Keyword research for SEO – The only guide you’ll need to find the best keywords in 2021. You probably know that keyword research is one of the essential SEO tasks. But you may ask: How do I find keywords? And what to do once I find them? In this ultimate guide, we’ll take you through the whole process step by step. Enjoy!
Keyword research basics
Before we dive into the specifics, let’s take a look at the basic terms and notions connected to keyword research for SEO. Download and install windows 11
What are keywords?
Keywords (sometimes referred to as “SEO keywords”) are any words or phrases that a user types into the search engine to find certain information on the internet.
The keyword is a gateway that leads people to the organic search results and ultimately, to the website where they find what they’re looking for.
That is why finding the right keywords is so important in SEO. Once you find phrases people use when looking for things from your niche, you can adjust your content strategy and optimization so that you target these phrases. As a result, you’ll rank better and get more visitors.
The keywords are discovered through a process called keyword research.
What is keyword research?
Keyword research is an SEO practice of finding, analyzing and using the phrases people use to search for information on the internet.
In other words, it is about getting to know the language of your potential visitors and using this knowledge to optimize your content.
WHY to do keyword research?
Because it is one of the most important SEO tasks and a great way to reach more people with your content.
HOW to do keyword research?
Well, this is something this guide will help you with.
You don’t have to worry, keyword research is no rocket science. Once you understand the basics and learn some proven strategies (as well as some useful tips & tricks), you’re good to go! 😉
WHEN to do keyword research?
Keyword research is usually the first step of search engine optimization of any website.
You’ll definitely need to do keyword research when you’re:
- looking for a new niche
- looking for new content ideas
- optimizing your existing content
WHO should do keyword research?
Any website owner, blogger, online marketer or SEO specialist.
A very brief history of keyword research
The way people do keyword research has evolved over time.
In the 2000s, keyword research was often reduced to visiting Google Keyword Planner, finding keywords with the highest search volume and stuffing them into the website text.
As this could be easily misused to rank with low-quality content, Google responded with several algorithm updates over the years. The goal of these updates was to understand what the users want and serve them with the best possible results.
The most important algorithm updates that influenced the way we do keyword research:
- Google Panda – has penalized thin, low-quality content and duplicate text
- Google Penguin – has penalized unnatural usage of keywords
- Google Hummingbird – has improved semantic search and focus on search intent
Today, keyword research is much more than finding the “right” keywords and putting them into “right” places.
Google is becoming better and better at understanding what people look for. Its main goal is to offer the content that satisfies their needs the best.
RankBrain is a component of Google’s algorithm based on artificial intelligence.
It had been around for a couple of years, but it took some time until it was fully implemented. In 2015, Google announced that RankBrain is the third most important ranking signal.
Thanks to RankBrain, Google understands 2 things:
- How users interact with the organic search results
- What is the search intent behind the query
In other words, keyword research is becoming more and more topical. It is no longer about finding one ideal keyword. It is about understanding the audience and covering the topic in a complex way.
To put it simply – if the topic is well-covered, you can rank for keywords you did not even use in the text! (We’ll talk more about it in the last chapter.)
This doesn’t mean that keyword research is no longer important – quite the contrary. It just looks a little different than in the past.
Stages of keyword research
For the purpose of this guide, I have divided the whole process into 3 main steps:
- Finding the keywords
- Analyzing the keywords
- Using the keywords
Let’s dive into the details of each step.