A step by step guide to Keyword Research in 2023

In this post, A step by step guide to Keyword Research in 2023 you will learn exactly how to find the best keywords for your blog, website, or business-related to any niche.

Before we start let's go through the Keyword Research basics.

What is Keyword Research?

Keyword Research is a technique to find out words or phrases that people use in the search engine to access the content related to the required topics with the ultimate goal to optimize their content for the required topics so as to get a huge traffic flow on their content.

Keyword Research is usually termed the first step to Search Engine Optimization ( SEO ). It impacts all other steps of Search Engine Optimization ( SEO ). Thus, there is a need to perform proper keyword research before posting articles on any topic on the web.

When I first started with Search Engine Optimization ( SEO ), my approach to keyword research was full of confusion.

Back then, I searched for one of the best keyword research tools and start typing in a bunch of random keywords related to my article.

But later I realized that this approach is not adding any value to my article.

So, what's wrong with this approach?

This is exactly the same thing that my competitors were also following. No wonder most of the keywords I found using this approach were insanely competitive.

Now over the years, I focused on the techniques used for keyword research that works really well and thus I am writing this post to share my techniques of keyword research with you all to make it easier for you.

Specifically, these techniques will help you to find out those keywords that your competitors don't know about.

So let's start it right now.

Step 1: Identify your customer persona.

This is a step that most people skip and thus it hurts them.

So what is mean by identifying your customer persona?

Let me explain with an example.

Let's consider that I am the owner of a site that sells SEO Training products to small and medium-sized businesses. Most people in my position would open up a keyword research tool and type in things like SEO training, SEO training products, and SEO courses into the tool.

What's the problem with this approach?

First of all, I mentioned before in this post that your competition is doing the exact same thing which means you will also get the exact same set of keywords as your competitors.

But more important than that is this approach ignores a very important fact about your customer and that fact is this: your customer spends 99.9 percent of their time online not searching for what you sell.

In other words, if you only target your customers when they search for the exact thing you sell you're missing out on hundreds of other opportunities to get in front of them.

For example: As the owner of a site that sells SEO Training products, I noticed that most of my customers were SEO agencies. So, I visited forums and online communities where SEO agency owners attended hang around.

That way I could see what my target customer searched for when he wasn't searching for SEO training and I discovered that there are dozens of keywords that my target customer typed into Google that were related to my products but had nothing to do with SEO training.

Those Keywords were on-page SEO, list building, how to get more traffic, and SEO tools. Thus I target these keywords to get my business in front of thousands of my target customers every single day and when my target customers are ready to buy the required products I will be the first person that comes to their mind.

That's the power of doing keyword research that supported your customer persona.

Now that you've identified your customer persona, it's time to find topics that your customer is interested in.

Step 2: Identify topics related to your customer interest.

So how do you find these topics?

It's simple.

Go to where your target customer spends most of their time online. Then search for topics that they have a tendency to debate.

For example: As the owner of a site that sells SEO Training products, my customers tend to hang out at marketing-focused communities like inbound.org and growthhackers.com

In your case, your target customer may hang out on places like Pinterest, Reddit, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, industry blogs, and niche forums.

Once you've identified where your target customer hangs out, it's time for you to keep an eye out for topics that are important to them.

For example: As the owner of a site that sells SEO Training products, I noticed that link building was one of the most popular topics in the online communities that my audience spent time on.

So I wrote down link building as a topic and I kept digging until I found at least five topics that my target customers talked about in online communities.

Now that you have found at least five topics, it's time to dive into finding keywords.

Step 3: Dive into finding Keywords.

Below I had listed my five favorite techniques for finding the required keywords that my competition doesn't know about.

Technique 1: Google Suggest

To use this strategy, just head over to Google and type your topic into the search field but don't press Enter.

Instead, take a look at the keywords that Google suggests for you. These are usually the best long-tail keywords that you can use.

As a quick pro-tip, try putting a few spaces or some alphabets before and after your keyword. This will show you a totally different set of keyword ideas.

