Keyword Research is not what it used to be a decade back. Over time, it has changed, improved and evolved.
So the traditional tools that you might have been hearing everyone talk about, aren’t really as effective as they were back when those reviews and articles were written.
- What you will learn:
- How Keyword Research has Evolved:
- Tools Reviewed and Listed:
- 1. SeCockPit
- 2 . Market Samurai
- Already want to go for it?
- 3. Keyword Discovery
- 4. WordTracker
- 5. Keyword Spy
- 6. FreshKey
- 7. WordStream
- 8. Ubersuggest
- 9. Long Tail Pro
- 10. BuzzSumo
- Types of Competitor Content:
- Paid Features:
- 11. Keyword.io
- 12. Google
- 13. SemRush
- Wrapping it up:-
What you will learn:
- How has Keyword Research changed over time.
- 13 Best Paid and Free Keyword Research tools .
- Pro’s of using them.
- Con’s of using them.
How Keyword Research has Evolved:
A decade back, keyword stuffing was the favorite weapon of bloggers. All they had to do was, put their keywords in the content, the more times they could, the more profitable it was to them. Well now, don’t even think of doing that. It’ll doom you.
After keyword stuffing came the more user-oriented keyword, the long tail keywords, which focus on the exact query of an user because ofg it’s saturation by the big brands. I mean those domain already had high DA, so when they started integrating long tail keywords, they ranked high easily and it was again hard for new comers to get anywhere near the first page.
And then came the Semantic Search with the hummingbird update. It is the most advanced algorithm update of Google till now, as it made Google think like a human .
Now, Google understood that when you search for “FOOD”, you might also be searching for “DRINKS” , meaning Google started incorporating related keywords, synonyms and words with same meaning in the search page.
We’ve written a detailed article on how to use the Naturalization tactic to integrate related terms on your post and bump up the ranking. So the point is, in order to keep up with the upcoming changes in keyword research, you need to diversify and expand your own toolkit.
The below numbers, are just numbers. All the tools are equallly efficient, the numbering is just for the sake of grouping them.
Tools Reviewed and Listed:
- Market Samurai
- Keyword Discovery
- Google Products
Every Keyword Tool out there can get you keyword related ideas and data right? There must be something unique that SeCockpit possess if I’m recommending it , shouldn’t be there?
Okay so here are the Pro’s of using SeoCockpit:
- Extremely Elaborate Keyword Data of course.
- Traffic Estimates
- Organic Competition etc.
The Dashboard looks something like this..
And I don’t think it’s really important or special to tell you how to Check a keyword search volume and CPC etc. Just key in the seed keyword, and you’ll get all those data almost looking similar to Google’s Keyword Planner.
What I should focus here is telling you how it’s special right? So here it is. There’s a column called Niche. Which is an angel data investor if you’re going to work on a niche site. ( They are tremendously profitable, trust me ).
Those green bars, simply calculate Organic hits, top 10 competitors and their data analysis, and then shows itself to you. Simply put, the larger the bar is, the more profitable and easier targeting that particular niche will be.
Competition Analysis: How can you beat your competition? The first step will be, knowing who they are right? Here’s what SeCockpit does for your competition:
- List top 10 Competition for your keyword.
- Get you a detailed data on why they’re ranking high. Backlinks, Domain Authority , Page authority and what not.
How you can use this data? Create your content, and approach them for a Backlink, if they don’t agree, just use the comment box on their sites. Anyway, you’ll be getting related backlinks which counts.
Secondly, you know how many backlinks they got, right? Just go on, and steadily, over time, naturally create more backlinks then them. Once you hit the mark, trust me you’re gonna be spotted.
- Not Free.
- You aren’t serious.
Okay so that’s it, this is just a list post of Top best keyword research tools, if you’re going for SeCockpit, do let me know in the comments, would be more then happy to help you out and probably learn from each other?
