How To Do Keyword Research

What is a keyword?

This is the word, or more likely words, typed into the search engine. This is what the searcher is looking for.

When an SEO agency talks about keywords they are usually talking about “non-brand” keywords. This means they DO NOT contain the name of your business. They are usually the name of a service, product type or a problem that the searcher is trying to solve.

What are local keywords?

In local SEO they will have a location tagged onto the end. Such as the aforementioned “plumbers Bristol”. Pretty much anything can have a local connotation. Such as:

  • Scuba diving lessons Bristol
  • MOT Bristol
  • Ford dealer Bristol

I’m using Bristol here as my main location, but this can be replaced with any location, any city or even suburb or district within the city. Such as:

  • Bedminster
  • Horfield
  • Stoke Bishop
  • You name it

The only issue with going “super local” like this is the search volume. It’s going to be pretty low if existent at all.

My advice would be to use Bristol as the main area for your website but then create subpages targeting anything more local than that.

What tools to use for keyword research?

There are various tools you can use for your keyword research. By far and away the best free tool for local SEO is the Google AdWords Keyword Planner (Google account required). Unfortunately, Google has decided to obfuscate the search volumes here by giving you a range rather than an “exact” figure. Still, it can help in determining whether a keyword has enough searches as to be worth targeting.

Another free tool and a personal favourite of mine is

Make a note of worthwhile keywords in a spreadsheet and group related keywords together.

Add them to the keywords you got from researching your competitors. You should be making quite a nice spreadsheet of potential target keywords by now.

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