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Who’ll Read You? Finding the Traffic Potential of Your Writing.

Updated on February 13, 2017
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© 2012 by Aurelio Locsin.

Whether you’re writing on the Internet out of love for words or to make money, you want as many readers as possible. While visitors to your hubs can come from other other hubs, related websites, or links that you post on forums, the chief source of those visitors is Google. Users enter a keyword into the search engine, the search results show a link to your hub, they click the link and then visit your page. Wouldn’t it be nice to know how many visitors your effort can potentially receive?


Adwords Keyword Tool

Google offers the Adwords Keyword tool for showing the potential traffic to any web page, including your hubs. You may find this useful to see why certain hubs receive a lot of traffic and others don’t. You can also use this tool on popular web pages to see what subjects are popular. You can then consider writing hubs on more visited keywords to boost your traffic.

Caution

This only works for non-fiction works. Google has no way of judging writing except by subject, so if your writing is a poem about sunsets, it will key into “sunsets” and not the literary value of the poem.

Click the image to see it full-size. Be sure to enlarge the window to the biggest screen size. If it is still too small, right-click the image and save it to your hard drive. Then open it with your favorite image program.

1. Sign into the Adwords Keyword tool.

Use your Google username and password. It’s free to register. Although you can use the tool without signing in, some of the features are disabled.


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2. Click “[Exact]” under Match Types.

It is located in the left panel under Tools.

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3. Enter the name of the hub you want to check into the “Website” box.

The box is located in the right panel. For this example, I’m using one of my more popular hubs Highest Paid Lawyers in America, which puts the following link into the “Website” box:

http://alocsin.hubpages.com/hub/Highest-Paid-Lawyers-in-America-Where-Attorneys-Make-the-Best-Salaries


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4. Click “Advanced Options and Filters.”

This is located in the right panel and reveals the options box.

  1. Choose “All Countries” under Location and Languages, and “English” under All Languages.
  2. Click the “Search” button. Scroll down the page until you come to the Keyword Ideas section. Make sure the “Keyword Ideas” tab is selected and NOT “Ad Group Ideas.”
  3. Click the “Global Monthly Searches” title until a downward arrow appears. This sorts the column in descending order – from highest to lowest.

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Click the "Search" button.

Scroll down the page until you come to the Keyword Ideas section.

  1. Make sure the “Keyword Ideas” tab is selected and NOT “Ad Group Ideas.”
  2. Click the “Global Monthly Searches” title until a downward arrow appears. This sorts the column in descending order – from highest to lowest.

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Reading the Report

The report shows the potential keywords used to search for your page, and the number of monthly searches for each keyword around the world. The higher the number of searches, the more likely it is that anyone will find your hub. As you can see, my hub has several highly-searched keywords:

  • Lawyer: 110,000
  • Attorney: 60,500
  • Highest paying jobs: 40,500
  • Free legal advice: 33,100
  • Lawyer salary: 14,800

This represents only the potential traffic, not actual traffic. In reality, the actual number of visitors for a page depends on the Competition, which ideally should be “Low”, as well as the actual ranking of the page in Google search. My hub gets about 300 visits a month.

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Account

Put your main hub site in the “Website” box to view the traffic potential of all your hubs. This example uses “alocsin.hubpages.com.” Don’t forget to click the “Search” button. In this case, the number of keywords and monthly searches are the following:

  • High paying jobs: 12.100
  • Money Making: 8,100
  • Extra Cash: 5,400

Note that these numbers will change depending on what topics HubPages decides to feature on my page when Google runs its report.

The searches aren’t quite as high as my Lawyer Salary hub because the report generalizes information from several of the hubs featured on the page. The relatively low number of searches also explains why as of November 2012, I’m ranked 97 among the top most visited hubbers, instead of near the top.

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Comparisons

Let’s compare my figures to that of nadeeshan301, the most visited hubber in November 2012. (They represent a group of doctors from Sri Lanka.) Putting “nadeeshan301.hubpages.com” into the “Website” box reveals the following keywords and monthly searches:

  • Breast cancer: 246,000
  • Prostate cancer: 165,000
  • Diabetes symptoms: 135,000
  • Lung cancer: 135,000
  • Cancer research: 74,000

As you can see, their topics have much higher traffic potential than mine. Small wonder that they are on top. Try putting nadeeshan301’s individual hubs into the tool to see how each does.

What to Do

How can this tool help you?

  1. First, find out the traffic potential of your individual hubs, and of your entire site.
  2. Then compare those numbers with those of the top hubbers listed in my Top 100 hub. Check out what topics (keywords) they write on and how many visitors they get.