2 . Market Samurai
The awesome list of Keyword Research tools has not yet even begun, and there’s already excitement it’s great. Wanna know more?
Let me list the Awesome list of features that Market Samurai has to offer:
- Rank Tracker.
- SEO Competition analysis.
- and best of all Keyword Research.
There are other awesome features too, but even if there were only these 3 features, I’d buy it.
So here’s the deal, for example I want to rank high for “Market Samurai”, it doesn’t only get me a very vast and extensive list of almost all the data I’m going to need to rank it, but also the analysis of my competitors for that keyword.
See that “Golden Rule” option at the top? Well that’s the magic wand from Market Samurai.When you key in your focus keyword, it eliminates all the keywords that have high competition, that won’t be easy to beat.
Instead, it shows you a combination of different long tail keywords, combining whom you can definitely rank on the top page within weeks. ( Yes it takes time, unless you are Neil Patel or Brian Dean. 🙂
Already want to go for it?
Sure I’d be more then happy to recommend it to you. Worry not, if you use my link, of course I’ll get a commission, and you’ll get a 35% discount, which reduces the price from 145$ , to around 100$.
Think of how many times you’ve just wasted the money on burgers and pizzas? Time to invest in something that pays you back maybe, right?
Bonus: It comes with a 7 day trial period. Not worth your money? Don’t buy it, but what’s the harm in trying?
Not Yet Convinced? Here’s what more you can do with Market Samurai:
Rank Tracker: It shows your current ranking for a certain Keyword, and in return you can analyse why you aren’t ranking above your competition.
Find content: Okay there’s a simple tactic if you’re going to use this tool to overtake your competition.
- Make your content more valuable then your “similar content competitors”.
- Make it longer. ( Yes, it might sound stupid but it does count as a ranking metric ).
- Create more “natural” backlinks to it then your competitors.
There’s no factor that can or will stop you from ranking if only this Find content feature is used to its true potentials. So what you are waiting for? And there definitely are a lot , and I mean Lot of other features in it, like Backlink analysis, backlink source, number of Backlink tracker etc, which are your foundation pillars if you are going to beat your competition.
So if you’re interested in Market Samurai and have downloaded the trial version, do let me know in the comments I’ll mail you a detailed article along with it’s functions and modules on how to use it.
I know you must have surely downloaded the trial version of MarketSamurai by now, but still let me just humor you. Here are 10 more Free and Paid tools to take your SERP to the next level.
3. Keyword Discovery
Keyword discovery is a basic keyword research tools, that shows you some keyword suggestions for the keyword you are trying to focus. Along with some cool features to help you with your research:
- It analyses the keyword’s search volume over the last 12 months .
- Data is collected from various individual browser toolbars, so that individualized data is of great help while writing your next article.
- Free version allows only 100 results.
WordTracker is another awesome tool when it comes to keyword research, along with some really great features. It is loaded with features, for example it’ll get you a list of keywords. It’ll even get you the estimated competition. Not satisfied yet? Well, it’ll not hesitate to get you Key Efficiency Index, that helps you calculate the potential of a certain keyword , all for free.
- You get lot of info, Keywords, their competition and the KEI.
- Allows sorting of the data, so you can analyse better.
- Only 10 search terms allowed in the free version.
5. Keyword Spy
Okay so this is the tool, after which you can literally stop reading this article.
It doesn’t only give you keyword insight, but a lot more than that. In fact, this is the one tool, after LongTailPro that can guarantee your success.
Why it’s Awesome :-
- Any tool can get you keywords. Well KeywordSpy gets you the exact keywords that you competition is using.
- It gets you the amount, which companies or individuals spend for advertising on that particular keyword, that directly shows you how important it is.
- Real Time Tracking :- You can track your keyword’s performance LIVE on different search engines. And if you’re not ranking #1, it gets you the reason and options to improve.
