How to Reduce Research Time for Long-Tail Keywords

31 replies
Hey fellows!

I have a problem with the time I spend in the research process plus content creation

But, first, here's how I do research long-tail keywords

List of keywords:
* Brainstorm general topics related to my niche
* Then I look keywords in the "Searchers Related to" area, when I search one of the general topics
* I use Keyworddit to look for keywords in Reddit
* Also, I check subreddits to look for common topics
* Sometimes, I look for specific topics on other forums

Choose keywords:
* I add all keywords to the Google Keyword Planner
* Then I filter the results with Low Competency
* I add to the plan keywords with 10 - 100 searches/month, to see the real number
* I do a simple search with keywords > 0 searches/month to see if there are sites with no high authority
* Pick that keyword

LSI keywords:
* I just use the Google Keyword Planner with the first three webpages that address the search intent
* Pick related keywords to the main one

Structure of the content:
* Based on the LSI keywords, I make a draft with title and subheadings
* Then I start writing 2,000 words

The total amount of time: 3-hour writing + 1-hour researching.

The problem:
I spend too much time researching long-tail keywords in my way. Sometimes I end up with less than I have at the beginning. And writing 2,000 words knowing that I have to repeat the same research process is overwhelming.

My strategy: writing every day one post targeting a long-tail keyword. So, at the end of the year, I will have a decent number of keywords ranked.
This strategy is good for a new brand site without domain authority like mine.

My question:
How would you do to improve this approach? or, how do you do your research for long-tail keywords?
By the way, I cannot afford tools like ahrefs, semrush, ect.

Additional question:
I don't mind writing 2,000 words every day, but is writing such long posts worth for long-tail keywords?

P.S. Hope this can help some with their process, but I would like to improve mine. Could you please share some of your expertise?
#keywords #longtail #reduce #research #time
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  • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
    You say you start by brainstorming general topics. I don't get what you're trying to achieve with all your content. Are you creating a generic site or sites?

    If you want to monetize your content, you'll find it easier to select a tightly-focused topic or niche in which people are currently spending money. That will also cut down on your research time.
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    • Profile picture of the author Teright03
      Yes, I forgot to add "related to my niche".

      It's a website with a tightly-focused topic where people are spending money. And I have a few pages ranked on the first page in the 3-15 position.

      How long is your research process? How do you do it?
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      • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
        Originally Posted by Teright03 View Post

        How long is your research process? How do you do it?
        Depends on the topic and type of project, but I stopped stressing about keywords years ago. It helps if you know your subject - and your market.
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        • Profile picture of the author Teright03
          How do you use your gut to write posts?

          It seems you're assuming I don't know my audience xD
          But I've got written in detail the 4 most common "customer avatar" or "buyer persona" based on the data of Google Analytics.

          It's a new brand site with a few pages at the front, but still with not huge domain authority.

          The thing is I don't want to spend too much time researching new topics and a long-tail keyword with low competition and a good amount of searches.

          How do you do that?
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          • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
            Originally Posted by Teright03 View Post

            It seems you're assuming I don't know my audience xD
            Not assuming, just going by what you've posted. If you know your subject, you'll already have a good idea about what topics are going to be of interest and value to your target audience. Concentrate on writing that kind of content and you'll find you're covering most of the keywords anyway. That's if all you're after is to build a content-rich site that's good to read.

            Without knowing more about your niche, your expertise, your budget/timescale or your experience, it's hard to say whether this approach is the best way for you, but in terms of attracting buying traffic, there are other more direct and less time-consuming ways.
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            • Profile picture of the author Teright03
              Nice, I understand what you're saying. Also, it reminded me of something I forgot:

              I should write by what I have known about them, and then optimize it based on the data provided by GA and GSC.

              Thanks for your time.
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              • Profile picture of the author randellz
                Wow doing all that must take you so much time.. I do this thing where I just use googles suggested search, its much faster mate.

                No keyword tool is right even google adwords keyword research tool, don't be fooled. Don't care what anyone says, no keyword tool has accurate data.

                think of the buyer/user what would they type in google. its not rocket science. don't make it harder than it needs to be. If you do it your way you will be at it for ever.

                This video is really helpful I feel it may help you


                Side Note: I'm not an affiliate for these guys.

                Either way good work man, wish you the best of luck.
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                • Profile picture of the author Teright03
                  I'll give it a try.

                  And, yes, the numbers are always an approximation.

                  However, I'm not convinced of what they said about:
                  "These search tools don't know anything about who is searching for this term"

                  So far, what I've been doing has worked.

