Find the Number of Competing Pages for Your Keywords

Part 3 of How to Do Keyword Research Tutorial

By Persuasionworks Team

Now it's time to find out the number of competing pages in Google for your keywords. This is an important factor when you decide on the keywords to include in your website search engine optimization.

Your site should be organized hierarchically: terms with higher competition at the top (parent theme and silos), moving down to terms with lower competition for article pages. This helps the search engines recognize your silo structure and relevance.

A keyword with high competition shouldn’t be placed “under” a keyword with lower competition in your site structure. For example, you shouldn’t have a silo about “Hawaii vacation rental” and put an article in it about the much broader topic of “Travel”. (See: seo-marketing-site-structure)

The scope of the topic of “travel” as indicated by its level of competition is much larger than the scope of “Hawaii vacation rental.”

Don’t be afraid if your keywords look competitive! Most of those pages are not real competitors. They have NOT intentionally optimized to rank high. Also, only a small percentage of competitors utilize a solid themed and siloed site structure!

How to Find the Number of Competing Pages

Go to and search the first keyword on your list. For example: travel.

If it is a key phrase with more than one word, use quotation marks around it like this: “Hawaii vacation”. This restricts results to pages that actually use this phrase, which is a more accurate measure of real competition.

Look at the number of competing pages listed next to “Results” in the blue bar at the upper right hand side of the page. For example: travel has 3,170,000,000 competing pages. Enter this number into your spreadsheet. Repeat this process for each keyword on your list.

Use the allintitle Search to Narrow Down the Competition

Next, check how many pages actually have the keyword in their page title. This is a good way to zero in on how many of the pages are real competitors that are actually using the keyword in the important page title area.

In Google, enter your search like this:


For example, allintitle:travel

There are still 187,000,000 results, but don't give up - as you dig down further into each of these top-level themes, there will be much less competition and you'll find some "sweet spot" themes to optimize your site for.

Search for New Keywords

Go to your favorite keyword tool (the Google Keyword Tool and the free tool by KeywordDiscovery are both good options). Search the first keyword on your list, for example: travel.

Only consider the top 10 most relevant / interesting keywords returned (it takes too long to manually research more than 10 keywords).

Add the new keywords to your spreadsheet.

Part 1: How to Do Keyword Research > Part 2: Keyword Synonyms >
Part 3: Keyword Competing Pages > Part 4: Keyword Analysis.