The Hidden Traffic from Long Tail Keywords

Today I was reading a blog post from Pat Flynn over at his website, SmartPassiveIncome.com.

Pat is a unique blogger in the Internet Marketing space because he is very open about his projects, his websites, and his exact income levels. One of his most talked-about websites is a security training website. He targets the keyword “security guard training”. He has a #1 ranking in Google for that keyword and he makes about $1500 per month in Adsense.

In his post, he says:

Since revealing my niche site and my results, the number one related question I get via email goes something like:

“Pat – I don’t believe you. There’s no way a niche site targeting a keyword with only 9,900 exact monthly searches can make as much money as yours does. Something isn’t right here…”

It seems that most people figure he’d have to have insanely high click through rates on Google ads on his site in order to make that kind of money from only 9900 keyword searches per month.

So what’s missing? The huge number of long tail keywords that also drive traffic to his site!

As Pat puts it, “The target keyword security guard training accounts for only 28% of the total search engine traffic, and 19% of the sites overall traffic. “

This means Pat’s actual traffic is about 5x higher than you’d have calculated if you assumed he only got traffic from one keyword. And now that this has been pointed out to you, it probably makes sense, right?

The bottom line is keyword research is just a guide. If you rank well for your intended primary keyword, you’re bound to rank well for a lot of other related keywords. And there are literally thousands of long tail keywords being searched on every day in any niche market.

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