keyword research tools

12 Best Keyword Research Tools

Keyword research and keyword research tools are the crucial first part of any content marketing strategy.

But while researching keywords can be a tedious and time-consuming process, not to mention difficult, if you’re unsure which keyword research tools are good, don’t worry – we have your back! 

We’ve researched for you and compiled this list of 12 Free Keyword Research Tools that’ll help you find just the right keywords for your campaign.

Tools in this list include Google’s Adwords Keyword Tool, Free Keyword Suggestion Generator, Free Keyword Density Checker, Free Keyword Tool Maker, Free Keyword Analysis Tool, and Free Keyword Trickle Feed.

Most are free Keyword Research Tools but only for a limited time.

Keyword research tools are essential to making the most of your SEO efforts. Use this list of 12 Free Keyword Research Tools to find out which is best for you!

12 Best Keyword Research Tools

Soovle

Soovle, a keyword research tools, suggested keywords from multiple sources.

Soovle gives you suggested keyword ideas from Google, YouTube, Bing, Yahoo, Amazon, and more.

(All in one place)

That way, you can find untapped keywords that your competition doesn’t know about.

Favorite Feature (keyword research tools): Saved Suggestions

Easily save your favorite keyword ideas with Soovle’s “drag & drop” saved suggestions feature.

Then, download your favorite keywords to a CSV file.

BOTTOM LINE

Soovle is one of the best free keyword research tools out there.

Jaaxy

Get thousands of related keyword ideas within seconds.

This is a straightforward (yet powerful) tool.

So, what makes Jaaxy unique?

First off, it gives you LOTS of different keyword ideas.

(Including some that you won’t find in most other tools)

Plus, you get useful data on every keyword it generates (including competition, search volume, and potential traffic).

Favorite Feature: QSR

QSR stands for “Quoted Search Result.”

It says: “how many other websites are trying to rank for this exact term?”.

Obviously, the lower this number, the better chance you have of ranking #1.

BOTTOM LINE

Jaaxy is a decent freemium tool. Not nearly as good as something like SEMrush or Ahrefs. But at $50/month, it’s not a bad deal.

Google Search Console

Find hundreds of “Opportunity Keywords.”

The Google Search Console isn’t a traditional keyword research tool.

But it does have a feature that makes finding awesome keywords a CINCH.

The feature?

The Performance Report.

This report lists the pages on your site that get the most clicks from Google.

(And the exact keywords that brought them there)

So: how can you use this feature for keyword research?

It’s easy: use it to find “Opportunity Keywords.”

Opportunity Keywords are where you rank between #8-#20 in Google for a specific keyword.

And with little extra on-page SEO, you can find yourself with a nice rankings boost.

For example, my average rankings for the keyword “SEO tool” is 6.2.

That keyword is an Opportunity Keyword. And if I optimize my page around the “SEO tool,” my rankings for that term should go up.

Favorite Feature: Google Analytics + Google Search Console

Did you know that you can combine your Google Search Console and Google Analytics accounts?

Well, you can.

And it’s very helpful.

When you do, you’ll get in-depth keyword data than you would with either tool by itself.

BOTTOM LINE (keyword research tools)

The Google Search Console is an underrated keyword research tool. No other tool can help you find Opportunity Keywords like the GSC.

Ahrefs Keywords Explorer

Make smarter keyword decisions.

Ahrefs recently rolled out a new and improved “Keywords Explorer.”

And what I like most about Keywords Explorer is this:

It gives you super in-depth information on each keyword.

Sure, you get the data you’d expect (like search volume). But you also get a breakdown of the first-page competition and how many searchers click on a result.

Favorite Feature (keyword research tools): Keyword Difficulty

Most keyword research tools give you vague difficulty info (like “easy” or “difficult”). Or a score (like “89/100”).

But Ahrefs tells you exactly how many backlinks you’ll need to rank on the first page of Google.

BOTTOM LINE

Ahrefs is mostly known for backlink analysis. But I have to say: it’s got a killer keyword research tool. I find myself using it more and more every week.

SECockpit

Keyword research for SEO pros (keyword research tools).

But what sets SECockpit apart from the rest of them is how it quickly surfaces more granularity from those results.

