Keyword Research

If you have a blog or a website, you have probably heard of “keyword research".

Looking at the term, you might assume it has something to do with researching keywords, but what is it really and what does it do? Here we’ll describe how our team goes about conducting comprehensive keyword research for your site.

What is keyword research?

Keyword research is a vital aspect of search engine optimization or SEO. It is a process that involves researching popular words and phrases that people type into Google and other search engines, and then strategically incorporating these search terms into your blog or website content in order to gain a higher ranking on a search engine results pages or SERPs.

When search engines crawl the internet for search results to return based on the keywords typed, they don’t just look at the content within the page. These search engines also consider the number of links that direct to these pages from other websites and also take into consideration the quality of other websites. Therefore, if there are several high-quality websites that link to your own website, you have a better chance of ranking higher in search results.

How do you do keyword research?

Keyword research is not only about finding terms to include in your content. It is also about having a list of goals and a plan of action to achieve these goals. Below are steps we follow to do proper keyword research:

1. Create a list of seed keywords

Say you run a bakery. Ask yourself what you might type into the Google search field in order to find your bakery. Perhaps words such as cakes, bread, pies, muffins, rolls, pastries and bakeries came to mind.

Those words are called seed keywords and they serve as the foundation of our keyword search. Coming up with them is an integral process. These words are important in that they define your niche and can introduce you to prospective clients and competitors.

2. Use the seed keywords to know the competition

After making a list of seed keywords, you’ll need to look them up on Google or another search engine to know who you are up against. Type the seed keywords into Google one by one and see what businesses appear on the first page of search results.

Businesses that come up on the first page of search results typically have effective SEO techniques and strategies, and there is an easy way to find out which top keywords generate the most traffic to their pages. Google Search Console is a free resource that can do just that. Just input the website you want to research into Google Search Console and get keyword ideas that can be used to boost a page’s ranking.

3. Make use of keyword research tools

Even though you can get a good supply of keywords from competitors, it’s easy to miss out on other keywords that they are not targeting. Another way to find keywords is by using keyword research tools.

There are many different keyword research tools available that can broaden your keyword list. Simply type a seed keyword in one of these tools to see a list of related words. Among all the keyword research tools available, Google Keyword Planner is probably the most renowned. As it is free of charge, many SEO beginners choose it as an introduction to the world of SEO.

Let’s say you decide to use Google Keyword Planner to expand the list of keywords for your bakery. You enter the seed keyword “cakes” and you will get several other keyword ideas such as “birthday cake,” “chocolate cake,” “red velvet cake,” and “happy birthday cake.” You will also get data on average searches per keyword per month, the level of competition, and other useful information.

Another free SEO tool you can use is the Google Autocomplete feature. On the Google homepage, simply type the seed keyword “cakes” and see suggestions, such as “cake design,” “cakes near me,” and “cakes delivery,” which are popular search queries that use that particular seed keyword.

While these free Google SEO tools can be helpful in your keyword research, they are limited and not very detailed. Paying for professional keyword tools, which we have access to, can yield a much larger database that contains billions of keywords and provides us with fully comprehensive SEO data and metrics.

4. Know your niche better

Learning more about your niche can help you come up with ideas to improve your SEO strategy and marketing.

It’s important to reach out to current customers and inquire about what they think of a product, service, or company. Ask what specific words they use to talk about or describe what you offer. Also, put yourself in the shoes of potential customers. If you were them, how would you describe your product, service, or company to other people? Exploring the internet also helps. Check out your niche’s discussion forums, social media pages, and other online communities. Read what people are saying about the types of products and services your company offers, and use both the positive and negative comments to improve.

5. Create content

Now that you have your keywords and have gotten feedback from your target market, you are ready to start making content. Think about which topics you can write that will incorporate your keywords. Sort your keywords to make it easier to use them naturally per topic. For example, “cakes” is quite a broad topic, so break down your content into smaller topics, such as “birthday cakes,” “chocolate cakes,” or “special occasion cakes,” then organize the best keywords for each topic.

These tips can help a website owner be on their way to improving search engine rankings. If you need help with any part of this process, please don’t hesitate to contact us for guidance.

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