The Beginner's Guide to Keyword Research

Keyword research is the very first thing that you will do before writing a blog or creating content. Your goal is to create what people want to know, and keyword research exactly does this.

This is a comprehensive keyword research guide that will tell you everything about keyword research. You will understand how important it is (if you don’t already).

What is Keyword Research?

What do you type in the search engine when you want to know about exercises to do for weight loss? Something like ‘workouts to lose weight', ‘weight-loss exercises’, ‘how to lose weight’ These three search queries are exactly what we call keywords.

Google Search - weight loss exercise

Benefits of Keyword Research

According to a recent study by Ahrefs, 90.63% of the websites don’t get any traffic from Google. If you don’t want your website to be a part of that 90.63%, it is essential to know what people type in the search engine. There is no better way than Keyword research to do that.

Keyword research helps you know exactly what your target audience types in the search engine to land on your page. After the revolution of voice query on an assistant, you must be thinking about whether keyword research for SEO still plays an important role.

You know that keyword research is important to know the search intent of users so knowing what the audience is trying to search is very important.

How to do Keyword Research?

This is going to be a long but accurate guide for doing keyword research on Google and other search engines.

Let us start by telling you the components of a keyword:

Head-terms are the keywords with a very high search volume per month. They are broad and shorter. For example, if you are searching for a keyword research guide, terms like ‘keyword research’ and ‘keyword research guide’ are head-terms.

Long-tail keywords are the terms that are very specific and have low search volume. Though these keywords are less searched, they have a huge potential of bringing in qualified leads. Let us take the same example, terms like ‘best keyword research on youtube guide’, ‘keyword research using google AdWords’, and ‘how to do keyword research in 2021’ are long-tail keywords.

Keyword research for SEO consists of terms from both types of keywords and their variants. Let us see the step-by-step process of doing keyword research.

Step 1: Create a Keyword list

We have talked much about the types of keywords, now start collecting them and pasting them into an excel sheet or spreadsheet. This spreadsheet should contain columns for the keyword, its monthly search volume, keyword difficulty, and its cost-per-click.

  1. Before using any tool to create a keyword list, sit down calmly and think of the terms that you will be using to land on your website. By doing so, your ideas will not get polluted and it will give a human touch to them.
  2. Refer to your user/searcher persona: if you don’t already have a user persona, create one because it will be of use for a very long time. Check whether the keywords you made a list of fit in your searcher persona or not.
  3. Use your site’s evergreen list of keywords: there must be some keywords that are essential for your business or you use them always, make sure to add them to the list too.
Keywords List

Step 2: Run them through a Keyword Research tool

Now, get on a keyword research tool and search for head-terms and long-tail keywords keeping in mind the following parameters:

  1. Search volume: it is the total number of searches for that keyword per month. You should choose some keywords that have high search volume because those are the terms people search often. The term ‘high search volume’ is relative and depends on your industry.

    For example, the term ‘weight loss journey’ has more than 13,800 search volumes whereas ‘best headphones’ has more than 123,400 search volumes. So, a search volume of 10k-250k is what you should aim for in the latter industry and 100-13k for the former.
  2. Keyword difficulty: it is denoted by KD on keyword research tools. It is an estimate of how difficult it is to rank for a particular keyword. Taking our previous example, ‘weight loss journey’ has a moderate keyword difficulty of 60, and ‘best headphones’ has a keyword difficulty of 72 which is considered high to rank for.
  3. CPC: cost-per-click is the amount of money that you pay for each click on pay-per-click ads on Google Ads and other platforms. As CPC is the amount that you pay to the platform, you should have a low CPC to allow more clicks for your budget. This will ensure that you get more ROI (return on investment).
Weight-Loss-Exercise Keyword Searched with GetKeywords

You must be thinking about which tool should be used to get accurate data all in one place.

What tools to use for Keyword Research?

Here is a list of the top keyword research tools that will help you in your keyword research journey.

Google Ads

This is a go-to option for many website owners and content creators for the reason that this tool gives accurate data right from the Google search engine. No doubt it gives a good list of keywords but they are meant for running as campaigns and not for SEO.

So, if you don’t run ads you will only get a range of data and not accurate.


This is our signature product that helps you focus on the next generation of Keyword Research with Audience Insights & Local Keyword suggestions to get exactly what you need with minimum effort.

Go forward to this link and check the features and try them on your own to see the magic happen. You get the data not only for Google Search Results but for Amazon also.


This may be another tool that you may use for doing keyword research for your business. The process of doing this is pretty much the same as we have mentioned in the previous section of this blog.

If you have a local business that you are doing keyword research for, then Semrush fails to give you the data because it only gives country-level data. But you shouldn’t worry, as we at GetKeywords provides 100k+ Locations around the world data.

Evaluate your keyword list

Now that you have a list of keywords, remember that not all of them are useful for every site on your website. How would you know whether the keyword is relevant to you or not? Here is a list of factors to consider before using them as a potential keyword.

  1. Is the keyword relevant to your searcher persona?: you must already be having a searcher persona answering the question: what do maximum people land on your website for? Check which keywords fall in the answer to this question.

    For example, let us say you sell weight-loss products, so maximum searchers will land on your page for keywords related to ‘weight loss’ and ‘weight loss products’.
  2. User intent: This is a very important factor because you will want to solve different intent each time. Your content will not always be transactional, it should be informational and commercial at times.

    Taking the previous example, if you plan to write a blog on ‘best protein powders for weight loss’, you would have to include terms like ‘protein powder’ and ‘whey protein’ in your list.
  3. How many keywords should you have on your list?: this is a common question among people. There is no sure-shot answer for this because it varies from content to content and industry to industry.

Tips for Keyword Research

We are now going to share some keyword research tips to up your game in the long term.

  1. Prioritize the keywords based on the type of traffic that they will bring. Group the keywords according to the most popular method- TOFU, MOFU, BOFU.

    [A] Top of the Funnel: the keywords that have the highest potential of bringing in traffic but do not convert into a purchase. The type of content that you may create at this stage are blog posts, eBooks, newsletters, and infographics.

    [B] Middle of the Funnel: the keywords focusing on your target audience. They may already be your lead. You should consider creating educational resources, host webinars, and give offers in the newsletters.

    [C] Bottom of the Funnel: focusing on the audience that is ready to buy from you. Since they are seen by your hot leads, offer them a demo or customer stories.
  2. Barnacle SEO: wondering what it is? When you use other sites’ authority to rank on Google’s searches, it is called Barnacle SEO. For example, if you have a site already ranking on the first page of SERP, you may use those keywords to create content on other platforms like Youtube and LinkedIn to rank for the same terms.
  3. Use keywords that your competitors rank for: makes it super easy for you. Just click on Competitor Research on the dashboard> enter the URL of your competitor’s website> select the country you want to target> hit the Search button.
Competitor's Research - GetKeywords Dashboard

Since your competitors are already ranking for these keywords, you must not miss on trying them out because they have already identified what terms people use before landing on their page.


We have covered the keyword research basics, keyword research benefits, and all the nitty-gritty in this comprehensive guide. Remember that creating a keyword list may be a daunting task, but it is worth the time taken. Since it is the basis for your content optimization, it should be the first task to perform.

Another thing to keep in mind is that keyword research is not a one-time task. You should revisit the list and edit it from time to time because the search engines change their algorithms. What works for your page today, may not work six months later.

Having said that, make use of a good keyword research tool to make sure you get all the data in one place to save some time. Go through the guide, understand the metrics to keep track of, and build your keyword list.

You can comment down your experience of creating a keyword list for the first time. If you have any queries, make sure to comment on them as well as we have a team to answer them and support you.