With a single click, you can work through dozens of keyword opportunities that come up as suggestions and find exactly which one represents your company best or has the most potential.

Sometimes, there’s even an opportunity to use one word twice!

The Swiss Army Knife of keyword research tools.

Like any other keyword tool, you give SECockpit a seed keyword, and you get a list of results.

But what makes SECockpit unique is the built-in features that allow you to get Much depth on search trends, organic competition, and traffic estimates.

This means that it’s a tool largely designed for SEO professionals.

Sure, newbies can get value out of this tool. But there’s no doubt that SECockpit is targeted at people that sleep, eat and breathe SEO.

If you’re brand new to SEO, the sheer number of features in this tool might be overwhelming for you. But if you’re looking for lots and lots of depth, you’ll probably get your money’s worth.

With that, here’s how it works.

When you log in, you’ll automatically go to your Dashboard, where you can create projects around sets of keywords or jump right in with a single keyword search.

To start the keyword research process, click on “Start a Keyword Search”:

Then, enter a seed keyword in the field marked “Keyword Phrase”:

You can get even more results by choosing to include Google Suggest, Related Searches and synonyms pulled from Google Ads:

When you’re done, click on “save and close,” and the tool will get to work:

Here’s the report you’ll get:

If you’ve ever used the Google Keyword Planner, the data here should look familiar to you.

The columns “Phrase,” “Monthly Searches,” and “CPC” are pulled directly from the GKP:

(The only difference is that CPC is called “Top of page bid” in the GKP)

So: what does the other information in SECockpit mean?

Monthly Searches CPC website traffic

Well, you’ll notice a bunch of green bars under the column labeled “Niche”:

This bar is a single metric that considers first-page competition, monthly search volume, and commercial intent. The larger the bar, the better the keyword. In other words, whether or not that search query is a good overall choice.

Next to monthly searches, you’ll notice a series of orange bars labeled “Top Results”:

This bar indicates the difficulty of ranking for that particular keyword based on the current top 10 results.

And when you click on a keyword, you get a breakdown of that keyword’s search results.

When you do, SECockpit will display important competition metrics for the top 10 pages in the results, including Moz Domain Authority and total backlinks:

This is a great way to quickly size up competition without having to look one-by-one at the SERPs.

And you go back to the keywords page. You can add at least 20 more columns to the results:

For example, you can see a ratio of the keyword’s competition compared to its search volume. Or you can get a comparison of the estimated traffic you’ll get from hitting the top 3 for that keyword. And lots more.

Favorite Feature (keyword research tools): Filtering

You can use over 100 filters to find the keywords that you want.

For example, do you only want keywords that get searched at least 10k times per month? 

Or maybe you want terms that have the best ratio of search volume and competition. 

BOTTOM LINE

Clunky? Yes. Intuitive? Heck no. Feature-rich? Absolutely. If you want lots of advanced features and don’t mind a steep learning curve, definitely check out SECockpit.

Google Keyword Planner

Tap into Google’s massive keyword database.

The GKP is pretty vanilla compared to most other keyword research tools.

So why use it?

Because the data you get from it comes straight from Google.

(So you know it is legit)

Favorite Feature: “Top of page bid.”

This is how many people advertisers are bidding on a keyword.

For example, if you see a top-of-page bid of $15, people are spending an average of 15 bucks per click.

Obviously, the higher this number, the more commercial intent that searcher has.

BOTTOM LINE (keyword research tools)

The data in the GKP is the most reliable out there. That said because it’s designed for Google Ads, using it for SEO can be tricky. This Google Keyword Planner Guide shows you how the GKP for SEO-focused keyword research.

KeywordTool.io

KeywordTool.io is a free keyword research tool designed to help online marketers find great keywords for their PPC campaigns. 

KeywordTool.io also provides insight into related keywords, which can help figure out how to optimize on-page content for search engines.

This site offers an instant, easy-to-use web interface, with quick access to all the major metrics of relevance you need to craft successful marketing campaigns on Google Adwords or Bing Ads. Free Keyword Research Tools KeywordTool.io Free Keywords Free Keyword Suggestions

Here’s another Google Suggest scraper (just like UberSuggest and Soovle).

What makes KeywordTool unique?

