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10 Best Keyword Research Tools for Beginner & Expert SEOs

Although keywords aren’t the most important factor in SEO, they’re still very useful and important in 2022. And in this guide, other than sharing with you my top 10 keyword research tools, I’ll take you through the keyword research and selection process. But first:

What are Keywords?

In SEO, keywords are search words, phrases, or questions that people enter into search engines like Google, YouTube, Bing, and Yahoo, looking for answers.

Therefore, keyword research is attempting to understand what answers your target audience is looking for on search engines. And then write content that meets their interests, aiming to rank higher on the search engine results page (SERP) and drive traffic, and ultimately, conversion, to your website.

Why is Keyword Research Important?

A good keyword research strategy should help you understand your target audience. For instance, know their top searches, search intents, and top questions. Then, you can write copies that answer all their questions, and turn out as an authoritative source.

Are Keywords the most Important SEO Factor?

Unfortunately, they aren’t, because SEO is more complex than putting keywords on a page. Also, because SEO is always changing with search engines continuously updating algorithms, marketers need to change how they are using keywords.

Now that you understand why keyword research is important, check out these free and paid SEO tools:

  1. Free Google Tools
  2. Bing Webmaster Tools
  3. Semrush: Best Tool for Beginners
  4. Ubersuggest: Idea Generation
  5. WordStream: Free Keyword Tool
  6. Keyword.io: Long-tail Keywords
  7. Answer the Public: for Questions
  8. Long Tail Pro: Long-tail Keywords
  9. Moz Keyword Explorer: for Beginners
  10. Ahref Free Keyword Generator

Let’s review each of these tools, one by one, and then give you may keyword research secret.

Disclosure: This content is reader-supported, which means if you click on some of our links, we may earn a commission, but the price on your end remains the same.

1. Google Free Research Tools

Whether you’re a YouTuber or blogger, Google has free tools that are very useful in keyword research and idea generation.

In fact, you can get content ideas from YouTube by checking the frequently asked questions on your channel (or competitor’s channels). Or just typing the keyword on YouTube search, and getting free suggestions from autocomplete.

Two of my favorite keyword tools include Google Autocomplete and Google Trends.

Google Autocomplete

Using Google autocomplete is straightforward, you just need to start typing, and Google will list some popular phrases that people are searching for.

For instance, when one types ‘creating’, you can get ideas like how to create a website, tips for creating a YouTube channel or how to create a Facebook page, and many more.

YouTube video ideas from Google autocomplete.

Check out how to get unlimited video ideas for a YouTube channel or blog:

The only problem with autocomplete is that it doesn’t show you the search volumes, CPC, locations, and keyword difficulties. Meaning, that it has to be used alongside other keyword research tools discussed herein.

Google Trends

Let’s say you want to write an article on ‘blog writing.’ You can head to Google Trends, and check how the keyword is trending, where it is tending (locations), and check other related queries.

For instance, you can see the top 5 countries searching for the keyword (blog writing) are Pakistan, Nepal, Kenya, India, and the Philippines. And some of the related queries include ‘what is blog writing’ and ‘what is a blog.’

Google Trends, one of Google's free keyword research tools.

The problem with Google Trends is that it doesn’t show you the exact search volume and keyword difficulty.


2. Bing Webmaster Tools

Bing, being the second most popular search engine after Google, is worth optimizing your content for. And it is a free keyword research tool, but you have to submit your website to their webmaster to access it.

You’ll be able to check the impressions in specific countries, languages, and devices, and get related keywords, questions, and newly discovered.

Best keyword research tool for Bing and Yahoo.

However, the tool is restricted to webmasters, so it is not available for YouTubers, Fiverr, and other search engines other than Bing and Yahoo.


3. Semrush: Best Tool for Beginners

Semrush is a premium (paid) keyword research tool that also has a free version, thus, highly recommended for beginners and expert SEOs.

The tool shows you the global and regional search volume per keyword, CPC, competition (difficulty), keywords variation, top questions, and related keywords.

Semrush, among the top keyword research tools for beginners.

It also helps you understand the search intent, so you can better understand your audience. More so, it helps you track what keywords your website is ranking for, so you can try it for free.


4. Ubersuggest: Idea Generation

If you’re into digital creation and marketing, you may have heard of Neil Patel. And he has a very amazing backlink checker and keyword generation tool called Ubersuggest.

And to use his tool, you have two options:

Ubersuggest on Neilpatel.com

To use this option, head to Neil Patel’s website, and look for this amazing content generation tool. And then you can key in your potential keyword, and check the search volume, search difficulty, paid difficulty, and cost per click.

