your content grows and rinse and repeat. The tool, basically a web based keyword management database plus a WordPress plugin, Fraser has developed takes care of the keyword finding and internal linking part. When all is set up you only concentrate on writing articles for your own site … Note that there is no idea of back linking the ‘h…ck out of it’, the method will work with only, relevant, content creation, but if you feel the need to create back links to it, it is not encouraged, but also doesn’t affect the main principle of ‘create keyword focused content, build internal links’.
There is a lot of free material on the >>>Keyword Strategy Website<<< including user manual, forum, SEO tips etc that are all free to read. Yup, no secret sauce or club here, the whole information is readily available to whoever cares to be interested in it. Only if you want to try the tool out for yourself, do you have to open a free trial account. This makes a pleasant change to the usual IM practice of keeping things ‘secret’ until you have signed up and / or paid for it. In the beginning I was a bit concerned that, for example, the forums are fully indexed and frequented by the Google bots, but now I am cool with it. As Fraser’s method is fully compliant with Google’s guidelines for web masters, no reason to hide it from Google 😉 But I digress …
If you want to know all the nitty gritty details, the good, the bad and the ugly, just read on. You have refilled your mug / glass, haven’t you? 😉 First of all some background info:
Keyword Strategy is a tool developed by Cain Fraser, the guy that runs ‘Universe Today’, a PR7 website about astronomy and related topics that receives
60,000 (100,000 by latest count) visitors DAILY. He developed this tool first for his own use and since, ?perhaps a year? opened it also up to other people. The interesting thing about Fraser and Universe Today is that he claims that all this traffic is because of his numerous, keyword targeted posts and that he never build a link to this web site intentionally. I think we can take the last bit with a grain of salt, what he means is that he never run a link building campaign for this web site, but I am sure he build the odd profile link from a relevant forum, a Facebook page, a blog comment etc. But still, PR7 and 60,000 (100,000) visitors a day is an impressive achievement, especially when achieved with only writing content, proper internal linking and minimal promotion. In 2010 I ‘met’ Fraser, nobody calls him Cain btw, ok, perhaps his Mom ;-), on the TKA forums and what he said struck a cord with me: ‘Why wasting time and effort in adding content to other people’s web sites, if you can add it to your own?’ So somewhen in 2010 I joined the brand new, and still teething Keyword Strategy site, first as a beta tester and then as a subscriber to the service. BTW, I love being a beta tester, first you can play around with all the cool, cutting edge stuff and then you get a nice price reduction when the product / service is out of the testing phase! But I digress again …
Ok, I think that Keyword Strategy is the best thing since sliced internet marketing bread, but don’t just take my word for it, try it out yourself for a month — for free 😉 Here some tips to make the most out of your trial and yes, I will mention the down sides also, I am a fan, but still realistic!
Go to the Keyword Strategy home page and scroll down until you see ‘Create Your First Project Now’ and put in the domain of the web site you are going to use. For a work around for using the tool to do keyword research BEFORE buying a domain and setting up a web site, keep reading, I’ll cover that also in this blog post, I told you, it is a long one. How is your mug / glass / cup btw?
Ok, now, after you have refilled your beverage, you also should have filled in your domain name / web site address. Now click ‘Go!’ And the subscription form pops up 😉 No worries, just fill out desired user name and password plus a working email address and you can test drive Keyword Strategy to your hearts content for 30 days. BTW, if you are really, really suspicious you can always use a ‘throw away’ email address, or open yet another gmail account … Click subscribe and you will be greeted by the welcome screen, which reads ‘Thanks for registering! Thanks for signing up, your 30-day trial starts now. Click here to create your first project.’
Ok, you guessed it, click where it says ‘Click here’ on that screen. The tool will now guide you through the setup process of your first project (you have two projects available as a trial user). As the tool does an excellent job in guiding a new user through said set-up progress, I will just add here some additional tips and info, but not bore you to death with a step by step instruction 😉
This one is a biggy for me as I concentrate now more on my German sites then on my English ones. The tool allows you to set the language, which also sets the Google location for getting keywords, competition analysis etc. Very handy if you have, or plan to have, a non-English web site.
Workaround if you haven’t decided yet which website / domain you want to use
If you don’t want to use a specific web site yet, simply create the project with a ‘faked’ domain name and you can do your initial keyword research without having to decide yet on a domain. When you have decided on a domain, simply download all your keywords, delete project and start a new project with your correct domain filled in. Just don’t leave this step for too long as the tool will re-evaluate your keywords and that takes time. But this method is great to quickly decide from which angle you want to approach your market. Lets say you are into dogs, know a lot about dogs but dogs is, as we know, a very competitive term and also very time consuming to cover all facets of it. So you could do a research to find the best ‘dog niche’ for you and still branch out later on.
