If you want to enhance your SEO efforts, you’re going to need a good keyword research tool.
When most people think keyword research, their minds automatically turn to Google’s Keyword Planner tool. It’s free and it’s a product of Google so it should be sufficient right?
While Google’s Keyword Planner tool can provide you with sound keyword data and a handful of good keyword suggestions, there are a number of other tools out there that you could be using that can take your keyword research, website planning and SEO efforts to a whole new level.
One of the main reasons why so many businesses are investing in additional keyword research tools is because Google isn’t able to provide you with the in-depth competitor data that you need to excel online.
Top keyword research tools to use in 2018
Below is a list of some of the most highly-recommended keyword research tools that are definitely worth exploring if you’re looking to expand your brand online in 2018.
This is probably one of the most talked about tools today because it goes beyond just keyword research.
One of SEMrush’s key features is that you don’t need to brainstorm your own keywords to get started. You simply need to enter your site’s URL to see which keywords you’re currently ranking for and where your keyword opportunities lie. You can also enter the URLs of your competitors to see which keywords they’re currently ranking for.
Over and above the general keyword functionality, marketers also have access to in-depth analytics and content marketers can use SEMrush to generate article ideas.
If SEO is an important function in your business, chances are you will have already heard of the Moz brand.
Moz’s keyword explorer tool is easy to use and understand and will show you both visual and numeric representations of keyword search volumes, ranking opportunities and difficulty. The tool will also provide you with keyword suggestions and SERP analysis.
The tool will allow you to submit two free queries per day but if you need more, you can upgrade to a paid plan.
This detailed keyword tool is another favourite amongst SEO junkies and content marketers.
With the help of clickstream data, Ahrefs will be able to tell you how many clicks you can expect to receive via search, a truly unique feature that provides you with additional data that can really come in handy. Along with their keyword research functionality, you can also closely monitor your competitors and monitor your niche.
This tool also cuts out the need for excel spreadsheets by allowing you to create a list of keywords directly from the dashboard.
If you’re on the hunt for a free keyword research tool that can give you suggestions that you might not always find on other sites, Keyword Tool is it.
The key feature of this tool is that it spans across multiple search engines, including Amazon, Bing, YouTube and eBay. The free version of this tool will allow you to generate over 750 long-tail keyword suggestions for every search term that you enter.
Unfortunately, if you want any further details, you will need to upgrade to a paid plan.
If you happen to be in a highly competitive niche and need to have a thorough understanding of how your competitors are using keywords in their marketing campaigns, SpyFu is one of the better tools to use.
This tool will also provide you with data that will help you discover un-tapped or emerging markets that you can take advantage of. Even though it doesn’t have the same depth that other keyword research tools have, it is still certainly one of the better Google Keyword Planner alternatives out there.
The key to getting the most value out of the KW Finder tool is to make use of the advanced filters.
Along with data on keyword trends, search volumes, CPC and difficulty, the KW Finder tool will also show you which websites are currently ranking for a particular keyword so that you can thoroughly research your competitors.
It will even give you data such as page authority and social media shares on top ranking sites that you know exactly what you are up against and where you can improve your own marketing efforts.
This cloud-based keyword research tool is another great option for businesses who are operating in a highly-competitive or micro-niche.
The tool’s simple interface makes it easy to use and navigate and will check for keywords across Google, Yahoo and Bing. If you’re currently running AdSense campaigns, this tool is particularly useful for researching profitable, long-tail keywords that you can apply to your campaigns.
You can also create multiple projects to help your team stay organised.
This all-in-one SEO tool can be used by your entire digital marketing department.
Along with the ability to research new keywords, Serpstat will help you build new links and develop a comprehensive SEO strategy for your site.
Their site audit feature will ensure that you’re cleaning up any errors and can thoroughly plan your SEM budget and strategy. You will also have the ability to research and track the progress of your competitors, ensuring you know exactly how your site fares.
In terms of which tools to use, it all depends on the unique requirements of your business. Ideally, you shouldn’t be using more than one or two tools, with most businesses opting for one free and one paid tool that has the features they need.
Which keyword research tools are you currently using or considering?