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  1. What is keyword research?

    Keyword research is a core SEO task that involves identifying common words and phrases people open into search engines -make in a struggle to figure out what to rank for. Researching keywords gives marketers a better knowledge of how high the demand is for certain keywords and how hard it would be to compete for those terms in the organic search results, offering some direction to optimization efforts.

    Keyword research isn’tjust about testing how many searches a particular keyword has — it’s also about exploring the many varied ways that people use language to research an idea or topic. As such, researching successful keywords isn’t just a big part of search engine optimization, it’s also an important element of content marketing as a whole. Why? Because it can help you find ideas for your next blog post, learn more about the demands of your audience, and keep up to date with the lingo of the ever-changing search landscape. Ultimately, by researching the words people type into search engines and utilising this research to generate targeted content, you can drive the right traffic to your place — traffic that is more likely to convert.

    How often should I do keyword research?

    Keyword research isn’t just a one-off task. Your website’s foundation is built on keywords, so precisely what building blocks you use requires regular re-evaluation and maintenance. Search language shifts regularly, new keywords are being formed all the time, and your public’s needs to develop and grow. As a result, keyword research is a job worth doing whenever you’re looking to build new website content. This includes when you’re looking at beginning a new website if you’re writing a new blog post for an existing site when you’re deciding whether to promote a particular product or service and beyond. It’s also rather beneficial if you’re restructuring your existing site and connecting your content.

    Your website content should serve to fulfil the needs of your audience. By regularly evaluating the ways in which people search and by identifying not just the most popular keyword searches but also the specific and ever-changing ways that people search for content within your niche of the internet, you can continue to produce content your audience will enjoy and share.

    How to do keyword research

    All keyword research starts with a topic, idea, or head keyword also called a “seed.” This seed can come from your business knowledge, from being an active member in relevant online forums and groups, or from the products and services you give. Make sure you have a spreadsheet or notepad where you can jot these terms down as you journey through the labyrinth of the site and social networks to discover variations on those keywords.

    Once you’ve got a good list, you’ll want to learn how successful each keyword is and how complicated it would be to rank for them on search engine results pages (SERPs). This is where a keyword tool comes in handy. Start by entering a seed into a research tool like Keyword Explorer. You’ll be presented with details on how popular the search is and how challenging it is to rank well for that keyword.

    Seed terms don’t just lead to metrics like search volume; they also open the door to the bounty of relevant keyword ideas that you may not have thought of yet. You can see how a simple seed word you selected up through a Facebook group or from a conversation with a customer can develop into a useful tree of keywords brimming with ideas for your pages or next blog post.

    If you want to learn more about how to do keyword research, check out chapter five of the Beginner’s Guide to SEO.

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