Still not convinced? Well maybe this will do the trick, here’s what the Head of SEO, for Yahoo has in mind for KeyWord Spy- “Best Tool By Far For Anyone.”
Freshkey is not Free, but it’s totally value for money.
It’s technically like the advanced, improved version of the Google auto suggest feature. As you already know, targeting direct words isn’t really easy if you dont have high domain authority.
What seems to help here, is the relative phrases and term variations that pop up on Google auto-suggest right? Targeting these is fairly easier then targeting the main phrase.
Another feature that makes it awesome is, you can get thousands of keywords using simple variations in the keywords like “a,’ “the” etc.
The power of WordStream lies in it’s Niche based research. Meaning when you research on a certain keyword, it’s not just the keyword you research, it’s the whole niche.
Also, it has another weapon called the Relative frequency. Means, it tells you how frequently a certain keyword is searched for. It’s no use for you if a keyword is searched 1000 times in December, and then never again till next December right? So well here’s you solution.
Not Satisfied yet? Well Wordstream also allows you to send those keywords free to your email account.
- Extensive Data.
- Over 1 trillion Keyword data.
- Relativity volume.
- Only 30 Searches allowed for free.
- Most metrics are not visible in the free version, so you need to signup. Although there’s a 7 day free trial.
UberSuggest is like the dictionary of keywords. You type in a Keyword , let’s say Affiliate.
If goes through all possible variations, like Affiliate A, Affiliate B , Affiliate C etc. And overall, gets you the results like Affiliate Adsense, Affiliate Book, Affiliate Company etc.
- Totally Free.
- No Registration Needed.
- Alphabetical syntax of the results.
- You get the keywords, not their Value, search volume or stuff.
It’s still great because when you are out of long tail keyword ideas, this tool can be of great help. After getting the keywords, key them in som premium keyword research tool like LongTailPro and you’re going boom.
9. Long Tail Pro
Okay, it’s a paid tool. It’s THE paid tool , my personal favorite of all the research tools I’ve listed in this post.
Yes it’s not free, sowhat? You do have to get buy your domain name, and servers anyway right? This is just an investment like that, an investment with sure returns.
Just to emphasize the features of this tool, here’s what Patt Flynn from SmartPassiveIncome says about it “ I’m impressed with Long Tail Pro. It’s definitely a must have for all SEO professionals.
- Shows upto 800 variations of keyword / seed keyword.
- Built in Rank checker, means you can analyse which blogs are ranking on #1 , for your keywords, and which keywords will help you outrank them.
- If you’re going for an “Exact match” domain, which is a boon if you’re going for niche sites , then surely the built in Exact Match feature will help you get there.
- There have been reports of it crashing, so make sure you have a high-end PC while using it.
- It’s not free.
It’s more like a Content Research Tool, rather then a keyword research one. But, what will you do with the keywords without the right ideas and tactics about the content?
That’s where BuzzSumo comes in handy. So here’s a brief guide on How to use BuzzSumo to brainstorm Content Marketing ideas that’ll break your ranking records.
What are the two most basic characteristics of a Good, valuable post?
- Social Shares.
- And links to it, right?
It’s an extensive tool, on which I’ll surely be publishing a detailed guide, but considering it’s keyword research potential in view, here’s how to leverage it for your SERP boost.
Hit up Buzzsumo, and key in your focus keyword. For eg. I’m keying in Content Marketing Strategy.
What you have to take a note of is, those domains which are appearing more then once in the results. For eg. in this screenshot, you can see JeffBullas appearing more then once right?
And his social shares are awesome too.
There are two results you can extract from this data, first, how popular your keyword is. The social shares give you a fair amount of idea about that. And secondly, if a domain is ranking for a certain keyword, like JeffBullas.com in our case, then he certainly has great authority over that keyword right?
What can be better then reaching out to him, and asking for a backlink? Trust me, if you do, your content is going boom. Because, related backlinks have awesome weight.
