5 Ways to get SEO Traffic in a Hard Niche


It’s one of the biggest challenges when it comes to SEO.

You can read about tons of different SEO tactics on various blogs, but will they work for you?

After all, that’s the important part.

Not everyone wonders about this because they know that common SEO tactics will work for them, no problem.

But you might be different.

Your business may operate in a “hard” niche.

And it’s true, SEO is more difficult in these niches, so not all tactics will work.

However, I’ve worked with many clients in hard niches and have been able to achieve great SEO results with them.

That’s why I’m confident that there is an SEO plan out there that will work for you.

I’m going to help you make that plan for your specific business by showing you 5 ways to improve your SEO efforts in hard niches.

But before we start…

What is a “hard niche?” There’s no formal definition, but I’m referring to businesses that operate in niches that:

  • have small online audiences 
  • have lots of SEO competition
  • are hard to get links in (there aren’t many blogs or sites that seem to link out)
  • are “boring” (I’ll expand on this throughout the article with specific examples)

If your business falls into that category, I believe that by reading this post, you’ll learn at least a few ways to improve your SEO traffic. 

1. Competition depends on the scope (hint: change your scope)

We’re going to address those problems individually, starting with competition.

It’s easy to rank highly for a term when only a few pages on the Internet are optimized for that term.

However, if you’re going up against 10 experienced SEOs, you’ll have a hard time.

If your business is in a hard niche in the sense that traffic is incredibly valuable so competition is fierce (think loans, insurance, etc.), you’ll find that scenario often.

The very core of your SEO strategy needs to shift because you won’t be able to beat all your competitors.

Instead, you need to find keywords that they don’t even target because they don’t think that those words are worth their time.

But you’re smarter than that.

We’re talking about long-tail keywords here—longer, more descriptive keywords that have lower search volumes.


Even though they have lower search volumes, because they are more specific, the traffic they bring is usually more targeted and valuable.

While long-tail phrases don’t get as many searches per month as shorter ones do, there are way more long-tail phrases than the popular short-tail ones.

This isn’t a new concept by any means, but it’s an important one if you’re targeting a competitive niche.

Even a phrase that only gets 50-100 searches a month may be worth it if it’s for a term with high commercial intent (reader is likely to buy something from you).

How to find long-tail keywords: Sure, some SEOs are smart and target long-tail keywords because they know they’re easier to rank for, but there aren’t very many of those SEOs.

And since there are so many long-tail keywords, you can always find some new ones to target if you’re willing to dig.


Because the best keywords aren’t easy to find.

Most bad SEOs (and there are a lot) and business owners simply use the Google keyword planner (or a similar tool).

They plop in a broad keyword and choose keywords to target based on the results:


But thousands of people have done this for just about every niche imaginable. You’ll find more competition than seems reasonable for almost all of those terms.

Google has data on just about every search phrase you can think of but doesn’t always show it in these broad search results.

So, while using the keyword planner is fine, you need to enter seed keywords and phrases that are different from those everyone else is using.

There are many ways to find these, but one of my favorites is to head over to Reddit.

Type a broad keyword into the search bar. I typed in “drywall”:


Now, start looking at the results for keywords.

I quickly found “how to screw drywall” in one of the threads.

Put that into the tool, and it turns out that the phrase gets about 90 searches per month in the US:


No, that’s not a huge number, but it’s nothing to sneeze at either. If you rank for that phrase, you’ll also probably rank for other very similar phrases (e.g., “how screw drywall” or “how to screw in drywall”). Each of those will have small search volumes, but they’ll all add up to something substantial enough.

Put together 50-100 articles for long term phrases like those, and you’ll be getting a few thousand search visitors fairly easily, without the insane competition for popular keywords.

Look at the search results for that phrase:


The #1 result is a YouTube video, and the top content results don’t even have the phrase in their titles.

That’s as easy a keyword as you’ll find, and it’s because it’s not a keyword that comes up in those obvious searches.

If you put the time into finding great long-tail keyword phrases, you’ll make your SEO plan significantly easier and more effective.

There are many ways to find good long-tail keyword phrases. Here are a few resources with other specific tactics:

2. If links are hard to find, think laterally

In some niches—such as marketing, recipes, and entertainment niches, for example—it’s very easy to get links.

There are hundreds of thousands of blogs that are willing to link to you if you make a good case.

But in some niches, those blogs just don’t exist.

That’s when you need to get creative.

One very effective strategy is to get links from related niches.

For example, if you’re a plumber, related niches would be:

  • home DIY
  • home decor
  • beauty/life (e.g., a proper way to unclog sinks or prevent clogs)

Basically, think of any other niche that you can add your expertise to.

Then, all the typical SEO tactics come back into play: guest posting, forum posting, etc.

Let’s go through an example.

Let’s say that you’re a home decorator.

One related niche is home buying and owning, which has a different audience from your typical home decor enthusiasts.

You could write about how home decor could add value to your home. In fact, that turns out to be a good long-tail phrase:


What could you do with this?

You could create content for your own site and then reach out to home buyer/owner blogs asking for a link. That’s a standard SEO tactic.

Alternatively, you could use the idea for a guest post on a popular site.

Not only will it rank for the long-tail keyword that you target (sending you continuous traffic), but it’ll also send you a lot of immediate referral traffic from the site you post on.

