How I Ranked 18 Posts Totalling 21,000 Monthly Search Visitors in 4.5 Months

How I Ranked 18 Posts Totalling 21,000 Monthly Search Visitors in 4.5 Months

Everybody wants free traffic fast that keeps on coming with no additional work.

I know I do.

That’s why like targeting long tail keywords.

The thing with long tail keywords is I have more control over the entire SEO process.

I have control over the following:

  • which keywords I target
  • the content targeting those keywords

As long as there isn’t much competition or no competition I can rank for those keywords quickly.

This system works like gangbusters.

When you target competitive keywords you have less control because of the links required element which is not easy to control.  While you can build links you still don’t have 100% control over those links (unless using a PBN, which enhances risk).  You also can’t control how many links you’ll need to rank #1 in Google.  It could be 10 or 30.  It’s very hard to calculate investment with the unknown link building variable.

How fast?

I analyzed a handful of posts published since December 2017 and I quickly found 19 posts that as of April 18, 2018 are ranking #1, #2 or #3 in Google for the targeted keyword.  They rank for many other keywords as well.  Many of these posts were published in February and March, which means they ranked inside of 2 months.

The total monthly search volume of those targeted keywords is 21,000 searches.

It’s remarkable actually.

19 posts are getting decent search traffic inside 4.5 months without building a single link except for some social media promotion (which aren’t links in the SEO-sense).

ROI Analysis

  • Content cost:  0 USD
  • Revenue from that traffic:  $210 USD per month
  • Months to break even:  3.6 months
  • Total revenue year #1:  $210 x 8 months (took 4 months to rank) = $1,680
  • Total value of those 19 mosts (in a site sale scenario):  $1,680 x 2 years = $3,360 (conservatively).

Net result:  excellent investment.


  1. There are also posts I published at that time that don’t rank as well or don’t get as much traffic.  But then I have posts published before then that rank for even more competitive keywords.
  2. The above ROI analysis does not include traffic from Pinterest, which is also significant for a lot of my content.

The point of this is to demonstrate that long tail keywords with little search volume can generate a nice ROI even when paying content.

I have one advantage though

The only advantage I have that many aspiring bloggers don’t have is I have site authority.  I know this counts for something so it has to be mentioned, but that should spur you on even more to build some site authority.  The fact is, the better and bigger your site, the easier it is to make faster gains.

How did I do this?

I spent a lot of time doing unique keyword research followed up with excellent content targeting those keywords.

I primarily use Ahrefs for keyword research, but Ubersuggest will work as well.

Metrics:  Several of the keywords I target have very low monthly search volume (i.e. 20 to 50), but when I publish the extensive content targeting those keywords, I target many other keywords.

You don’t have to restrict keyword selection on high search volume.  I love going after low search volume keywords as long as they have little to no competition.

Ahrefs also provides a great keyword difficulty measurement.  I filter this to KD of 0 (the lowest KD level).  Yes, that’s right.  I look for keywords with a KD of 0.  While this doesn’t guarantee I’ll rank quickly, the odds are quite good.

Should you avoid high search volume keywords?

No way.  Of course target higher search volume keywords but the lion’s share of your daily content should target longer tail stuff.  Over time strive to rank higher search volume keywords, but in the meantime let’s get some traffic to your site, even it it’s just a bit to start.  Each little bit you add with new content adds up to a lot over time.

Remember, less competition means you’ll have less competition coming after you too.  It’s all well and good to rank high search keywords, but once ranked, you must defend which means ongoing work.

The content lover’s dream

If you love publishing content every day in pursuit of evergreen search traffic, this strategy is for you.  I’m a content guy and can’t click “Publish” enough each day.

The only up-front work involved is mining 100’s of really good keywords with little or no competition.  Once I have my list, it’s off to the races.


4 thoughts on “How I Ranked 18 Posts Totalling 21,000 Monthly Search Visitors in 4.5 Months”

  1. Hey Jon,

    Where does the 210$ come from? Adsense?
    Isn’t that a very optimistic estimation for 21k visitors?


    1. Hey Atti,

      It comes from all ads and affiliate commissions. I earn a lot on my sites because I’ve extensively optimized them with various ad networks and affiliate links.

      1. So you took the average value of a visitor to you website or in other words:
        total income/total visitors.

        Wouldn’t it be more precise to just take income of your ads on your info content pages into considerations (obv. that would ignore that people go to other pages and convert there as well).

        Do truth would be somewhere in the middle ?

        Trying to figure out for myself how much traffic to my info content is worth and how much it is worth spending on/ what my ROI on those pieces of content are…

        Maybe a Google tag manager case study could reveal the exact value of info content vs review content?!

        1. Right now I’m merged into this RPM/ROI/numbers of info content too! But man, less than 10 buck per 1000 visitors is just not enough.

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