So, today I came up with an idea. I am uncertain of its utility as an SEO tool, but in any case it will serve as an academic exploration into keyword research here's the plan: - Pick a niche, any niche. Brainstorm and come up with as many sub-niches as possible. it stands to reason that the smaller your niche becomes, the longer your key phrases become. -Come up with several keywords and key phrases, starting with one word and going up to 5 or 6. A nice smattering of each will do quite nicely. The more the better. - this is the painstaking part: Perform competition research, taking into account several different indicators. Each keyword will get its own investigation for each indicator. For example I'll do research on the keyword "basketball". I'll check the top ten list of Google, looking up each site's Backlinks, etc. - Compile this information in a spreadsheet and create a graph. The independent variable (y-axis) will be the competition indicators, and the dependent variable (x-axis) will be the keyword/keyphrase word count. We know that this scatter plot should conform do something that resembles a Pareto, or Power Distribution (with the head, body, and long tail keywords). It should look something like this: Then, what we do through trial and error, is find two power functions that encompass as many as the data points as possible on the top and bottom. We "squeeze" them together as far as possible, keeping as many of the data points inside as possible. Most of the data points should converge upon a particular line like the black line, so we should be able to squeeze it in as far as possible with little consideration to the outliers (the crazy random data points don't don't really correlate too much.) Now, these two red lines represent functions which we can find the mean. The mean would be represented by the black line in the middle, which would be another function. This mean would represent your Competition Vs. Keywords. At that point, you could simply plug in your keyword word count, and out would come an average indicator of Competition for your keyword in your niche. This would work out better and become more accurate the more data points you have. :OTENTIAL APPLICATION:: With a sufficiently large amount of keywords and sub-niches covered, you could find the approximate competition of any key phrase based purely on the number of words in it. This would be custom tailored to your particular niche and sub-niches. Why would that be really nice to have? You could simple come up with keywords and have a good idea of what your competition looks like without doing a great deal of research on it. The leg work at first would be the hard part, but after that you could just plug in the number of words, and get going on using that keyword. If you had the money, you could set it up to where you outsource this enormous amount of legwork through Amazon's Mturk or something similar. Then you have a fantastic (approximate) competition checker without delving much deeper into it. All because of statistics Of course, this entire plan was a brainstorm, so I'm open to ideas and constructive criticism. EDIT: Oh, forgot to add that one of the competition indicators would be SEARCH VOLUME. That's an important one to have.