Start by thinking of as many related niches as you can, then generate as many ways as possible to add value to those niches.

3. Boring niche? Here’s how to make it more fun

What can you do in a boring niche?

Can you really make painting homes fun?

If you approach the subject with a notion that it is, in fact, boring, then you probably can’t.

But usually, there are ways to make content at the very least entertaining.

Brian Dean did a great case study of this exact idea. Mike Bonadio, who runs an SEO agency based in NYC, had a client who worked in bug control—boring.

However, he created a high quality infographic on an interesting topic: how bugs can help you defeat garden pests. That infographic got picked up by a few prominent blogs:


Gardening is a related niche for pest control (just as we discussed in the previous section).

But Mike took it a step further by creating “fun” content.

Bugs aren’t supposed to be fun, but he made it fun by focusing on the benefits that bugs can provide.

And you can do this in every niche by focusing on exciting benefits and surprises instead of the boring parts.

For example, do you seal driveways?

Well, that seems boring at first, but what if you created content like:

  • How many gallons of sealant would it take to seal Leonardo DiCaprio’s driveway?
  • Choosing the wrong driveway sealant will cost you money: A comparison of the true cost of paving a driveway

I’m not so sure that all of those are real things, but the point remains. Turn the boring parts into an important element of a story, but not the main focus.

Back to the case study—how did it go?

Extremely well, I’d say. After Mike reached out to sites in that related niche, he was able to get over 60 referring domains and hundreds of links:


On top of that, he got over 2,100 views from referral traffic in the short term. His client’s site still ranks #4 for the term “exterminator NYC.”

Can you make your niche interesting to your customers? I know this is difficult and requires some thinking, so let me give you another example: Blendtec.

Blendtec is a company that sells…blenders.

Not exactly a sexy product.

However, you might have heard of their “Will it Blend?” video series.

In these videos, they blend all kinds of crazy objects, like iPhones, superglue, and even skeletons to answer the question: “Will it blend?”


They now get millions of views on each video they produce.

More importantly, those videos get linked to a lot, and those videos link back to Blendtec’s website, which makes them rank highly for all sorts of blender-related terms.

4. Don’t start from scratch

If you’re in a hard niche and you also have a brand new website, it’s going to be a long journey to SEO success.

For some types of businesses, most notably local businesses, you have an alternative: use another site’s domain authority.

For example, if you search for “plumbing Chicago,” you get these results just below a map of a few plumbers:


Notice that these listings aren’t of sites that actual plumbers own but of review sites such as Yelp.

Any business can create a page on Yelp, which will automatically have more search authority than your brand new site.

More importantly, these sites have that authority because they already have good search optimization and huge quantities of backlinks.

All you need to do is show up highly on their important pages, and your page (on their site) will rank highly in the search results.

You don’t need links to do this. Usually, you just need reviews.

If you run a great business, these aren’t too difficult to get. Just ask all your happy customers to leave a review (and give them instructions).

In addition, here are some more resources that will help you get more online reviews:

5. Competitor analysis is always an important first step

The final complaint that I hear is that “no one links out in my niche.”

Well, I’ll tell you something: everyone else is getting their links from somewhere.

And with the tools available to you today, there’s no reason why you can’t get many of those same links.

This is not a new technique, but it remains one of the most cost-efficient and effective ways of getting backlinks and improving your search rankings.

It’s not difficult either, but it will take some work on your part.

Here’s the simple procedure.

Step #1 – Make a list of competitors: First you need a list of sites similar to your own—your competitors.

If they are similar, you should be able to get most of the same links they have.

To make this list, start searching for popular terms in your niche, and then write down the URLs of the top 10 results (or fewer) in a spreadsheet or list:


If it’s a site on a specific topic, you can write down just the domain name, but if it’s a huge site (like hgtv), copy down the exact URL of the page.

Step #2 – Get a list of their backlinks: Next, you need to sign up for either Ahrefs or Majestic.

Those are not affiliate links; those are just the two best link databases by far.

The small monthly cost is more than worth it if you’re serious about SEO.

Go through your list, one by one, and enter the URLs or domain names into the site explorer:


Then, go to the “backlinks” panel on the results, and you’ll get a list of all the backlinks to that page or site:


Step #3 – Determine if it’s possible to get any of those links: Here’s where the work really comes in.

You need to visit each of those pages that link to your target page and see if it’s possible for you to get a similar link on those pages.

For example, one of the above links looks like this:


It’s a page that links to tons of resources.

If you had an appropriate resource page, it would be simple enough to email the owner and ask to be included.

Other times, you might see that the link is from a guest post. You can email the owner pitching a guest post of your own.

While you won’t get a 100% success rate, you will be able to duplicate a good portion of the links for each competitor.

The links are out there, and this is one of the best ways to find them.

One final note is that I recommend you batch each step to improve your efficiency.

Don’t try to get each link as soon as you find it. Instead, record it in a spreadsheet, and do all your link outreach at once.


Not all niches are created equal.

Some are in fact more difficult when it comes to SEO.

However, that doesn’t mean that it’s not doable.

I’ve shown you 5 ways that can help you improve your search traffic in almost any industry (hard ones included).

Start by trying out at least one of these, if not more.

If you have any success stories about SEO in a boring niche, I’d love it if you shared them in a comment below.


