Keyword Research Tools

Keyword research tools are the cornerstone-step in the process of finding and analyzing keywords for SEO. They provide insights into what people are searching for, the popularity of those searches, competition, and more. Here’s an overview of what keyword research tools are, their importance, benefits, and a look at both paid and free options.

Section 1: Keyword Research Guide

Section 2: Keyword Research Basics

Keyword Research Guide Section 3: Keyword Research Tools

Section 4: Keyword Research Process

Section 5: Keyword Research Metrics

Section 6: Keyword Research in Content

Section 7: Keyword Research Tracking

Overview of Keyword Research Tools

What are Keyword Research Tools?

Keyword Research Tools are software applications used to discover and analyze the keywords that people are entering into search engines. These tools help in understanding the demand for particular keywords and the difficulty level to rank for them. They’re invaluable for SEO professionals, content marketers, and anyone who wants to increase visibility in online searches.

Using Keyword Research Tools: Here’s What You Get

Understanding Audience Needs

They help in understanding what terms the audience is searching for, allowing you to tailor your content accordingly.

Improving SEO

By targeting the right keywords, you can enhance your site’s SEO, which can lead to higher search engine rankings.

Content Strategy Planning

It helps in planning a more effective content strategy by focusing on high-ranking keywords within your niche.

Analyzing Competitors

These tools enable you to see what keywords your competitors are ranking for, helping you create a strategy to compete effectively.

Tracking Trends

They allow you to track trends in keyword popularity over time, which can be essential for seasonal businesses or industries influenced by changing trends.

Budget Optimization

You can focus your efforts on the most profitable keywords, potentially reducing advertising costs.

Paid vs Free Tools: Which Should You Choose?

Choosing between paid and free keyword research tools depends on your specific needs, budget, and level of expertise. If you’re a professional looking for detailed insights and analytics, a paid tool would be the preferable choice. On the other hand, if you’re a beginner or on a limited budget, free tools can provide valuable insights to get started.

Always consider factors like the depth of information, the reliability of data, and the specific features you need when making your decision. Utilizing trials or demo versions (if available) can also help you evaluate and find the tool that fits your requirements the best.

Paid Tools

Comprehensive Data

Most paid tools provide more extensive and accurate data compared to free ones.

Advanced Features

Features like competitor analysis, keyword difficulty scoring, and more are generally found in paid tools.

Support and Updates

Paid tools often come with dedicated support and regular updates.


Tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, and Moz are widely regarded as top-tier paid options.

Free Tools

Limited Features

Free tools often offer limited functionality compared to paid counterparts.

Basic Analysis

They are usually good for basic keyword research but may lack depth in analysis.

Great for Beginners

If you are new to SEO or working on a tight budget, free tools can be a great starting point.


Google Keyword Planner, Ubersuggest (free version), and WordStream’s Free Keyword Tool.

Detailed Guide to Google Keyword Planner

Google Keyword Planner is an excellent free tool for keyword research, whether you’re an advertiser or working on SEO and content strategy. By understanding how to use it effectively and applying some of the tips and tricks, you can make the most of what it offers, helping you build successful online strategies. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced marketer, Google Keyword Planner can provide valuable insights to drive your online success.

Introduction to Google Keyword Planner

Google Keyword Planner is a free tool provided by Google Ads. It’s designed for advertisers to discover new keywords and see how they might perform, but it’s also widely used for SEO and content marketing purposes. Here’s what you need to know about it.

Setting Up Google Keyword Planner

Create or Log into a Google Ads Account

Google Keyword Planner requires a Google Ads account. If you don’t have one, you’ll need to create it.

Navigate to the Keyword Planner

Once logged in, go to the “Tools & Settings” menu, then under “Planning,” click on “Keyword Planner.”

No Active Campaign Needed

Though aimed at advertisers, you don’t need to have an active campaign running to use the Keyword Planner. Some functionalities might be limited without an active campaign, though.

