How to do keyword research – for beginner bloggers
One of the most daunting things I think any blogger faces is the whole SEO challenge.
You can be an amazing writer and have the type of content that people are desperately searching for… but if you don’t have a great SEO strategy… Or if SEO scares the life out of you then your content might get lost in Google.
Keyword research is a part of that puzzle.
Sigh…. You didn’t sign up to become a search engine optimisation expert right! You wanted to share your passion with the world… don’t stress! It needn’t be hard nor time consuming!
There’s a few easy things you can do to find relevant and searchable keywords that your perfect audience is looking for in Google. But, remember that above all else – content is key!
There’s a lot of info out there about SEO and keyword research in particular.. And some if it is simple trying to get you to use a particular tool or product… which is totally fine! …
There are some amazing products out there! And I am a big fan of some of the most promoted ones… but sometimes a girl just wants to know the basics… and get on with knowing that she’s covered on the keyword front, right!
You don’t have to be a keyword wizard to get started on your blog. Relax! Breath! I’ve got your back sister!
Let’s get into it!
Keyword research – 6 easy ways to do keyword research for SEO
1. Google search
Google is your jam when it comes to keyword research. There’s a few really easy wee tricks you can utilise when you’re trying to figure out which keyword you should be using.
Remember that there’s two types of keywords… head terms… and long tail keywords…
Head terms are those 1-3 word terms that are the most searched for… like cocktails… or summer cocktails …head terms are far harder to rank for as you would expect as they are a lot more generic…
Long tail keywords
Long tail keywords are those that have 3 or more words in them and are generally way more specific… and a lot easier to rank for ..
Think Shoes… then Jimmy Choo…. You would be hard pushed to rank for either of those search terms, right?…
But … Jimmy Choo party shoe dupes might be an easier one if you’re a fashion blogger….
Here’s how to utilise Google search to find relevant keywords for your blog:
Type your general topic area into the Google search bar….
Pause a little as you’ll get a handy drop down of other suggestions for keywords!
One you submit your query … there you’ll get a whole heap of results.. Skip the paid ones… (unless something incredible catches your eye!) …
Here you’ll also see a people also ask query box…
This is a pretty cool way to figure out if you could maybe word your key phrase a little differently to catch what your audience is actually searching…
At the bottom of the page you’ll see a people also search for box…
And a section on related searches… ALL fabulous intell for you to discover exactly what it is your ideal client of customer actually search for when trying to find info on your keyword
Remember that long tail keywords might have a smaller pool of people searching for them… but…. They may be far better qualified traffic to suit your niche… and may also be far easier to rank with- meaning… that very specific keyphrases or long tail keywords might have a lower difficulty score… less competition.
2. Mozbar from Moz
Ahhh my little secret weapon… this is a weeeee bit more technical… but not so much as to scare you!
The MozBar Chrome extension gives you a bit more secret intell into the search results and potentially your competitors listings that have ranked.
Simply install the extension and every time you do a search and want that little bit extra…. Click your Mozbar icon in your extension toolbar.
This will place a little bit of extra intell below each non paid search result.
Here you can see what sort of link juice your competitors might have, their PA and DA for that particular keyword result.
If you click through to link analysis… you’ll get a whole heap more free info from Moz… we just ❤️ Moz !
3. Pinterest search
Again, a really simple one here… but so easy and so valuable!
- Head on over to Pinterest.
- Type your keyword into the Pinterest search bar, and select all pins on the right hand side (you can also search for boards, videos or people.
- First up! It’ll give you a drop down of other suggestions… take your time here! You want to take note of these other suggestions! They just might be a whole lot more relevant for you and your particular niche!
- You’ll see above that instead of simply keyword research it returns results for
- Summer cocktails for a crowd
- Summer cocktails recipes
- Summer cocktails vodka
- So, depending on what your niche is and what your area of expertise is, you might want to tweak your keyphrase to suit.
- Next, submit your query for your original Pinterest search.
- Your top row or two of Pinterest will give you hints as to what sort of topics are popular and doing well on Pinterest search… usually meaning which ones are being searched for! This is what you want to see…. What is it your audience wants to learn or find out?
- Along the top there you’ll also see some finer drill downs for your particular keyword…
These are suggestions as to what this particular search is interested in… great keyword research intell!
- Click any of these to drill down a little further if it’s relevant to your niche!
4. Pinterest ads
So, you don’t have to actually spend any money here or actually create an ad!
Go to Pinterest Ads > Create ad
Select Traffic as your business goal
Click continue and scroll down to the keywords section
Type in your keyword
You can see a list of all relevant keywords here and the amount of searches for them…
Scroll through hand click the ones that are relevant to you …
You will create your own list on the left hand side…which you can then copy and save! Soooo good right!
5. Answer the public
This is something that is a bit of a hidden secret if I’m honest… you either know about this! Or you don’t!
The guy on the main screen is somewhat creepy… ha ha ha … but once you’re over that this free (for a limited amount) tool is fantastic!
Just type in your query and they’ll generate a great chart for you full of typical phrases and questions that people are asking search engines! SO GOOD.
AND incredibly valuable research material for your keyword research process.
It’ll typically give you results with interrogative words as starters- like why, which, are, where, what and how…. All the things people are generally searching for… then, give you a run down of popular queries…
Tools like SEMRush, Moz and UberSuggest are all similar…. They allow you to research both competitors website URLs and keywords.
You can pop in your keyword and see how easy or difficult it is to rank for… and then explore options for more specific keywords to target your preferred audience.
You can see here that while Summer cocktails has 8K searches a month, the more specific queries still have 1K… and might be far, far easier to rank for… just click through to view all keywords to see keyword difficulty scores.
Be sure to keep in mind a few things here… you’re looking for alternatives that are highly relevant! Not just keywords that are easier to rank for… Google searches content for intent!
Another cool thing to see here is if you click through to a specific result….
Here you can view trends… and see that here summer gin cocktails was trending for 3-4 months… probably Summer time! … so make sure you’re paying attention to seasonality cues and trends as well.
RECAP… let’s wrap that all up in a simple bullet list for you 🧡
6 easy ways to do keyword research
#1. Search Google and pay attention to related searches
#2. Install the MozBar from Moz to assess competitors
#3. Make use of Pinterest search function and look for alternatives
#4. Try the Pinterest Ads creator and search for related keywords
#5. Utilize Answer the Public to see search terms from all search engines
#6. Use a tool like SEMRush to see keyword difficulty, volume and trends
It’s so easy now to make sure you have a few of these tried and tested strategies for researching keywords in your blogger toolbelt.
AND it doesn’t have to be overly complex or difficult to search for the keywords that will help you grow your blog.
Remember that you’re trying to get a share of the search queries on a particular topic.. So keeping up with what your competitors are and are not ranking for is one of the vital keys…
And, if you don’t remember anything else, keep this in mind… you want to try to rank for keywords that are not overly competitive…. AND that are highly searched…. meaning you’ll have to do the one thing that you are great at…
PRODUCE GREAT CONTENT (that’s better than your competitors).
Google is pretty clever and it will look at your content from the eyes of a user… does it answer the actual intent of a searchers question? Your best bet is to make sure you’re not vying for that prized top keyword… but are using both natural language AND are answering your specific niches intent.
Good luck! Let me know what’s working for you in the comments below!