In this guide, we’ll walk you through all the steps necessary to do keyword research!
In the end, you’ll have a clear idea of what types of keywords you should be targeting.
Step 1 – Start by brainstorming
Start by trying to think of keywords that people might use to find your business online.
Here are some questions you might want to ask to get your creativity flowing:
- What phrases would you type in if you were looking for your products?
- What categories do your products or services fit into?
- What problems do your products or services solve?
- What type of people do your products or services serve?
- What questions do your customers ask before they buy?
You can also get more ideas by typing your keywords into Google. As you type, Google will suggest other possible keyword phrases that might be relevant.
After you complete the search, Google will also display related keywords at the bottom of the search results page. Make note of any keywords that might be relevant to your content.
Step 2 – Visit competitor websites and see what they are ranking for
Another great way to generate ideas is to take a look at your search competitors websites.
“Search comeptitiors” are different than your normal competitors, because we’re looking for websites that rank for your target keyphrases. We’ll model them since they are already ranking well.
You can find these sites by just typing in your main keyword to Google and finding the URLs of the top-ranking positions.
Then, you can use a tool like our own SEO rankings checker to see what your competitors are ranking for!
Analyze title tags to see what keyword phrases they are intentionally targeting. Title tags will give you clues about what keywords your competitors think are important.
Step 3 – Use Keyword Research Tools
Keyword research tools will help you decide which keyword phrases to target by revealing keyword phrases that you may not have thought of as well as estimated search volume.
Ubersuggest is a free tool that can give you a ton of keyword ideas. Ubersuggest provides related keywords, more specific search volume estimates, and even a keyword difficulty score.
If you want to get serious about keyword research, then you should consider investing in other keyword tools so that you can get more data on keywords. Tools like Ahref’s Keyword Explorer, Moz, and SEMRush can provide additional keyword ideas and more precise keyword volume numbers.
Step 4 – Consider Seasonality and Trends
Keyword tools alone are not enough when doing keyword research. When optimizing for SEO traffic, you also need to consider seasonality and trends.
Google Trends is a tool that you can use to view a keyword phrase’s popularity over time. For example, “salsa dancing” seemed popular in 2004, but appears to be declining in popularity.
Some keyword phrases can also experience seasonal fluctuations. For example, “easter chocolate” sees a spike in search interest every Easter.
Before investing in SEO, you should consider trends and seasonality to determine if your marketing efforts will be worthwhile over the long term.
Step 5 – Select keywords to target
Select a primary keyword phrase to target. This phrase will likely be the highest volume phrase that is most relevant to your web page.
You should also select a few secondary keyword phrases to target. These keywords can drive additional traffic to your web page.
Finally, you may want to consider creating a list of long-tail keywords that you can add to your page content.
Although these keywords won’t drive a lot of traffic individually, the cumulative traffic that they send to your site can add up quickly.
Consider search intent before selecting keywords to target and be sure to only target keywords that are relevant to what people are actually looking for.
Once you know what keywords you will be using, then you will need to do On-Page SEO (and possibly some link building) to optimize your web pages to rank in the search engines.
Step 6 – Analyze and Improve Results
After you have selected your keywords, added them to your web pages, and completed SEO marketing activities like link building, check your website analytics.
It may take several months or longer before you rank for the keywords that you are targeting, especially if they are competitive.
Pay attention to which keywords are driving traffic to your site, which keywords are driving sales and conversions, and make decisions based on the data if you decide to adjust which keywords to target!