And even if the Marketer or Blog owner doesn’t give you a direct backlink, make use of the comment box out there. Pitch him a Good, seriously thorough feedback about his post, and include your link there. The good old fashioned way.
Types of Competitor Content:
So you’ve found your Top competitors? What makes them Different? Why are they getting so many shares? Well that’s where this part comes in. Head over to BuzzSumo again, and key in that domain which is appearing frequently in your search terms.
I’m putting JeffBullas.com, and here’s what I get.
Please please please tell me you’ve noticed what he does. Yup, see? Most of his posts are list posts. 10 ways to do something. 5 ways to do another thing and stuff like that.
So you’ve got a pretty much clear idea about the approach which you’ll need on your next blog post right? So instead of just “Killer Content Marketing Ideas”, why not use ” 5 Killer Content Marketing ideas for 2016″ ? It works like charm.
- BuzzSumo offers you the one thing most of us are dying for, Backlink Analysis. Meaning, it shows you the sites which have linked back to a content, and so clearly the content is ranking high because those backlinks were of Good authority right?
So you don’t have to go link-fishing anymore, just focusing on those Sites saves both time and energy, and accelerates results of course.
2. Unlimited Searches. So you are free to do whatever you want with BuzzSumo and use it to it’s fullest of potentials.
You get to the homepage, choose your country and enter a specific keyword and it will get you a vast list of potential keywords. Let’s look at some of it’s pro’s and con’s.
- Country Based Targeting.
- Long Tail keyword suggestions.
- Free URL suggestions for the Keywords.
- Visualized analysis of the keyword.s
- There aren’t any, there are some limitations which can be removed with the Free signup, so just hit it.
This is the best, free keyword research tool you can get. And the point is, when you’re trying to rank on Google, what can be better then Google itself?
I’ll just fast-list some of the best features on Google you can utilize for a beneficial keyword research for your next blog post.
Okay so you can’t rank easily for “content Marketing”. You can’t trust me. But you can rank for the other terms, that come up when you are typing “Content Marketing” in the search box, and they already have high search volume or else they don’t appear here.
If you are “news-jacking” or just “keyword jacking”, this is the best tool for you. It shows you the search relativity of certain keywords, throughout the whole year.
For eg. if there’s a new Google Update going to be released, it’s a good idea to have a post on the topic.
Google Keyword Planner:
Who can forget Google’s very own keyword planner when Keyword Research is being discussed? It’s one of the best tools for long tail keyword researches, available for free from Google.
All you need to do is, hit the link, enter your keyword, and click on Get Ideas.
Now you’ll get a Gold mine of relevant keywords, with their competition statistics. This is the basics, but well, one of the most accurate, instant and better ways to finalize your keyword research,.
Undoubtedly one of the Best keyword research tools available on the market. As SemRush’s positive reputation is unquestionable.
Here is why you should go for SemRush:-
- Total Competitor analysis. Let’s you know their paid and organic keywords ( which you can steal ).
- Search volumes , trends and best time of the month or year to use a certain keyword based on years of data.
- Detailed data includes CPC, volume, the number of results, trend, and ad copies for the queried term etc.
- You’ll also discover which of the biggest web players use each keyword, and their most popular landing pages.
- Used by 500000+ users ( as of December, 2015). Now, all of them can’t be wrong, right?
Here’s why you shouldn’t go for SemRush:
- Because, you don’t want to rank. Simple.
Wrapping it up:-
If you are serious about your online presence, then you need to build a brand. And you can’t do so, without a proper research, because there already are enough brands dominating the E-market.
The free tools do the job quite OK. But if you need exceptional results, trust me those small investments are worth making. And the best thing is most of the tools have a trail period too.
Would you mind Sparing couple seconds for me? Your feedback’s keep me motivated and informed, seriously:
- Have you worked with any of these ?
- What was your experience?
- Do you think there’s any tool we missed that should’ve been included?
The comment box is all yours.