I often get asked how I find the best keywords for my clients and what I look for so I’m not wasting my efforts on keywords that have no chance of being ranked.
So today I decided to reveal some of my favourite and best keyword research tools that I normally only let my private clients in on. Keyword research is a fundamental part of blogging and content marketing. It’s an essential tool for developing an effective content marketing strategy and search engines want you to create compelling content.
But you won’t get much traffic to your website if you don’t include the words and phrases people are using to find the information they’re looking for online. However, the keyword research tools available can often be confusing and cumbersome to use, which makes the process of doing keyword research difficult and time-consuming.
The tools I use to find the best keywords help me to run my business more efficiently – they save time and money. Some of them are free, and some are paid tools. A couple of the links I’ve included in this post are affiliate links so if you did want to use them, I would receive a tiny commission.
All of these tools provide valuable insights into what people are actually searching for online. They identify exactly what your ideal clients want and need at a particular point in time.
So without further ado, let’s go.
1. Google keyword planner tool – free
I’ll start with the old trusty and most popular keyword tool, which is the free Google keyword planner tool.
What’s surprising to many people is that it’s not designed as a SEO tool. It’s actually a tool designed for PPC Adword campaigns – for advertisers bidding on keywords to advertise in the search results. So I don’t look at every column in the keyword tool.
The two main columns I look is the keyword column and the monthly search volume. I don’t pay much attention to the competition field because it calculates the number of advertisers bidding on each keyword – what I’m interested to know is how many other websites are optimised for specific search terms and I use a different approach to assess the competitiveness of a keyword.
It’s really simple to use. All you need to is type a word or phrase relevant to your business, click get ideas and the tool will generate a list of keyword ideas based on the exact language people have used to search for information online.
From there, you can download all the keywords onto an Excel spreadsheet to review and select the most relevant keywords.
Instead of entering a word or phrase, enter the URL of a website where it says Website. Google will then crawl that URL and list the keywords associated with that website.
For example, if you have wellness site or similar, you might be interested in checking out the keywords associated with the site Mind Body Green:
2. Ubersuggest – free
I love Ubersuggest and you will too. Not only is it another free tool, what makes Ubersuggest so awesome is its ability to pull suggestions from Google and other search engines and then it expands upon each of keyword by combining them with other popular search terms. You end up getting longer keyword phrase ideas based on real user search queries. Think tons of blog post ideas. (More on what a long tail keyword further down this post.)
So you’ll be rewarded with higher rankings, it’s crucial to maintain your authority in your niche and to do that you need to write quality, original and targeted content (yeah I know, how many times have we heard that generic advice?)
This is where Ubersuggest can help you out. If you don’t want to use the Google keyword planner tool, Ubersuggest can find thousands of keywords. Take a look at the screenshot below:
Based on these keywords, you can write blog posts and rank really well for these long tail keywords. Ubersuggest is particularly useful when you need to find ideas for blog posts on the go.
The other great advantage of using Ubersuggest is that you can diversify your link profile and find content for guest posting opportunities. For example, for a key phrase such as “how to grow vegetables from seeds,” you could use this to guest post on a gardening blog.
3. Long Tail Pro – paid
Now Long Tail Pro is my secret weapon and my life saver. I’ve been using this for about a year and I now do the majority of my keyword research using this tool.
The good thing about using paid tools such as Long Tail Pro and Market Samurai is the competition analysis of a keyword. The reason is I’m not a fan of analysing the competition by simply putting a keyword into Google in quotation marks. The power of using these tools is that you can look at the top 10 results for a particular keyword and work out if its going to be viable to target.
A final word
None of these tools are magic bullets. The starting point of doing any good keyword research starts with you – your own insights about your business, your clients, ideal clients, benefits and features, problems, pain points etc. But validating your keywords and removing the guesswork out of what you think people are typing into Google is essential to growing your organic traffic on a consistent basis.
If the thought of doing your own keyword research seems to cumbersome for you, then let me do it for you. I have two keyword report packages available depending on your budget and needs. You don’t just get a keyword dump – I handpick selected keywords and them turn these keywords into practical and creative blog headlines. It’s definitely your Fast Track to Fame Blogging Solution.
I’d love to hear from you. Have you used any of these keyword tools before and if so, which one is your favourite? If not, will you start doing your own keyword research?