Turn organic search into your #1 marketing channel

Automating Affiliate SEO Keyword Research

ContentDistribution.com has taken 4 projects from approximately zero organic visitors per month, to more than 100,000 organic search visitors per month.

CampusReel.org

The fastest went from 0 to 100,000 visitors per month in only 8 months.

do not pay 5.12.20
DoNotPay.com

Combined, these projects have nearly 100,000 keywords on page 1.

None of these sites spent more than $1,000 on backlinks.

And one of the sites is a DR9.

Doggypedia.org

The thing all of these projects have in common.

We used SEO Content Planner.

SEO Content Planner is an affiliate keyword research tool that clusters large lists of keywords into unique content topics.

And SEO Content Planner allows us to do perfect affiliate keyword research.

Every.

Single.

Time.

And when you do perfect keyword research.

Your content ends up outranking competitors with higher authority, more backlinks, and bigger marketing budget.

Doggypedia.org (DR8) ranking #1 above sites with higher DRs and more backlinks
BrandChamp.io (DR30) outranking their better funded competitors with more backlinks
outranking hubspot
AnyLeads.com (DR36) outranking HubSpot (DR92) and LinkedIn (DR98)
DoNotPay.com (DR56) outranking Wired (DR91), Vice (DR91), Equifax (DR87) and more.
BrandChamp crushing much larger, more authoritative competitors

And when backlinks are needed to get the outcome you desire.

You need less to get there.

Keyword Research for affiliate SEO could be a lot better

Whether you know it or not, keyword research for affiliate SEO could be better.

  1. Performing quality keyword research requires high levels of skills and experience
  2. Keyword research strategies rely heavily on gut feelings and intuition, mistakes are likely
  3. It’s a manual process that takes a long time to do
  4. Experienced SEOs have a difficult time delegating high quality keyword research to junior team members
  5. Inexperienced affiliate SEOs know how important keyword research is, and stress about whether they did it right, or wasted their investment

When you Google keyword research there are 400 million results.

When you google affiliate keyword research there are more than 6 million results.

affiliate KW research SERPs

So who do you listen to?

  1. Ahrefs?
  2. Moz?
  3. SEMRush?
  4. Yoast?
  5. HubSpot?
  6. Neil Patel?
  7. Brian Dean?

All I see is 6 million opinions.

And no one using data.

SEO Content Planner in action

SEO Content Planner is a better way to do keyword research.

It uses data from Google to determine which keywords can rank together.

And it allows us to do a years worth of keyword research in minutes.

And I’m going to show you in two minutes with two examples.

DIY affiliate keyword research

Alright, let’s pretend we’re starting an affiliate site in the pet niche.

  • We used Ahref’s Keyword Explorer to look up dog
  • Then we used the ‘Having same search term feature’

This discovered 10,000,000+ ways people are using dog in their searches.

pet kw research

We want to get more specific, so we filter down to just people searching for

dog + food

This generates a list of 455,000 variations in the way people are searching for dog + food

pet kw research

We exported the top 25,000 keywords by search volume

Then we imported these 25,000 keywords into SEO Content Planner.

And SEO Content Planner grouped that list of 25,000 keywords into unique content topics.

It shows us the data by

  1. Main keyword. This is the keyword in a group with the most volume.
  2. Total search volume for every keyword in the group.
  3. The variations that can rank with the main keyword

 

To see the full list of variations, click a cell.

Then click the icon in the right hand corner to expand it.

That’s literally it.

We did 1,000+ pages of keyword research.

We mapped every keyword variation on every single page.

And we did it perfectly.

In literally minutes.

  1. We didn’t need extensive SEO experience
  2. We didn’t need to spend weeks slaving away
  3. We didn’t need to make gut decisions on keyword variations
  4. We don’t need to second guess our keyword research decisions

DIY affiliate keyword research

Alright, let’s pretend we’re starting an affiliate site in the DIY niche.

  • We used Ahref’s Keyword Explorer to look up DIY
  • Then we used the ‘Having same search term feature’

This discovered 2,000,000 ways people are using DIY in their searches.

DIY keyword research for site in the affiliate industry DIY

We exported the top 25,000 keywords by search volume.

Then we imported these 25,000 keywords into SEO Content Planner.

And SEO Content Planner grouped that list of 25,000 keywords into unique content topics.

It shows us the data by

  1. Main keyword. This is the keyword in a group with the most volume.
  2. Total search volume for every keyword in the group.
  3. The variations that can rank with the main keyword

How SEO Content Planner works

I think you guys get the point.

So how does it work?

SEO Content Planner uses data from Google to determine which keywords can rank together.

No more using your gut and intuition.

After you import your list of keywords, this is what happened under the covers:

  1. SEO Content Planner scraped the top 10 websites ranking for every keyword on our list
  2. Then it compared every keyword against every other keyword
  3. Looking for keywords that have URLs in common
  4. If SEO Content Planner found 3 or more URLs that rank for a set of keywords
  5. SEO Content Planner groups those keywords together into a unique content topic

This is as data driven as it gets.

If 3 other websites can rank for this set of keywords with one page of content, I can probably rank for that set of keywords with one page also.

But if SEO Content Planner compares a set of keywords.