  1. Rohan Singh :

    When I started my blogsite, accidently i took a wrong niche with high competition, I was a new blogger, I started everything from 0. But Today, I see good growth in my organic traffic. Somehow I managed to find rare keywords in this high competition niche. I have started 7-8 months ago. Good to see this article. This will help me in my journey.

    • That’s awesome Rohan! And it’s okay if you went into a competitive industry, you learned how to find rare keywords that are producing the results you want, so it sounds like you’re on the right track.

    • Sometimes, learing things the hard way results in better experience than following a typical track. Great to know that you are experiencing growth Rohan.


  2. Hey Neil, Great post, (of course).

    Thank you very much for your informative post. Really comprehensive. Long-tail keywords part is helpful for me.

  3. Niketan Shah :

    How to rank for website like “PNR Status” for Indian railway?

    Keyword like pnr status


    • You’ll need to provide up to date information on that status and build links from other sites that reference you as that keyword

  4. Rohit Shitole :

    Amazing Neil.
    This article totally relates to me :). I have boring niche + links are hard to find right now.
    Thanks for amazing post. Using ahref tool will help me a lot to get backlinks. I actually tried it before, and its working for me.
    Oh the my niche is educational, which is boring 😛

    • It’ doesn’t have to be boring Rohit! This is your opportunity to be creative and add elements into your content that make it entertaining and inspiring too.

  5. Thank you for this wonderful info. I will try to apply this on my websites. It can work in a very competitive niche, it will surely work in my niche….

    • Sounds good Jay! Keep me posted on your progress and let me know if there anything I can help you with.

  6. After complaining about Neil, not reading his articles, because I was really hopeless, I think this one article, yes, this one, can help me!

    I will get back to you in couple of months, following few things from here and would let you know about it then…

    Thanks Neil!

    If it didn’t work ;s, I WILL BE REALLY MAD!

    • it doesn’t* work

    • I’m glad you changed your mind. I would love to hear about your progress so please keep me posted. In the mean time, if you get stuck or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!

      • Yeah, doing something is better than doing nothing :s, so I just want to know, I am following the first approach you mentioned in your article “1. Competition depends on the scope (hint: change your scope)”, the long tail keyword approach you mentioned in this “specific” article.

        Why I am emphasizing on specific is for few reasons.

        1. this one made sense to me.
        2. Its easy to follow
        3. the rest of related articles you mentioned up there are pretty long and I think I won’t be able to do that.

        So my question is, if I follow that specific segment of your article only, will I get results, right now I have few long tail phrases I searched last night, like sitting for 2 hours, till 3am.

        So you see I am serious, but I just wanted to know, will this specific approach work for me or I need to follow the rest of the articles, if I need to follow the rest of the articles then why would you mention this little approach here ???!!!

        Q1. will following that approach alone help me ?
        Q2. if not, why would you mention it
        Q3. still I need something that would work, does that mean I need to follow all the skyscrapper articles ? :s

        Btw my niche is traditional orthodox marketing, thanks for the kind help and suggestion and giving me some hope after all!

        • Yes, this approach alone will help you, but I would still recommend applying and factoring in the other methods as you can.

          • Thank you Neil, well, first let me try this approach only, if it give me the results I want, then I will go for in-depth stuff, I have already written one article based on this approach, it will go online maybe tomorrow some time, I will monitor it along with posting several more.

            I have few questions though, writing one super rich article on one long tail keyword is sufficient ? if no, how many articles would help me rank for that one long tail keyword phrase ? 2, 3, 4, how many ?

            Hope I am not asking too much, thank you so much!

            After four years, I feel I am getting this right, so if I achieve it even after all these years with your help, I promise I will be your life time fan!

            But if I don’t :s I might go crazy or quit this …! for ever :s

            • There isn’t an exact answer of how many articles you need to support that 1 article. The article itself maybe enough, but remember that you’ll want to spend some time promoting it to build links too.

              • Thank you so much for responding, I have been checking out on and off your site to see if you will give me some response on those questions.

                Talking about building links, its not an easy niche, I told my niche is “traditional Marketing plus small business” there aren’t many sites out there… :s

                That’s why I am hoping to get success with this long tail approach … I have put up like couple of articles though…

                I promote on twitter and gplus, can’t manage more social media accounts….

          • Nobody in my family who knows about blogging, getting famous, having tons of traffic, making good money, nobody believe that anymore, yes they did when I started but not anymore, they keep telling me I am wasting my time, to be honest sometime I think ruined my four years for nothing.

            I am telling you all this so that you may know I am really depressed, I so much wanted to get it work, but it haven’t so far but somehow I am still trying… I mean after all the negative thoughts, everybody telling me…

            • Email me and I will give you a free blogging webinar that will help. Stay focused, you can do well. 🙂

  7. Pankaj Dhawan :

    Hi Neil

    This is a perfect guide. Any niche could be a difficult one if you don’t understand it much but this guide makes a lot of sense.

    • The more knowledge you have your industry, the better decisions you’ll make as you navigate your way through it.

  8. Neil,

    I like your point #5 Competitor Analysis. I am currently following these steps for one of my clients who is in a really hard chiropractic niche. Thanks for posting directions on how to work this process.

