How to Reverse Engineer Your Competitor’s Top Keywords

Wouldn’t it be great if you could find out what keywords were making your competitors the most money in Google? Now you can do exactly that.

The Best Blog Traffic You Can Get

Although it’s great to get traffic from Pinterest, Facebook and other sources, there is no doubt that search traffic is the best long-term traffic you can get for your blog. Once you have managed to get good rankings for your website, those rankings are likely to continue for many years – even decades.

Better still, all of that traffic is free. Google, Bing and Yahoo will quite happily send you traffic all day long from their organic listings and not charge you a cent for it. There are many websites that get literally millions of visitors a month from free search traffic.


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The pie is getting bigger every day, too. We are all using the Internet more and more from a whole range of devices. We are still using desktops, but now we search even more on mobile devices. Smartphones, tablets – and even watches and TVs – are providing the world’s population with new ways to search.

So if you want your blog to be a real long-term success, then you need to take search traffic seriously. And that means working hard to ensure that you rank in Google and other search engines for keywords that are important to you.

The Changing Keyword Landscape

The way that people search has changed in recent years, too. As we all become more Internet savvy, we are using longer search terms. Instead of just searching for general terms like ‘car insurance,’ people nowadays tend to search for something much more specific like ‘third party insurance for a 2016 Ford F-150.’

As a result, the number of keywords you can profitably rank for has exploded – there are now gazillions of phrases that you can rank for that can bring you good traffic. But finding out what they are is not always easy. Tools like Google’s Keyword Planner are helpful, but they only tell a part of the story.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could spy on your competitors and see what keywords they are ranking for in Google? Just imagine what a goldmine of information that would be.

Well, you don’t have to imagine – you can do it with SEMRush.

How to Reverse Engineer Your Competitor’s Top Keywords

SEMRush is without doubt one of my favorite blogging tools, because it gives you access to so much information that you can actively use to increase your blog traffic. Here’s how it works…

SEMRush has compiled a huge database of many millions of keywords. It then spiders the major search engines regularly to see who is ranking in the top 100 for all of these keywords. Then all of this massive amount of data is organized by website. The result is that you can spy on your competitors, and see what they are ranking for in Google.

This video gives a quick overview of the cool things you can do with SEMRush:

Awesomely-Powerful Organic Research

My favorite section in SEMRush is Organic Research. Click through to this part of the analysis and you get a wealth of detailed keyword information.

There’s gold in them there hills…I mean pages! You could easily spend hours looking at this section, deconstructing your competitors and finding out what makes their website tick.

The real power here is the advanced filters. Using this required a paid membership, but it is worth every cent. You can refine the data using multiple filters together, so that you can seek out keywords that you could easily rank for.

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As an example, it is usually much easier to rank for longer keyword phrases. So you might filter so that you only see key phrases with five or more words in them. Or you can search for phrases with the lowest keyword difficulty. Better still, combine the two and search for keywords with low difficulty that have five or more words. And so on…

Even with a free account though, you can a wealth of very useful information from SEMRush. You can get a great understanding of what your competitors are ranking for, and which pages are doing well. That may come as a big surprise to you. I bet you will find dozens of key phrases which are relevant to your blog, but which you had never even considered using.

Recover All the Keyword Data Hidden by Google

Another great way to use SEMRush is to find out what your own blog is ranking for. This is important because Google now hides a lot of this information, due to privacy concerns. If you check your Google traffic in Google Analytics, you will probably find that over 90% of searches are listed as ‘not provided.’

So people are finding your site through Google searches…but you have no idea what they searched for. This means there is no way you can optimize your blog to get more traffic for these searches.

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Thankfully, SEMRush comes to the rescue and fills in a lot of these gaps. Just research your own website using SEMRush and you will no doubt discover that you are ranking for terms you had never thought of. Now that you know Google is ranking your blog for these phrases, you can go flat out and optimize further – or write more blog posts on the same subject to get even more traction.

So if you want to get a real advantage over your competitors, sign up for a free trial of SEMRush today. Better still, upgrade to a paid account and discover the full power that the SEMRush system can offer. You will get a fantastic return on your investment, that’s for sure.

Get a FREE trial of SEMRush and Discover Hidden Keywords


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