5-Step SERP Analysis Framework (How to Accurately Qualify Keywords)
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Hey everyone in this video i'm going to walk you step by step...
hey everyone in this video i'm going to walk you step by step through the serp analysis framework that i use to more accurately qualify new and existing keyword opportunities and this is just one of a hundred plus videos taken from inside my premium training program the seo playbook if you want to learn more about the course and see what results other students are getting you can just click the link below this video in the description all right so we're going to start things off by walking through each of the five steps in this serp analysis framework explaining really quickly what each one is and why we look at it and then we're going to go through a series of working examples so that you can take this training and immediately apply it in your business so let's jump in [Music] okay we're going to start off here in the existing keyword document in the done tab once you've gone through just like in the previous videos and flagged the relevant terms in this list it's going to generate the keyword short list which will bring across those terms with a few different data points and this is where we'll be qualifying the different keywords so you want to do now is just grab your first batch of terms and then head over to the ahrefs keyword explorer and what you want to do is paste those terms in go to the overview report and you'll see those keywords along with a
Few different data points and then as well you'll see the serp drop down over...
few different data points and then as well you'll see the serp drop down over here and we'll dive into that in just a second but before we jump into the working examples i just want to really quickly go through this specific framework and thought process that i use when i'm evaluating serp data and to kick things off here the first one i'll look at is click data for click data you first want to analyze that section at the top of the serp report where you can see are there a lot of clicks or traffic going to paid search results are there things like zero click serps where there's a featured snippet where people are able to get the answer directly inside of the search results page because if there's low click data going to organic listings it doesn't really matter if you move it up in the rankings you're probably not going to get a lot of extra traffic from it unless it's a massive topic with a ton of search volume behind it so just look at this first because if you're only able to get a few extra clicks by moving into the top three or five positions because a lot of the clicks are going to adds and other serp elements then it might not warrant investing a lot of resources into that term so once we've established that there is click potential in the organic listings the next thing that we want to look at is content type and format and like we saw with the interactive infographics example
It doesn't matter how great your content is or how many links you build to an...
it doesn't matter how great your content is or how many links you build to an asset if you're targeting with the wrong content type and format you're never going to rank so that's why this is placed higher in my thinking process when i'm analyzing serp data the next thing i look at is content quality gaps and we didn't really jump into this a lot in a dedicated video in the previous module it's fairly self-explanatory when i'm going through the qualification process i like to look at the top five to 10 results and just see at a real top level compared to my asset are there opportunities to improve my content like are they answering certain questions or subtopics in their content better than my client or my business because if there are gaps there then that's a really good sign we can bolster up the content and get it moving up the rankings we'll dive into each one of these in greater depth in just a second the next thing i look at is the linked data so first of all i start with domain rating i want to make sure that like we saw in the previous videos we fall within five to ten domain rating points of at least three to five of the top ranking assets next i look at url rating again this is another one where we want to be within five points of the url rating of at least three to five urls ranking in the serps
Or we want them to be well below where we're at or even single digits or...
or we want them to be well below where we're at or even single digits or in the teens ideally the next one is referring domain count we really want to try and find examples where there's assets ranking that only have single digit or very low teen referring domain counts because we can build links and catch up to them really quickly if that's where the gap exists in our ability to rank or not finally the last one i'll look at is overall traffic potential and this is really helpful when you're trying to prioritize your existing keywords within a certain intent bucket because if you look and see if i move this keyword from position eight into the top five or three positions but it only generates 10 or 20 extra visits a month it might not make sense compared to another term where you can see as we saw earlier with wedding forward by moving it from position seven into the top five they could four or five x the traffic to that one url each month so in that case there's loads more traffic potential just by moving it up a few spots so i'll generally look at that overall traffic potential increase when i'm prioritizing which existing keyword opportunities i want to go after first or if it makes
Sense to even go after them at all and again these are all data points that we...
sense to even go after them at all and again these are all data points that we looked at at various levels in the previous videos but i just wanted to show you how it's a very sequential thought process that will allow you to eliminate opportunities without needing to look at each individual data point before you can make a decision okay let's go through a couple examples of the serp analysis framework in action from within the ahrefs keyword explorer and the overview report come over to the serp drop down for the first term in your list and we'll see here for this term how we can qualify it within 60 seconds so scroll down i can see immediately that over here in the traffic column there does appear to be a lot of clicks going to the organic search results next i can see here in the left looking at the urls and specifically the titles of the ranking content these are all blog content types in a listicle format which aligns directly with wedding forward ranking position 10 here they've got this blog post that lists 25 bachelor party ideas the next thing we looked at was the content quality you can see the ones ranking above and we've got 50 and 86 for pinterest but if we look above then we've got 47 for zola so i think that if we expanded the list here we could probably move it up just
By doing that and you can see i've actually flagged this...
by doing that and you can see i've actually flagged this inside the keyword shortlist tab in our existing keyword document where i've said expand the list of 35 ideas so there are some content quality gaps next thing we want to look at is the link metrics and first up we look at the domain rating so wedding forward has a 59 domain rating but is that within five or ten domain rating points of at least three to five assets ranking in the top ten immediately i can see yes in position six five and three here we've got all the ranking assets with a domain rating actually below wedding forward so that's another good sign next we look at the url rating waiting forward actually has the highest url rating at 32 of any of the ranking assets and there are some that have single digit or mid teen url url ratings which that's another good sign next we look at the referring domain count and again wedding forward actually has more referring domains pointing to the url than any of the other assets ranking in the top ten and there is even one with zero and a couple with low single digit referring domain count and then finally if we look at the traffic column we can see that for wedding forward they're getting an estimate of 420 clicks from this topic
But if they were able to move from position 10 into say the top five you can see that...