    I think your HTTPS has issues. It is grey with no padlock for me in IE, Chrome or FF instead of green. In FF it says “This website does not supply any identity information.” In Chrome it says “This page is trying to load scripts from unauthenticated sources.”

    In other words, if your secure site (https) is trying to load an external script from a non-secure site (http), then it breaks the security rules and is technically not secure. All external javascripts, css, pdf, etc need to be delivered from a secure site (https) for a site to be fully authenticated as secure, if not it will display errors and not be green.

  9. Nick Kringas :

    This made me laugh – “Sure, some SEOs are smart and… but there aren’t very many of those SEOs.”

    Thanks for the excellent advice, Neil.

    • lol I am teasing but it’s also kind of true 😉

      You’re welcome, let me know if you have any questions!

  10. Emily Hunter :

    Neil strikes again! 🙂 These are all great ideas, and it’s awesome to have them all in one place. I’ve used Ahrefs before – it’s an excellent tool for this sort of thing, perfect for linkbuilders out there.

    Thank you for the insights!

  11. Hello Neil,

    You really are a herald of good news – thank you.
    Although I am happily occupied writing fictional nonsense (which is, however, very entertaining!) I still harbour thoughts of providing guidance in the self-improvement/lifestyle area.
    However, my insights would not appeal to a majority but would address dilemmas which few can even articulate. In other words, it is for a minority, occupying various competitive niches and is probably seen as boring and pedantic by many.
    Nevertheless, for the minority it would be their solution to a difficult problem so I am duty bound to at least try and get it out there.
    Thank you for opening up a world of possibilities.

  12. It was one of a good idea to outrank our competitors. I use ahref since it contains fresh backlinks for any sites.

  13. Thank you I needed this! I have a “hard” niche (can you get any more boring than “Medicare Supplements)? Can’t wait to fully dig into this article!

  14. How do you even
    think up this stuff Neil?
    Sheer genius…
    which we had even an
    iota of the brain power
    that you have.
    Thanks for sharing.

  15. Robin Khokhar :

    Hi Nell,

    Much needed tips. It was really difficult to appear with results on the hard niche. But I think following your tips will make it.
    Thanks for the share.

    • It takes a little time and definitely some patience, but this will surely help you go in the right direction.

  16. Hi Neil i think my site im sharing with you here is hard niche site gonna use your guide for sure thanks for the update

    • Marketing is one of the toughest niches, but anything is possible. Let me know how things work out for you!

  17. Khagesh Darji :

    LongTail Keyword tools which is the most favorite tool of mine because of really helpful for getting more traffic and usually longtail keywords low volume or high advantages of any websites.

    • Long tail keywords are also where the money’s at. The more specific someone is with their search the higher their intent is to take action.

  18. Rachael E Stout :

    Great post, Neil.
    I was going to focus on links today, and your comment about reddit was great.
    No matter what niche, SEO is so important to your ranking.

    • You’re welcome Rachael! Glad I could help. SEO is your long term and game and what helps companies survive in the digital world.

  19. Neil great post again. Think I have to do more lateral thinking for my niche. (although later thinking – de bono) is a whole different topic:-).


  20. Shruti Shrivastava :

    Great article Neil!
    I am into a hard niche as well.. eggless bakery…so lot of points in here that could help me. Especially trying my hand at the long tail

    • Long tail traffic will build upon one another. It may not seem attractive, but at the end of the day, it’s where you’ll get your highest quality and intent for action.

  21. Swaraj Nandedkar :

    Hi Neil,

    I thought Ranking and getting traffic for High competition keyword is impossible. Thanks for clearing this thought of mine. I am currently working on a Medium Competition niche. I will try to follow above tips. Let’s see what happens!

    Thanks for this wonderful post!

    Happy Blogging!

  22. Great tips Neil. I’ve been using the competitor analysis one with Majestic and ahrefs for a while now and even though it is time consuming it is very worth while particularly in local niches. Thanks for the article.

    • Totally worth it. As you keep using it, you’ll become faster and faster in the way you think and make decisions.

  23. Hi, great post indeed but u didn’t mentioned how to find keywords in hard niche like insurance.
    plz elaborate more for me for insurance niche.

    • The same process would apply Mamta, but with insurance. Think laterally, and write blogs accordingly to that strategy. Insurance is VERY tough, so you’ll need to get your creative juices flowing.

  24. I have an in-house project that very much relates to the definition of hard niche you’ve presented here. And that’s why this gonna by very very helpful for me.
    That outreach way is good after being creative in content marketing.
    So, I am going to use all of the tricks given here and will be back with some results for sure.
    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • it looks like this post was serendipitous Vashishtha. Keep me posted on how the out reach campaigns for in-house projects works out.

  25. Paul Gallimore :

    Excellent article and very timely for me, as I am working on improving the ranking of my son’s plumbing company. In fact, we are doing OK for a new-ish site, but we have room for improvement. Thanks for the tips and the reminders.

    With regard to the articles for longtail keywords you mentioned up to 50-100 articles. That seems an awful lot, but I guess you mean over time?

  26. Hi Neil,
    Thank you for this article.
    As expected an articles with great insights and ideas. I have been following up on your advice that you give through your blogs and podcasts. Finally I am able start getting some traction on my blog.
    Thank you again.
    Amit Patel

  27. Tapan Patel :

    Hi Neil,
    Thank you for this article.

