How To Do Keyword Research

Keyword research can be complicated at first. There are tons of different keyword research tools and so many different terms. Without an organized approach, you could spend countless hours doing keyword research.

This article will:

  • Review why keyword research is important & why you should do it.
  • Give you a step by step guide to do keyword research
  • Expert tips to find the best keywords for your industry

Why is Keyword Research Important?

There are 8.5 billion searches completed on Google per day. It’s safe to say that a lot of folks are looking for answers to their questions, solutions to their problems, buying a product, or just searching to find knowledge on a given topic. 

Some of these searches are highly relevant to your business. While a lot of these searches are probably not as relevant. If you’re going to promote your business on Google, Bing, or any other search engine, then you need to pick the right keywords.

Otherwise, you could be wasting a lot of time and money.

On the other hand, you have a huge opportunity to get in front of people that are actively searching for something you provide. The power behind search is that it represents consumer intent in a way that other marketing channels can’t replicate.

The free tools that Google provides you along with third party tools like SEMRush, SpyFu, Ubersuggest, and more can help you find the right terms for your business.

When Should You Do Keyword Research?

There are four key reasons why marketers tend to do keyword research:

  1. Finding the right keywords for your paid search campaigns – to create an effective search campaign, you need to choose the right keywords. This allows you to show ads to people when they are looking for your product or have searches that relate to your product. Furthermore, you can find keywords based upon then decide which keywords to advertise on:
    1. Monthly search volume
    2. Average CPC (cost per click)
    3. Level of competition
  1. Finding the right keywords to rank for on SEO – similar to paid search, you need to pick which keywords you want your content to rank for. Unlike paid search, you need to find terms that your site can rank for based upon the level of competition that brings a meaningful amount of traffic to your site.
  1. Learn more about your customers and how your product/service relates to their search queries – keyword research is an excellent way to discover more about what customers are looking for. You can answer questions like:
    1. Which product(s) are they trying to buy?
    2. What do seasonal trends look like for searches for your products?
    3. Which products are more popular or more niche?
  1. Refining or developing content based upon what your customers are searching for – content is king and can enable your PPC, SEO, and digital marketing initiatives. Keyword research can give you an idea of how people talk about your products/services so you can speak their lingo. This allows you to relate more to them and the problems they are trying to solve.

The Easy Approach to Keyword Research for PPC

There are a variety of approaches to keyword research. To help you get started, here’s a basic step by step guide.

  1. Determine what products/services you want to focus on – this sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s very easy to get distracted as you progress through your keyword research. Besides knowing your business objective (revenue, leads, etc), knowing what you want to market is the first step. This and your budget will help you determine which keywords to advertise on.
  1. Use Google’s keyword research tool to come up with different ideas. Here’s where you can find Google’s keyword research tool in Google Ads and a basic guide on how to use it:
    1. Log into your account
    2. Select tools & settings in the top of your screen
    3. Under planning, go to keyword planner
    4. From there, you should see this screen with three options.
      1. The first option to “discover new keywords” will help you find different terms based upon your website url and product.
      2. The second option will give you traffic estimates based upon the keywords you end up selecting and your bids/match types
      3. The third option helps you organize keywords into ad groups after you’re done with keyword research….though you should be able to do this proficiently on your own to start off.
  1. You should get a list of keywords after you use the “Discover new keywords” section (example below) which you can download. From there, you can filter for different terms in excel or Google Sheets to find the right ones based upon your ideal CPC, search traffic, and intent.
  1. The last step to any basic keyword research is refining and repeating. You should filter out keywords that don’t match your criteria for what you offer, where you’re located, and lack relevance to your business. You should repeat your keyword research to make sure you find new opportunities over time as well.

Expert Tips for Keyword Research

Here are a few expert tips to help you while you do your keyword research:

  • Categorize your keywords for ad groups/campaigns based upon search themes. Here are a few different categories to consider using:
    • Brand vs Non-Brand
    • Product Category
    • Actions (buy {insert-product})
    • Location Specific Keywords (near me, in New York City, etc)
    • Discovery terms (how to, where is, tutorials)
    • Rephrasing similar terms (classes, courses, bootcamps, etc)
  • Know your goals and conversion rate before you do keyword research. That will help you determine how many clicks you need to get an order or lead. Then you can determine if a keyword is able to help you achieve your goals.
  • Use competitor tools like SEMRush/Spyfu to see what keywords your competition is using. More likely than not, they’re bidding on specific keywords that are profitable to them which means they could be good keywords for you to use.
  • Below are different categories of keyword intent for you to consider:
    • Informational – how, why, what
    • Commercial – best, review, compare, product name, etc
    • Transactional – buy, for sale, cheap, rent, book
    • Navigational – any specific site name
  • Here are some keyword research tools for you to consider besides Google’s free keyword planner:
    • SEMRush – provides keyword research based upon its forecasting data and data on which keywords your competitors show ads on.
    • SpyFu – similar to SEMRush, when you compare/contrast data from the two you could find different terms for the same topic. 
    • Google Trends – gives you search demand over time for different keywords and topics. This is great for content research & allows you to look for emerging trends/virality of different keywords.
    • Ubersuggest – gives you different keyword suggestions related to your initial keyword or website. 

Final Thoughts

If you follow these basic tips, you’ll master the art and science of keyword research! But if you need more help, we’re here for you. Book a free consultation with us today and we’ll go over how to get started on Google and how to get better results.

Centaur Consulting Group

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