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How To Find Common Search Words?


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So, after a couple months of tweaking, I've pulled a top ten placement in several search engines (and currently top 1 in google--whatever they did to their algorithms, I love it) for a reasonably prolific term (400,000-500,000 results). I'm happy about that, obviously. It's also a term that I thought was a no-brainer for searches; it's one of the first I would use to find my sort of site.


As it turns out, what I would use to find sites is not what everyone else is using, because I get very few hits on this search term. This may be a quirk of the industry; by and large, news of sites spreads by word of mouth and link swaps more than new hits from search engines. I'd still like to pull more visitors in from search engines. That's so silly of me, I know--next I'll be saying I want them to visit more than one page while they're on my site.


So how do I find out what people are actually searching for? I could use the other search terms I might use to find similar sites, but usually I just... go by word of mouth and link swaps. And I wasn't very good at guessing popular terms the first time, obviously. I could use meta tags on my competitors' sites, but they would suggest, among other things, the term I already have.


Any ideas?

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You can use the Overture pay-per-click keyword selector tool at http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/ it gives you many variations on a phrase you enter and how often those terms are searched for. It's free to use too.

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Bruce-- Good idea-- I found a couple trends I hadn't thought about. I might have been thinking backwards in terms of how to promote this site, given its focus/audience. (of course, for every relevant search term, there's someone who reaches my site by looking for "drunk mattress" or "painting people drinking tables," so... that just proves people have weirder topics on their mind thant I do)


Jim-- thanks for the link. I'll check it out -- sounds very useful!

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