For simplicity, only 1 key phrase will be used, only top 10 analyzed. I’ve picked the one which is relatively easy and with a low frequency – “wordpress maintenance service”. Please, keep in mind that by the time you are reading this post, the top, frequency, competition and any other data could have changed. But you may still use the template and logic behind it for most of the niches. It doesn’t really matter whether you have an ecommerce or service website.
Wordpress Maintenance Service frequency for the USA is medium:
210 – in Adwords (480 worldwide);
170 – in SemRush;
210 – in SerpStat.
Competition is 8.2 millions, which is rather high for this frequency.
Google Ad Preview and Diagnosis Tool provides me with this top 10 for the USA, language English that I will be using. I’ve added SemRush and MOZ tops for comparison. The results are pretty similar.
It should be noted straight away that the first result is an aggregator, and you’d rather want to get your service listed there rather than compete directly with it. Thus, I will measure this page, but will not include it into the average results.
Backlinks Research with Ahrefs
More than 27 million backlinks with more than 150K domains linking to them. 97% of links are dofollow.
They’ve got 97 gov and 650 edu links. The links curve is going upwards gradually. The anchors cloud consists mainly of branded keywords of elegant themes. The word “themes” may be found in 89% of all the anchors. Something might have happened at the end of April 2016 as organic traffic had a dramatic drop, but has mostly recovered from that time.
3873 backlinks with 161 domains. No gov or edu links. The number of reffering domains has dropped slightly in the last month – the fact that may influence rankings negatively in the future. Organic traffic has been lowering since the end of October along with organic keywords. Anchor phrases are mostly branded – maintainn, but there are some commercial anchors as well as follows: “wordpress support and maintenance services by maintainn”.
80213 backlinks with 846 referring domains. 1 edu link from northwestern.edu. The number of domains is constantly growing since winter in 2016. It seems to be managed because the line is too smooth. They try to make a natural anchor cloud by adding website domain and urls into it. Commercial anchors have the lowest rate- “wordpress support”, “wordpress hosting” – 2%. Organic traffic has been growing incredibly for a small amount of time this summer. However, something happened on the 12th of August and it dropped suddenly to the previous rates. Organic keywords are growing nevertheless. It might be curious to look at the site in a month or two again to see where they are and what they are doing with what they have. For a more detailed analysis, I’d look closer at their referring domains with CheckTrust tool.
12068 backlinks but with only 63 domains which is not a good sign for a particular domain. The referring domains growth is however very gradual and constant, being mostly from UK. The anchor cloud looks more or less natural. However, the “details” – not branded, not commercial term is 15% of all the anchors, which might be rather high. The organic traffic is constantly growing, though organic keywords have slightly lowered a few weeks ago, but it may also be a natural fluctuation. It shouldn’t be hard to check all of their donors and try to put your information on their best sites as well.
The site with a large number of referring domains – 7942 (763931 backlinks). It has its history of growing and then losing some and growing again. The last growth period lasted since November 2015 till May 2016 and then the number is somewhat lowering again. 3 gov domains, 51 edu domains. Anchor cloud consists mostly of branded phrases. There is also a “get in touch” phrase (16%) which may imply the commercial nature of link, but those links have to be looked at closer to say more definitely. The organic traffic grew in April 2016, but then lowered somewhat in the end of July. Organic keywords are mostly growing.
2064 backlinks with 27 domains. Here the organic traffic and organic words are correlated. The slight correlation with referring domains is also observable.
72 domains with waves instead of an upward curve, but fluctuations are nonthreatening. Organic keywords are lowering, which may result in traffic decrease as well. This site is good to look at closer and understand what they are doing wrong in order to avoid doing that for your own site. At the same time, it may be a good idea to watch them for some time to see the performance in 2-3 months. May be they’ve got a kind of interesting plan.
Only 20 domains, none of which is in the US or UK. Organic traffic and keywords are lowering. The problem is also that even with so few links, they don’t have nofollow links at all. And we can see that in this niche you should have a good number of those as well. The site may be out of top 10 in the nearest future if they don’t do something about it. If they remain with what they have now, it will be a sign that this keyword is not that competitive and one can easily get into top for it.
This website doesn’t require analysis because they are offering services (and tools) for the companies offering maintenance services. Thus, may not be regarded as a part of competition. They are unlikely to get to the top 5 results for this keyword (except for in the personalized SERP). Anyway, it may be curious to note that they are losing organic keywords and see how it influences their performance in the future.
This one is also interesting to look at. Though they have 100 referring domains, and have that number mostly growing, more or less natural looking anchor cloud, etc, this website is still experiencing not their best times. The organic traffic is lowering along with keywords. The reason may be in their backlinks quality.
Traffic Check with SimilarWeb
The good point about it is that it’s totally free. However, the data is not absolutely accurate and may be totally different from reality sometimes, yet, in other cases or for the small websites, be unavailable. At the same time, no other tool provides you with that amount of insight.
For example, #1 – elegantthemes.com – has almost 50% of their traffic from search, but they have more than 18% of their traffic directly. That means for me that their brand is very strong. They have quite a lot of traffic from referrals (which is usually converting better) and lots of traffic from mail. They do have comparatively small amount of traffic from social media (mostly Facebook). And I may see their audience interests.
Information was not available for these 2 websites: wpminder.com and wpupkeep.com. That could be due to their small size. But it was shown through CheckTrust tool that has some SimilarWeb data built-in if you choose those to be shown.
Quick Texts Analysis
To write a good killer text at once, you should look at your competitors’ texts first. You should find out how long they are, spammy, dense with keywords, if they use relevant metas, optimize their images, etc.
The best tool for that ever existed is ContentYoda, SEO Quake, SEOLib and some others. As a result, you get a similar kind of table (here’s only top 3 for simplicity).
If you want to be in the top for the key phrase – wordpress maintenance service – you should study the competition. A brief look suggests that if you are offering WordPress Maintenance Services:
- Don’t take the first result of Elegant Themes into account as it is an information article aggregating several services in it. In fact, it would be preferable to get into it if you are able to. The 9th position is also not of your competitor, you should leave it out as well.
- You may concentrate on the 8 sites left or the top 3 if you have not so much time. If you have several clusters of keywords, you pick your competitors that happen to be the most often in each cluster. In this example, for simplicity purposes I’m picking the top 3 (not taking Elegant Themes into account).
- The remaining top 3 sites have these averages:
- Domain Authority – 35
- Page Authority – 45
- Majestic Citations Flow – 38
- Majestic Trust Flow – 28
- Pages in Google Index – 201
- Referring domains – 357
- The text is 665 words on average. The keyword should be in exact match in the text at least once and recommended including into alt. Title may be a form or part of the phrase.
- Most of the sites are older than 3 years. There are no new sites at all.
It is useful to have those numbers as a reference point. In the next post, I will explain how to quickly make a rough budget evaluation based on this kind of info.