I don't know how many years i am already using keyword research software, like Market Samurai, Micro Niche Finder or countless other tools.
Many times in the past i said on internet marketing and seo forums how important keyword research is.
Now don't get me wrong, i am still recommending such tools like Market Samurai et. al. because they have their use.
But the important thing is that my stance in regards to keyword research and research software has completely changed.
People are using those tools and are searching and filtering for "competing web sites", "number of sites with phrase in title".
A common approach is to set a filter, say "display me each keyword which has less than 55.000 competing pages with that phrase in the title"
Then people and SEOs make an assumption that this is a way to find "good keywords" since the other keywords ("with more competition") are obviously way to hard to SEO and rank for.
The point is, this is pure nonsense.
The truth is, most numbers these tools give you can safely be ignored since they don't mean squat. At all. Looking at "competing pages" for example is useless and totally irrelevant since it doesn't matter whether there are only 55.000 competing pages, or 5 Millions.
If anything, what counts would be the currently dominating web sites on Google's page #1 for a keyword and doing an analysis of the strength of those ten sites. (Aka page rank, page age, and so forth.)
But even that is often simply wasted time.
Look at this nice screen shot:
In relatively little time i managed to rank some mega keywords in the weight loss niche quite high. This is particularly interesting since i made this site simply out of curiosity, i would have never thought i can reach page #1 in Google for a keyword like "lose weight fast" or similar.
In addition, i had this site dormant for many months, i literally did not do one thing with the web site, no SEO, backlinks, new content or whatsoever for 7 or so months.
You can imagine my surprise when i checked the stats one day and found that i ranked page #2 on Google for "lose weight fast". So it only needed a little more work…and now i am on page #1 and i am still climbing, of course.
The worst which can happen is that you use a keyword research tool and the tool will tell you:
"Oh my God, you are crazy!! This keyword has 3 MILLION so called "competing pages with the phrase in title", "lose weight" has about 7 MILLION competing pages" <- In other words, you would not even remotely attempt to make a site in that niche because the keyword tool told you so.
Do you get where i am going with this?
Those numbers mean nothing.
I am not an exceptional gifted web designer, SEO or marketer. But this doesn't mean that my website(s) are bad. I am simply saying that anyone can do the same thing.
You can make a wordpress site with a nice theme and structure. You can use (or make) a nice template for your site. And most importantly, you can write articles which should be somewhat of value: QUALITY
And if i can do that, everyone can do that. You can take on crazy niches which crazy high search volume keywords and you WILL rank sooner or later. It is only a matter of time, patience and consistency.
Do not look at the "competing sites" numbers because they will only hold you back and you will miss great opportunities.
If any number should interest you its only the amount of searches and SEOT (SEO traffic), which is potential number of clicks if you would be #1 for that keyword.
Why? Since the "best niche" is worthless without substantial traffic. To be honest, shoot for a absolute minimum of maybe 100 SEOT (which is about 250 searches) DAILY.
If you go for keywords with less search volume you will simply never get any traffic, let alone sales. The higher the search volume, the better.
All other numbers are not interesting.