There are many critical elements that must be considered when starting a blog, and to be successful, you need to make sure that all of them are done right. One of those essential elements is keyword research, as choosing the right keywords to focus on is one of the main ways to increase the number of views that your blog will get.
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- How To Find And Use Industry Research In Your Blog Posts Post
If you currently write content but need some new methods for finding topics for your blog, read below for my favorite content research tools (some free, some paid). Free Content Research Tools. Content topic research is more of an art than a science. There isn’t a prescriptive, one-size-fits-all approach. The more you know about how your content performs, the better you can perfect your content marketing strategy. Run A/B tests to refine your landing pages and home page or to test different CTAs on your blog posts. As your brand evolves, establish new tests. You can incorporate that data into future content creation decisions.
A lot of new bloggers don’t even consider doing keyword research, and because of this, they struggle to get visitors on their blog, no matter how hard they try. Others simply add keywords that are “the most popular, ” but they don’t understand that if a keyword is very common, it will not help, but send your blog to the 15th page of search results.
Skipping over this part is not an option, as you won’t be able to grow your blog as fast as you want to, so what can you do? Simply put, you will have to do keyword research to find keywords that will work well and help your blog rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs). It’s not a simple thing to do, as all blogs and target markets are different.
You will need the right SEO tools and the right knowledge that will help you start this process correctly and go through it smoothly. This guide will provide tips on properly structuring your keyword research, and you can adjust it to your specific needs.
First of all, you must understand why you need a good keyword strategy for your blog. Keywords are an extension of your organic reach, meaning that they will allow you to attract readers with a genuine interest in what your blog has to offer. Of course, if you create a good keyword strategy that isn’t misleading.
Organic traffic is the most valuable asset for your blog, and you need to have as much of it as possible to grow your blog.
Brainstorm to find niche topics
Without thinking about anything else, start your niche decision process by writing down all the things that interest you. These can be personal interests or professional interests.
- Start by thinking about the things you enjoy doing, or would enjoy doing if you had the chance. For example, you are an amateur photographer. Photography blogging could be a great niche. You can share your photos, your detailed knowledge, or your experience with camera technology.
- Next, think about the things you would enjoy learning. For example, you’re interested in taking up cooking classes. Even if you don’t have the time or budget to start cooking classes, you can start a food blog where you analyze recipes you find online. And discuss how to choose perfect ingredients, and weigh the benefits of organic versus GMO ingredients.
- Finally, think about the things you are already diving deep into. For example, let’s say that you are an adult that is going back to finish your degree in college. You’re going to do a lot of research on on-campus versus online degree programs, what university to choose, how to get back into the swing of studying, and so on. These are great topics for a niche blog about higher education.
Picking a niche is a challenging process. But, during this exercise, you will get a better feeling for the topics that resonate with you. The ones that you are most passionate about are the best candidates for your niche blog.
For example, let’s say you are starting a blog about golf. The first keywords come to your mind that you would use in Google search:
- golf for beginners
- golf tips
- golf swing
- golf clubs
These would be your seed keywords, broad topic ideas. Next, you will have to find more specific keywords that offer attractive opportunities.
Find core keywords and gather search volumes
Using Google Keyword Planner to find keywords
The Google Keyword Planner will be of great help when you start creating a list of keywords that you could potentially use for your blog. This tool is handy, and it can help you quickly create a large keyword list.
Login or create a new account to enter Google Keyword Planner tool.
You will see three different options under “Find new keywords and get search volume data.” Select the “Search for new keywords using a phrase, website, or category” tab.
This is a bread and butter tool that you will use to generate your keywords ideas.
Once you open the tool, you will see the list options. Most of these options are preselected, and you don’t have to worry about them. Let’s go over options that will help your keyword research.
Your product or service: This is where you enter “seed keywords, ” and this is the primary field you will use. You can enter one or more keywords here.
Your landing page: This is primarily for Adwords users.
Targeting: This option relevant to switch the country, language and search engine that you’re marketing on.
Customize your search: Here is how Google explains this option – “Filter your keywords by historical statistics, hide keywords already in your account, and include or exclude certain keywords. Click the pencil icon to customize these settings.”
