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SEO Keyword Research

How do you research keywords?

Keyword research is an integral part of SEO. Whenever we perform a search, we type a keyword (usually made of more than one word) in the search engine that generates results.

Having an idea about the information the user is searching for gives site owners a very powerful advantage. This is because they can use these ideas to improve the ranking of their website. Tools can help us find the actual words people use in search engines. This can help us to track and reach out to the audience. We can use different keyword ideas for building helpful pages, doing on-page SEO, finding relevant sites in particular niche and improving content.

1. Give your website a home for all topics:

First of all, identify all the topics which are relevant to the website. Don’t think of every keyword variation, instead think of topic categories – which cover sets of related pages. Blogging requires a separate category for the content. A business website need separate buckets for each service or products it offers.

After defining the main topic, list the relevant keywords. Think of all the different word combinations a user might use to search the content provided on your website. Create a separate home category for your main topics, so that it is easy for the users to navigate through your website.

2. See what keywords your site is visible for:

Before searching for new keywords, a better way is to identify how your website is already ranked. Google or Bing will list the topics which it thinks are relevant to your website. This will reveal whether Google has identified your website correctly or not, ranked your site in the wrong category, or whether your site is making progress.

Serpstat or SEMrush are third-party tools, which show the keywords your website is displayed for. These ranking may not be high enough to earn traffic, but you at least have a start!

Bing Webmaster Tools or Google Search Console can generate a few free keyword ideas. These tools show the key terms which display your website in search results, plus the number of users who have visited your site. Search Analytics data displays the queries you are shown for, the ranking of your webpages and number of people who clicked on your results.

A free and better way to search for new keywords relevant to your niche is by making use of the data Google provides with every search. After performing a search on Google, you will find relevant searches on the bottom. You can use these to improve your content ranking. 

Ubersuggest and Keyword Tool allows you to search for different variants of your main keyword, based on real searches. These tools provide the same functionality for Wikipedia, Youtube, Amazon and more.

5. Check out your competitors:

Another valuable SEO strategy is to search how your competitors are ranked on a search engine. Use the tools to find out your ranking, and also enter the competitor domain. This will give you an idea about how they get traffic, and you can implement their strategy. To search for your competitor, use your targeted keywords which you think will most likely rank your website. And take a look at the sites which are shown. Avoid searching for big companies like Amazon which sells many different products. Instead choose the target whose keyword searches rank very closely to your own.

If a keyword is ranking a competitor well, that doesn’t imply that you should also target the same keyword. It must be relevant to your audience and site. However, this is certainly an effective and quick method to use other people’s hard effort to gauge user interests.

6. Choose suitable keyword targets:

You will eventually at some point come up with a huge list of potential keywords. You will need to select the best ones and focus on them. Go for a mixture of head & long-tail words. 

Head terms are shorter (often 3 or less words), searched frequently and are more competitive and generic as well. Long-tail terms are large (often more than 3 words) and more specific. We can identify what the user is searching for using long-tail keywords. Think of mobiles vs. best mobiles under $1000. 

Keyword volume data can be searched by using different tools like Google;s Keyword Planner, WordStream, and SEMrush. Use these tools to eliminate keywords ideas that have either too short or too long volume and generate a correct mixture of head and long-tail keywords, search the competition to find better ideas.

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