Day 1 – Setup
Welcome to Day 1. Take a look at this:
I’ve cut out the ads that appeared above the organic search results in the screenshot above. Enter “definitive guide to bookkeeping” into Google and see if you get the same or similar result.
As at July 2020 (the last time I edited Day 1 of this course) it’s still there. Placements can and do vary according to many factors including the searching habits of each searcher, location, intent (of the search) and many other factors, so what’s at the top of page 1 for one person may not be the same for someone else. This is important to know.
However, the more specific the search, the more likely it is that a certain page, if useful, will always be near the top no matter who searches if the search term used is the same and is more than a couple of words.
But all of that misses the point. AccountingForEveryone.com is a site I own. I wrote this page in a specific way to get it to rank at or near the top. It delivers EVERYTHING a searcher needs if this is what they’re searching for, and Google KNOWS IT.
I’m using Neil Patel’s SEO tool (Ubersuggest) to get further data on it. Ubersuggest tells me that I’d need at least 5 backlinks and a domain score of 62+ to rank on page 1 (let alone at the top of page 1).
Yet this domain has a lousy domain score of 2 (you can’t get much lower) and just 1 backlink (that incidentally, didn’t exist when the page first ranked).
What’s going on?
The keyphrase I wanted to rank for was ‘the definitive guide to bookkeeping’ – Note that I use the term ‘keyphrase’ and not ‘keyword’.
The phrase I chose is no big deal. Google says there were 1,850,000 competing pages for it at the time of the screen shot (in 2019 there were only around 500,000).
But the real phrase I was after is the shorter version: ‘guide to bookkeeping’.
Google says there are 42,300,000 competing pages for the shorter phrase, which means more traffic.
Note a few years ago there was ‘only’ 12,600,000 competing pages for the shorter phrase. The world of search is getting more competitive every day (or as I prefer to see it, there’s more traffic for everyone if you know what to do).
There’s a good reason I chose a longer title in order to rank for the shorter one, read on.
After I ranked for the longer title, I continued to follow the principles in this course (100% encouraged by Google) and after a few ups and downs from around months 3 to 6, the article ranked at position 10 on page 1 for the shorter phrase (right now it’s moved up to position 6 for me).
But it doesn’t stop there. The most traffic comes from the top 3 positions on page 1, so I will continue to work on this page to get it higher (and I will show you how to do that yourself as you work through this course).
It doesn’t make any difference what industry you’re in, you can rank pretty much anything given enough time. Keep that in mind as you go through this course and start implementing the steps.
Each step is short and simple. The idea is not to get overwhelmed. Some days will be done in a few minutes. Others will take longer. By the end you will have all the steps you need to take any topic, write the best article on it, and start the process of moving it up the ladder at no cost other than your time and effort.
I’m stressing that last point as I want to give you the confidence to just go ahead and get this done so you have a skill you can use for life.
The way this course has been put together, and the steps you will be learning are unlikely to change in any particular way no matter what happens to search engine technology.
So as I asked earlier: What’s going on?
Google will only survive if it delivers the best answers it can find to the problems being searched for.
And that’s what this course is about. How to find those problems and write the best answers that Google will pick up and rank you for.
One last thing to end this short intro before we get into today’s task: from tomorrow onwards, you will see a box at the top of each day with a very brief summary of the tasks for that day. This is the “TL;DR” version (Too Long; Didn’t Read), but it’s really there to give you an instant idea of what to do next. The text that then follows will fill in any blanks and give you all the direction you need.
Here is what it looks like for today:
So let’s get to it.
DAY 1 TASK
Today we’re going to equip ourselves with a simple free tool. It’s called Ubersuggest and it will give you some idea of the competition for any keyphrase you want to rank for.
There are many other options including the free version of the MOZ bar (which I used to recommend), but Neil Patel has got it right with his Ubersuggest tool. I have the paid version, but the free version will give you what you need for this course.
You’re also going to need a Google account. But luckily, that’s free too. In fact everything I recommend in this course is free, so you won’t be forking out any more money to get this done.
Google has a free browser called Chrome, which runs on both Windows and Mac. But first you need to set up a Google account. Go here to do that and follow the instructions:
I use Google for everything now. This includes email (called Gmail), word processing, spreadsheets, presentation software, surveys and backups.
I have multiple email accounts for the domains I run, but I can connect all of them with my single Gmail account and I can reply from every one of my other emails addresses as though I were replying direct from those email domains.
I mention this because I want you to have confidence in Google and what we’re about to do. We will be using other tools too, but Google is absolutely vital since they are the holders of all the data we need.
Once you’ve set up your Google account, you need to install the Chrome browser. Click on the link below and follow the instructions to do that:
Now we’re ready to install Ubersuggest. Go here, https://neilpatel.com/ubersuggest/ then click on the blue Sign In With Google option and follow the instructions. Note: Neil will probably try to sell you something (and who can blame him), but you can close any popups (look for the X in the top right part of the screen).
Set up a work folder on your hard drive to store your work. I use the Google Drive option that comes with every Google account (it’s also free) to store all my work. I can navigate all of this direct from the Chrome browser and everything is automatically backed up to the cloud for free.
I think that’s quite enough for day 1. Tomorrow we start the real work.
Everything about this course is about staying on Easy Street, and even though the above tasks may have taken time and been a little confusing, you’ve done most of the hard work.
If you get stuck in any way, leave a message in our Facebook group explaining the problem. Obviously, Google and Ubersuggest have extensive help themselves and plenty of videos on YouTube, so you may want to check that out too.
Either way I’m here for you and I don’t want you to get stuck anywhere, but especially not at the first hurdle.