Date range: You can enter a date range to see average monthly searches for a given period.
Let’s enter “seed keywords” (golf tips, golf swing, golf clubs) that we used in the example above and look at the results.
You will get results for selected keywords and also relevant keywords ideas. Let’s look at the each area in this screen.
Search Terms: These are the keywords you entered.
Keyword (by relevance): The list of keywords suggested by Google.
Avg. monthly searches: Number of searches interval, not a very accurate indicator of search volume. (We’ll show you how to get accurate search volume data below).
Competition: This indicates the number of advertisers bidding on that keyword, used for AdWords. Useful to evaluate how competitive is the keyword.
Suggested bid: Great way to get the idea of monetization potential of the keyword.
Now, you can download the list with keywords ideas to sort the after.
Another useful option you can use with Google Keyword Planner is “Ad group ideas.” You will get an extended list of ideas to explore.
Click on one of the ad groups to see what’s inside.
You will see what keywords are included in that group.
You can also download all these keywords and add them to the list.
You have more tools that you can use to find more keywords ideas. Some of them are free, freemium, or paid. We believe that by using Google Keyword Planner, you can get a list of keywords ideas that would be more than enough to explore. But in case you want to check other tools, here is the list of the most popular:
How To Find And Use Industry Research In Your Blog Posts Instead
Ahrefs keywords explorer
Using Google Keyword Planner to gather search volumes
As we mentioned, earlier, Google Keyword Planner will show you the range of monthly searches (ex. 1k-10k). You can get exact search volume for specific keywords if you are running active Adwords campaign (paid advertisement). But, even exact search volume fluctuates, and Google will show the estimated average number of searches. It’s helpful to see the exact number of searches however there is nothing wrong with using ranges to choose the keywords.
Let us show you how you can pull out the exact search volume from Google without creating Adwords campaign.
First, pick the keyword from the list of suggestions and click add to plan.
You will see Your plan widget on the right side.
Put some high number (ex. $1000) in “Enter the bit” field, look at the number of “impressions” this is how many people search for this keyword every day.
Now, if you multiply that number by 30, you will get a legit number of searches per month. The trouble here is that you will have to perform the same process with each keyword you want to target. But, let us repeat there is nothing wrong with using estimated ranges (1k-10k) of search volume if you don’t want to go through each keyword.
Using paid tools to gather search volumes
As we mentioned earlier, there are some paid tools available online. And you can use it to find keywords and check search volumes. These tools would show you numbers based on the algorithm they use, and it will be estimated figures.
For example, here is what you get if you try Ahrefs keyword explorer.
As you see these numbers differ from what you get with Google tool but you get the rough idea of the search volume.
More tools are available, and you can check it from the list provided below.
Understand the importance of long-tail keywords
Before we get to the part on how you can determine the value of your keywords, first you must know which keywords are the most valuable and why it’s all about long tail keywords. It is true that you can choose keywords which have from 500 to 5,000 searches per day. However, these big terms account for less than 25% of the searches on the whole web.
Over 70% of keywords people search for are located in the “long tail” search. This long tail area has millions of searches that can happen a couple of times on any day, but these searches make up most of the daily searches.
Let us describe the three different categories that keywords usually divided to: head, body, and the long tail.
- Head: These are single-word keywords with huge search volumes (for example, “golf” or “food”). These terms are broad, and people might be searching for various things using these keywords (for example, someone searching for “golf” might be looking for golf classes, a golf clubs, or rules of the game).
- Body: These keywords are 2-3 word phrases that get decent search volume (1,000 to 2,000 searches per month) and are more explicit than the head (for example, “golf lessons” or “food classes”).
- Long Tail: These keywords are 3 or 4+ words long and are very specific (for example, “cheap golf lessons for kids” or “food classes for Japanese cuisine”). These terms don’t have a lot of search volume, but statistically, they make up the majority of searches online.
As a rule of thumb, when you choose Body keywords and optimize your content around them you will usually rank for related long tail (4-8 words) keywords. And that’s how you get natural traffic to your website.
