The reports of the death of keywords have been greatly exaggerated.
While Google certainly has moved toward a more topical evaluation of sites for search ranking, keywords still play a role in how those topics are determined. After all, what else is Google using to determine the content of a page than the words it uses?
Therefore, it is still important to conduct keyword research and to evaluate the keywords used by your competitors. With the right implementation of the right keywords – paired with high-quality content, of course – you can position yourself high in search results and get the traffic you need.
Here are some of the top tools you can use to uncover your competitors’ keywords and to do other keyword research:
SEMRush is one of the best online research tools on the market.
This tool offers a very simple interface. Just go to the site and enter a URL to get a list of organic and paid keywords the site is using. You can also filter the results by top organic keywords to see what the current rankings are for those keywords.
SEMRush also offers analytics to help you understand your competitors’ link building strategies and advertising campaigns. You can compare sites (including your own against your competitors), get information about on-page health and more.
You can get a basic snapshot of a site for free, but if you want the more extensive data, you’ll need to sign up for a paid account. The basic account starts at $69.95 per month, and the top account goes for $549.95 per month. You get from 10,000 to 50,000 results per report, depending on the account, and can support 500 to 6,000 keywords.
Webbee SEO Spider
Webee SEO Spider helps you look at the site architecture as well as the SEO to understand the overall health of a site.
One feature of the tool is the “Keyword Intelligence Mode,” which shows you issues with keywords rather than giving you a complete list. The feature lets you see where there are conflicts for titles, headings and links. You can use this feature to discover the keywords being used on your competitor sites, as well as to determine where your competitors are having issues.
Once you get these keywords from the tool, you can go to Google’s Keyword Planner to get search volume and prices for those words.
Other features of the Webee SEO Spider include on-site SEO audits, listing of links, analytic reports, and more.
You can use a version of Webee for free, but if you want to get all the features, you’ll need to sign up for a paid account. Plans range from $15 per month to $129 for the year. Buying a license lets you use the tool on two machines, and it gives you many more features and allows you to crawl unlimited pages. It’s a small price to pay for a lot of useful information.
Like many of the other tools, Ahrefs allows to simply enter in a URL and get a list of the keywords used by that site.
You’ll get a list of keywords used, which you can then plug into Google’s Keyword Planner to get more information on search volume and bid price.
Ahrefs provides a host of other information about a site, including the global rank (as assigned by Ahrefs), the number of backlinks, a list of backlinks, progress charted over time, and much more.
The interface is easy to use, and all the data is charted out in a way that is easy to read and access.
Ahrefs is a paid tool, but you can get a free trial to make sure you like the service before you commit. Plans start at $99 per month for one user, and they go up to $999 per month for five users. Each plan includes a set number of campaigns, update frequencies, keywords, backlinks and more.
If you are a single user looking to track data for a single site or just a handful of sites, you should be fine with the Lite or Standard plan.
A number of other keyword research tools are available, but they do not all offer reliable data or useful tools. It is important that you check out reviews and perform other research to find the right tools for your needs. However, from our research, we have found that these are some of the top tools for the largest number of marketers.
Don’t leave keyword research out of your marketing planning. While keyword research is not what it used to be, it remains an important part of what we do. Just don’t get so focused on keywords that you overlook the importance of creating great content. You need lengthy, authoritative content behind your keywords to make the impact you want.