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Keyword Research – Finding Keywords for Your Blog That You Can Compete & Make Money On

Finding keywords for your blog featured image - a man inspecting a giant key placed in front of a webpage.

One of the most important aspects of blogging success is finding the right keywords to target. 

The goal is to find keywords with a high search volume to get decent traffic. You also want to make sure you can realistically rank for each keyword. 

In this article, we’ll show you how to find profitable keywords that your competitors overlook.

Let’s start finding keywords that help your blog convert to sales or ad revenue.

What Is Keyword Research?

Keyword research is the process of finding words or phrases that people type into search engines to find content. You can use those keywords in your blog posts to rank higher in search engine results. 

Why Is Keyword Research Important for SEO?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving your blog’s ranking in search engine results. Keyword research is important for SEO because it helps you find keywords that you can rank for. If you blog about popular topics, your blog will get more traffic over time. As traffic grows, your lead flow and sales numbers will increase.

Customer Acquisition

In addition to SEO, keyword research helps with customer acquisition. You can identify keywords that attract people at the top, middle, and bottom of your sales funnel. Understanding that a searcher is at the bottom of the funnel, for instance, helps you mold content that speaks to the user’s immediate buying needs.

Marketing Trends Insights

Keyword research can also help you stay up-to-date with marketing trends. You can use keyword research tools to find new topics that people search for. Staying focused in this area identifies content gaps over time.  

Keyword/Query Trends

Google Trends is a free tool that shows you keyword trends over time. Using this tool helps to identify gaps in your overall keyword strategy.

You can use Google Trends to do the following. 

  • Find new blog post ideas
  • Monitor changes in search volume
  • Identify seasonality patterns
  • See if there’s a spike in searches for a particular keyword

Stages of Keyword Research

The first stage is to brainstorm a list of potential keywords. You can use a tool like Google AdWords Keyword Planner, Ahrefs, or Moz Keyword Explorer to find popular keywords in your industry. 

Once you have a list of potential keywords, you need to evaluate each one to see if it’s a good keyword to target. 

The next stage is to check the search volume for each keyword. Doing this will give you an idea of how many people search for that keyword every month. After you’ve checked the search volume, you need to evaluate the competition for each keyword. 

The next stage is to prioritize your keywords. Prioritize keywords with a high search volume and low competition. These are the keywords that you can realistically rank for in search engine results. 

Short Tail vs Long Tail Keywords

There are two types of keywords.

  1. Short tail 
  2. Long-tail

Short tail keywords are one or two words. They have a high search volume. They’re also competitive. Long-tail keywords include three or more words. They have a lower search volume. They’re typically less competitive. It’s usually easier to rank for long-tail keywords because there’s less competition.

Understanding Keyword Themes

A keyword theme is a group of related keywords. For example, if you blog about “content marketing,” you could target the following keyword themes.

  • Content marketing strategy
  • Creating blog content
  • Repurposing blog content
  • Promoting blog content

You can turn each of these keyword themes into blog post ideas. When you blog about these topics, you can rank for the individual keywords. Over time, Google will recognize your blog as an “authority” for the “content marketing” theme. 

Other examples of keyword themes in different niches include:

  • Dog training
  • Web development
  • Travel hacking

How To Do Keyword Research

With a basic understanding of the stages of keyword research and the types of keywords to look for, it’s time to begin the research process.

Brainstorm Your Keywords

To brainstorm keywords, many people go straight to keyword tools like Ubersuggest or Google’s AdWords Planner. You need to use these tools. However, you shouldn’t underestimate the power of other options to uncover keywords you can compete with.

Google Search Console

One of the most underrated tools for blog keyword research is Google Search Console. It’s a free tool from Google that shows you the keywords your blog ranks for. 

It doesn’t simply give you blog post ideas. The tool will also help you understand which keywords you’re already ranking for. You can then prioritize these keywords in your blog content strategy. 

To get started with Google Search Console, you need to add your blog to the tool. You can do this by going to the “Add a Property” section and adding your blog’s URL. 

Once you’ve added your blog, you need to wait for Google to crawl your site. The process can take a few days or weeks. After Google crawls the site, go to the “Search Traffic” section and click on “Search Analytics. You’ll see a list of the keywords your blog ranks for. You can then use these keywords as blog post ideas. 

Generate Organic Keyword Ideas From Your Website

Another great way to find blog post ideas is to generate organic keyword ideas from your website. You can do this with a free tool like Google Analytics

Go to the “Acquisition” section and click on “All Traffic. Look at the list of the channels generating traffic to your blog. Click on “Organic Search. You’ll see a list of the keywords people use to find your blog. You can use these keywords as blog post ideas. 

YouTube Suggestions

You can YouTube to find topics and keywords people search for. Go to YouTube and enter a keyword into the search bar. You’ll see a list of related keywords. You can then use these keywords as blog post ideas. 

Answer the Public

Answer the Public is a free tool that generates questions people are asking about a particular topic. To use the tool, enter a keyword into the search bar. The tool will generate a list of questions people are asking about that keyword. It will also generate a list of related keywords.