but if they were able to move from position 10 into say the top five you can see that now we're looking at potentially a couple thousand organic visits from that one url so that would be about a 5x increase in organic traffic if they can move from the bottom of page one into the top five positions so that's a significant organic traffic increase just to one asset so just simply come back over here into the keyword shortlist tab and just tag this as a yes i think i can compete adding any relaunch notes again this can be brief but just little thought or just little observations you can put in here to help when we get into the next module where we're looking at which specific relaunch strategies we want to implement so i can see for here i want to expand my list i want to use some surfer seo analysis again this is just an on-page seo tool that i use to analyze content and then add some internal links from other posts around the site you notice here that i didn't put anything around backlinks because that doesn't seem to be a gap as to why it's not ranking in the search results at this point in time since i already have more referring domains than any of the other top ranking assets now we'll just come back to our list now that we've qualified that term we can just keep motoring through these really quickly so
I can see here for groomsmen proposal 1300 searches a month you can see that...
i can see here for groomsmen proposal 1300 searches a month you can see that the assets are getting a decent amount of traffic not a ton so this one might be a little bit lower in my relaunch list but i'll come over here and i'll click the show more just to see exactly where wedding forwards ranking i can see them here in position 14. again we've got a blog post content type in a listicle format which maps directly with what waiting forward is using to target this term so there's a match there next i can see here again that it looks like they've got some lists above them we've got 29 plus 35 another 27 33 so there are some longer lists so this is another one we're waiting for we could expand their list by maybe five to ten more proposal ideas come over here to the domain rating column we can see 59 again for wedding forward but above them we've got one two three four five results that are actually below their domain rating so that's another good sign pretty much all the ranking assets have low to mid-teen url ratings which is another good sign and then all of them have single-digit referring domain counts so i think for wedding forward if we're able to expand their list build some internal links and maybe even just a few more quality
Backlinks we could move this asset from position 14 where they're getting under...
backlinks we could move this asset from position 14 where they're getting under 100 organic visits into the top five positions where they could be getting several hundred or even close to a thousand organic visits so there is a decent organic traffic potential increase here with this serp result so again i'll just come back into my shortlist tab now and just click yes that we could compete for that term now just keep moving through this list you can see for the term catholic wedding vows we can see that most of the top 10 results are getting several hundred organic visits so that's a good sign but if we look at the serp content types that are ranking outside of the knot which is a hugely authoritative domain at domain rank 90 we can see that position 3 and 4 are actually specifically about catholic wedding help so there's a really strong topical domain match there then if we scroll down we can see that we've got for your marriage wedding wire and the not as well as catholic regional teacher again another strong topical domain these are all hugely authoritative sites or domains that have a really strong topical focus on catholic weddings so this is going to be really hard now for wedding ford to
Crack the top five positions for this term even though it may have a higher domain...
crack the top five positions for this term even though it may have a higher domain rating than a couple in the top five positions but due to the topical relevance of those lower authority domains that's showing me that google is probably preferring to rank these urls because they're on like a catholic wedding specific domain so for this one i'm not as confident and there doesn't seem to be a huge traffic potential here so for now i'll just come back over and click no and i can always revisit this one later on down the road and that would just repeat this process moving down the list of keywords until you've gone through and qualified all of the terms here in the shortlist tab and just to show you what a couple examples outside of wedding forward can look like if we look in my niche seo tools here my domain rating is a 71 but if i hit this serp i can see yes i do have a blog post in a listicle format there is tons of traffic going to these assets each month but if i look at the domain rating column now i can immediately see here that pretty much every site ranking is in domain rating in the high 80s or even 90s which is
Well above the 5 to 10 points from my 71.
well above the 5 to 10 points from my 71. i can see the url ratings are huge as well all of them are in 30s 40s 50 you can see moz here is an 80 and that's because they all have at least hundreds or in some cases thousands of referring domains pointing to them so no matter how long i make my piece of content i'm probably not going to be able to move it in the top five positions within 60 days so i can immediately disqualify this term for now and come back to it later on when i have maybe a higher domain rating another one here is sales tracking so this was a term we're looking at in the sales sas space you can see that for sales tracking we've got bit of a mixed serp here now the business that we're analyzing this topic for were sort of a mid 60 domain rating range and you can see there is some traffic going to it not a lot probably enough to warrant taking a closer look at it because there's a mixed serp signals in here what i look at here when i'm seeing feature pages as well as blog posts and and even domains ranking is i look at what is the predominant type in the top five positions so even when we look in the top five it's still varied okay
What's in the top three positions now we can see that we've got this third party...
what's in the top three positions now we can see that we've got this third party aggregator then we've got a resource page from pipedrive and then we've got a blog post from copper that's ranking in the number one or even the featured snippet result so i feel pretty confident that for this specific website i could write a long form guide on sales tracking and then use that to internally link through to feature pages and the fact that they just fall within that 10 domain rating range they've got low teen url rating and there's actually no referring domains pointing this asset but they're still ranking in the featured snippet that gives me enough confidence to go after this term and qualify it okay so that's just a real quick overview about how i think through analyzing serp data and while you're going to get faster at qualifying terms the more that you do it it is going to be a time consuming process if you're if you're working on larger keyword sets so use this in other videos from this module as well as the the framework that we covered at the start of this video to train other team members so that you can collectively qualify existing keyword opportunities much faster or even better yet hand off the entire keyword qualification process
All together okay so now that you've finished qualifying your existing keyword set in...
all together okay so now that you've finished qualifying your existing keyword set in the next video we're going to start moving your short list of keyword targets into the pipeline document and kick off the content briefing and creation process so i'll see you in the next video
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