Free Tools and Strategies for Keyword Research

by Dec 4, 2020

Any piece of content you expect to publish on your blog should begin with keyword research. If you want to create content for your website’s blog then it means researching the keywords associated with your industry or niche. In this blog post I will go over some free tools and strategies for keyword research.

What is keyword research?

Keyword research is the process of finding and analyzing the keywords people are using when they search for your content, products, and services.

By doing this work you can take out the guesswork of content creation. With a well-researched list of keywords you can create the exact content that fits the user’s search query.

Free tools and strategies for doing keyword research

There are plenty of premium keyword research tools like Ahrefs and Semrush, which provide lots of insights into each search query, however these platforms are usually quite pricey.

The following are free, but very useful tools and strategies you can use to get started doing keyword research for your blog or ecommerce website.

Google Keyword Planner

This tool is part of Google Ads and you can use it to find keyword opportunities based on an initial keyword input.

The planner will also tell you things like how much search volume there is for each keyword.

To get started you’ll need to set up a free Google Ads account.

Once you’re in the keyword planner tool you can type in a keyword, or several, related to your industry or niche.

google keyword planner discover new keywords

The tool will then return a list of keyword ideas with some additional information.

google keyword planner results

You’ll want to pay attention to the average monthly searches column, which gives you a range of how many times this search query was performed in a given month (premium tools like Ahrefs and Semrush will give you a more “exact” number, rather than a range for this volume).

This is why doing keyword research is so important. It tells you how much interest, if any, there is in your keyword(s) and/or niche. Ultimately you want to create content that people are searching for.

Google Search

Aside from the Keyword Planner, another powerful and free tool you can use to conduct your research is the Google Search box.

By simply going to google.com and typing in one of your keywords the search bar will start autosuggesting additional keywords.

google search autosuggest results

This is Google letting you know that people are also searching for the keywords in the dropdown list.

Use this strategy as a quick way to find what other keywords are associated with the initial query.

Pro tip: perform these searches in an incognito window, that way you get a more accurate idea of autosuggested keywords. If you’re logged into your Google account and you type in these keywords into the search box then Google will return autosuggested keywords based on your search history.

There are a few other things we can glean from this strategy.

First try typing an underscore at the beginning of the keyword you put into the search bar. This will autosuggest a list of keywords where the keyword you put in is the suffix of the search.

google search autosuggest results suffix

Alternatively try typing an asterisk after the keyword and you’ll find additional keywords where your keyword is the prefix. Try both of these strategies to expand your keyword research.

google search autosuggest results prefix

For a particular keyword hit search and you’ll be able to glean even more information provided by Google.

The first is the “People also ask” box. 

google search results people also ask

These are specific questions that people are using as their search query that are associated with your keyword. Make a note of these questions as you’ll want to answer them in the content you create.

At the bottom of the search results you’ll also see an additional list of related searches. Grab the ones that make sense and add them to your keyword list.

google search results related searches

Final thoughts

These are just a few simple, but very useful and free tools and strategies that can help you get started on doing some initial keyword research for creating content for your blog. By doing keyword research you can create the content that matches the searcher’s query and intent.

Once you’ve put together a list of keywords you can start creating content that targets that keyword. Keep in mind that your content should answer any questions associated with the initial query and address any related search queries.

If you’re interested in getting started on creating a blog you can go here to learn how to install WordPress with Bluehost. You can also click here to follow my guide on how to start a food blog.