If you’d like to get more visitors, write hubs on similar highly-searched keywords.

Let me know in the Comments box below what the Adwords Keyword tool revealed about your hubs and searches.

Comments

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    • How to - Answers profile image

      L M Reid 2 years ago from Ireland

      Great information for those new writers who are only finding their feet. Yes I find the Keyword Tool invaluable when choosing which ones to use

      Voted up and shared

    • How to - Answers profile image

      L M Reid 2 years ago from Ireland

      Great information for those new writers who are only finding their feet. Yes I find the Keyword Tool invaluable when choosing which ones to use

      Voted up and shared

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 4 years ago from West Virginia

      Alocsin, this is a great resourceful article. This is a great tool to use and you have showed us exactly how to use it. Good stuff my friend. Voted up, useful, interesting, and shared.

    • Kasman profile image

      Kas 4 years ago from Bartlett, Tennessee

      I really appreciate hubbers like you writing articles like this alocsin. I'm new to hubpages and working hard to discover all the ins and outs.

    • profile image

      ignugent17 4 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this useful information. :-)

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

      Fantastic hub, alocsin! I learned a few things on this. :) I didn't know you could estimate the traffic potential for ALL your hubs. That is awesome.sauce. ;)

    • Cathy Fidelibus profile image

      Ms. Immortal 4 years ago from NJ

      Thank you, very useful information.

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 4 years ago from North Carolina

      This is very helpful! You presented this information in a way that even I can understand. I am going to look into this!

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

      That's helpful. I've done the URL with both high traffic and low traffic potential and some do well and others don't. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to it sometimes, but of course I'm still learning.

    • alocsin profile image
      Author

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      It's a balance, vespaw0olf. You want something with high traffic but also low competition -- which means you won't have a lot of competition for your website and it won't get lost. But lots of people can potentially visit.

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

      Alocsin, I have a question. If we choose keywords for the highest potential traffic, won't our hub likely get lost in the mass of information out there? I read once that we should choose more specialized keywords that narrow the field. I think your approach makes more sense now that I think about it.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      This is so helpful. I have muddled through and muddled through but I think this really will help. Voted up+++ :) ps

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      This is so helpful. I have muddled through and muddled through but I think this really will help. Voted up+++ :) ps

    • molometer profile image

      molometer 4 years ago

      Very useful and interesting hub Aurelio.

      I must give it a spin and see how it works. I use the Adwords program but never thought of using it this way. Thanks for sharing this helpful information.

      I'll let you know the results.

      Michael

      Tweeting this.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      That's good to know. Thank you!

    • alocsin profile image
      Author

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      As far as I know, you want to use terms with LOW competition but HIGH views (at least 3,000 exact monthly searches -- preferably more). If you use high competition terms, you won't be able to compete with well-established websites who are already pulling most of the searches. With low competition words, you still have a chance to make it to the first page of Google, which is where you want to be. Otherwise, no one will visit your page.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Great tip! Sending to my desktop for future reference.

    • Millionaire Tips profile image

      Shasta Matova 4 years ago from USA

      I dabbled with this tool before, but now that I am a part of the Apprentice Program, I am trying to use it with every hub that I write. I still feel like I don't quite understand everything, but I am making the effort. Voted up!

    • PreetSaluja profile image

      PreetSaluja 4 years ago

      I use Google Adwords for getting a bit knowledge about top searched keywords.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 4 years ago from Thailand

      Great hub Alocsin, I will definitely check this out ... think I may have to play a little to fully get it, but it looks like it is worth the effort!!

      Sharing, up, useful, pinned and tweeted.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      Thanks for the information. I am following through on your advice. It's always a good thing to know where your traffic comes from, especially using the highest visited hub post for interest. Voted up +++

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 4 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      I will have to bookmark this. Keywords seem to be my downfall.

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      TIMETRAVELER2 4 years ago

      Aurelio. I am having a really big problem understanding the "competition" portion of the keyword tool. I have heard two things: 1: you want to use terms that have high competition. 2. You want to use terms that have low competition. I have been told that this column is for advertisers, not writers so if you use terms marked "high", you can make more money because advertisers will pay more. Here you are telling me that you should use the Low rating. I am going NU TS! Which is it...Please!

    • alocsin profile image
      Author

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      I try to get keywords with at least 3,000 visits a month but low competition, rfmoran.

    • alocsin profile image
      Author

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      You're doing it right, rajan. I believe there's a paid version that offers more than a 100, but you'll only see 100 of the top keywords for any site.