Technique 2: quora.com

Quora is a massive community of people that ask questions or answer questions on each and every topic. All you need to do is search for your topic in the Quora search box and see which keywords tend to show up.

Technique 3: Reddit

Like Quora, Reddit is also a massive community of people that discuss every topic from pets to politics. To use Reddit for keyword research simply head over to Reddit and look for your topic.

When you find a thread on your topic keep an eye out for words and phrases that tend to come up again and again. These make awesome keyword ideas.

Technique 4: Google's Searches Related To feature

To use this feature, simply type your topic into the Google search field and press Enter. Then scroll to the bottom of the search results.

Google then shows you other searches that are related to the keyword you just put in. These are usually the excellent long-tail keywords that you can target with your content.

Technique 5: Wikipedia

Wikipedia is an open-source encyclopedia with in-depth articles on different topics. To use Wikipedia for keyword research just head over to Wikipedia and type in your topic in the search box.

Then take a glance at the opposite entries that that article links to. These are usually closely-related topics and even the most potential keywords themselves. 

Also, make sure to check out the table of contents for the required articles. Again, these are usually the best keywords that are closely tied to your topic.

Now that you have a list of potential keywords, it's time to choose the best from your list.


Step 4: Analyze each keyword's commercial intent.

Commercial intent simply means how likely someone checking out a given keyword is to shop from you.

Below I had listed some important tactics to find out if your keyword has a high commercial intent or not.

Tactic 1: Google Keyword Planner

First head over to the Google Keyword Planner and sort in one among your potential keywords. Then take a glance at the suggested bid column. This column shows you how much advertisers are spending in AdWords for a single click from this keyword.

Obviously, the upper the suggested bid the more valuable that keyword is.

Tactic 2: Google Adwords

Another simple way to size up commercial intent is to see how many AdWords ads appear when you search for your keyword in Google.

If you search for your keyword and see lots of AdWords ads it means that people are struggling at the bit to bring those searchers to their site.

Okay, now it is time for our last step which is to seem at each keyword search volume.

Step 5: Analyze each keyword's search volume

In the past, Google used to show you the exact search volume numbers in the Google Keyword Planner but unfortunately in the present unless you're running active AdWords campaigns they show you an extremely unhelpful search volume range.

So how can you see how many people searched for your keyword?

There are two freemium tools that get the job done.

The first is semrush.com.

To find a keyword search volume simply type the keyword into SEMrush and they'll show you how many searches that keyword gets every month.

You can also use kwfinder.com

Again, just pop your keyword into the kwfinder tool and you'll see the exact amount of searches that it gets every month.

Now before you decide on a keyword, I recommend you one last step.

Now, this step is completely optional but in my experience, it helps you find the absolute best keywords for your business.

Step 6: Analyze the keyword's growth in Google Trends.

For example, for instance, you simply found two keywords that have similar search volume and commercial intent and you do not know which one to select.

But when you look at Google Trends you notice that one keyword is growing in popularity and the other is dropping like a stone.

Obviously, you'd wanna go with the keyword that's growing.

For example, A couple of years ago, I was debating whether to target one or two keywords.

Google Keyword Tool or Google Keyword Planner?

You know that Google had renamed the Google Keyword Tool as the Google Keyword Planner. But the keyword Google Keyword Tool still got 20 times more searches than Google Keyword Planner.

So I almost pulled the trigger on Google Keyword Tool.

That is until I looked at Google Trends.

That's when I noticed that searches for the Google Keyword Planner were skyrocketing while searches for the Google Keyword Tool were steadily dropping.

So I decided to go with the Google Keyword Planner and it was a good move. This is a keyword that's growing in popularity every day.

Okay, so that's all there to a step-by-step guide to keyword research 2023.

If you follow these steps properly you should have a handful of excellent keywords that you can use. And once you have those it's a matter of creating landing pages and content optimized around those terms.

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Now I would like to show it over to you.

Which step from this post was new to you?

Or maybe you tried them all already. If so, you probably have a favorite technique that works well for you.

Either way, let me know by leaving a fast comment immediately.

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