    Please give me more information about back link.

  28. Neil,

    Your article comes just in time. I’m still new to SEO and struggles a lot at ranking on search engines.

    The ideas you share in this post aren’t necesarily new but they are very detailed with easy to understand examples. The tip that speaks to me most is no.1 on long-tail keywords. I’ve been lazy on my research, and was thinking I could rank for harder keywords. But as a new site, it’s probably not the best tactic. I’ll have to do more keyword research now and we’ll see what happens.

    Thanks for sharing with us these excellent tips. Okay, I’m off sharing it!

    Happy Saturday,

    • You can rank for harder keywords, but need to build yourself up to that level. Long tail keywords are much easier and will give you a bunch of small wins to give you the momentum you’ll need to grow beyond.

  29. Tina Willis :

    Somehow you have managed to turn me into a regular reader of your blog. But I never know if you reply to my comments (if there is a subscribe feature, I don’t see it). Would be nice to have that option.

    Anyway, do you have suggestions other than Reddit for long-tail keyword discovery? I just tried Reddit and that was a bust for my main short-tail keywords.

    • Check out this video from my university https://www.quicksprout.com/university/how-to-find-long-tail-keyword-ideas/

  30. Freddy Junior :

    Hi Neil!

    Very valuable SEO tips you are sharing here. 🙂

    I think one very important tip, from this list, is Analyzing your competition (and competitors).

    It is very important to see who is currently ranking for the keyword(s) – and take some time to analyze the reasons WHY they are ranking very well. This insight information can make a big difference when you are working towards high rankings for the same keyword.

    Thanks for sharing such value on SEO man!

    Loving your blogs, by the way!

    Keep up the great work!

    Cheers! 😀

    • Absolutely Freddy. Taking a peak at what your competitors are doing will give you incredible insight. Not necessarily to “dominate”, but rather enhance or enrich what you’re doing.

  31. Mike Toste, Realtor :

    Being in the real estate industry, it’s difficult to get backlinks as agents generally don’t have the best reputation, unfortunately. The terms people are searching for are usually not local. IE a term like “how to choose a real estate agent ” is going to get searches from all over the country and is not local-specific. Meanwhile the big boys like zillow and realtor.com and news sites gobble up all the top spots. When it comes to local terms, at least in our market the competition is fierce. Also, in our market there are several smaller towns and they just don’t get much traffic at all. I do like the reddit idea for keyword ideas but its just difficult to find terms that have have people who are more ready to move forward In buying or selling a house. Your getting ratings idea is also smart but also much competition in that arena. Still this article has inspired me and my team to keep at it. Any ideas are appreciated.

    • I don’t think “how to choose a real estate agent” will work as a strategy unless you’re a giant company. Try blogging about the lifestyle of the neighborhood you live in. There is very little competition and you’ll find yourself ranking for many local long tail keywords in no time.

      • Mike Toste, Realtor :

        Thanks Neil for the reply and we have been doing that very thing although not as much as we could. I guess it’s just difficult to do all the work for a very indirect way of getting business, if that makes sense.

        • Why do you think it is indirect? The more you can talk about the local lifestyle, the more likely you’ll start to rank for long tail traffic. Whether it be the best DMV in xyz town to drive go to last minute, to the block party event happening later this year. Become the source for everything around the local lifestyle.

  32. Completely agreed on targeting longtail keywords. Even targeting keywords of 10 monthly searches could be beneficial if people could search for them with different variations.

    Thanks for your great inputs Neil.


  33. Sunil Kumar :

    Well good article. Some of them are I already know but remaining added some more knowledge to me. I want to implement those tactics. Thanks.

    • That sounds great Sunil, I’m curious to know how this works out for you. Keep me posted on your progress and let me know if there’s anything you need clarity on.

  34. Working in hard niche is always very difficult to get reliable and huge traffic. Now I m working in low competition niche. But I will use all your tech-tics, when I create my Tech Blog.
    Thanks Neil

    • lol

      Yeah its hard and challenging but obviously can be rewarding assuming your passionate about the industry.

  35. Aarif Habeeb :

    Thank you Neil for this amazing article. We can get traffic without links via social media . Make your boring niche interesting via social media share interesting material with your hard niche users. they automatically come and take interest. When your users take interest you will automatically enjoy.

    Thanks for informative content.

    Thanks from India

    • You’re welcome Aarif. You can take any industry and take it from boring to fun. Be creative by having fun with what you’re trying to talk about.

  36. Mike Allison :

    This is a fantastic article, which I personally really appreciate you preparing for your readers. I’m going to begin using the advice immediately this week. Thanks Neil and have a great weekend.

    • That sounds great Mike! Keep me posted on how this works out for you. Feel free to ask questions if you need clarity on anything.

  37. Bruce mesnekoff :

    Thanks for Information about SEO Your Article is impressive and very informative. I am now regular visitor of your website and bookmarked it.

    • I’m happy to hear that Bruce. Keep me posted on your progress and let me know if there’s anything else I can help you with.

  38. I work for a website that struggles in a boring niche and also a pretty hard one.
    We will try the site explorer from Ahrefs to duplicate some of the achievable links of our competitors to see if we rank the same or even better.
    Thank you for these awesome lessons.