                  I'm good at picking intent and low competency. But for that, I need a list of keywords to choose from.

                  I guess I'm too focused on targeting long-tail keywords.

                  Because I think it's the best strategy to follow when your site doesn't have that much authority.

                  What do you think about targeting long-tail keywords with a new brand site?

                  Thanks for your time!
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  • Profile picture of the author DABK
    Make one keyword search produce enough keywords for 5 articles.


    I just did 1 hour of keyword research. Found dozens of suitable keywords.


    People have questions, your keywords could be based on those questions.


    So, let's take, small business accounting for seed keyword (have never searched it).


    But I am betting you find keywords along the lines"
    how to find a good accountant
    who needs an accountant (which can be morphed, for a later article, into when do you know it's time to hire an accountant)
    what do accountants need to produce an audited report
    what's an .
    un-audited report
    what's an an-audited report
    what's a compilation.


    Your first article would be a comprehensive article about finding a good accountant.
    The second one would be a list-article about finding a good accoutant.


    I think part of your problem has to do with you seeming to be stuck at 2000 words.
    And the other one has to do with you thinking that all your articles have to be widely different.


    Sometimes, I'm in a mood for a complete answer. Sometimes, I'm in the mood for a cheat list. Sometimes, a quick reminder.


    I am not alone.



    Plus, some people are readers, some are scanners. Lists work well for the latter. And Google will show your content over other people's content eve if, God forbid, some of your articles be 1,999 words long.


    Your when to hire an accountant could have several supporting articles:
    accountant vs bookkeeper
    can bookkeepers prepare compilations
    can you have a bookkeeper and an accountant at the same time.


    Don't like my accounting keyword:
    Let's look at dating:
    Lots of how-to questions there
    Lots of where-to questions there.


    Which means you can find keywords for both and end up with one research yielding more than one article. Trick is to be on the look out for more than one topic from the beginning.


    how to dress for your first date keyword research can easily bring you relate keywords, like
    what's a good first date
    what activities are good for a first date
    how to start a conversation
    how to keep a conversation going
    how do you now if she/he is into you
    what topics are a bad idea on a first date.


    I know people say pluck into the keyword tool a seed keyword that's broad, like
    lose weight or make money online

    but, and maybe it's just my imagination, but I get better results when I type in some kind of what or how or when question, or a can-I/could I

    could I make money online
    how do you lose weight without exercising.
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    • Profile picture of the author Teright03
      Yes, I agree that you can find different keywords along the research process.

      The concern I have:

      Sometimes, these keywords have high competition, and I cannot compete against them with a new brand site.

      So, I look for long-tail keywords with low competition and a few searches per month that will rank higher.

      And, that additional step is what slows my process.

      The goal I have in mind is to tighten the process, so I can find keywords with such traits faster.

      I'm having good numbers in "session time" and "bounce rate". The content I write does a great job.

      Do you know a way I can tighten the research process and still keeping the odds I have to rank in the front?

      What is your proportion of ranked content on the first page doing what you do?

      For example, in my case, several are on first page.

      Thanks for your time!
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      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        Download the keywords as a cvs file or google doc snd sort by searches, concern yourself only with the ones that have 10 to 100 searches.

        Put the ones that interest you and have correct English in Google in quotation marks. If you get something with low numvers, see how mant have it in title on page one.

        You will find many with 3 to 9. You are guaranteed page 1 if you know on page seo.


        [QUOTE=Teright03;11600523]Yes, I agree that you can find different keywords along the research process.

        The concern I have:

        Sometimes, these keywords have high competition, and I cannot compete against them with a new brand site.

        So, I look for long-tail keywords with low competition and a few searches per month that will rank higher.

        And, that additional step is what slows my process.

        The goal I have in mind is to tighten the process, so I can find keywords with such traits faster.

        I'm having good numbers in "session time" and "bounce rate". The content I write does a great job.

        Do you know a way I can tighten the research process and still keeping the odds I have to rank in the front?

        What is your proportion of ranked content on the first page doing what you do?

        For example, in my case, several are on first page.

        Thanks for your time![/QUOTE]
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        • Profile picture of the author Teright03
          You know what? - I hadn't thought about exporting to CSV.

          (facepalm)

          That will save me a lot of time and I can keep up what I've been doing.

          Thank you!
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          • Profile picture of the author DABK
            Since you didn't think about exporting, I feel I should give you one more tip:
            Write yourself notes about competition levels and article ideas next to each keyword...


