Are you in the process of rolling out a new website?
As you know, there’s a lot that goes into the process. From the design to the development, from content creation to your marketing strategy, there’s not enough time in the day to tackle every task.
While there’s sure to be a lot on your mind, make sure that you spend enough time on keyword research. By doing so, up front, you’ll have a clear idea as to where you want to take your site in the future.
In the past, I’ve discussed a variety of tools that new businesses can use to target the best keywords. This time around, I’m going to focus on 10 free keyword research tools. With these, you’ll be able to:
- Choose the best keywords, based on your niche, monthly searches and more.
- Create a content calendar that’s based on related long tail keywords.
- Learn more about your competition.
Although you can pay for access to a variety of high level keyword research tools, this isn’t something you have to do. Instead, you can rely on a combination of free tools to dig up the information you’ll be seeking.
Let’s get started.
The most obvious choice for the top spot, this keyword tool has been a favorite for many years.
Not only is the Google Keyword Planner a good choice when starting a new site, but it can also be your best friend as you grow and produce more content.
The primary benefit of this tool is easy to see: you’re able to pull information directly from Google, which is the search engine you’re most likely to target, when optimizing your website.
The first step is as simple as entering your keyword or keywords into the search box.
From there, everything you need is laid out in a clear and concise manner.
In addition to your search term(s), you’re provided with many other ideas. Some of these will work, some won’t. Either way, you want to pay close attention to all of the keywords. You never know when you’ll find a gem.
Download this checklist of 10 free keyword research tools to help plan your new site.
Along with the keyword list, you’ll find:
- Average monthly searches
- Suggested bid (if you’re using AdWords)
I’ll be the first to admit that the Google Keyword Planner doesn’t do anything special. However, it does everything right and that’s what matters most.
If you’re seeking keyword data from the source, you can’t go wrong with this tool.
Are you struggling to uncover new keywords?
This is a challenge that you may face, when launching your new site. While you’re familiar with the top keywords in your niche, you don’t know where to go from there. And, as you know, that can be a problem as you create more content.
With the AdWord & SEO Keyword Permutation Generator tool, it’s easy to get creative as you search for keywords that align with your site, marketing strategy and goals.
The thing that I like best about this tool is the way that you can get creative. You can enter a keyword in each of three boxes, hit “generate permutations” and watch the magic happen.
Here’s an example:
As you can see, the more keywords you add into the first three boxes, the more results you’ll receive.
The only downside to this tool is that some of the keyword results may not make sense. For this reason, you must be prepared to spend a good amount of time moving through the list, searching for those that best suit your site.
If keyword creativity is an issue for you, let this tool be your guide. It’ll point you towards some ideas that you may not have previously considered.
As noted above, there’s nothing better than getting advice straight from the source. And, once again, Google is the source I’m talking about.
Google Correlate is an often overlooked tool that can be extremely powerful for generating a large keyword list.
The primary reason to use this tool is the ability to see which keywords get searched together. With this information, you can begin to grow your keyword list (especially longtails).
In the example below, you’ll see that people who search for “diet plan” also search related phrases:
So, while diet plan may be your primary keyword, there are several others that you can focus on, as you create your content calendar. For example, you may decide to create a blog post based on some or all of the “correlations.”
If you find yourself in a keyword rut, Google Correlate can help you escape. You simply enter your primary keyword. From there, the tool does all of the work for you.
Some keyword tools are good for every type of website. Others, however, are only a good fit for a particular site type.
This is where the IMforSMB Bulk Keyword Generator fits in. This tool works best for local service companies, as it’s designed with the idea that you’ll want to find local keywords.
Using the tool begins with selecting a category:
From there, take the time to carefully choose your service type:
Finally, enter your service location and click “Generate Keywords.” Then, get ready to be mesmerized by the results.
These results aren’t anything special, as you could eventually come up with the same keyword list by using another tool. However, with its local approach, you’ll feel as if you’re on the right track quicker.
Pro tip: even if your business type isn’t available, you can still use the tool. You’ll have to replace some of the keywords with your own, in the search results. But, you’ll end up with the same basic results.
5. Keyword In
If you want to “combine your keywords the easy way,” you’re in the right place.
It all starts with a seed keyword or keywords. From there, this tool mashes everything together, to provide you with a long list of potential keywords.
Here’s the example shared that’s when you first visit the site:
Once you hit the “generate” button, you’re shown the following:
Keyword In is, by far, one of the simplest keyword research tools to use. It only takes a couple of seconds to plug in your keywords, choose your options and generate results.
Pro tip: experiment with each match type, including broad, phrase match and exact match.
I like keyword tools that are easy to use. Furthermore, I always tell people who are launching a new site to keep things as simple as possible. With Keyword In, you get the best results without any complications.
Have you ever used Google’s autocomplete feature to generate keywords or a blog post title?
If this is a trick you’ve used in the past, you’ll love what Soovle has to offer.
