There is a lot of material written on technical side of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). However, just like everything else in life, SEO is not all black and white (and I’m not talking about SEO hats here). This means that no one can give you a guarantee that he can magically put your site to number 1 page of Google results. Read further to find out why it is not possible and learn the trick which will help you find the right keywords for your site.

I have been observing Search Engine Ranking Positions (SERPs) of over 100s of my sites since the year of 2004. Surely, the algorithm has changed many times since then with the recent major update being finalized just recently. But over those years I discovered a few principles of SEO game. The first one is keyword competitiveness, the second one being your site likeability by Google and another one - site selection. Strangely enough, none of them relate to each other.

Keyword competitiveness

You might read plenty on topic how to select keywords with low competition (several tens of thousands results in exact match), but in reality such keywords might be as hard to target as those with millions results. Nobody of SEO gurus will be able to explain this fact. And this is something you need to watch for. How? This leads us to the next principle.

Google likes you

If you heard this before and thought it was a myth than start believing it. My biggest successes come from sites randomly selected put by Google put on page 1 that stay there for years. Those sites are optimized exactly the same way as others, have similar backlink profiles, numbers of pages or even lower counts but for some reason they get considered worthy enough to be on the top. It becomes even more surprising when you see that competitors offer more valuable sites than yours.

Site selection

Knowing those two principles I manage my SEO strategy the following way. I build a number of sites in the niche of interest, add a few backlinks to them from existing sites than closely monitor the incoming traffic. Because Google gives initial boost to all new sites, a boost which places your site on page one almost instantly, you can easily see which of the sites have potential to be ranked well under certain keywords in the future. Once you got this information, you will have an idea which direction to follow.

Getting your site to rank well in Google is synonymous to breaking through the brick wall. The wall can be made of quality bricks laid by professionals - have strong competition made of regularly updated authoritative sites occupying first page or old bricks laid by amateurs - have a few static sites that you can knock off and get through. Rarely a first page of Google results is made of ’strong bricks’ only. Do your research, look for sites that ‘got lucky’ to be on first page and beat them in the process.