    • beingwell profile image

      beingwell 4 years ago from Bangkok

      Voted this hub useful! I'm glad to have read it. I also use the Keyword tool of adwords in making blogposts. At least, I know I'm on the write track in hoping to get those views. Sharing this one to my hub friends, thanks!

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Aurelio, this another very useful hub. I use it to get keywords for my hubs. Though your hub has revealed to me how I can use it to get keywords being searched for my hubs I find that the keywords are limited to 100 and keywords for only a few of my hubs are listed. Do I need to do the search a bit differently?

      Greatly useful information. Voted up, useful and sharing.

    • GiblinGirl profile image

      GiblinGirl 4 years ago from New Jersey

      Very informative and helpful. Thanks for sharing.

    • mpropp profile image

      Melissa Propp 4 years ago from Minnesota

      You really know how to show and explain the statistics. I really appreciate that. I'm still learning new things each time I re-read your hubs! Thank you very much for the advice you provide, you help a LOT of people who are still trying to figure out how exactly SEO and keywords work.

    • rfmoran profile image

      Russ Moran 4 years ago from Long Island, New York

      Aurelio - Another great hub by one of our most thoughtful writers. Question, in using keyword tool do you follow HP suggestion that you look for low competition words between 500 and 40,000 page views a month?

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 4 years ago

      Awesome...thank you!

    • billd01603 profile image

      billd01603 4 years ago from Worcester

      Thanks for the info

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 4 years ago from Florida

      I use this tool for topics people are searching for, but I have not used it to track my Hubs. I will be doing that now that I've read this Hub.

      Thanks for more of your great info.

      I voted this UP, etc. and will share.

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 4 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      If HP doesn't "put something to sleep," then I'd sure as heck hang onto it...Just this week someone at the top comments on a political page on a site called "The Blaze" did me a tremendous favor.

      They left a comment with a link to one of my hubs and said, "read this and become wiser."

      OH MY! That just happened out of nowhere....over a thousand hits in the past day and a half.

      That kind of thing happens...someone likes something and links it in some forum or site they participate in....it's a pick me up...and that can and will happen for folks if they are patient and keep at it.

    • nanderson500 profile image

      nanderson500 4 years ago from Seattle, WA

      This is one of the most interesting hubs I've read. I haven't checked this yet, but I plan to. It should be quite interesting. Voted up, useful, and interesting.

    • alocsin profile image
      Author

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      Happens to me too, Wesman Todd Shaw. Popular topics come and go, so it's important to use this tool often. You may discover that a keyword that wasn't popular weeks ago is suddenly on top because of a popular book or movie.

    • alocsin profile image
      Author

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      I know how you feel, Jools. The recent Google updates have reduced traffic for many websites, including Hubpages, and even my offsite ones. One suggestion is to see if you can spin your hubs so they still include your interests, but talk about more popular topics. For example, if you're into crocheting and want to do a cancer hub, due to the high potential traffic, create a hub that talks about crocheting caps for cancer patients who lose their hair due to chemo.

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 4 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      Jools - I'm not familiar with you, but sometimes things just sit and get no traffic for months at a time...then all of a sudden, start getting loads of traffic from Google.

      I've had that happen many times with things I'd published and then just left to sit for having gave up on the hub....then later WHAM...here comes the traffic.

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

      Aurelio, very interesting hub and just the kind of advice I need! My traffic is falling, my few cents per day are getting less and less (the least happened today for over a year!). I write about what interests me but it seems I am in a minority and need to set my pen to other subjects. It is so disheartening to put a lot of work into a hub and then not get any traffic. I've been on HP 15 months and I'm still no wiser about SEO, I have so much to learn and your hubs are proving to be a real help -thanks!

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 4 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      The tutorial is very good, and highly recommended for those who need to make a living online.

    • Hunbbel Meer profile image

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 4 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      Extremely useful information, for beginners and pros alike. I am sharing this hub with my social network so that it may also help others to have a kick-start in the right direction.

      Thanks a ton for writing and publishing this!

    • Curiad profile image

      Mark G Weller 4 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

      Very useful information. I am not sure how many people actually use these tools but hopefully your hub will enlighten many!

      Mark

    • Ruchira profile image

      Ruchira 4 years ago from United States

      awesome tutorial, Aurelio.

      Have to go step by step so that I can get some bucks from my writing here :) Lately HP is becoming a drag for me.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      very useful Aurelio! I already use this but you have given a great primer on its uses and importance. Well done!