After you have created the project starts with I call ‘Dance with Data’. The first step is to get as many keywords on your list as possible as long as they are relevant to your main topic. Try to keep this list as it grows as clean and relevant as possible, much less work later! There are several ways to get keywords:
From your own site
Hit the ‘Get Keywords’ button, check that language is set correctly and fill in the url of your own site and wait a moment. You will see a pop up window with the keywords the tool thinks your site is already about. Check keywords and black list all that you don’t want to keep. This step is important in order to avoid getting drowned in irrelevant keywords. Import the ones that you want to keep and discard the ones that are not useful for your site. Use also the ‘tagging’ feature when you import them, this way your list becomes more manageable and article writing and organizing becomes easier down the time line.
From your competitors’ sites (*sneaky, sneaky*)
Exactly the same as above, I suggest trying out the top ten results in Google for your chosen keyword / topic. Just don’t get too narrow at this point, keep your mind open and use ‘music instruments’ instead of ‘string music instruments from India’ or the like. If there is a good Wikipedia article on the topic, no harm in putting that one in also …
A special tip for getting more great keywords
Sort your processed keywords by ‘lowest competition’ (meaning how many people write about this keyword on the www) and tick the top ten. Hit ‘Get keywords’ and they will become your new seed keywords. Sort, filter, black list, import, lather, rinse and repeat to your hearts content until you have a nice long list of relevant keywords / topics to write about. At this stage you already should ‘tag’ your keywords when importing them. For example, staying with the example of a music instrument related website you could use tags like ‘country of origin’, ‘type of instrument’, ‘music style typically used for’ etc. The more care you take in this step, kicking out (black listing keywords you don’t want) and tagging keywords that belong together, the easier life will become for you later on.
Now let the tool work a bit, that is the bad part! As it relies on the Google API, it is quite slow and gets through around 3,000 – 4,000 keywords a day. Now, after your first batches of keywords have been processed, you can continue to sort them and kick out the ones that you don’t want. You can sort the list by competition (low is good), search volume (high is good), KEI (means the quotient of searches and competition, high is good) and a whole bunch of other values such as CPC etc. At this step it also pays out to tag your keywords already, for example with the categories you plan to use. Yes, I know, I mentioned tags already several times, but it really makes a difference later on in your workflow, believe me!
So, before you proceed to the next step, you should aim at getting a clean list of several thousand (no joke) keywords that are properly tagged. You can change the tags later on, btw, if you want and one keyword can have more then one tag assigned. The biggest danger is now to become a ‘data junkie’ like I am and spend too much time researching and too less creating content 😉 Because now it is time for
The keyword list you have created should provide you with endless ideas for articles. You can simply start with any of them (you have the super-high competition keywords blacklisted, right?) Or you can use a more systematic approach and write first for the keywords with the lowest competition or highest KEI, up to you. Every time you publish an article you should connect the relevant keywords in the tool with the respective url on your site. The tool aims to do this automatically, but I prefer to do it by hand to make sure that each keyword is assigned to the right url because the plugin creates now the internal links for it. Basically this is the ‘magic’ part in it as now every time you mention >keyword< in a future blog post the plugin will automatically link >keyword< to the post you have written about >keyword<. And the more content you create, the more internal links are build, strengthening your internal link structure and showing Google which post on your site is the most relevant one for >keyword<.
A word about ‘Groups’
The tool tries to automatically group keywords together and frankly it does a pretty good job with it. Basically a group is a collection of keywords that belong together and should ideally be written about in one article. If you click on the group info in the tool, it tells you what your main keyword is, what your related keywords are, and, perhaps most importantly if you have your main keyword in the title, on the page etc. As groups are created when you publish articles, it pays out to check them and see if the tool finds any SEO related issues with your new article, i.e. keyword missing on page etc.
The more you publish the better, as the tool crawls your site and finds additional keyword suggestions for you. These can be reviewed under the ‘Keyword Discovery’ tab, where also those discovered via Google’s webmaster and analytics info, are displayed. And from now on all becomes pretty much semi-automatic and you’ll get the hang out of it easily.
- Publish article.
- Assign url to keyword(s) to create internal links.
- Let tool discover more keywords from your content.
- Filter and import keywords that are relevant.
- Choose new keyword(s) to write next article about.
You see, no secret sauce and nothing dodgy that Google would be unhappy with here. Just make sure that your article provides the best possible answer to a search a real human does and you are in the clear.
If you are looking for a ‘magic wand’ that makes you tons of passive income overnight with little or no work involved, Keyword Strategy is not the place you should be looking at. If instead you want to build a site that weathers algorithm changes quite well, is actually useful to the readers and want to take the guess work out of keyword research, Keyword Strategy is exactly the place you should start your journey.
That is pretty much only scratching the surface of what the tool does and what else is included in your subscription. Here a list of other things you get included in your subscription, the price and even a summary of the things some might find less appealing when using the tool.
Can’t mention that one enough 😉 reading about something is one thing, but trying it out for free for a month is another thing. A bit like reading a recipe book and actually cooking one of the dishes and savoring it!
Duplicate Content Detection
This one is super-useful if you have an existing site that has hundreds of articles of which some may or may not target the same keyword. The rule of thumb with the Fraser Method is to write the best article possible about >Keyword< and only one of them and then to move on to the next keyword. The duplicate content detection allows you to find out which articles on your site target the same keyword and then you can combine them in one and generally improve them in the process.
