Using SEO Tools and Analytics to do Keyword research is an essential part of search engine optimization (SEO). It involves finding the right keywords that people are searching for and optimizing your content to rank higher in search engine results. In this article, we will explore nine free keyword research tools that can help you with this process. These tools will allow you to generate keyword ideas, check their ranking difficulty, and find the best way to rank for them.
The Best Free Keyword Research Tools
1. Keyword Generator
The Keyword Generator tool provides up to 150 keyword ideas based on a broad topic. Simply enter your topic, select your target country, and click “Find keywords.” For example, if you search for “bitcoin,” the tool will show you the 100 most popular keywords related to bitcoin. It also provides a list of the 50 most popular questions people are searching for. Each keyword has a Keyword Difficulty (KD) score, which indicates how hard it will be to rank for that keyword.
If the keyword ideas are too broad, you can feed them back into the generator to narrow down your search. This iterative process allows you to find more specific keywords related to your topic.
2. Answer The Public
Answer The Public is a tool that uses autocomplete to find questions people are searching for. Simply enter a broad topic and choose your target country. The tool will generate a list of keyword ideas categorized into five groups. Each category visualizes the keyword ideas, and you can see if they have a high, average, or low number of monthly searches. While the tool doesn’t provide search volumes, you can paste the keyword ideas into Ahrefs’ free keyword generator to get more accurate estimates.
ChatGPT is a chatbot developed by OpenAI. While it may not be directly useful for keyword research, it can help you find seed keyword ideas. By asking for a list of terms related to a specific topic, you can discover keywords that you may not have thought of before. For example, if you ask for terms related to bitcoin, ChatGPT may suggest keywords like “hashrate” or “bitcoin mining.” These seed keywords can then be used in the keyword research process to find more specific keyword ideas.
4. Ahrefs Webmaster Tools
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools provides valuable insights into your website’s performance in organic search. One of the useful features is the Organic keywords report, which shows all the keywords your website currently ranks for in the top 100 search results. By analyzing this report, you can find low-hanging page two rankings. These are keywords that rank between positions 11 and 20 and can be easily improved to rank on the first page. Improving your rankings for these keywords can significantly boost your website’s traffic.
5. Google Keyword Planner
Google Keyword Planner is a keyword research tool primarily designed for advertisers. However, it can also be used for SEO keyword research. The tool provides keyword ideas related to your seed keyword and can help you find keywords that don’t contain your seed keyword. It also offers search volume ranges for keywords, although exact volumes are only available for users running search ads. To get more accurate search volume estimates, you can copy and paste the keyword ideas into Ahrefs’ free keyword generator.
6. Google Search Console
Google Search Console (GSC) is a powerful tool for monitoring your website’s performance in Google search. The Search results report in GSC provides valuable insights into the keywords your website ranks for and the clicks and impressions it receives. By comparing the performance of your keywords over time, you can identify declining keywords that may need your attention. Updating and optimizing your content for these keywords can help regain lost traffic.
7. Google Trends
Google Trends allows you to visualize the search popularity of a keyword over time. It also shows related rising and breakout searches, which can help you find trending keywords. By identifying trending keywords early on, you can create content around these topics before your competitors. Google Trends also provides more specific ideas related to trending topics, allowing you to explore different angles and perspectives.
8. SERP Checker
SERP Checker is a tool that shows the top-ranking pages for a keyword and provides useful SEO metrics for those pages. It can help you understand a keyword’s traffic potential by showing the estimated monthly search visits to the top-ranking pages. This data is often a better indicator of a keyword’s true traffic potential than search volume alone. By analyzing the top-ranking pages, you can assess the competition and determine how much traffic you can potentially get by ranking for that keyword.
9. Keyword Difficulty Checker
Keyword Difficulty (KD) Checker is a tool that estimates the difficulty of ranking in the top 10 search results for a keyword. The KD score ranges from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating greater difficulty. While the KD score is based solely on backlinks, it can give you a rough idea of how challenging it will be to rank for a keyword. However, it’s important to conduct further research and consider other factors that may affect ranking difficulty, such as content quality.
Free vs. Paid Keyword Tools: How Do They Compare?
While free keyword research tools are useful, they have limitations compared to paid tools. Free tools may provide a smaller number of keyword ideas and less data. In contrast, paid tools offer a wider range of keyword ideas and more robust features. For example, Ahrefs’ paid keyword research tool, Keywords Explorer, provides a vast number of keyword ideas and offers filters to help you find the best keywords for your website. As your website grows and the value of your time increases, investing in a paid keyword research tool can save you time and provide more accurate data for your SEO efforts.
Final Thoughts on SEO Tools and Analytics
Keyword research is a crucial step in optimizing your website for search engines. By using free keyword research tools, you can generate keyword ideas, assess their ranking difficulty, and devise strategies to rank higher in search results. While free tools are sufficient for beginners, investing in paid keyword research tools can provide more comprehensive data and make your keyword research process more efficient. Remember to choose the tools that best suit your needs and help you achieve your SEO goals.
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