    • Keep me posted on how that works out for you Danny. I would also suggest a more, creative content strategy.

  39. Taranpreet Singh :

    Hi Neil Sir,
    The point you’ve covered in this post are useful enough for those who are having a hard time in achieving higher search engine ranking.

    And you suggest getting backlinks as a significant factor. For that, creating high quality confent consistently is another thing you always talk about.

    in conflict to this notion, I’ve recently watched Brian Dean’s latest video where he clearly states that high quality content / consistent blog posting is just not needed to beat competitors in SEO.

    Backlinko is an example which has just 32 posts, but it’s still ranking at the top.

    I can understand that opinions of experts may differ, but I wish to ask you how you would interpret this idea?

  40. Hi Neil, nice article as always very detailed and thorough.

    I am newbie and am interested in starting my own blog in the MMO. Could you give me some examples as what would the long tail keywords would be for this MMO niche.

    • I need to know a little bit more about what you’re trying to do. By MMO, you mean massively multiplayer online? Which game or is all games?

  41. Thank you, Neil, for writing this awesome post for us. I am much inspired again with this article and I am again boosted with self-confident that I can also compete any blog with proper mindset and strategy.

    • Awesome Sandeep! Change is something that always happens from the inside first, before it manifests outside.

  42. Neil this is one of your better posts.

    Whoever wrote this post for you, I’d highly recommend having him or her write more of your posts. As far as the grammar and not becoming too scattered, trying to cover everything under the sun, they stayed focused and provided a good article. Can you reply or email who you used for this post?

    One thing I’m surprised you didn’t mention is to specialize even more in an industry. Example, if you sell copiers that’s a fairly specific industry (subset of electronics, subset of computers) but what if you focused on copiers that served a specific function maybe they were the easiest to use copiers in the history of man and if they ever jammed the copier company would dispatch somebody immediately to fix it for you.

    Being seen as “The Company that does XYZ” is an unbelievable place to be and will not only benefit you SEO wise but also from a branding perspective.

    • LOL, I actually really do write my own posts. Yes sometimes they are a bit different but that is because I have a few editors.

      You make a good point. I should have included that and probably one or two more tactics…

      As for grammar, there shouldn’t be any errors, that’s why I pay editors. 🙂

  43. David Cross :

    Long tail keywords are a great way to drive very targeted traffic to your website. The good thing about long tails is that the competition for these are very low. The problem is that you can not optimize a page for multiple long tails keywords. At least I had not success with this.

    If you want to rank for multiple long tail keywords, you have to create separate pages for each keyword. This can result in repeating yourself over multiple pages without adding any extra value to them. I think this is a big challenge for many bloggers, but I also think it is doable.

    Great post, Neil, like always! Really helpful!

    • Think of it as an art. The better you get at writing and creating stories, the easier it will be for you intertwine long tail keywords with valuable posts.

  44. Farhan Sharma :

    Hello Neil Sir,

    QuickSprout is like a daily newspaper for me with which i start my day. Thanks for again sharing the great article. So much to grab from here, surely gonna implement all the techniques to boost my blog ranking.

    • I’m happy to hear that Farhan. If you get stuck or need any help along the way, don’t hesitate to ask.

  45. Bhuboy de Leon :

    This is really helpful to me, my career niche site is hard niche, when I search google for my main keyword, all I see is gov site and regulations site, very high authority websites, not much of blogs related to my topic

    • Ouch, that does sound difficult. However, the long tail strategy will help you build the momentum you need to lift your site across the board.

  46. Hi Neil,

    As usual, detailled , actionable and usefull post :).

    I’ve got one question, maybe out of the context, but how do you get your sticky widget (following the scroll) on your right side bar ?

    Thanks Neil.

    • It was a custom plugin my developer coded, but you kind find something similar https://wordpress.org/plugins/q2w3-fixed-widget/

  47. Cavakia Therlonge :

    Glad I motivated myself to read this article so I can begin implementing the Reddit tip in finding long-tail keywords and leveraging review sites to build quality links to my new site. How do you feel about PBNs in speeding up SEO results?

    • It could help a little, just not as much as links from authority sites like Huffington Post or New York Times.

  48. Very use-full article about hard niche finding tactic.This is very very important article to find hard niche topics now a days in competitor marketing.

    • Glad it was useful Sudhir. As more people are jumping online, the landscape is evolving and it means we need to adapt to the new changes.

  49. Golam Qauser :

    Hi Neil,

    Thank you so much for writing this awesome Article for us. I am very inspired with this informative article. I am a new on blogging. This article will hell me a lot.

    • This will be a great place for you to start. You may also want to check out the sidebar for more guides to help you along. Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions.

  50. These SEO Tips Will Surely Help. Thanks Neil.

  51. This is an excellent resource for me too.. although I consider myself to be well trained in SEO, this is a refreshing eye opener. I’ll be sharing it with my Facebook groups – amazing insight, Neil, once again thanks!

  52. Hi Neil thanks for the nice article about Hard Niche, good post to read in the morning.

    I got a idea in what you said about Local directories (Yelp). I’ll implement in my future projects.

    Thanks again.

    • There is always a way, but if there isn’t, you can always make one. Let me know how the local directories works out for you

  53. Excellent article!

    While it’s easy to rank for less competitive keywords, it takes pretty long to reach high volume / traffic we expect from the website.