            That way, you don't have to do your analysis again in 2 weeks when you're ready to write another article on the topic.


            Ok. I'm in a really generous mood, so I'll give you another tip.


            Sort by search volume, keep the 10-100. then search by high position bid (Because the higher the amount, the more of a buying keyword you're dealing with). Leave the keywords that have no bid amounts next to them alone.



            Originally Posted by Teright03 View Post

            You know what? - I hadn't thought about exporting to CSV.

            (facepalm)

            That will save me a lot of time and I can keep up what I've been doing.

            Thank you!
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  • Profile picture of the author spartan14
    Dont spend so much time in researching so much ,remember most important its the work .Just find a way to write the content and not loose so much time searching for keywords
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    • Profile picture of the author Teright03
      How am I supposed to do that?

      Wouldn't it be better to be sure that your content will rank higher with the right research?

      Do you mind sharing what you do?

      Thanks for your time!
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    I am a big fan of your strategy ( sort of ) Like the targeting etc. even like the writing. however you have to keeping mind all of the data you are using with the exception of "Searches Related to" isn't really "valid" data.

    Starting out there is simply no way around using Keyword tool, but it is simply flawed - I would suggest by design. I personally do the best I can for like 10 articles or so using something similar to your method and after that I use HARD data that comes out of Google Analytics. You simply are looking at a pages rank, the term used to find it, and how many impressions it has.

    An example would be an article you wrote about topic X and it ranks on the 8th page but it is getting 90 impressions. THIS more than suggest that the content on the prior 7 pages of SERP's is probably not answering the question at hand. You would write content towards that keyword to gain traction.

    I would suggest to remove the whole LSI research step. LSI will more often than not hurt you more than help you. ( https://www.searchenginejournal.com/...lp-seo/240705/ ) I personally write based on a single keyword term. and from that how other terms enter into the equation I can find in the Google Analytics concept I mentioned above.

    IF you have content ranking on page 1 of the SERPS double down on the exact same topic. There is no rule that a site can only have 1 page in the top 10. 2 or 3 on that low end of competition is my personal goal.

    So how my work flow works... I look at a topic and I pay attention to the "About X results" in the upper left of the google search results. anything under 1 million and I then MAY ( I generally don't ) go look at Keyword planner. I personally shoot for terms that are 500,000 or less if I am starting a new site. From this single step I begin to write. 5 minutes maybe? and in the process have written down other terms to target that meet my criteria.

    The whole looking for a term and then supporting terms and then LSI and then writing and trying to inject terms is not needed and Like the article above indicates is probably hurting you. Simply find a single term that should have low competition and write.
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    • Profile picture of the author Teright03
      That is an interesting article!

      [B] Structure, context, and phrases that coexist for that meaning. [/ B]

      After reading it, I will delete the step.

      Instead, I will look at the top ranked pages and choose phrases that add context to the meaning of the main keyword.

      It makes sense to write focused on 1 keyword, and then use GA to write content with a different and relevant keyword that that first article produced.

      Would you link to that article with an LSI keyword to that new article?

      Yes, I always try to look for keywords with low search results in the SERPS but always in combination with Google Trends.

      Thanks for your time!
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      • Profile picture of the author savidge4
        Originally Posted by Teright03 View Post

        Would you link to that article with an LSI keyword to that new article?
        The short answer - NO

        Let me say this, the whole idea of LSI is a strategy of the past. It simply does not exist today.

        If I have an article about "Macintosh Apples" I want link text to include the term "Macintosh Apples" If I decide I want to get cute and use a LSI term like "Red Apples" like the article I linked above states I am losing over gaining.

        SEO is not as complicated as you are making it for yourself. Keep it simple and to the point - literally.

        Let me give you an example of LSI gone bad. "Boat" and "Ship" under the old LSI "list" were indeed matching LSI terms BUT they are 2 totally different things. There came a point that Google understood that LSI terms were not effective and consequently removed the idea from its ranking structure.

        To this day people are still talking about it, and trying to implement them, even tho there is more than enough documentation from "Reliable" sources to suggest they simply do not work.

        So to wrap this up a bit... You can write an article about "Macintosh Apples" that includes the term "Red Apple" - because it is... and also use terms like "Baking Apple" and "Cider Apple" but any linking to a page about "Macintosh Apples" should include the term "Macintosh Apples"

        Hope that Helps!
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        • Profile picture of the author Teright03
          Oh, that was an impressive explanation.

          Now, I understand

          Thanks for your time!
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    • Profile picture of the author DABK
      I thought the OP was looking for keywords to to write articles for, not to use as additional LSI keywords. Their answer to you makes me think that's what they're doing.


