How To Research Keywords For SEO

As a website owner, keywords are perhaps the most crucial part of your SEO strategy. They fit in your content, links, anchor text, title and even the meta description of a page. Keywords help optimize your content so it can reach a larger audience and a higher ranking on the search engine result pages. Many times finding the perfect keyword can be extremely difficult. Even with the various tools to find keywords, often, you cant find your hidden gems. So what are some of the ways to get those unranked keywords that can be a gold mine for your business?

why is keyword research important?

When it comes to keyword research, you might have noticed that even if you have a good keyword with lots of searches, it still might not get you a lot of traffic. That is because the keyword you choose probably is a high search volume or popular keyword. This means that a lot of people are trying to rank for this keyword. When that happens, your page tends to get lost in the sea of pages, and larger pages with more authority than yours tend to land the top spots. This is exactly why you need to find keywords that still have a good search volume but don’t have a lot of competition in rankings. There are many ways you can go around doing this; you can use the help of tools or do manual research to find your optimum keywords.

choose long-tale keywords

Most new website owners often forget that they don’t necessarily need their keyword to be a single word. In fact, long-tail keywords or phrases are a great way to find some words that may have a lot of queries but not many people target. So how do you find these long-tail keywords? Well, one manual way that many overlook is through the google related results.

When you type in your popular keyword, go further down in the search result to find out what other people are searching for. This will give you alternative phrases and words for that same keyword that might have less competition and allow you to rank better. For some queries, there is even a “people also ask” section. This further gives you ideas for phrases that you can use to rank better. You can also click on that question and see the “people also ask” again if you want a variety of questions to choose from.

A pro tip is that you shouldn’t ignore all the search engines other than google. If you can’t find a good related search on Google, you may be able to find some unique ones on Bing or Duckduckgo. So cover all your basis when conducting keyword research.

reverse engineer your competitor's pages

Another great way to get options for keywords is by finding out what your competitors are ranking for. To do that, you first need to figure out who your competitors are. You can do this by typing in your primary or most important keyword and seeing which pages show up in the search results.

You can then go onto tools like Ahrefs site explorer or any other keyword research tool you prefer with the competitor selected. Here you will check to see their most high ranking page or one that brings in the most traffic. By inspecting these pages, you can find your keyword and a topic that you haven’t covered. Since these pages are your competitors, most likely, they have the same niche as you and thus will write similar articles.

After finding all possible keywords to rank for from one competitor, you can go ahead and find another competitor and repeat the process.

Look out for forums in top search results

Google generally doesn’t let user pages rank in the top spots since they don’t have a lot of credibility or authority. That means if you do see a forum like Reddit or Quora ranking for a keyword in the top spot, it means that there is less competition for that keyword. Hence ranking for the same keyword and producing a high equality piece of content can get you one of the top spots.

If you want to be certain how to get the number one ranking for that keyword, you can use a backlink checking tool; there are many free ones available that tell you how many backlinks a page has. For a low competition keyword, the number of backlinks is usually low. Doing this gives you an exact number of backlinks you need to establish to get the top spot. Although other factors affect the ranking as well, a professionally made website will have an advantage over an online forum.

Run A Content Gap Analysis

The chances are that if your competitors rank for a certain keyword, it may also be of interest to you. To find these keywords that you might be missing out on, you need to run a content gap analysis. You can find a free tool for it relatively easily, and it will be able to find you any missed keywords. Before you can run a content gap analysis, you need to figure out your competitor domains. After that has been decided, you enter the three domains and check which keywords all 3 of them are ranking for. You may see most of the keywords you already rank for, but the chances are that you will also find some that you have yet thought of.

In the tools, you can then also check the stats of the keyword you select to find out its ranking and search volume before you write content around it.

Get Creative with your keywords

What most webmasters face trouble with is getting creative with their keywords. You may have their primary keyword down, but as the content and pages keep increasing, it can be difficult to find new and interesting keywords each time. That is where the tool “AdWord & SEO Keyword Permutation Generator” comes in. Here you can enter your primary keyword phrases. Depending on how long you want the keyword to be, you can add multiple lists. Then you press the “generate permutations” button, and it creates keyword phrases for you. This allows multiple new options for keywords that you may not have considered. You have to remember, though, not all the keyword phrases generated will make complete sense, so you will have to sort through them to find your perfect keyword.

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