We’re going to go through a series of case studies in the coming months. We’re starting with chicken coops because we were amazed at the popularity of this search term and the absolute exploding buzz around the country. People in the suburbs are starting to raise their own chickens more and more!

And hey, we’re not knocking it. We think it’s great! It also makes a great case study for Search Engine Optimization. We believe the best way for people to analyze information is through data. Search Engine Optimization is all about getting the right kind of customer to your website. For example, it’s obvious that a site about chicken coops does not want to get traffic from people looking for cattle. They probably aren’t looking for customers that want chicken recipes either. A website about chicken coops is most likely interested in people that:

Want to buy a chicken coop

Want to build a chicken coop and are looking for chicken coop plans, or

Want to find products relating to chicken coops

Would you believe that chicken coop gets searched over 900 times a day, chicken coop plans over 950 and chicken coops almost 1000. This data is according to Word Tracker. Also, according to Word Tracker, there are 423,000 pages that contain a title tag and back link with the word “chicken coop”, 182,000 with the word “chicken coop” and 47,300 with “chicken coop plans“. It’s a pretty competitive term.

Here’s what google trends has to say about the relative nature of the searches chicken coop, chicken coops and chicken coop plans. One thing is clear and the chart is trending up at a sure and steady pace. It’s also clear that spring is peak season for these search terms (which makes sense).

So, who shows up for the search term chicken coop? Chickencoop.org, mypetchicken.com and diychickencoops.com round out the top three terms.

How many back links does each site have? According to Yahoo and filtered by “entire site” and “except from this domain”:

chickencoop.org – 97 backlinks and 21 pages of content

mypetchicken.com – over 15,000 back links and over 2000 pages of content

diychickencoops.com – over 2600 backlinks and over 200 pages of content


How did chickencoop.org out rank the other two? The first answer is the name of the site is had the exact search term in it. That counts with the search engines. Also, there is just no way of knowing what kind of links are coming into the sites. Are they high page rank links? Are they specifically with the back link “chicken coop”? We just don’t know. This information is not available. But we can guess that primarily, chickencoop.org gets a lot of credit for being named the search term. After, that the order of the results start to make more sense by the volume of the back links.

Anyway, this is just a basic example of how you size up your competition because we all know that ranking on natural search is a great way to market your website. Some people go with the pay per click model while others invest in search engine optimization. SEO can be done with hard work and time. Pay per click is usually just done with a percentage of sales. Many businesses do both. For whatever reason, people clicking on advertisements seem to be more prepared to spend money. The search engines have been training us!!!

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