      I never understood the LSI thing, never did it. I do not know how to write an article without using related terms. Often, I use synonyms without trying. But to use synonyms just for the sake of using synonyms seems absurd. And can jar the reader.



      I think you're leaving money on the table with the 500,000 results in the top left corner.


      I published two weeks ago for a keyword with 34,100,000 pages found. As of today, I'm 11 (12, if you count the ad) without having done nothing but onpage.



      The keywords has 60-80 searches a month.


      And looking at what I'm being found with in the console has been immensely helpful. The best thing I do for my SEO, really.



      The article I mentioned above, I wrote it because the console told me I was #64 for it from content not targeting it.


      I have to tell you, though, if you have clients, you should be a bit skeptical about what the console says about their content.


      Most extreme case I came across, a car repair shop. According to the console (and Google keyword tool search by domain) their site was about warranties and guarantees.


      The owner was very proud of the guarantees and warranties they made... Too proud for Google.


      More common:
      A site about wedding dresses... short sleeved, long sleeved, low back, high back, mermaid style, etc. The most relevant keywords according to Google are
      lace and bead related keywords (that don't even use the word bride or wedding).


      Wedding dress and bride dress related keywords start coming in after 300 lace and bead ones.


      OP, there's nothing wrong with ranking 2 pages on your site for the same keyword, Savidge is right about that one too.


      For that matter, having 2 pages on 2 sites in the top 4 spots is sweet too. So, is having two pages at 1 and 2, a youtube video at 3, a dailymotion one at 4, and other such variations.


      With having your stuff in all the spots on page 1 being the best... and achieavable. And, sometimes, worth doing too, fiscally speaking.



      Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

      I am a big fan of your strategy ( sort of ) Like the targeting etc. even like the writing. however you have to keeping mind all of the data you are using with the exception of "Searches Related to" isn't really "valid" data.

      Starting out there is simply no way around using Keyword tool, but it is simply flawed - I would suggest by design. I personally do the best I can for like 10 articles or so using something similar to your method and after that I use HARD data that comes out of Google Analytics. You simply are looking at a pages rank, the term used to find it, and how many impressions it has.

      An example would be an article you wrote about topic X and it ranks on the 8th page but it is getting 90 impressions. THIS more than suggest that the content on the prior 7 pages of SERP's is probably not answering the question at hand. You would write content towards that keyword to gain traction.

      I would suggest to remove the whole LSI research step. LSI will more often than not hurt you more than help you. ( https://www.searchenginejournal.com/...lp-seo/240705/ ) I personally write based on a single keyword term. and from that how other terms enter into the equation I can find in the Google Analytics concept I mentioned above.

      IF you have content ranking on page 1 of the SERPS double down on the exact same topic. There is no rule that a site can only have 1 page in the top 10. 2 or 3 on that low end of competition is my personal goal.

      So how my work flow works... I look at a topic and I pay attention to the "About X results" in the upper left of the google search results. anything under 1 million and I then MAY ( I generally don't ) go look at Keyword planner. I personally shoot for terms that are 500,000 or less if I am starting a new site. From this single step I begin to write. 5 minutes maybe? and in the process have written down other terms to target that meet my criteria.

      The whole looking for a term and then supporting terms and then LSI and then writing and trying to inject terms is not needed and Like the article above indicates is probably hurting you. Simply find a single term that should have low competition and write.
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      • Profile picture of the author Teright03
        I did the LSI keyword step for complementing the content I write.

        Even though, I know well the audience, I'm not my audience.
        So, it's useful to have such terms people tend to use to describe the same things because, sometimes, I cannot figure out them by myself.

        But, after reading the article that my fellow shared, I realized it was an unnecessary step at that early stage.
        I always can optimize the content for better UX when it's ranked, and aim to target more keywords with synonyms.

        By the way, skipping that step has saved me 15 minutes. And what you have said above about the CSV and the CPC, has saved me another 20 minutes.

        Even though, I'm still doing 1-hour research, it's giving me more long-tail keywords to target in further articles.

        So, all of you have saved me 6-hours per week Thanks!

        Yes, I have some articles that are ranked for the same keywords, but they are optimized for different keywords.

        There's no keyword cannibalization.

        Is keyword cannibalization an issue for SEO?

        About, the left corner with the number of searches.

        I use it along with Google Trends because 500,000 could mean: it's not going to grow because it's no longer a trend, or it's gaining traction to become evergreen.