How to find long tail keywords
The easiest and probably the most efficient way to find relevant long tail keywords is to use Google suggestions. Let us show you exactly how you can do it.
First, when you type selected keywords into Google search, look at the auto suggestions.
Second, when you perform the search scroll down to the results page and look at the “Searches related to….” suggestions.
You can perform this technique with different variations of keywords and pick terms that are most suited.
Check what keywords competitors rank for
That is one of the effective advanced tactics you can use to find the right keywords within your niche. This option offered with paid tools such as SEMrush and Ahrefs site explorer.
As an example, we will demonstrate how to check your competition with Ahrefs. First, pick a domain name (URL) of the website you want to check. In our case, we will check golfdigest.com website.
Open Ahrefs Site Explorer tool and enter the URL of the domain you want to check.
You will get in-depth details of that website including backlinks profile and search traffic. By clicking on “Organic keywords” section, you can see rankings of this site and keywords ideas.
This exercise will help you to find more keywords and determine what keywords you should go after.
Evaluate competition and difficulty
To further evaluate the keywords ideas you will have to look how competitive they are and how difficult it will be to rank for these keywords.
You can make an educated guess with Google Keyword Planner tool by looking into two parameters: Competition and Suggested bit.
We described these two items above but let’s look at them again.
Competition: This indicates the number of advertisers bidding on that keyword, Low, Medium, and High. Useful to evaluate how competitive is the keyword.
Suggested bid: Great way to get the idea of monetization potential for the keyword. But also will give you an idea of how difficult it might be to rank for these keywords.
With the data from Google, you can make an educated guess. If you want to get a deeper understanding of competitiveness and difficulty of the keywords, you will have to use a paid tool such as Ahrefs Keywords Explorer.
Run the report for specific keywords and click on “Having the same terms” tab.
Here is how this report will look like:
Here is how Ahrefs measure KD: “Keyword Difficulty is an estimate of how hard it would be to rank in Top10 Google search results for a given keyword. It is measured on a nonlinear scale from 1 to 100 (low difficulty to high difficulty).”
Determine the money keywords
If one of your goals is to make money online, it’s important you select the commercial intent keywords. These keywords can be divided into three classes:
Buy Now keywords
These are keywords that people use before making a purchase.
Here are words that tend to be part of these type of search queries:
How To Find And Use Industry Research In Your Blog Posts Using
Product Keywords are searches that focus on a particular product category, brand name, or service. People using these phrases are in early buying stage.
Product keywords tend to include:
- Top 10
The bulk of keywords online are “Informational keywords.” It’s natural for people to look for information before going into the buying process.
Information keywords tend to include words like:
- How to
- Best way to
- Ways to
- I need to
Available keyword research tools
We’ve mentioned some instruments in this guide, but here we will give you the bigger list of tools you can test when doing a keyword research.
Once you’ve done all of the things mentioned above, you can set your keyword strategy in motion, but this doesn’t mean that your work ends there. A good keyword strategy requires an adequate follow-up, which includes monitoring and tweaking things constantly.
These are the essentials you need to know about creating a proper keyword strategy for your blog. Remember that choosing the correct keywords is essential for a blog to succeed, but this is just one of the aspects and you cannot neglect other important things.
One of the best ways to get visibility and traffic to your blog posts is to write on topics that are popular and being shared on social media platforms. One reason why trending topics get more traction is that they’re relatively more valuable to the reader. Such content is more likely to get links and shares as well. Displaying domain expertise becomes a breeze when you follow and post about the latest stuff in your industry. It then gets you, followers and subscribers. Hacking industry trends is an essential part of any content marketing strategy.
Here are ten awesome ways in which you can find and write about trending topics:
Feedly is a great tool to research for trending content. The tool allows you to follow some of the top blogs in your niche with just one click. You can simply search for the relevant publications by choosing a category. Just subscribe to their feed and get all the latest content in your Feedly dashboard. Feedly is a freemium app available on desktop and mobile.