In short, this free tool provides autocomplete suggestions from a variety of sources, not just from Google.
While you can use it for Google suggestions, there are many other sources, including Yahoo, Bing, YouTube, Wikipedia and Amazon.
The first thing you need to do is choose your source. Google is the default, but you can change this easily enough, by clicking on one of the many other icons below the search box.
The search results aren’t the most advanced, but you’ll probably find a few suggestions that make sense for your blog. For example, a search for “content marketing” shows the following suggestions from Google:
As you jump around to other sources, such as Yahoo, the results change:
The best way to use Soovle is to experiment with a variety of keywords, while paying close attention to the results from each source.
Using Soovle is as simple as entering your keyword and reviewing the results. It’s quick, it’s efficient and it’ll guide you towards a few good keywords.
If so, you expect this tool to provide you with all of the keywords and data that you need to make informed decisions. And, while this typically holds true, it’s important to remember one thing: you may not be getting as much data as you think.
Ubersuggest provides you with keywords that are not available through the Google Keyword Planner.
With this in mind, I suggest that you always run a Ubersuggest search, after checking your keywords through the Google Keyword Planner.
Type in your keyword and click “suggest.” This generates a keyword list that is big enough to keep you busy for quite some time.
The thing that I like best about Ubersuggest is the way that it breaks down results by the letter. For example, a search for “content marketing” and the letter “a” shows the following:
With this organized approach, you have a better chance of reviewing every keyword, without missing one that could be a game changer for your site.
Pro tip: in addition to a web search, you can also search Images, Shopping, YouTube and News.
Have you ever considered the fact that your competition can provide you with the best keyword data?
There are a lot of tools out there, including many on this list, that help you generate in-depth keyword lists.
It goes without saying that you can visit any web page, such as a blog post on a competitor’s site and dig around for keyword data. After a few minutes, you should have a better idea of the primary and secondary keywords.
However, this can be time consuming. And, you could also miss out on a few keywords, every now and again.
Wordtracker Scout is a high-powered Chrome extension that ensures your success, if this is a strategy that interests you (and it should be).
Once you have the extension installed, you simply visit a webpage, hover over the content and hit the “W” button. This generates the following:
(via Wordtracker Scout)
Some of the key features of this tool include:
- The ability to analyze what your competitors are doing.
- Access to high level keyword performance metrics.
- Simple to use and understand.
When launching a new site, it’s only natural to wonder what your competition is doing. What steps are they taking to reach the top of the search engines and generate traffic?
It’ll take more than the right keywords to outdo your competition. But, it’s good to collect as much data as possible. Using this free Chrome extension puts you in position to analyze the target keywords of any web page.
As a free keyword tool for the first 30 searches, it never hurts to become familiar with what WordStream has to offer.
Similar, in many ways, to the Google Keyword Planner, this is one of the more user-friendly tools on the list.
Just as with every other tool, your first asked to enter your keyword. From there, you’re supplied a list of keywords:
Pro tip: if you’re willing to share your email address, you can have all of the keywords sent directly to your inbox.
Going beyond the basic tool means experimenting with the Free Keyword Niche Finder. Sticking with the “content marketing” example, here are the results.
The goal of this tool is to help you find a profitable niche. In the event that you’ve yet to settle on a niche, it can give you the guidance you’re seeking.
The more you use the many free tools by WordStream, the more intrigued you’ll become.
Whether you’re seeking keywords for your new site or need help settling on a niche, you’ll want to rely heavily on the tools offered by WordStream. They’re powerful, accurate and informative.
It’s last on this list, but that doesn’t mean that this tool has nothing to offer. It’s free, it’s easy to use and, above all else, it’ll provide you with some keywords that you may have overlooked.
The most interesting feature of this tool is its three level approach. If you’re interested in basic results, a Level 1 search will do the job.
If you require deeper insight, you’ll want to bump up to Level 2. And, if you want to really drill down, a Level 3 search is the best place to start.
Here’s an example of a Level 3 search, for the keyword “content marketing.”
To go along with the Level 3 results, you’re also provided with keywords associated with levels one and two.
On the surface, the results appear similar to most other tools. And, while this is true, to a certain degree, I’ve had great success with Level 3 results. They go well beyond what you’d expect, providing some hidden gems that can set your website apart from the competition.
Pro tip: even if you don’t use the SEO Chat Suggestion Keyword Finder as your primary tool, it’s a good idea to run a few searches, from time to time. This will ensure that you don’t overlook a keyword that could make a big difference.
When it comes to keyword research, there’s a right and a wrong way of doing things.
Rather than guess and hope for the best, I urge you to experiment with all 10 of these free tools. Doing so will go a long way in ensuring that you choose the right keywords for your new site, thus putting you on track to success, from day one.
Do you have experience with any of these tools? What are your thoughts? Share your feedback in the comment section below.