And most importantly, you can monitor what keyword your website is ranking for. Or key in your competitor’s link, and check their top pages and keywords that are bringing the most traffic.

Ubersuggest, the best free keyword research tool.

As a beginner, you can use the free option, where the tools give you three searches per day. Then you can consider the premium one as you proceed. I’ll let you decide on that.

Ubersuggest Chrome Extension

You can also use the Ubersuggest chrome extension for more convenient keyword research whenever you input a keyword on the search engines.

Video ideas from Ubersuggest chrome extension.

I prefer you install this extension, as you can check the domain authority, monthly visits, and backlinks for the website(s) ranking for the keywords that you want to target. You’ll have 40 searches per day when using the free version.

In that way, you can estimate the number of backlinks you need to compete for the keyword.


5. WordStream: Free Keyword Tools

Just like Ubersuggest, with WordStream, you can key in a keyword or domain to discover new content ideas for your blog or YouTube channel.

WordStream shows you the alternative keywords, monthly search volume, top page bid (low range), top of page bid (high range), and competition.

So, it is also resourceful for paid search campaigns with Google Ads or any other ad network.

WordStream - among the best keyword research tools for free.

You can also download all the keywords.


6. Keyword.io: Long-tail keyword

Keyword.io is a resourceful tool for getting content ideas not only for your blog or YouTube channel but also for Amazon product descriptions, Bing, Yandex, Fiverr, and many more.

It is best for long-trail keywords, which despite having less search traffic, are less competitive and easier to rank for.

Blogging and YouTube ideas from Keyword.io

However, the tool doesn’t show you keyword difficulty or search volume and has to be used alongside other tools like Semrush, Uberssugest, or WordStream.


7. Answer the Public: Best for Questions

A good keyword research strategy should show you the questions that your audience is looking for answers to. And Answerthepublic.com have the solution to this.

It helps you understand your audience better, and you can include some of these questions in your content to attract more organic traffic.

With the free version, you will have two searches per day, and if you want more, you’ll have to subscribe to the pro version.

One limitation of this tool is that it doesn’t show you the search volumes, CPC, and difficulty, so it has to be used alongside other keyword research tools.


8. Long Tail Pro: Long-tail keywords

Long Tail Pro is yet another resourceful tool that helps you discover new or untargeted long-trail keywords that helps your site to rank high in Google search results.

Unfortunately, they do not have a free version, but you can try it out.


9. Moz Keyword Explorer: Best for Beginners

Moz tool helps you check a keyword’s monthly search volume, difficulty, organic click-through rate (CRT), and priority.

And it gives you keyword suggestions and their monthly volume, and a SERP analysis report that helps you check the PA and DA for the top pages ranking for the keyword.

Check it out and try it for free. And if you like it, consider the pro version.


10. Ahref Free Keyword Generator

The tool helps you with keyword research for Google, Bing, and Amazon.

And it helps you with suggestions, keyword difficulty, monthly search volumes and clicks, CPC, and more information.

Before Selecting a keyword;

All the 10 keyword research tools are important, you can use any of them depending on what you intend to achieve.

For instance, if you’re looking for long-tail keywords or questions, the best tools include Keyword.io, Answerthepublic.com, and Longtailpro.com.

If you want to optimize your content for the Bing search engine, the best tools include Bing Webmaster and Ahref.

But remember, you need more than keywords to rank on search engines.

And for your keyword research to yield even better results, do this:-

  • Know what location of audience you want to target
  • Check the keyword search volume, difficulty, and CPC in that area
  • The goal is to understand the audience, so don’t over-rely on search volumes
  • Check the common questions your audience is looking for answers
  • Review the sites already competing for the keyword and learn one thing or two

Conclusion

You probably know that you can’t rely on one SEO tool, but I will tell you anyway.

I suggest you select three to four of the following 10 keyword research tools and use them to find ideas for your blog or YouTube channel:

  1. Free Google Tools
  2. Bing Webmaster Tools
  3. Semrush: Best Tool for Beginners
  4. Ubersuggest: Idea Generation
  5. WordStream: Free Keyword Tool
  6. Keyword.io: Long-tail Keywords
  7. Answer the Public: for Questions
  8. Long Tail Pro: Long-tail Keywords
  9. Moz Keyword Explorer: for Beginners
  10. Ahref Free Keyword Generator

But don’t over-rely on keyword volume and avoid keyword stuffing. Only target keywords that are relevant to your audience.

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Which keyword research tools do you use, if any?

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