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You’ve likely heard the term “keyword research” thrown around before. Maybe you’ve even tried it yourself, without much success. While the practice of keyword research is a critical part of SEO that every business owner should understand, it can be difficult to know where to start. This beginner’s guide will walk you through all of the basics—including what is keyword research and how it works—and help you develop your own strategy for effective keyword research today!

What is keyword research?

Keyword research is the process of finding out what people are searching for online. Keywords are the words or phrases people use to search for products, services, and information online. They’re important because they tell you what people are looking for in your industry–and if you can provide it better than anyone else.

Keyword research will help guide your content strategy from start to finish: from deciding what topics to write about in each piece of content (the topic), where on your website this new piece of content should live (the URL), how much text should go into each page (length), whether there’s an image that would be better than just plain text on the page (images), etc.

Before you start researching keywords

Before you start researching keywords, it’s important to understand your audience and goals. What do they want? What are their pain points? How can you help them by providing information on a specific topic or issue?

You should also consider how competitive a particular keyword is. If there are thousands of other websites competing for the same keyword, it will be harder for yours to rank highly in search results–and that means less traffic coming from Google!

It’s also important not only to think about how much money you have available but also whether the long-term benefits of using certain keywords will outweigh any initial costs (e.g., buying ad space).

Should you use the Google Keyword Planner?

The Google Keyword Planner is a great tool for keyword research. However, it’s not the only one you should use and it’s not always accurate.

On top of that, the free version of the tool limits your access to certain features (like geographic targeting) unless you pay for a premium account.

For what purpose are you using keywords, anyway?

Keywords can be used for a variety of purposes, and knowing which ones are most relevant to your business is the first step toward success.

  • To find out which keywords are most popular among your competitors: This will help you identify what types of content people want from each company in this industry, so you can create something better than what’s already out there.
  • To find out which keywords are most profitable: You’ll know what terms advertisers are willing to pay top dollar for–and if any of those terms relate directly back to your product or service (or even an aspect of it), then this gives insight into where future marketing efforts should focus.
  • To determine whether certain keywords matter more than others: If one phrase seems much more likely than another phrase when plugged into Google AdWords Keyword Planner tool (more on that later), then we know we need more research before deciding if anything else matters at all!


Keyword research is the foundation of SEO. It’s what you need to do before you can even think about optimizing your website, writing content or launching an ad campaign.

Keywords are the words people use when they search for products and services online. Keywords help you understand what customers want, so they’re important if you want to serve them well with your business offerings.

If keyword research is done correctly, it will lead to opportunities in your industry that have not been discovered yet by other businesses (or if they have been discovered but no one has acted on them).


Keyword research is one of the most important steps in SEO. It’s also one of the easiest to do, as long as you have the right tools at your disposal. Whether you’re trying to find new keywords for existing content or creating entirely new pages, doing keyword research will help you find topics that are relevant to your audience and improve their experience on your site.


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