        Thanks for your time and help!
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      • Profile picture of the author savidge4
        Originally Posted by DABK View Post

        I think you're leaving money on the table with the 500,000 results in the top left corner.

        I published two weeks ago for a keyword with 34,100,000 pages found. As of today, I'm 11 (12, if you count the ad) without having done nothing but onpage.

        The keywords has 60-80 searches a month.

        And looking at what I'm being found with in the console has been immensely helpful. The best thing I do for my SEO, really.

        The article I mentioned above, I wrote it because the console told me I was #64 for it from content not targeting it.
        The 500,000 number is what I use for "New" sites with no "DA". I am a strong believer that rank begets rank. Meaning the faster you can get pages to rank well for low comp terms the faster your DA will build, and then the ability to rank for harder comp terms becomes easier.

        We see it here all the time people shooting for the moon in terms of Terms they are trying to rank for... and they simply do not have the math behind it. "Web 2.0" ( hate that term btw ) links just don't cut it, and "REAL" backlinks are hard to come by - especially for someone just starting out.
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  • Profile picture of the author sunilsharma
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    • Profile picture of the author DABK
      Yours is the answer to: How to do keyword research. That was not what the OP was asking. The OP is interested in reducing the time it takes them to do the research. Have any ideas on that?


      Originally Posted by sunilsharma View Post

      The easiest and commonly used method of long-tail keyword research is with the help of Google keyword planner. When you put a keyword into it, you will also be able to see many related keywords which you can use.

      Also, you can find and use long tail keyword from Google Search Engine Suggestion keyword on the footer.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    Now that you have saved some time in the initial research - perhaps you might look at it from the 'other side'.



    I'm still doing 1-hour research, it's giving me more long-tail keywords to target in further articles.

    That is the 'key' to drastically reducing 'research time' - I may do one hr of research - but from that one hr I may have the keywords and keyword phrases to write 10-20 articles.


    Don't think 'research per article' but 'research per SET of articles'. You can also get very detailed with the 'set' - for example:


    Use 2-3 of the keyword phrases you identified in each article. Rotate which is 'primary', 'secondary', 'tertiary' keyword for each article. It's a simple way to organize the results of your research hours to produce maximum results in the articles.


    EX: You have an article built around Keyword phrase #1 - and in that article you mention keywords #2 and #3 once or twice in the body of the article.



    In the next article Keyword #3 is the primary focus and #1 and #2 are 'mentions'. hope that makes sense. It's a process I used to write hundreds of articles in the same few niches where I wanted to tightly 'focus' but not be too repetitive.
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    • Profile picture of the author Teright03
      Oh man, that's a great idea to automate idea generation with keywords in mind.

      Indeed, that will increase my content production.

      Thanks for your time!
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  • Profile picture of the author Rebecca M
    Clearly you know how to do your homework before starting, but problem with keywords or copy writers in general is that they often select keywords with high volume not intent. Intent plays major role when it comes to ranking now a days. here is how I proceed with my research. First, I make a listed of intent based targeted keywords that have decent search volume not so high. then I look for keyword profitability, relevance, popularity and competition and check out for the scope of LSI and long tail keywords.

    I have completely shifted to Keyword Country for keyword research, after getting disappointed from the all other tools. KC not just helps me to research geographically active keywords but also lets me to reverse engineer 96% of competitor keywords.

    If you want to see the difference just search "alexa" on keyword tools and I bet you'll find Alexanda diddario in top volume keyword and do it on KC, you'll see the difference.

    Once I have my keyword then I head to answerthepublic.com and make long tail keywords that fits my copy. Hope it helps.
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    • Profile picture of the author Teright03
      Yes, AnswerThePublic is a good starter to get several broad queries and some long-tail keywords. I use it to find informational keywords because they're the easiest ones to write about. Advertorials are great to teach and sell at the same time

      These results, most of the time, have a high competence. Though, I still use them to dig deeper until to find a less competitive alternative or a long-tail keyword.

      But I have to say it has its limits in long-tail keywords with low competence. At least, it's that the case in my niche.

      By the way, thanks for your time!
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  • Profile picture of the author mandiradebnath
    Depending on my business type I choose some keywords myself with the help of Google search. Then took mostly high search volume keywords.
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  • Profile picture of the author Amsterdam81
    when choosing ltkw just a noob advice from me, Id always use commonsense like: how, why, how, when, what, where, related to your main keywords, you could also use free tools like answerthepublic, cheers
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  • Profile picture of the author hasnain1976
    You can go keyword recherche tools and get the solution
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