For obscure reasons that Glen and Janet will understand, I’m going to call this the Potato Chip Challenge.
In the past, we’ve learned that adding “unique” to gift-related keywords captures long-tail searches. I have also observed that the word “stuff” can collect people who are searching vaguely for interesting, er, stuff. As in “stuff about volcanoes.” “Review” gets people looking for “[product name] review” before making a purchase, and as I noted in a previous post, people often search for types of products, news, movies, etc by appending the year to the search (“lcd TVs 2011″).
Well, here’s another to add to the list. I’d been doing it already, for some topics where keyword research suggested a match, but I hadn’t consciously added it to my toolbox of pointless yet useful qualifiers: “best.” I’ve got Best Books on Greek Mythology, for example.
Here’s the Potato Chip Challenge: Take a lens where you’re reviewing several of the same kind of thing — or even one thing, if you’re really sure it’s a good one — and open its traffic stats, the detailed stats where you’ve got all the keywords that have brought visits to your lens. Set the time span to “90 days.”
Now, open another window to edit the lens. Add “Best” to the title. Work in “best” next to the main keyword in a few places on the lens where it sounds natural. IMPORTANT: As you edit, keep an eye on your traffic stats to make sure you don’t accidentally delete/screw up a phrase that’s bringing you traffic.
Publish and use SquidUtils’ workshop add-on to ping the updated lens.
Wait! You’re not done yet. Look at the traffic stats again. Open a text document, jot down the date, and record the weekly and monthly traffic totals. Copy and paste the complete list of keywords. Save the document as “potato chip” in your Squidoo projects folder.
Come back in a month and compare traffic stats (keeping in mind that shopping-related traffic often dips in summer and rises in the fall). Hopefully, “Best [thingie]” will now be part of your lens traffic.
I don’t know how successful this will be, but based on observations, it looks like an experiment worth trying. Please report results one way or the other, if you give this a try!