I had been doing quite well ranking for a tough keyword (Dont know how best to determine competition, but when I type the term in to Google in quotes, it returns 239,000,000 results ). Anyway, since the discovery of the "Exact" tick box on the Goolge keyword tool, I realised it doesn't get nearly as many searches as I originally thought it did 160,000 down to 1200 So, I thought I'd gradually move away from that keyword and do some research to find a keyword worth going for. I decided to document results here just for fun. So, the first thing I did was some keyword research - I bought scrapebox and MS for this and initially scraped a load of keywords related to my niche and then narrowed them down by competition and monthly searches - doing this took my list from about 10,000 keywords to about 30 keywords and they were all crap... So next I decided to change tactics a little bit and do some keyword research based on terms that I already rank for. I downloaded all of my visitor logs (last 10,000 visitors) and I took the complete list of keywords that I rank for (or that I get traffic from). then I ran that through Google keyword tool and made a spreadsheet of competition, monthly searches etc. Next I manually checked all of the positions on Google (initially I tried using MS, but it was too slow). I kept all of these keywords (as long as they had a decent amount of searches per month) and set them aside, then using that list, I scraped some more keywords using scrapebox and I ran those words through Google keyword tool and kept any that were appropriate and that had a decent amount of monthly searches. By the end of this process I have a nice big list of keywords that have a good amount of monthly searches, and that are highly relevant to my niche (I have about 170 keywords ranging from 12-8000 exact local searches per month). Next I chose a keyword based on competition and monthly searches. The keyword I chose has the following characteristics: Local monthly searches: 5400 Adwords competition: 0.97 Keyword results: 137,000,000 "Keyword" results: 618,000 Rank: #25 Initial Efforts: 1.Purchased 5 x blogroll links on high quality domains (Max 8 OBL) 2.Done on-page SEO (Title, H1,H2, keyword density etc). Note: 2 of the above links were targeted towards my original search term which I am currently ranked #7 for - after removing these links I will be tracking that keyword as well.