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Beginner’s Keyword Research Guide for SEO

What Is Keyword In SEO

Keywords are the most commonly used words and phrases, also known as search queries that people type into the Google search page to look for information on products, services, educational topics, etc. Basically, keywords define what your content is about to search engines.

In order to rank your website, you will need to find out the relevant keywords that people in your niche are searching for and create content around it. No matter how top-notch the quality of the articles on your website is if people are not searching for those keywords you are targeting, it is of no use, and your hard work will go down the drain. That’s why keyword research is very important.

It is quite common to find many people, especially bloggers struggling with keyword research. Some people don’t know how to do keyword research at all while others find useless half-baked keywords that are not in line with their business even though they have to potential to rake in a large amount of traffic to their website.

How To Do Keyword Research For SEO

The very first step is to put yourself in the shoes of your potential customers, or the people you are targeting. For example, if you are selling or recommending shoes on your website, ask yourself what you would be searching for online to find the best shoes or where you would be looking for recommendations, and what your search queries will be. It is nothing but the terms and phrases which you will be using to find the desired information, which is ‘the best shoes’ in our case.

Now, we all know that when it comes to buying shoes, we look for comfort and quality. Now, open up Google, type in ‘best comfortable s’ (initial for shoes), and wait for the Google search suggestions to load. What you get over there, these recommendations, are the best keywords you can use for your blog posts. For example, some of the suggestions will be – the best comfortable shoes, best comfortable shoes in India, best comfortable sports shoes, best comfortable sneakers, etc.

Now, if you want to target long tail keywords, as they are comparatively easy to rank, type in something like ‘best comfortable shoes [space]’ and wait for the autocomplete suggestions to load. You will now get some more keyword ideas like –  best comfortable shoe brands, best comfortable shoe insoles, best comfortable shoes for work, best comfortable shoe companies, etc.

These are all the most commonly used keywords people search for on Google. Now, type in ‘best comfortable shoes for [space]’, and you will get something like this – best comfortable shoes for walking, best comfortable shoes for travel, best comfortable shoes for running, best comfortable shoes for walking, best comfortable shoes for men, best comfortable shoes for nurses, etc.

I guess that is more than enough for kickstarting your own niche blog on comfortable shoes. Unless you are searching for a very wide term, most of these keywords you find using Google will have low search volume and less competition. Which means you can easily rank for those keywords. For example, if you choose to write an article on ‘The 8 Most Famous Sneakers of 2018’, the search volume would be 150 for famous sneakers. Now, if you look at the top ranking websites on the search engine results page (SERP), and analyze what are their top ranking keywords, it would be as follows –

  • Best sneakers of all time: 600 search volume generating 412 traffic per month.
  • Coolest shoes ever: 1400 search volume, 1431 traffic generating per month.

They are the same keyword but with variations. Now, If you type your keyword ‘famous shoes’ you will get the same search results covering the best shoes and coolest shoes. That’s because Google is smart enough to know that they are the same search queries people commonly use to type in the search box.

Now, carefully analyze the backlinks traffic per month, and select a keyword.

Also Read: How To Get High-Quality Backlinks For FREE

Now, copy the URLs of the top websites and select a keyword that has the least number of backlinks as it is easy to outrank them. For your blog post, you can make use of the same title but with little variations (remember to keep the main keyword intact). You should now have some content around the keyword for your blog post. Make sure that the quality of your content is way better than that of your competitors. That way, you can easily knock them off their position and outrank them.

Free Keyword Research Tools

Pro Keyword Research Tip

Don’t always rely on these SEO keyword research and analysis tools for doing on-page SEO. They are not always accurate and should be used for just generating new blog post ideas and calculating rough estimates of search volume and competition. It is better than doing no keyword research as something is always better than nothing. By the way, try to perform manual keyword research if possible before diving into new topics.

Other Ways To Find Great Content Ideas

Forums like Quora, Reddit, and Facebook groups, are your best friends. Just open them up on a new tab, type in the keyword you want to write an article on, hit enter, and see what other people are looking for. Analyze those keywords the same way we have done above and check if it is worth putting your time and effort into.

As soon as you have created content around the popular keywords found on these forums, answer those questions and link them back to your blog post.

If you are using Ahrefs, you can also make use of their Content Explorer tool. Just type in your keyword, and from the filter mentioned on the page select 0 backlinks filter. It will display all the pages with 0 backlinks, you can now simply pick up a keyword with great search volume, write better content and outrank your competitors.


Thus I hope that you found these keyword research tips useful in finding your desired keywords. Remember that the keyword research process needn’t always be as complex as it sounds. You can simply use the humble Google search box to find most of your keywords! 😉

Beginner's Guide To Keyword Research
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19 thoughts on “Beginner’s Keyword Research Guide for SEO”

  1. Antony, this subject can be confusing for new bloggers, thanks for the info and the links to keyword tools.
    We will feature this post on the next Blogger’s Pit Stop
    The Blogger’s Pit Stop

    • I totally agree with you Kathleen, that’s why I was inspired to write down a beginners guide to keyword research. You’re welcome by the way!

  2. It’s very handy guide ! Hoping to use it for my own blog 🙂
    thanks for sharing.
    have a great week ahead 🙂

  3. I am so naive though you have written so many things but I understood only some of it. Can you take a look at my site and help me out am into dire need of quality backlinks

    • Hello Swapnil, you cannot directly analyze the traffic generated through backlinks but you can use tools like Ahrefs, Linkody, Majestic SEO, Moz Link Explorer, etc to analyze where your backlinks are coming from.

      • I checked it out but I could not understand it… backlinks in the sense the links which are embedded in my site? How did they get attach when I did not attach them? How do I know if they are good or bad and remove them

        • No, backlinks are those links from other sites to your website. Some backlinks are spammy because those domains have got no real content, that is, they use content scrapers to fill their site with copied content.

            • Hello Swapnil, outbound links/OBL are links which you create to other websites and they are different from inbound links/IBL. Inbound links are those links which are created by others to your website. It can either be done manually (by content creators, bloggers, etc) or automatically (by content scrapers, bots, etc). There’s nothing you can do to actively stop your content from being scraped and linked back to your website.


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