Quora Questions

Quora is a Q&A platform where people ask questions about different topics. Use it to find blog post ideas by searching for a keyword. Look at the questions that come up. You can also use Quora to find blog post ideas by looking at the related keywords it reveals. 

How To Choose the Best Organic Keywords

Sifting through ineffective options and selecting relevant keywords is the most important part of the process. 

Include a mix of short-tail and long-tail keywords on your list. You should also have a mix of high, medium, and low competition keywords on your list. High-competition keywords are usually difficult to rank for. You’ll find that you can rank for medium competition and low competition keywords more easily. 

Don’t shy away from high-competition keywords, however. Use them as “hub” pages. A hub page links from the home page. Some people call them Tier 2 pages. Use your medium competition and low competition keywords to expand upon a hub page’s theme. 

Relevance for Business

Always consider your blog’s relevance when choosing keywords. It doesn’t matter how much traffic a keyword gets if it’s not relevant to your blog. For example, let’s say you have a blog about dog breeds. You wouldn’t want to target the keyword “cat food” because it’s not relevant to your blog. 

How Many Terms Should I Have In My Organic Keyword Research List?

The number of keywords you have on your list will depend on your blog’s topic. If you have a blog about dog breeds, you might have a shorter list than if you had a blog about the history of the world. 

A good rule of thumb is to have at least 100 keywords on your list. Doing this will give you enough options to work with and will help you find blog post ideas that you can rank for. 

Organic Keyword Research Tools

There are a few different tools you can use to perform organic keyword research.

Google Keyword Planner 

Google Keyword Planner is a free tool that’s available to anyone with a Google account. To use the tool, go to Google Keyword Planner and sign in with your Google account. Here are ways to use the planner. 

Perform a Search Based on a Seed Keyword

The first way to use Google Keyword Planner is to perform a search based on a seed keyword. A seed keyword is a word or phrase that describes your blog’s topic. 

To do this, click on “Keyword Ideas” and enter your seed keyword into the “Your product or service” field. Then, click on the “Get Ideas” button. 

Check Specific URL To Get Keyword Ideas for a Specific Topic

Checking a specific URL is useful if you want to find keywords relevant to a blog post you’ve already written. Click on “Keyword Ideas”. Enter the URL of the blog post into the “Your landing page” field. Then, click on the “Get Ideas” button. 

Competitor-based Keyword Research

You can also use Google Keyword Planner to do competitor-based keyword research. It’s a good way to find blog post ideas that you can rank for. To do this, click on “Keyword Ideas” and enter the URL of your competitor’s blog. 

KWFinder

KWFinder is a keyword research tool that’s similar to Google Keyword Planner. It’s available for free. To use KWFinder, go to KWFinder.com and enter your seed keyword into the “Enter your keyword” field. Then, click on the “Find keywords” button. You will get a list of relevant keywords that you can use for your blog.

Ubersuggest

You can research both keywords and domain URLs with Ubersuggest. When searching for keywords, it will give you a list of relevant keywords that you can use. Similar to AnswerThePublic, it will also bring back question-based ideas to use as content. 

You can also perform competitor research Ubersuggest. Enter a competitor domain URL to see which keywords it ranks for. Identify areas where you can write better content to outrank each competitor on your list.

Ubersuggest offers a free and paid plan.

Ahrefs

Ahrefs is one of the most comprehensive keyword research tools available. It’s also one of the most expensive options. With it, you can uncover thousands of relevant keywords to add to your keyword research list. 

For each keyword, Ahrefs shows you which websites already rank for it. It will reveal the Domain Authority (DR) of each website. Using DR as a metric helps you understand if the competition is too great for the keywords you want to target. 

If you see a DR of 70 or greater for each website ranking on Google’s first page, you probably want to look at a different keyword. As your website’s DR grows, you can compete for these types of keywords. 

The Ahrefs tool also reveals the number of backlinks each page already includes. Once again, it’s better to move on to a different keyword if it will take too long to generate the same number of links to your new piece of content. 

Moz Keyword Explorer

Moz’s Keyword Explorer is another excellent keyword research tool. It provides data similar to what Ahrefs offers. It works well to help understand the difficulty of ranking for a keyword. The higher the difficulty score, the harder it will be to rank on Google’s first page. 

You can also use Moz’s Keyword Explorer to find new blog post ideas. Enter a seed keyword and let the tool generate a list of related keywords. 

Conclusion

We’ve shown you a variety of methods to help you uncover keywords relevant to your blog. We’ve also provided an overview of some excellent tools that will make the process easier and more comprehensive. Use these tools and methods to find blog post ideas that will help you earn money.

Written by Kyle Garcia

Hi, I'm Kyle.

For the last 9 years I have been studying, researching and perfecting everything marketing related.

I specialise in SEO, and also have a lot of experience in PPC, digital PR and content marketing. At times I dabble in web development and design, but find it is usually best I leave this stuff to the real experts.

Over the years I have been fortunate enough to work closely with many household name brands, helping them see growth in the millions of $, and also managed to create and grow my own Amazon affiliate site before it was acquired in early 2022.

Now I'm sharing my learnings with the readers of this site.

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