In this post you’ll find a few ways to do keyword research for free.
Keyword research is a very important part of content development. Picking the right keywords can sometimes be a time consuming activity, but doing it can save more time on the long run. It doesn’t matter how well you write your content, and how much value it brings to the readers, if the keywords you chose don’t have the same potential as your content in the first place. So, doing keyword research is important, and today, there exist dozens of not hundreds of keyword tools that will help you do just that but for a fee. The good thing however, is that there are also tools that can help you do keyword research for free.
How To Do Keyword Research For Free?
Doing keyword research as you probably know by this point doesn’t require money. Below you’ll find a few free tools and techniques to help you (1) Find keywords for your business and (2) To distinguish the best keywords to target, among the ones you found with the tools.
1. Google keyword tool
The search engine giant Google, apart from the free traffic it gives to the ones who produce high quality content, also developed a keyword tool. With this tool you get to hear from Google itself, a few important things about specific keywords. Among them are: other related keywords, the level of competition, the search volume of each, as well as the amount others are willing to pay for in PPC campaigns.
2. Spy on your competition
Another way of finding new keywords to write content around, is by looking at what your competitors are doing. Sometimes you’ll notice that for a certain keyword, your competitors did a poor job in coming up with quailty content; and one telling trait of poor quality content is the number of words.
It’s commonly agreed that any post with less than 500 words is probably not informative enough. So, If this happens to be the case, you can take advantage of it by simply coming up with better content. Chances are that if others are targeting that specific keyword, they somehow, maybe through fancy keyword tools, found it to be a valuable keyword. So, in a way, you get to indirectly enjoy the benefits of the paid keyword research software your competitors are using, without having to pay for it.
3. Look for trendy topics on the social media
The social media is an amazing place to find and connect with people. More than that, it is also an amazing place to find out what are the most trendy topics people are interested at and what they are talking about. With tools such as TrendyNaive and Trendsmap, you can quickly find out what are the most popular hashtags on twitter, which can certainly be of help to find new keyword ideas.
Jaaxy is a very powerful keyword research tool that you can benefit from for free. The service they provide is paid, but at the time of this writing you can get up to 100 searches for free, just by signing up with them. With this tool you get to learn about other related keywords to the keyword you typed, the respective average traffic per month, and the level of competition.
This is all excluding the fact that you can also use the tool to track your SEO efforts.
5. The alphabet soup technique
The alphabet soup technique is another way to find new keywords to develop content around. It consists of using only google search to see the keywords visitors type the most, when they look for a specific kind of suggestion. In essence, you just type a keyword, and run trough all the letters of the alphabet next to the keyword; which can give you a broader idea of what people are searching on google and how.
Here is a more in-depth post around the Alphabet soup technique if you would like to learn more about it.
6. The low hanging fruit principle
As we discussed before, it’s not enough to just find keywords for which to develop content around. It is also important to know how to filter the ones that will more likely get you ranked on the first page of google and thus get more traffic, from the ones that look like it, but are in truth a lost cause. There are many ways to do that, but the one I use the most when doing keyword research is the low hanging fruit principle.
The low hanging fruit principle
The low hanging fruit principle is a strategy you can use to pick the best keywords to create content. The idea is simple. Instead of looking at the number of searches/traffic the keyword gets on a monthly basis, you pay more attention to the level of competition it gets. By focusing only on the keywords that bring moderate traffic but with low competition, as opposed to the ones with high traffic and high competition, you increase the odds that your content will actually get the traffic the keyword tools shows you.
For a keyword that bring 5000 people every month and there are 1000 websites competing for it, chances are that your content won’t be the winner, specially if the website is new and has little trust from Google.
Another strategy to evaluate keywords is by focusing on long tail keywords as opposed to the short tail ones. Short tail keywords such as: ” Buy clothes” or “buy cars” target people
who are usually a long way from the purchase in the consumer purchase cycle. They are probably in the research phase, and promoting a product to them is probably the last thing you want to do.
The most profitable keywords
Another important aspect of keyword research is also the profitability potential of the keywords you choose. The truth is that not all keywords will result in sales no matter how much traffic you get from them. This is specially important if making a profit from your website is one of the reasons why you created it. In short, the most profitable keywords are the kind of keywords that resemble what a costumer ready to buy would type on google. Examples of this are: “buy prom dress in new York” , “Mercedes Benz S Series for sale”, “buy gym runners for cheap”, which suggest that the costumer is not looking for suggestions of what to buy, but suggestions of where to buy. The costumer already knows what he wants, and now is looking only for the place to buy it.
The way you pick the keywords for which you develop your content around is probably just as important as the content itself. It’s important to take in consideration the fact that there are many people out there, trying to rank high on google for the same category of keywords as you. So, poor research, even with great content can be detrimental to your website’s traffic potential.