SEO Keyword Research Tools
Earlier, I wrote a post about the use of long tail keywords. Focusing on long tail keywords could be a good strategy, especially when trying to rank in a highly competitive market. But how do you decide on which (long tail) keywords you want to rank? This post will give you some handy tips and keyword research tools to make your keyword research a bit easier.
Repeat keyword research regularly!
Keyword research is an activity you undertake every now and then. If you have a clear definition about the product or service you want to ‘sell’ with your website, you should be able to come up with keywords, related keywords and even more related keywords to make your awesome website (more) findable. As your product and the market will evolve, your keyword strategy should do the same.
Resemble the vocabulary of your audience
The keywords you want to focus your SEO on, should closely resemble the vocabulary of your audience. In order to come up with the proper keywords you really have to get inside the heads of the people who search for your website. What terms will people use? How do people search? Which question does your website answer? You should create a list of all search terms people could use and think of combinations and nuances within these search terms.
Keyword research tools to use
Making a list remains hard. And up until a few years ago, doing your keyword research was much easier. You could simply check Google Analytics to see on which terms people found your website. That is no longer possible. So you’re pretty much left in the dark about the terms people use in search engines to end up at your website. Luckily, there are some other tools which can make your keyword research a bit easier:
Google Adwords Keyword Planner
Use the to find new and related keywords, but ignore the search volume data! The search volume data in the planner is really only useful for keywords that you’re actually spending money to advertise on. Otherwise, these volumes are not reliable. While not really helpful to decide which keyword is most used by your potential audience, Google Adwords Keyword Planner makes a useful tool in coming up with ideas for potential keywords!
Joost developed his own keyword research tool to come up with keywords as well! Yoast Suggests uses the Google Suggest functionality you know from searching in Google. It finds the keyword expansions Google gives and then requests more of them. So if you type ‘example‘, it’ll also give you the expansions for ‘example a…’ till ‘example z…’ etc. Just go on and try it and fill out some of your potential keywords. It’s a great way to quickly find more long tail keywords you can focus on.
Is there a free SEO keyword research tool that has accurate traffic estimation for keywords?
There have been some good answers already. My summary: There is no accurate tool for measuring traffic estimates (Ian's tip is only way I would know) but don't obsess over it anyhow, just use as a scale. When using the AdWords tool for SEO research, as suggested by Abey, ensure you are using Exact match and appropriate local settings.