Do you want more targeted traffic to your website, blog or eCommerce store? If so, you need to master keyword research!
Most people will write blog posts on topics they’re passionate about (which is awesome!) but just because you like the topic, doesn’t mean that the blog will perform well, or that it will send traffic to your website.
In an ideal world, all of our blog posts would make it to the first page of Google so we get a constant flow of traffic to our sites which ultimately helps grow our authority and increases our chances of making more sales of our products and services (or just get more views on those in-blog ads!)
But here’s the thing: your blog posts will never make it to the first page of Google if you haven’t done keyword research. Remember: You want to find your keyword first, THEN create content around that keyword – not the other way around.
When you use this strategy, you’re not only going to write content that people ACTUALLY want, but you’re also going to massively increase your chances of ranking on the first page of Google and getting an influx of traffic to your website!
Here’s a screenshot of what that looks like:
Over the last year I’ve generated over 1,000,000 visits from organic search (aka. directly from google!) by implementing the keyword research method outlined below. Want this too? Keep reading!
Prefer to watch the video version of this blog post? Check out my YouTube Video!
There are many keyword research tools out there but very few are free. I used to use a tool called Keywords Everywhere which is a chrome extension and it shows you search volumes in real time as you type things into Google, YouTube and even Amazon. It is now a paid tool but I still highly recommend it.
For this tutorial we are going to focus on a free tool created by Neil Patel, called Ubersuggest. What this site does is allow you to enter a topic that you’re considering writing content about and it will generate a list of potential keywords. Attached to those keywords is its monthly search volume (how many people actually type that keyword into google every month) and a gauge for how difficult it would be to rank for that keyword.
How to Conduct Keyword Research using Ubersuggest
Open Ubersuggest and type in something you’re interested in writing about (be sure to keep this brief. For example, input ‘bookkeeping’ rather than ‘bookkeeping for bloggers’. By keeping it vague, Ubersuggest will present us with more useable options)
Note the country drop down to the right of the search bar. This indicates which country Ubersuggest will give us monthly search volumes for. This is the one area I think this tool is lacking – it would be ideal to be able to search globally. In any case, select the country of most interest to you.
Press ‘search’ and scroll down to the ‘Keyword Ideas’ section. Here you will see some suggestions on what keywords you could use, and most importantly, the blog post topics you could write.
Remember: we’re using this keyword research to tell us what we should write about, not to find keywords for content we’ve already have created.
To see a full list of potential keywords, click the ‘View all Keyword Ideas’ button.
On this page you’ll see a longer list of potential keywords and topics to write about. You’ll want to take note of the monthly search volume, as well as the column titled ‘SD’. ‘SD’ stands for SEO Difficulty and helps you gauge how difficult it would be for you to ‘rank’ for this keyword. The closer the SD number is to 100, the harder it will be to rank for that keyword.
‘Rank’ in this sense means having google display your URL in search when someone types in that exact keyword (psst. A keyword can be a single word or phrase).
Some Things to Consider
If you have a new blog that doesn’t get much traffic, ranking for keywords with very high search volume will be incredibly difficult. The perfect number is hard to say for each unique person as our websites are all at different levels of authority. However, it’s better to start small and work your way up.
For example, my website gets around 70,000+ monthly views (at the time of writing this blog) and a few keywords I’m currently ranking for are:
New Instagram Update – 60,500 monthly searches in the USInstagram Stories How To – 74,000 monthly searches in the USHow to get verified on Instagram – 33,100 monthly searches in the US
So, as you can see, I can often rank for pretty popular terms due to my website’s authority. If you get significantly less views per month you’re going to want to start a lot smaller.
Now, don’t let that discourage you. Consider this: if you currently get 100 people to your site every month, but you write a blog post and rank for a keyword that gets 1,000 searches. That means you would get a percentage of that traffic, depending on what position you show up in google (#1 is ideal of course!). Say you make it to the third spot and get about 30% of that traffic (most users click the links in positions 1-3). That means you’d be getting an extra 300 people to your site every month from one single blog post!
So while 1,000 may seem small in comparison to 74,000 it still can make a big difference in your overall website traffic!
Choosing The Best Keyword
In order to pick the best keyword, you’re going to need to collect data for a handful of keywords then put them against each other to determine your best possible choice. I do this by collecting potential keywords and adding them to an excel sheet.
Scroll through the suggested keywords Ubersuggest has given you and add any that interest you to an excel document. Make sure you record their search volume and SEO difficulty score. Remember, you want to choose keywords that you could easily create content around, that have a search volume that is not too small or too large and has a low SEO difficulty.
Once you have exhausted the keyword ideas generated by Ubersuggest you can then go through your excel document and decide which keyword you’re going to target. The best keyword is the one with the most search volume and the lowest SEO difficulty.
How to Optimize Your Blog with Your Keyword
I plan to write a blog post on Search Engine Optimization in the near future (check back for that or download one of my freebies to get on my email list and I’ll msg you when it’s live!) where I will cover this topic in depth. However I will give you a few tips that you can pair with your keyword research to see the best results.
When writing your blog post you want to make sure that the keyword appears in the:
Title of your blog (ex. Bookkeeping for Bloggers – A Full Step by Step Guide)The URL or ‘slug’ of your blog (ex. yourdomain.com/bookkeeping-for-bloggers)Within the text of your blog (add it where possible but do not ‘keyword stuff’. Stuffing is when you try to write the keyword everywhere possible, even when it’s not grammatically correct – google will notice this and not rank you as a result!)The file name of any images in your blog (ex. bookkeeping_for_bloggers.jpg)
By doing this you’re going to send Google numerous signals that this blog post is about ‘Bookkeeping for Bloggers’ and that will significantly improve your chances of ranking on the first page.
How to Outrank the Competition
One other thing to consider is that, to rank in the #1 spot on Google, you’re going to have to outrank the people who are already there. To do that you’ll need to create better content. This could mean a longer blog post, a unique spin on the topic, or simply a higher quality piece of content that provides more value.
To see who you need to outrank, you can go back to Ubersuggest, click on the keyword of your choice and on the right hand side of the screen you will see exactly which URLs are ranking for the keyword right now. You can then open them up and see what you’re competing against.
Ask yourself how can you write a better, more valuable piece of content? If you are certain you can do it. Go for it and use all the SEO tips above to get your site ranked!
So that is how you use Ubersuggest to conduct keyword research! I hope that this gave you new insight on how to create content that people are actually searching for and how to use that data to your benefit (aka, getting ranked and boosting your traffic!)
Did this help? Will you be conducting keyword research before you write your next blog? Tell me in the comments!
So helpful and thought provoking!
This is the best keyword article I’ve read yet. Thank you!!
Easily one of the most understandable breakdowns of modern SEO techniques there is! It’s concise and packed full of great tips. I love the part about the simple math behind the number of people that potentially are exposed to your brand per month from just one blog post. Here are some more tips for finding those perfect keywords for readers: — If you are starting a new blog then try and target keywords under 500 searches per month to build your reputation and backlinks. — When you have some potential keywords based on everything Alex mentioned, google the keywords in… Read more »
Most definitely I will be using this information. It’s something I have been wondering about as I create my plan of action for 2020, which includes getting site up and running. Thanks Alex!!!
Great article! Thanks, Alex. One thing though – when I clicked on the link to Ubersuggest, it brought me to an unsecure site warning page. I googled Ubersuggest and it took me to app.neilpattel.com/ubersuggest which was fine. Just wanted you to know.