  54. StyleinCraft :

    Plz help me i made my website most popular i want to earn money plz help me

  55. khakchangri Debbarma :

    Neil, Thanks mate for such an informative post… For newbies of course it’s hard to choose the right niche.. Thanks once again for the detailed info.
    Regards khakchangri

  56. Hemang Rindani :

    Interesting article. With new release of search algorithm, developers and users need to understand the business perspective of SEO. Website optimization is still very useful and thus doing right things improves site visibility. Finding right mix of Long-tail and Short-Tail keywords is the key. Make sure that website is optimized as per those keywords. Enterprise web content management services may help the cause of fulfilling on-site optimization process. Another important aspect of a website is doing the off-page activities correctly and rigorously. Understanding target niche and doing a guest blogging activity is a good option.

    Thanks for sharing this informative article.

    • There are a lot of aspects to this obviously, but thats why you turn this into a daily routine. Success is the sum of small habits repeated day in and day out.

  57. Hey Neil,

    Didn’t get your reply for the last mail that I sent you at the time of your webinar. Can you please check your mailbox and get back to us. Email: admin@fossbytes.com


  58. Nick Stamoulis :

    Long tail keywords are so important to any SEO strategy, even if it isn’t in a tough niche. However, when the niche is difficult, it’s even more important.

    When the niche is challenging, it’s important to find specific keywords to target that will attract the right audience to your pages. Here’s a link to an article we recently wrote about this very topic – http://www.brickmarketing.com/blog/longtail-keywords.htm

    The bottom line is, it’s possible to succeed in SEO no matter what the niche is. They key is to customize the approach based on the niche the business, while also adhering to the basics of any good SEO program.

  59. Hi Neil,

    Been following your SEO tips for a new project. However, I have encountered something I never faced before. One of my article http://www.teacoffeebible.com/how-many-calories-in-coffee-with-cream-and-sugar-at-starbucks/ which I have been targeting for a long tail keyword ‘calories in coffee with cream and sugar’ shows up under 40 all the time for various SERP checker. However, when I go through google search pages with the keyword I can never find it.

    What could be causing this?

    • I’m not sure, maybe it’s there and you missed it?

      • have checked with various browser and through mobile. But I can not find it by typing the keyword in google search. Although when I add “keyword + www.teacoffeebible.com ” in google search, my result pops up. so its their in the pages just can’t find it on the position various SERP checker are showing. I have gone through +/- 3 pages just to make sure if it has slipped some position but to no avail.

        • It seems like you only have a handful of posts still. I would stay focused and keep blogging and promoting that content. The results will come with patience.

          • Sure thing Neil. I just got worried that why is the result not showing up in the positions SERP checkers are showing. By the way its that article only which is experiencing this problem. Rest all show up in their position.


  60. Great article, as per usual.
    I love the graph on long tail keywords. I’ve tried to visualize that concept many times but the way you have presented it makes so much sense and shows the size of the opportunity. Also, the conversion rate of something like ‘best shoes under $100’ is far better than a much more difficult keyword such as ‘shoes’…

  61. Amazing post!

    For the “how to screw drywall” example, wouldn’t Google’s semantic algorithms be able to figure out that “how to install drywall” and related phrases actually refer to the same topic? And if so, how easy would it actually be to rank for that phrase?

    For example, that Reddit post doesn’t show up anywhere in the first several pages of the results, even though the phrase is at the beginning of the title and is used naturally in the thread.

    Lately, I’ve been failing a lot at ranking for keywords even when I have the only optimized page for that particular phrase, losing out to larger sites with vaguely related content. Is it just a matter of growing my own backlinks/authority, since my site’s just a few months old?

    • Yeah you’re site is too new. Keep focusing on creating high quality content and promoting it to earn links.

  62. Thank you Neil! I have been following Your great articles for two years now, and these helped me to make my site. Keep it up!

  63. Hi Neil,

    I just want to say thanks for all the amazing information you freely share. It is a breath of fresh air reading your articles and I’m always finding great things to implement in my business.

    • It’s my pleasure Andy, I’m glad I could help. Let me know if you have any questions or things your stuck with.

  64. Great article as usual Neil. Here is the issue i have experienced. We target a specific long tail keyword and make a specific page for it and very focused. The issue is that many times the main home page of competitors get picked before us although its less focused compared to ours. We also try to build back links to those subpages to boost page authority butdoesnt seem tohelp. What do you suggest in these situations Neil? Would be great to hear your views in this as it has happened many times…

  65. Loved to know about these helpful tips will definitely work out on your tips,Your resource always helps me when i need guidance in my work
    Thanks a lot once again

  66. Hi Neil.
    Very inspiring article. Just recently began looking into growth hacking and on the question about long-tail keywords, GOOGLE (we phoned them to get started) they said “Ohh no – that’s not gonna work!”. Now I for sure know this is one of the ways we should get more traffic – and why Google said so.
    Our site is just a few months old so I know it’s gonna be a lot of hard work ahead of us. One question perhaps you can help me with? Forgive me if I am missing the point…
    But when you say: “Put together 50-100 articles for long term phrases like those…” what do you mean exactly? 50-100 articles on our own website? Or do you mean blog-posts? We are a marketplace in a niche-market, but are working on include a blog to get the good and valuable content you’re also talking about in your other articles. But still – 50-100 articles on our page? Just wants to be sure I understand it correctly. Thank you again for the useful tips and articles – they are a very inspiring.
    Best, Thomas

    • Yes as you create blog articles on your own site you will start ranking for random phrases. These posts need to go on your domain.