Pretty quiet, people are actually more busy to write articles then to chit-chat on the forum. But there is always somebody around to give you feedback or helps you to decide on the best plugin to xyz on your site. Plus Fraser checks in daily and helps if you run into any issues or have questions about how to use the tool best.
Live Consultations with Fraser
If you have Skype you can speak with the man himself, for free! Very useful to get a nudge in the right direction when you are confused about what to do next or how to approach the whole thing with building an authority site. One point Fraser stressed during my chat with him was that I need to see my site more from the point what it actually offers, i.e. which problem it solves for a person that ends up on it.
Optimization Tips and Alerts
There is a whole bunch of diagnostic features available in the tool, from alerting you to rank changes, telling you which posts / pages need more, internal!, links, tracking your Facebook likes and tweets that mention your site etc. You will discover them as you go along, just don’t get hung up with them, the most important bit is writing keyword relevant content that solves a problem for your readers 😉
A nice little app in your profile that shows how much work you have actually done on your site(s) and how much you have procrastinated. A bit like the house points in Hogwarts, each action gives you a point, or more, and you have a 30 days window to see if your productivity was good or bad. A bit of a motivational tool, nice to have but not essential.
Videos, Tutorials and the like
Lots of information here from somebody that knows what he speaks about and can proof it. As I mentioned already, all this content can be found for free, no sign up necessary, just go to the >>>Keyword Strategy Home Page<<< and look under the sections ‘Videos’, ‘Manual’, ‘Extras’ and ‘Forum’ and have a good read around.
The basic price for the monthly subscription is $29 for two website projects. If you are serious about building an authority website, that is plenty. If you have too many web sites to work on, you spread yourself too thin. Ask me, I’ve got that t-shirt already 😉 Just for the record, here the other subscription prices and their project / website limitations.
Personal – $49 up to 10 projects. That is the one I have and I have a hard time to decide on which site to work next. Too much tempting data 😉
Advanced – $99 up to 25 projects. Uh, oh, for a single person that would be far too many sites to manage, perhaps right for a starting SEO consultant and / or somebody that outsources quite a bit of content creation.
Professional – $199 up to 100 projects. This one is really only useful for SEO companies and consultants with lots of clients, imho and massive outsourcing when it comes to content creation.
Yes, they do have one but compared to others the commissions are pretty low, between 10% and 20% of the sale. In my opinion this reflects the fact that Keyword Strategy is not over priced to start with. So many internet marketing offers are overpriced because they have an affiliate commission of 40% or more included in the price calculation.
And, as you managed to read until the end, here a little extra reward for you 😉 If you decide to try Keyword Strategy out, leave me a working email address in a comment and I send you an invite for a 10% off code. You can still take advantage of the 30 days free trial and if you decide to subscribe, you get 10% off. To take advantage of this offer, please leave a comment below with a working email address included and indicate clearly that you want to receive said invite. I will not sell, publish or else use your email address other than for generating the voucher code for you, promised. Nor will I send anybody an invite that leaves a comment here, but doesn’t indicate if s/he wants one …
The Downsides of Keyword Strategy
There is really only one thing that I find possibly problematic and that is the reliance on the plugin / tool for internal linking. If I ever, not that I plan to, decide to cancel my subscription I would need to download my keywords and url pairs and upload them into another plugin to keep my internal linking structure intact. This can be done, but it would be a bit of a PITA …
Competition Data or You Still Need Common Sense
You still need to apply common sense when you choose your keywords and occasionally some data slips through that is simply wrong. If a competition value is unrealistically low, use common sense and check it. This happens rarely with the tool, but it does. Nothing is perfect 😉
Data Addiction Danger
That is a big one for me, I could play the whole day with data, I am a data junkie! Do yourself a favor and put content creation first, new keywords will be discovered as you publish and you will never run out of things to write about!
No Separate Writer Login
That could be a big one for people that outsource content creation. It would be nice to have a separate project specific writer long-in that displays only the data a writer needs to select a new topic / keyword without giving away all your info like other sites you have etc. As a workaround you can always download some or all of your keywords and import them with a free plugin like ‘CSV Importer’ as draft posts for your writer(s).
OK, thanks for reading so far, I am wondering how many readers lasted until the end 😉 Here my
Isn’t that the good old ‘build it and they shall come’ authority site approach?
Yes, it is, but with a ‘keyword twist’, meaning you are building your site with a different mind set and knowing exactly what people are looking look for. And if you have traffic building up you can monetize it, the best monetization method is worth nothing if you don’t have traffic to your website. If you want to build a web site, or improve one you already have AND if you know your way around the very basics like how to set up WordPress and publish blog posts, Keyword Strategy is the best option for you, at least in my opinion.
And here, for the last time, my friendly affiliate link:
>>>Keyword Strategy Free 30 Days Trial<<< Click it, you know you want 😉
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