And those keywords have 2 or less results (URLs) in common.

I probably can’t rank for that set of keywords with one page of content either.

And I’ll need to create two pages to rank for that set of keywords.

Doing this manually, at scale is impossible.

And that’s why mistakes happen.

Because it’s not always intuitive which keywords can rank together.

And which keywords can’t.

Keyword research isn’t intuitive & based on gut feelings

Let me give you a real life example using two keywords.

  1. Linked Profile examples
  2. Linkedin Headline examples

To rank for both of these keywords, you need to create two pages of content.

One page about LinkedIn profiles.

And one page about LinkedIn headlines.

Because if you try and rank for both keywords with one page, you won’t rank for either.

How do I know?

Because I googled it.

The search results are completely different.

Even though these seem like related keywords.

And if you were writing an article on LinkedIn profiles you might optimize your article for both.

But if you did, you wouldn’t rank for either LinkedIn profiles or LinkedIn headlines.

Because there isn’t a single website that ranks for both keywords with one page.

The pages Google shows for LinkedIn Profiles are all 100% optimized for LinkedIn profiles.

And the pages Google shows for LinkedIn headlines are all 100% optimized for LinkedIn headlines.

best linkedin headline

Now multiply this effort across every keyword on your list.

Comparing every keyword against every other keyword manually is impossible.

So affiliate SEOs developed shortcuts and heuristics.

That are ultimately based on intuition and gut feelings.

And when you make decisions based on intuition.

You make mistakes.

The content calendar for your affiliate site is bigger than you think

Want to know what every single top affiliate SEO site has in common?

Boat loads of content.

Don’t believe me?

Let’s look at the pet space.

I analyzed all of the top dog publishers.

Column E is the publisher’s efficiency score.

This is the total traffic divided by the total number of pages.

Every top publisher generates between 170 to 870 visitors for every page of content on their site.

There is no publisher generating 80% of the traffic with 20% of the pages.

Quick side note – take a look at pet website #11, Doggypedia.org

Doggypedia is a site I referenced at the beginning of the article.

One of the projects I took from 0 to 100,000 organic visitors per month in 11 months.

We competed with the top publishers in the pet space.

With less budget and less backlinks.

One of the core reasons we were able to punch above our weight is because of SEO Content Planner.

We were more relevant for the content we wanted to rank for.

And if you know how Google actually works, you know that being more relevant can help you rank with less backlinks.

Here are a couple of other notable examples.

CreditKarma.com generates an insane 7,768,000 organic visitors per month.

But they published 24,660 pages. 

NextLuxury.com is an affiliate site in the fashion niche generating 1,345,000 organic visitors each month.

From 13,453 pages.

How much time and money do you think these sites spent

  1. Mapping out 10,000 – 20,000 unique pages of content
  2. Doing keyword research on a page by page basis

Hundreds, and hundreds, and hundreds of hours.

Forecasting costs and ROI

SEO Content Planner’s groupings make forecasting costs and ROI really simple.

Referencing our dog food keyword groupings above.

The top 299 pages represent approximately 2,946,000 searchers per month.

dog affiliate site keyword research analysis for blog post

Now I can sanity check my costs against income on varying levels of success.

Here the variables I need to decide:

  1. What % of the searchers can I capture?
  2. How many searchers will click an affiliate link?
  3. What % will purchase?
  4. What is my average payout?

We built a guide walking through each of these variables, and build an automated calculator to help you estimate varying outcomes on your affiliate SEO investment.

Get our guide and SEO ROI calculator here.

Turning any writer into an Affiliate SEO writer

The rankings and traffic you saw at the beginning of the article was not written by SEO content writers.

It was written by good writers that we turned into seo content writers.

Because regardless of whether the writers we work with know SEO.

We need their content to rank.

So we’ve created systems to enable writers without our background to create outcomes as successful as we could create ourselves.

By providing our writers with:

  1. Everything they need to know about the project and target audience
  2. Our writing standards (that have gotten us 65,000 page 1 keywords without building backlinks)
  3. A list of all the variations they should use within their content

Writer instructions

affiliate kw research instructions for writers

Keyword variations from SEO Content Planner are provided directly into the Google Doc

Get the exact template we use to turn any writer into an SEO content writer producing content that naturally ranks

Working on other projects?

SEO Content Planner automates keyword research for every vertical and niche.

Check out our example keyword research for:

  1. B2B SaaS keyword research
  2. B2C SaaS keyword research (coming soon)
  3. E-commerce keyword research (coming soon)

Our best content

Want to learn how we’ve grown 4 websites from approximately zero to 100,000 visitors per month?

do not pay 5.12.20

We share it all.

  1. How Google actually works (based on 65,000 page 1 keywords)
  2. How to find and hire the highest quality, most affordable writers on the internet
  3. How to turn any writer into an SEO content writer
  4. Forecasting SEO ROI
  5. How we crush B2B SaaS SEO
  6. How we crush B2C SaaS SEO
  7. How to rank without backlinks
  8. Brand Jacking (ranking for your competitor’s brands)
  9. The #1 lever to get the fastest SEO results

Turn organic search into your #1 marketing channel

Turn organic search into your #1 marketing channel

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