Another cool place to find trending content in your industry is Medium. Medium is a free-to-use content publishing platform. It’s a great community for finding some truly remarkable content pieces. You can use category search on the platform to search for some popular blog posts and pick those that you wish to write about. You can log in and create your free account and use Medium on your desktop or download its mobile app. You can follow individuals and categories on the platform. Once you do, you will see latest stories from them in your feed. Another section that’s worth checking out is “Popular on Medium”.
I think Quora is one of the best communities for finding trending content. Whenever I’m ideating a content piece, I would check out popular questions on Quora. The platform provides you the option to follow the relevant topics in your niche. Once you do so you’ll keep seeing the ‘Top Stories’ (questions) in your Quora newsfeed. You can also check out the ‘New Questions’ option to see the latest questions. The community is full of interesting questions to find inspiration for your next blog post.
How To Find And Use Industry Research In Your Blog Posts For A
4. Google Trends
Google Trends is another free tool with a host of interesting features. It helps you to do a comparative keyword research to find out which ones are being talked about the most.
The tool provides you with an option to analyze trends for web, images, videos as well as Google shopping.
You can also look for trending stories for a particular category and location.
How To Find And Use Industry Research In Your Blog Posts Post
There are many content pieces that get widely shared on social media channels. There is something unique and valuable about these pieces that make them unique. You must catch hold of these content pieces to know more about what’s doing well. Buzzsumo is one tool that will help you to find niche pieces which have the highest social shares. Type in a sample topic or keywords and you’ll get the URLs of all those pieces along with their respective number of shares on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn etc.
Some communities may not be as popular but definitely quite valuable. Reddit is one such community which can help you to find some fairly exciting content to help you ideate your next blog post. The community helps you view content based on its freshness and popularity. Look for the relevant subreddit for conversations related to your niche. You’ll find tabs like hot, rising, and new to look for trending topics.
Reddit is not a conventional place to do your content research but it’s certainly worth researching.
7. Linkedin Pulse
LinkedIn Pulse helps you to find some of the top stories and professional conversations on a daily basis. These stories are curated by editors of LinkedIn and include stuff that’s published on the platform and off it.
Check out the “What People are Talking About Now” section to get your dose of trending content.
Pocket is a must-have app for content marketers. Its core feature is to let you save your favourite articles and refer to them anytime, anywhere. The app recently came up with the “Explore” tab where you can type in any keywords in your niche and find content that people using Pocket are saving. That’s one great way to find popular content on Pocket. The other useful sections within the Pocket app include “Recommended, “Trending”, and “Must Reads”.
This another cool freemium tool to find trending content in your business vertical. You can simply use the search bar in the tool to look for a topic URL or author. EpicBeat has a unique search assist feature that gives you suggestions of keywords, authors, and websites based on your interests. The tool also provides you with an advanced search feature to make your search more accurate.
It lets you analyze the top content pieces and shares while it also gives you the list of those who have shared the pieces in the past week.
10. Social Mention
This is another cool web app to find the latest content in your industry. Just type in your keywords and find real-time content in your niche. It gives you the option to look for content pieces of all formats (Blogs, Microblogs, and Videos etc.) or just one of them. The tool gives you the option to search for exact key phrases so you can find results that are more relevant. You can use the tool to look for content that’s as recent as the last one day, 12 hours or an hour.
Besides the tools mentioned above, you can also look for trending blog topics in Google’s News Search feature. It’s a great place to find the very latest news and in your industry. Even Twitter for that matter is a great place to type in domain-specific hashtags and find the latest stories.
Make Your Content Stand Out
There are other things that you must keep in mind while posting on trending topics. Make sure you are trying to outdo some of the top trending content pieces. It will help you to get more shares and visibility for your blog post. Give an interesting twist to the topic by adding a point of view to your story. You can make it more valuable by adding examples and case studies that fit into the story.
Over To You
You must make use of the above tools white researching for blog topics. Tools for creating and maintaining an editorial calendars. Trending stories will always fetch you more traffic for your blog and result in more leads and conversions. You must make use of trending topics to pitch for guest stories - the acceptance rate will be much higher and result in more backlinks and brand mentions.
I hope you found this piece helpful. Would love to learn from your experience. Please feel free to add your suggestions in the comments section below.