If you want to attract the right traffic from Google you need to use the right keywords—and that means researching what keywords people are actually searching for in your industry. This research is so important to businesses of all kinds that there’s an entire industry growing around it with dozens of tools you can use. Many of these tools cost money but some of the best are free—and those are the ones we’re going to explore today.
Google Keyword Planner
This free tool is one of many tools provided by Google and it allows you to search for keywords related to your niche and see how often those keywords are being searched for and what similar keywords are also being frequently searched for. It uses an incredibly simple form that allows you to filter your search results based on things like language or location. You can also enter the URL of a competitor’s website to see what keywords they rank for, which is probably the coolest feature of GKP.
GKP is built for advertisers so it doesn’t provide much information about relevant keyword competitiveness for publishers but it is still one of the best and easiest tools. For best results, you want to use GKP in combination with other keyword tools on this list.
Check out the infographic at the bottom of this article from the team at LocalDigital.com.au, which was put together solely with the keyword and search data provided by Google, in particular, the Keyword Planner.
Keywordtool.io is the site you go to if you want to find long-tail keywords—keywords that are actually phrases like “best SEO tips 2016”. All you have to do is type in a simple phrase like “business marketing” and this tool will give you several long-tail keywords extending the phrase. It gathers these keywords from Google, Yahoo, Bing and even the Apple App store, all within a matter of seconds.
This tool does have a premium version as well as the free version with a large variety of features that may be worth investing in such as information on PPC and search volume for all related keywords.
With this tool you can filter your results based on things like language and country or choose to research a specific keyword and its potential. It also allows you to research long tail keywords. It can even help you find synonyms of the original keyword you searched for. Results are displayed in a visual graph instead of just numbers.
All in all, this is probably the most well rounded free tool but it still isn’t perfect. The display for results is quite narrow and it can be frustrating to have to scroll through all the results when you’re doing a large amount of research.
Keyword revealer instantly finds relevant keywords while you’re typing out your seed keyword. Unlike most of the tools on this list it has a keyword competitiveness indicator that shows you what keywords will be more difficult to rank for. It also tells you what the CPC rate and potential earnings of the keyword you’re researching are. Last but definitely not least is the brainstorming feature which will help you come up with new keywords to research when you’re feeling stuck.
Unfortunately, this keyword tool does have one major drawback: the number of related keywords it gives you based on a seed keyword is way less than what you’ll get out of the Google Keyword Planner. This makes it essential to use other tools with the Keyword Revealer.
The Bottom Line
All of these keyword tools are excellent at the thing they do, but they all come with their own limitations. The best solution is to use a combination of the different tools on this list. Google Keyword Planner, Keyword Revealer and Keywordtool.io is a particularly powerful combination that will help you perform in-depth keyword research quickly.
Of course, there are dozens of tools and it’s worth trying several—both from this list and from other lists—to figure out what works best for you and your business.