How To Do Keyword Research for SEO

Keywords are the foundation of SEO as they allow you to target the search terms and queries that your audience is searching for. Your ability to find the keywords most relevant to your business will affect how much organic traffic you receive.

Our definitive guide will teach you exactly how to get started with your keyword research and offer some expert tips when it comes to discovering the most successful keywords that are relevant to you and your business. Let’s get started.

What is Keyword Research?

Keyword research is the process of finding and analysing search terms that people enter into search engines with the goal of using that data for a specific purpose, such as SEO, PPC or other types of marketing.

It offers a valuable insight into the queries that your target audience is actually searching for. With this information, you will be able to make informed decisions on your larger marketing strategy. Keyword research will also help you answer important questions such as:

  • How difficult is it to rank for this keyword?
  • How much traffic will I get from this keyword ranking?
  • What type of content do I need to create to rank for this keyword?
  • How much search volume does this keyword get?

The answers to these questions will help you to effectively decide on your keywords and thus rank.

How to Find Your Keywords

Discovering your set of desired keywords will begin with thinking about how your customers will be searching for your business or website. From here, you can use keyword research tools online to expand on those ideas and find more relevant keywords.

  1. Establish your seed keywords. These are the foundation keywords, that define your niche and are often based on your products or services. For example, a fashion retailer would have seed keywords such as “t-shirt” or “jumper”.
  2. Discover your competitor keywords. Finding out which keywords already send traffic to your competitors will help you identify which ones you should also be targeting.
  3. Use keyword research tools. Google Keyword Planner is the most well-known and it’s completely free to use. Just insert a seed keyword and the platform will generate an array of keyword ideas from their database based on the seed keyword.

Example of Keyword Research

With your list of keywords now assembled, you need to narrow them down to the most important ones using a range of SEO metrics.

  • Search volume
  • Clicks
  • Potential traffic
  • Keyword difficulty
  • Cost-per-click (CPC)

Comparing your keywords against these metrics will allow you to establish which keywords will be the most beneficial to you. You will be able to spend time trying to rank for keywords that will actually produce results for your SEO.

The Best Keyword Research Tools

We’ve put together some of our best-loved keyword research tools, to aid you in your process:

  • Google Trends allows you to discover great seasonal keyword fluctuations.
  • AnswerThePublic is a free tool that lists commonly searched questions around a specific keyword.
  • Moz Keyword Explorer is a premium platform that allows you to enter a keyword into their keyword explorer to obtain quality information such as monthly search volume.
  • Semrush Keyword Research is similar to the last one – a premium tool that provides an analysis of keywords, including their ranking difficulty and traffic potential.
  • Ahrefs Keyword Explorer is another premium tool that works similarly to the previous two. Even better, you can download the Google Chrome extension for this platform and have the information presented to you live on the search engine results page.

Ahrefs Keyword Explorer Chrome Extension

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