A Single Online Competitor – Making the Top 10

Online competitiveness for keywords

There seems to be a lot of emphasis on the number of online competitors for target keywords.

If you search (in Google Australia) for ‘shag pile carpets’ you’ll see there are some 173,000 listing results. According to common beliefs, that would suggest you have 173,000 competitors if you want to target those keywords.

But let’s look at the facts:

    1. If your website lists lower down than the first couple of pages in Google (lower than position 20), then you have little hope of receiving much traffic;
    2. Many of the 173,000 websites are not competitors at all e.g. listing number 663 was about teen hairstyle trends; and
    3. On page 64 of the search results, you see the Google message (below) so almost (173,000-663) of the competitor results are just variations of the first 663:

In order to show you the most relevant results, we have omitted some entries very similar to the 633 already displayed. If you like, you can repeat the search with the omitted results included.

So take less notice of how many other websites are found by Google. Google knows that most of them have little relevance to what the searcher is looking for. Perhaps, the 173,000 is a marketing attempt by Google to impress us with its thoroughness.

Your online competitor is the website ranking at number 10

If you’re considering targeting a keyword phrase, keep these things in mind:

  1. Who is at number 10 – if you can knock them to number 11 and take the number 10 spot, you may see an increase in traffic to your website;
  2. How entrenched is the top 10 – are there websites well optimised, do they have many inbound links, and as a further indicator, are there lots of AdWords listings for the keywords you’re considering; and
  3. Is it worth your effort – perhaps the time and money to reach number 10 makes it all a great waste of time.

If you decide it’s not a worthwhile use of your resources – there are plenty more keyword options to investigate.