With all our posts about keyword research, you might be wondering what SEO keywords to use. It’s important to understand the intent behind the keyword. SEO tools will often break these down into four different types of intent, informational, commercial, navigational, and transactional. The first thing you want to do is make a simple search on Google for your keyword. What are the top posts that are showing up? It’s important to look and see what Google is showing for that query because they’ve already decided what is the best possible results to show for that SEO keyword.
Once you do that, you will know what type of content to create, or if your business fits with that specific type of keyword.
For example, if you’re an E-commerce business, you might want to rank for a specific type of product, so you’ll want to use that type of keyword paired with the correct type of content (product page). OR maybe Google is showing a “how to find the best shoes for kids” type post (unlikely) but just to make an example, then you would want to create more informational type content for that specific keyword.
Deciding how your content pairs with your keywords is the best way to figure out what SEO keywords to use, and doing this research first is incredibly important.
Research the Intent Behind the Keyword First
When conducting keyword research, you’ll want to make sure you search for your term on Google or go through the intent outlined in the keyword research tool you’re using.
Depending on your business model, you might want to focus your keywords around generating sales with commercial intent or driving traffic and converting leads with informational keywords.
The best approach is to focus on the type of keywords that are going to have the biggest impact on your business immediately.
Focus on Lower Keyword Difficulty Long-Tail Keywords
This is for newer sites or sites with lower authority that haven’t developed a solid SEO foundation as of yet. If you are a more advanced site, you can move on from this tip.
If you’re using keyword research tools, then you will inevitably know the projected and estimated keyword difficulty of your keyword phrase. If that keyword phrase is too competitive to rank for your website, then it’s a great idea to niche down your target keyword to a more long-tail phrase.
The long-tail phrase might be easier to rank with less keyword difficulty. For example, the keyword “SEO” is extremely difficult to rank for, while the term “SEO for interior designers” is much easier to rank for.
Use Keywords That Will Have an Immediate Impact on your Business
Look for keywords that are at the end of your target customer’s buying journey. Some would say the bottom of the funnel type keywords. Someone just looking up general information and doing a bit of research might type something in like, “is SEO worth it?” or something like that. Whereas, customers at the bottom of the funnel would type something like, “best search engine optimization services near me”.
You can place these relevant keywords in buckets and break them down into 3 different categories:
- Top of funnel keywords
- Middle of funnel keywords
- Bottom of funnel keywords
Based on your SEO strategy, search volume, and difficulty, you can put more emphasis on specific types of keywords. This is a great way to choose your keywords for SEO purposes.
Use Related Keywords & Semantic SEO
A great way for how to choose your SEO keywords is to use a Semantic SEO tool like InLinks.
Semantic SEO is the process of selecting keywords based on entities. When you do your SEO keyword research, you will target keywords under the same topic cluster. For example, you would write about “Leather Shoes” for blog post after blog post until you have completely exhausted all the relevant keywords and search intent behind “leather shoes” type queries. Then you would move onto your next topic cluster, which could be “suede shoes”.
This would ensure Google gives you a designated authority over that specific entity or topic, and higher change of driving up your search engine results and organic traffic for the best keywords.
This method relies less on monthly search volume, and more on covering a topic in it’s entirety. Keyword stuffing is never a good strategy anyways, so go with Semantic SEO as your content strategy for the best search results.
Use an NLP Tool like Surfer SEO
Surfer SEO analyzes the top results from the search engines to find the right keywords and related topics within an article you would need to cover a specific topic according to what Google is already ranking at the top. This is not a free tool, but it enhances your SEO efforts enough to justify the cost.
The software will also tell you how many words each article should be, as well as what type of content Google is already ranking at the top. This will help you align your keyword strategies with what’s working so that you can avoid any guesswork.
Use a Keyword Planner Alternative
Google’s Keyword Planner is a great way to get monthly search volume for keywords, but it doesn’t give you much more than that. If you’re looking for an alternative with more features, then use KWFinder.
KWFinder will give you long-tail keyword ideas, monthly search volume, difficulty score, and more. This is a great tool for those who want to do their own keyword research without having to pay for more expensive software like Moz or Ahrefs.