Joydeep Bhattacharya
April 15, 2021

Future Keywords Optimization (FKO): Acquire Clicks With Zero Backlinks

Ever Heard Of Future Keywords Optimization?

One of the biggest issues faced by SEO professionals is acquiring backlinks. You can’t expect to obtain higher organic rankings for your target keywords unless you earn a significant number of backlinks.

Now, imagine if you can drive clicks to your site just by creating content. Not only this will save time, but it will also help you to plan your SEO strategy on a limited budget since more than 50% of the SEO budget is spent on link building.

Future keywords optimization is a new term for SEO and digital marketing professionals. I coined this term after I was able to increase the amount of organic traffic to my blog significantly by leveraging strategies centred around future keywords. 

Before we discuss what is future keywords optimization, let us first understand what are future keywords, and how they can help you to acquire lots of clicks with zero or a few backlinks. 

What Are Future Keywords?

Much as the term sounds, Future keywords are those keywords aren’t yet popular but will become so in the future. Such keywords are brand new, meaning they haven’t been around for long. They are slowly coming into existence but will get popular in the future. 

For example, “core web vitals” is a keyword that didn’t have a search trend in April 2020. 

core web vitals search future keyword

In May 2020, when Google announced the Page Experience update, the keyword started gaining popularity. 

We can find the rise in popularity of this keyword with the help of the Google Search Trends tool as displayed in the below screenshot: 

Google search trends data after launching core web vitals update

In June 2020, the popularity rose to 100. Hence, we can accurately forecast that this keyword will have a decent search volume in the coming months – probably in May 2021 and beyond – after the Page Experience update is launched by Google.

What is Future Keywords Optimization (FKO)?

Future keywords optimization or FKO is the process of optimizing your website for keywords that are slowly gaining popularity. It is done by creating content centred around future keywords that offers unique, accurate, and complete information on the discussed topic.

The biggest advantage that FKO offers is that you don’t have to acquire lots of links to make your content rank on the first page of Google. FKO helps your site to rank for future keywords with zero or just a few links.

How Can I Identify Future Keywords?

Google Trends is the best tool to identify future keywords. All you need to do is to enter keywords related to your industry that are fresh. These keywords could be related to a new technology that is about to get launched in the coming months or has launched recently. 

For example, Zendesk maintains a library of resources related to customer service and collaboration tools. If I was asked to boost the traffic of the site, I will first visit Google Trends and enter the term “collaboration tools” to see the related terms and topics. From there, I can pick a keyword like “virtual team collaboration tools” because this is a keyword that doesn’t have a search trend but in the future, it might be good for acquiring traffic. I can also see that there are few resources on Google that compete for the target keyword.

Similarly, you can study a website niche, choose some keywords to try, and check the related terms or related topics section in the Google Trends tool.

Important: Remember to choose keywords that do not have any articles on the internet or have a few related contents. If you choose keywords on which a lot of coverage has already been done by different websites, the FKO strategy won’t work.

How Can I Optimize My Site For Future Keywords?

Now for the most interesting part of this FKO guide, the optimization process.

Follow the below steps to optimize your site for future keywords:

  • Step 1: Prepare a list of terms that are relatively new to your industry.
  • Step 2: Check the search volume trends of the selected terms using Google Trends. Then shortlist keywords that have no search trends.
  • Step 3: Create an article that covers everything related to the topic. Remember, the article should be comprehensive, unique, scannable, user-friendly, and engaging.
  • Step 4: Add proper schema metadata in your article and make it easier for Google to present your article as a featured snippet. 
  • Step 5: Publish your article as soon as possible. The sooner you publish, the higher are the chances of ranking higher. 

That’s it. Now, just relax and let Google crawl your new page. You can submit the new URL to Google via Search Console for faster indexation. 

How I Used An FKO Strategy To Acquire 1.8K New Clicks In Less Than A Month With Just 1 Keyword (Example)

Data is essential to prove the worth of any SEO strategy. Hence, I will show you real data from my site that shows the potential of FKO. 

Keyword: How To Fix LCP Issue 

Google made an announcement in May 2020 that they are going to launch an algorithm update called the Page Experience in 2021. They have also given some suggestions to optimize your site for the Page Experience.

One of the suggestions was to improve the individual page speeds of every page on your site. A major issue affecting page speed was LCP or the Large Contentful Paint. 

Google also started displaying this issue in the Search Console. I conducted a search and found there are no tutorials that properly explained: “how to fix LCP issue”. So I knew there was an amazing opportunity for me to optimize for this keyword and prepare content accordingly.

I studied the LCP issue and prepared a comprehensive tutorial-style article that covered everything related to the LCP issue in my blog SEO Sandwitch

Here is my article: How to fix the LCP issue

The Result

My site quickly ranked under the featured snippet and this helped me acquire 14,336 clicks and 72,828 impressions in the last 6 months. 

Google Search Console Data

It ranks on the top for keywords like:

  • LCP issue
  • LCP issue longer than 4 seconds 
  • LCP issue longer than 4 seconds mobile
  • LCP issue longer than 4 seconds desktop
  • What is the LCP issue
  • How to fix the LCP issue

nd 100’s of other keyword variations.

keyword variations

I published this article in the first week of June 2020 and you can see the results yourself. 

Until May, there were no clicks. In June suddenly, the traffic spiked and I was getting an additional 50-100 clicks every single day. This is the power of Future Keywords Optimization. 

Now, imagine you apply this strategy to 10 different keywords. You can easily raise your traffic by over 20K-30K each month without the need to create any backlinks.

My page didn’t have any links. 


Future keywords optimization is a great strategy to increase clicks to your site on a limited budget. However, it takes time to find click-worthy future keywords. Follow the advice provided in this guide to find the best future keywords in your niche and start dominating the Google search results with zero links. 

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Joydeep Bhattacharya

Joydeep Bhattacharya is the author of the SEO Sandwitch Blog where he shares his latest tips and tutorials to learn SEO and Digital Marketing. He is a regular contributor to publications like SEMrush, Search Engine Watch, Smartinsights, ClickZ, and many others.