I have always seen the Google SERP as a relentless battlefield, and up to now I stand to that belief. Though one thing that I really enjoyed with SEO is the piece of competitiveness it breathes out from me just to be on top of it. I must say, I’m very persistent and can be easily obsessed once focused in achieving a certain goal.
My Google adventure just started a few months ago – but I’m no stranger to SEO – and I seriously enjoyed this particular experience. So what was this adventure? I started working with a website which I had completely no idea about its niche and having only a few arsenals in building links as well as online reputation management.
Here’s the deal, I was assigned to promote an online bingo site, wherein the targeted keyword to be optimized were “uk bingo” and “bingo uk”, and of course there were also other keyword sets included (uk bingo online, best uk bingo, uk bingo site, bingo in the UK etc…). I found it hard at first, but my enthusiasm was the real key that made me learn a great deal of knowledge and at the same time made real money out of it.
Here are the site’s stats before I came in:
- Pagerank 2
- SERP Ranking position “uk bingo”: 194th
- SERP Ranking position “bingo uk”: 207th
- Number of Google index: 203
- Number of Yahoo backlinks: 16,000+
I was already expecting for the worst mainly because of its very competitive keyword and the competitiveness of the industry. Well, both keywords have healthy global search queries, which are around 250,000 users monthly. And its search trend never dies and a proven unseasonal form of recreation for ages ranging from 20 and above, and yes, for both male and female species.
So what did I do that almost made me conquer the online bingo industry? Hard work! I worked 60-80 hours per week just to build links, promote the site as well as to train myself further. Even on weekends, I was clearly driven and motivated to outrank our top competitors. Then I realized that I’m already addicted to it. It even came to the extent that I think of more strategies to apply in my campaign before I go to sleep, while walking at the park, to almost everything that I do which is not related to work and that even includes eating.
Evidently, I am in love with SEO, and I admit that I did love my work back then. It’s just sad that I had to leave the team due to some revenue issues. Now let’s get back to business. So there, I worked with fire in my eyes on an extensive search engine optimization and social media marketing campaign for the entire 8 weeks (March 2010 – April 2010). I made over 500 backlinks on my first month – one-way nofollow and dofollow links – in which slowly I was getting the results I needed to rev up my upcoming tactics.
In 4 weeks, I saw my primary keyword sitting on the 21th place, as if it was a race. That moment boosted my morale and the challenge of getting to the top page in the coming month just made me feel more confident. Well, that’s quite fast for me back then, but not compared to how fast I can get that ranking today. With the excessive knowledge and experience in SEO I possess now and the level of expertise I am constantly improving just makes me want to time travel.
Moving on, the following month was the hardest part. On my 5th – 7th week of conquest to glory, there I have encountered a lot of tight spots. That was the time where my rankings were not moving in weeks, it just played around on the second page between the positions 13th – 20th (Note: I check rankings twice a week, Tuesdays and Fridays). I have even encountered a “Google dance” that made me go ballistic for an hour or so, as I ranked back to the 78th (Page 6), but it was just Google fooling around when updating their algorithm.
The second page is the spot where you will usually feel the gravity of the solid efforts that are being exerted by your opponents, and it’s not fun! But if you take the time to analyze things while you’re in that position, there you would see a much in-depth look of both the strong and weak points of your top competitors.
Google Alerts was my only savior at that time, seeing as it had provided me more ideas through updated information from my most active opponent. The deciding point eventually came when I have seen how my top competitor do their thing, and naturally became my wakeup call on how to match their efforts. I’ll possibly discuss the strategies and methods I used here on future rants.