What is key word research anyway?
Whether you are opening your first online business or entering into the highly competitive industry of freelance copyright, it is crucial for you to know how to conduct keyword research. As you probably know, incorporating successful keywords into your online content is a huge part of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
According to Forbes, "While some traditional marketing methods may be becoming obsolete, SEO is here to stay in 2020. Whether you invested in SEO early or are just getting started, it can still be a major driver of traffic and leads to your website." Therefore, anyone hoping to direct a target audience to their website should learn how to do keyword research.
I've done the research- so you don't have to! Here are the core tips to how to conduct successful keyword and competitor research:
List Out Key Terms Regarding the Niche
Put yourself in the shoes of your target audience, and think about what they would Google to answer a question or to locate a service. What questions can you answer for your audience through your website? What key terms would people Google to find your website?
Then, take some time to jot down the key terms and phrases regarding your niche. Remember, it's important to keep these words and phrases simple. This is because when people are searching on Google, they are not likely to use fancy words and phrases.
Utilize a Keyword Generator or Software
Now that you have your list of simplified words and phrases relevant to your niche, it is time for you to use a keyword generator or software tool to determine the searchability of your terms. Ahrefs is a great starter website as it provides easy-to-understand results; as a bonus, it's free!
This generator will provide alternative words and phrases you may not have thought of, and it will also give you results regarding how often each keyword or phrase is searched. Many keyword generators will also tell you the KD (Keyword Difficulty) level.
As reported by Ahrefs, "KD stands for "Keyword Difficulty" and represents an estimation of how hard it would be to rank on the 1st page of Google for a given keyword. KD is measured on a scale from 0 to 100, with the latter being the hardest to rank for."
How to Choose a Successful Keyword
The key to successful keyword research is to choose 2-3 keywords at varying Keyword Difficulty levels and search volumes. So, rather than keyword stuffing your entire website or blog post, try to narrow your list down to a few keywords with both high and low keyword difficulty volumes as well as high and low search volumes.
Not only will this help you capture a wider audience, but it will also ensure you are not pigeonholing yourself into content that is too competitive or not searched at all. Remember, keyword-stuffed content sounds robotic, sometimes grammatically incorrect, and evident to your readers. Narrowing down your keyword list will make your content sound more authentic and relatable for your audience.
We've covered why identifying keywords is vital for research; let's review why it is also essential to conduct competitor keyword research. Competitor keyword research is simply understood as the act of looking at which keywords your successful competitors are using for their websites.
While it is possible for you to local keywords with your bare eyes, it may be easier for you to use a website such as SpyFu. You simply plug in your competitor's website and follow the steps to determining the keywords they are using to drive traffic to their websites. Then, you can utilize this knowledge and inspiration for your own website.
It's no secret that writing website content that converts isn't a simple feat. Learning how to conduct keyword and competitor research correctly are the first steps to optimizing any website. Furthermore, having the right SEO skillset in your back pocket to drive traffic to your website is vital for a successful online presence.