How to Use Google Keyword Planner for Keyword Research

Discovering New Keywords

  • Click on “Discover new keywords.”
  • Enter a keyword or a URL related to your business.
  • Click “Get results” to see a list of keyword ideas along with metrics like average monthly searches, competition, and more.

Get Search Volume and Forecasts:

  • Click on “Get search volume and forecasts.”
  • Enter the keywords you want to analyze.
  • Get detailed forecasts like expected clicks, impressions, and costs.

Filter and Refine Results:

  • Use filters to refine your results based on location, language, search networks, and date ranges.
  • Download your results if needed for further analysis.

Tips and Tricks for Getting the Most from Google Keyword Planner

Analyze Competitor URLs

Input a competitor’s URL to find keywords they’re targeting.

Use Broad Terms for More Ideas

Starting with broader terms can give you more varied keyword ideas.

Pay Attention to Competition Score

The competition score can give insights into how hard it might be to rank or advertise for a particular keyword.

Utilize Negative Keywords

If certain keywords are irrelevant to your business, use the negative keywords feature to exclude them from your search.

Explore Ad Group Ideas

Ad group ideas categorize similar keywords together and can inspire new content themes or ad groups.

Look at Top of Page Bid Metrics

This information can give you an idea of how much advertisers are willing to pay for a particular keyword, indicating its commercial value.

Regularly Monitor Trends

Use the tool regularly to keep up with the latest trends and shifts in your industry’s keywords.

Detailed Guide to SEMrush

SEMrush is an incredibly powerful tool for anyone looking to optimize their online presence. From basic keyword research to more advanced insights and competitive analyses, it provides a comprehensive set of features to guide your SEO and marketing efforts.

With a little investment in time to learn the platform and by applying these strategies, you can significantly enhance your keyword research and overall online marketing strategy. Whether you’re a small business, an SEO professional, or part of a large marketing team, SEMrush offers valuable resources to help you achieve your goals.

Introduction to SEMrush

SEMrush is a comprehensive digital marketing toolkit that offers a range of features to help with SEO, paid advertising, content marketing, social media, and competitive research. One of its core functionalities is keyword research, providing in-depth insights into keywords, their ranking difficulty, search volume, and more.

Getting Started with SEMrush

Create an Account

You can start with a free trial, but for complete access to all features, you’ll need a paid subscription.

Choose Your Plan

SEMrush offers different plans to cater to different needs, so select the one that fits your business best.

Set Up Your Project

Creating a project will enable you to track a domain’s ranking, backlink profile, and more.

Familiarize Yourself with the Dashboard

The dashboard is user-friendly but packed with features, so take some time to explore and get comfortable with where everything is.

Using SEMrush for Keyword Research

Keyword Overview

  • Enter a keyword into the search bar.
  • Review the overview, including volume, keyword difficulty, CPC, competitive density, and more.

Keyword Magic Tool

  • Access the Keyword Magic Tool.
  • Enter your target keyword to see a list of related keywords, questions, and variations.
  • Use filters for exact match, broad match, phrase match, and related keywords.

Organic Research

  • Enter a domain or URL.
  • View the top organic keywords for that site, including rankings, volume, and more.

Gap Analysis

Compare your domain with competitors to see what keywords they rank for that you don’t.

Maximizing SEMrush for Advanced Keyword Insights

Utilize the Position Tracking Tool

This tool helps in tracking your rankings for specific keywords over time.

Explore Keyword Difficulty

Understanding how difficult it will be to rank for a keyword is crucial in your strategy. SEMrush’s keyword difficulty score is very insightful for this.

Analyze SERP Features

See what SERP features appear for your target keywords (like featured snippets or local packs), and tailor your strategy accordingly.

Use the Content Template

This tool gives you content ideas and SEO suggestions based on the top 10 ranking pages for a specific keyword.

Export and Integrate Data

Exporting data and integrating with tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console can streamline your workflow.

Regularly Update and Monitor

The landscape of keywords changes, so make sure to update and monitor your keywords regularly using SEMrush’s various tools.