  67. Great article, your though motivated many blogger who doing hard niche, including myself..

  68. Hi Neil,

    Thanks for giving this helpful tips. You are motivation for all newbies. Will ask my customers to review my services..

  69. really this information is very useful for me

  70. Hi Neil, thanks for this amazing post.
    I have been trying to rank a site in a very competitive niche but getting very little result. But after reading this post i have found a new strategy to implement and hope it works.

  71. Anil Agarwal :

    I think using less competitive long tail keywords is the key.

    I know how hard it is for anyone to increase their search traffic, especially when they are in a competitive niche.

    Unless you have a brand authority and lots of links, it’s really hard to boost search traffic.

    This is where you need to target long tail keywords. Find out ways to use them smartly and focus more on content marketing. Sooner or later, you will start getting the results.

    • It’s about working smarter not harder. There is plenty of opportunity out there, you just need to think creatively on getting there.

  72. I was searching for this. I m working on insurance niche and I m facing loads of problems to get traffic. I hope after following yours tricks I will get some good traffic. Thanks.

  73. Hello Neil,

    I landed on this page via google, I think using less competitive long tail keywords is the key to success. From today, I will follow a new strategy. I am sure with this strategy I will get success in this field. And I am thankful to you for providing such an informative posts. Thanks for sharing.


  74. Emilee C Hatch :

    Again Neil! I am agree with you 100%.. I have used these SEO tactics before.. But grabbed some more information from here. And the best part is about long tail keywords… Thanks!

  75. Sue J. Maselli :

    Nice post..

  76. Flavius Noja :

    Hy Neil, thanks for this post! Helps me alot for my business!


  77. Happy to see a guide on increasing long tail keywords traffic. Thank u neil, looking for some opportunities to earn links.

  78. Nitin Singh :

    I believe that SEO is the key in any niche. Sure content is king but SEO is required for sure. Thanks Neil for this wonderful article 🙂

  79. A great article ! Thanks for amazing guide.

  80. It was one of a good idea to outrank our competitors. I use ahref since it contains fresh backlinks for any sites.

  81. Creative Solutions :

    Which one is better SEO Audit tool?

    • Check out this post: https://www.quicksprout.com/2013/02/04/how-to-perform-a-seo-audit-free-5000-template-included/

  82. Sir thanks for huge inspiration… I want to ask you one question and please must reply.. Is redirection of old expired domains to my site will help in ranking?

  83. Great article as usual Neil. I just want to say thanks for all the amazing information you freely share.

  84. Hey neil I am on my first niche project and I picked up the niche with has average competition 50-70 ( should I exit this niche or should I continue seo tactics to rank my website ? )
    PS :- 5 of my keywords are under 40th position on google
    Thnx in advance

  85. The article is informative, indeed. Nevertheless, my 6 weeks of intensive study and self debate can not bring me to go forth with a ” multi (2) niche site which every expert online says stay away from if you want to make some money and as regards to SEO optimization.
    I have writing thoughts and some unpublished articles on a few passionate, well written albeit unrelated niches or topics. So I keep looking for reasons to go that way; contrary to everything I read! So… I’m still stuck in a hole . Any advice?

    • I would stick with 1 niche vs two. If there’s one you’re more passionate about than the other, I suggest going with that one. Listen to what your heart is telling you

  86. Shahzaib Ul Hassan :

    Today i read your first article, Learned lot of small things that really matters for SEO. will apply on my web…Big Thanks from Pakistan 🙂

  87. I agree with your first method, Long tails are love 🙂 easy to rank with quite good traffic
    Thank you for an amazing article.

  88. Thank you, thank you! This was so useful!

  89. Thanks for your amazing guideline, I have more dream of Amazon affiliate marketing I believe that Long tails keyword most effective in affiliate marketing

  90. Hi Neil,

    Awesome article as usual. Everybody preaches the need to provide real VALUE to your readers, but I find very few deliver. You’re a true gem.

    I’m hoping for some advice. I have picked a niche, and I’m very passionate about it (hint: it’s fitness and weightlifting), but I don’t want to put my face all over the website and blogs.

    Is it possible to run a blog without being the “poster boy”, so to say?

    Thanks in advance.


  91. Finally, I find out this content that really helps me a lot. After 2 weeks long I still searching niche but I can’t because most of the niche has huge competition. After study your content I wanna inspire and work again to searching niche. But I have a question, some of the niches found monthly search volume low like 10 or 0 but Google research results thousand or million and the keywords difficulty medium sometimes high.So, Which is the most important things to pick a niche for rank? Monthly search value or Google search result?

    • I would focus on monthly search volume. Google will return lots of results even if there isn’t much interest in the topic just because of latent semantic indexing.

      • So, it does’ matter google search result, we should focus on monthly research result for pick up the niche. Someone said that, Google search result matter for SEO parameters like title and URL. What about you say that? On the other hand, what about you say that low monthly search value but high keyword difficulty.

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