Advanced Word-Listing Techniques
So, we might come up with a more complex word list through the frequency word list generation strategy, or we can start combining words on our own in the brainstorming session, or both. Let’s say that we are going to take the original simple word list as follows:
- gardening equipment
- drought-resistant plants
- rain barrels
- heirloom plants
- soil preparation
And, we’re going to start creating a complex list for research purposes and to effectively target highly relevant articles on Google. The term “gardening” is great but too broad. It will come up with all kinds of things. So, we can’t really use it effectively in Google and really get anything too specific. So, maybe we combine it with other terms in our list. So, maybe instead, we choose to combine the term “gardening” with other words on the list to put in the Google search box. Maybe we start to brainstorm a more precise list that might look like this:
- gardening “drought-resistant plants”
- gardening “heirloom plants”
- Burpee Seeds
- Burpee AND “gardening equipment”
- bulbs AND “soil preparation”
As you can see, now the list has become much more specific and highly targeted. In addition, we are using some Google searching techniques to refine the search results we obtain from our word list. In the case of putting words in quotes, we are telling Google that the term must appear exactly as we have it in the quotes. It’s a way of saying: Return only the articles with the exact phrase. However, gardening is not in quotes, so it is a very general search term that just says we’re interested in gardening articles, but also for drought-resistant plants. That means we won’t get scientific articles describing the way drought-resistant plants function, but specifically how to garden with drought-resistant plants.
Maybe, we’re also interested in particular companies that create gardening equipment or sell seeds. Then, you can just add their proper name in the search box. Finally, when you use the search function AND, that tells Google that you want both terms on either side of the AND function to appear on the same page.
Obviously, it’s not an exact science, but you will get the hang of the different operators available to use for searching in Google the more you practice. We will even discuss this further in the next chapter. For now, this is a good way to start your word lists while keeping in mind that the ultimate aim is to get a list that helps you create topics or research them more efficiently.
Word List Research
After you have a great word list put together, always keep it handy as you are doing your research. You can use it to jog your memory too. You can even use them to do some mind mapping and within the Thesaurus to generate power words. The word lists are very versatile and are key to establishing a firm framework for your entire project. At the very least, they will help you build an outline for the projects that are informative and also attention-grabbing, both from a readership and search engine standpoint.
If you get stuck trying to find articles through the search engines or locate words for your word list this way. There are some particular areas that are great for researching topics and the associated words. Here are a few sites that you can visit research topics and use the articles to cut and paste into the frequency word list generator.
- Highbeam — You have to pay to use this site, but the quality of articles is very good. It is a research site with over 60 million articles online. The source of the articles tends to be magazines, newspapers, and trade journals. It is located at http://www.highbeam.com/.
- Wikipedia — This is a site that creates content like an encyclopedia, however, the content is contributed by many people all over the Internet. For that reason, it can sometimes lack credibility and needs to be substantiated with other more reputable sites. However, for generating word lists, it can be a great source of inspiration and it’s free to use. In addition, they have a links section in each of their articles that can eventually get you to more reputable articles that you can use within your research. It is located at http://www.wikipedia.com.
- QueryCat — According to CB (Crunchbase website at www.crunchbase.com/organization/querycat), Query Cat is a large database of frequently asked questions gathered from all over the web. You do have to search with specific key phrases, so it’s not as versatile as some of the other sites.
As you are looking for articles to use in the frequency generated list, be aware that keyword optimized articles may or may not be a good choice. If they are older articles, this will not be relevant for you because the search terms that are a popular change from month to month. However, a very recent article with great targeted keywords can be a gold mine for Internet marketers and saves time in doing your own research. So, although it’s not great for generating really broad and interesting word lists, it can be a way for Internet marketers to locate some terms that make sense to include in their articles to attract attention from search engines. Don’t focus solely on keyword articles though, as the best way to generate a word list for research is to give it a much wider scope