Explore Competitor Analysis Features

Dive deep into your competitors’ strategies, including the keywords they are ranking for, and use these insights to guide your efforts.

Detailed Guide to Ahrefs

Ahrefs is a robust tool that can dramatically enhance your SEO and content marketing efforts. By leveraging its comprehensive features, from basic keyword research to advanced backlink analysis and competitor tracking, you can get a significant edge in the digital landscape.

Investing time in understanding how to properly utilize all of its functionalities and following best practices will ensure that you’re making the most of this powerful platform. Whether you’re an individual blogger or part of a large marketing team, Ahrefs can cater to your needs and help you achieve your online goals.

Introduction to Ahrefs

Ahrefs is a well-known SEO tool used by marketers, content creators, and SEO professionals worldwide. It provides extensive insights into your website’s performance, competitors’ strategies, backlinks, keyword rankings, and much more. It’s particularly recognized for its extensive backlink index and powerful keyword research capabilities.

How to Use Ahrefs for Keyword Research

Keyword Explorer

  • Enter your target keyword into the Keyword Explorer.
  • View key metrics such as keyword difficulty, search volume, clicks, and more.
  • Explore related keyword ideas, phrases, and questions that people ask.

Competitor Analysis

  • Enter a competitor’s URL into the Site Explorer.
  • Navigate to the “Organic Keywords” section to see what keywords they are ranking for.

Content Explorer

  • Search for a topic to find the most popular content around that subject.
  • Analyze the keywords that the content is ranking for.

Rank Tracker

  • Add the keywords you want to track.
  • Monitor your site’s rankings for those keywords over time.

Diving Deeper: Advanced Features of Ahrefs

Backlink Analysis

Ahrefs offers a detailed backlink profile, showing you who is linking to your site and how valuable those links are.

Content Gap Analysis

Compare your site with competitors to find the keywords they are ranking for, but you are not.

Internal Linking Analysis

Get recommendations for internal linking to enhance your site’s SEO.

SERP Analysis

Analyze the top-ranking pages for a specific keyword to understand what it takes to rank.

Site Audit

A comprehensive tool to analyze and fix issues related to your website’s SEO.

Best Practices for Ahrefs Users

Start with Broad Keywords

Use broad terms to begin your research, then drill down to find long-tail keywords that suit your content.

Regularly Monitor Backlinks

Keep an eye on your site’s backlink profile, as well as competitors’, to stay ahead.

Utilize Content Explorer for Ideas

Regularly explore content ideas that are popular within your industry.

Perform Regular Site Audits

Regularly audit your site to ensure it’s optimized and free from technical SEO issues.

Analyze Competitors

Constantly analyze what your competitors are doing in terms of keyword ranking and backlink strategies.

Utilize Alerts

Set up alerts to get notified of new backlinks, keywords rankings, and brand mentions.

Collaborate with Your Team

If working in a team, make use of collaborative features to coordinate your SEO efforts.

Detailed Guide to SERPStat

SERPStat is a versatile SEO tool that offers extensive features to guide your online marketing efforts. Whether you’re just starting in digital marketing or an experienced professional, understanding how to utilize SERPStat for keyword research and other SEO tasks can substantially enhance your online strategy.

Investing in learning the platform and applying these pro tips can help you make the most of SERPStat and drive tangible results for your website or business. It’s a valuable addition to your digital marketing toolkit, providing insights and tools to compete successfully in the online space.

Understanding SERPStat: An Overview

SERPStat is an all-in-one SEO platform offering various functionalities such as keyword research, competitor analysis, rank tracking, site audit, and backlink analysis. It’s designed to help digital marketers, SEO experts, and business owners optimize their online visibility and performance.

Getting Started with SERPStat

Create an Account

You can begin with a free account, but to access all the features, you’ll need to subscribe to one of the paid plans.

Explore the Dashboard

Familiarize yourself with the user-friendly dashboard, which provides quick access to all of SERPStat’s main features.

Set Up a Project

Create a project for your site to start tracking its performance, rankings, backlinks, and more.

Configure Your Preferences

Tailor the tool to your specific needs by setting up your preferred search region, language, etc.

Conducting Keyword Research with SERPStat

Keyword Analysis:

  • Use the Keyword Research section to enter a keyword.
  • Analyze metrics like search volume, competition, CPC, and more.
  • Explore related keywords, search questions, and long-tail variations.

URL Analysis:

  • Enter a URL to see its top organic and paid keywords.
  • Analyze competitors’ URLs to gain insights into their keyword strategies.

Content Marketing Tool:

Use the “SEO Content Template” to create content based on the top-ranking pages for specific keywords.

Keyword Clustering and Text Analytics:

  • Group keywords into clusters to organize them more effectively.
  • Utilize text analytics to analyze the content of top-ranking pages.

Pro Tips for SERPStat Users

Regularly Monitor Rankings

Utilize the Rank Tracker tool to keep an eye on your keyword rankings over time.

Analyze Competitor’s Strategies

Delve into competitors’ keywords, backlinks, and advertisements to inform your strategy.

Perform Regular Site Audits

Make use of the site audit feature to ensure your website is free from technical SEO issues.

Explore Backlink Opportunities

Use the Backlink Analysis tool to uncover potential backlink opportunities and analyze your existing backlink profile.

Use Filters for Tailored Insights

Apply filters to your keyword research to narrow down results based on your specific goals, such as location or device.

Leverage the API

If you require data in a more flexible format, consider leveraging SERPStat’s API to integrate the data into your own systems or tools.

Engage with SERPStat’s Community and Support

Don’t hesitate to engage with the community or support team if you have questions or need assistance. Their knowledge can guide you in maximizing the tool’s capabilities.

Utilizing Free Keyword Research Tools

Free keyword research tools can be a significant asset, offering valuable insights without the investment required for paid tools. Whether used on their own or in combination with paid options, understanding the available free tools and how to make the most of them can greatly enhance your keyword strategy. While they may have limitations compared to their paid counterparts, these tools can still provide substantial benefits for businesses of all sizes and stages.

Why Consider Free Keyword Research Tools?


Ideal for small businesses, freelancers, or startups who may not have the funds for paid tools.

Ease of Use

Many free tools are user-friendly, requiring no specialized knowledge.

Great for Beginners

A great way to start learning about keyword research without a financial commitment.

Supplementary to Paid Tools

Even for those using paid tools, free tools can provide additional insights and data points.

Best Free Keyword Research Tools in the Market

Google Keyword Planner

Provided by Google Ads, it offers insights into keyword search volumes, competition, and more.


A tool by Neil Patel that provides information on keyword difficulty, monthly search volume, and more.

Answer The Public

This tool visualizes search questions and suggested autocomplete searches in an image called a search cloud.

Keyword Surfer

A Chrome extension that shows estimated global and monthly search volumes for any query typed into Google.

Great for finding long-tail keywords related to your main keyword.

Google Trends

Useful for tracking the popularity of certain search terms over time.

Bing Webmaster Tools

Offers keyword research functionalities similar to Google’s tools, but with insights into Bing’s search engine.

Getting the Most from Free Tools

Combine Multiple Tools

Since each tool might have different strengths, use a combination to get a more complete view.

Understand Limitations

Free tools may have limitations in terms of data accuracy, update frequency, or depth of insights. Recognize these limitations and, if possible, supplement with additional research.

Experiment with Different Keywords

Try variations and related terms to build a broad and effective keyword strategy.

Analyze Competitors

Some free tools allow you to peek into competitors’ keyword strategies. Utilize this information to inform your own approach.

Stay Up-to-Date with Trends

Tools like Google Trends can help you keep your finger on the pulse of what’s relevant in your industry.

Integrate with Other Free Tools

For example, you can use Google Analytics to see how the keywords you’ve found translate into traffic and conversions on your site.

Take Advantage of Tutorials

Many free tools offer tutorials or community support. Make use of these to fully understand how to maximize the tool’s potential.

Read Section 4: Keyword Research Process