Two things:

First, KeywordTool gives you Many keyword suggestions.

For example, I just searched for “SEO”… and got 1,394 relevant keywords. (keyword research tools)

Second, you can easily filter, drill down or expand the results to find the right keywords for you.

Favorite Feature: Analyze Competitors

This is a very cool feature I don’t see in many other keyword research tools.

Just enter a competitor’s site, and the tool will generate a list of keyword ideas based on that site’s content.

But I also came across terms that I don’t use anywhere on my site but are closely related to my writing type.

(Like “digital marketing” and “how to check backlinks”)

BOTTOM LINE

One of the best comprehensive keyword research tools on the market. It’s worth a try.

Moz Keyword Explorer

Moz Keyword Explorer is a Free Keyword Research Tool from the SEO company Moz. Keywords are the words or phrases that people search for online. Free keyword research tools can be used to find out what people are searching for on the internet.

Moz’s Keyword Explorer does an awesome job of finding “lateral” keyword ideas.

For example, take a seed keyword like “digital marketing agency.”

But what makes Moz unique is that it’s SMART. Like most other tools, you get a list of closely related keywords:

This means you get outside-the-box suggestions that you probably won’t find anywhere else.

Favorite Feature: “Organic CTR” and “Priority”

These two awesome features let you know how many clicks you can expect to get from your target keyword.

Organic CTR is the number of clicks you can expect to get if you crack the top 10. For example, your CTR will be low if a SERP has many PPC ads, news results, and a knowledge graph.

Priority takes CTR, search volume, and difficulty into account. It’s an “overall” score of whether or not you should target a particular keyword.

So if you’re overwhelmed by keyword data, you can use this single metric to find keywords that will bring you the most traffic from Google.

BOTTOM LINE (keyword research tools)

Moz’s keyword tool is pretty darn awesome. Unfortunately, it’s not a standalone tool (you have to pay for their entire suite of SEO tools to use it).

free keyword research tools top

Keywords Everywhere

Get search volume (and more) wherever you go.

Keywords Everywhere is a paid keyword research tool that displays keyword data on top of 10 websites, including eBay, Amazon and Answer The Public.

That way, you don’t need to copy and paste keywords into the Google Keyword Planner. The data shows up in your Chrome browser. 

My Favorite Feature: “People Also Search For”

Get a list of keywords related to your search term in the Google search results.

What’s cool about this feature is that you can find keywords that your target customer searches for when they’re not searching for what you sell.

For example, when I search for “SEO Tools,” I see terms like “Google Keyword Planner SEO” and “Free SEO analysis.”

(Both of which get decent amounts of searches every month)

BOTTOM LINE

If you’re serious about keyword research, you NEED to install this extension.

Keyword Snatcher

Find 2,000 keyword ideas with a single search.

If you want a lot – and I mean a lot – of keyword ideas, Keyword Snatcher is a dream come true.

You’ll usually generate at least 2,000 keywords from a single seed keyword.

Here’s how it works:

Just open up the tool and choose the sources that you want Keyword Snatcher to pull its suggestions from:

I recommend keeping them all checked so you can generate as many keyword ideas as possible.

Next, enter a seed keyword into the field and click “Get Suggestions”:

And after a long wait, you’ll get an insane amount of suggestions:

The big downside of this tool is that it doesn’t give you any data on the keywords that it generates (like search volume and keyword competition). It’s simply a keyword idea tool.

To get that information, you need to extract the list of keywords by clicking on “Download Suggestions” and saving your keyword list as a text or CSV file:

Then, copy and paste those keywords into the Google Keyword Planner.

Favorite Feature: Word Count

This nifty sorting feature lets you focus on keywords that are a certain length.

(Like terms that are at least 4-words long)

This makes finding long-tail keywords much easier.

BOTTOM LINE

Not the best keyword tool ever made. But it’s one of the few out there that don’t require a monthly subscription.

Google Trends

Find new keywords and search trends.

There are two ways to use Google Trends for keyword research:

First, you can search for a specific keyword and look at the “related queries” section.

Second, you can see if whether or not a keyword is growing in popularity.

Why is this important?

Well, let’s say you’re debating between two keywords:

SEO Marketing” and “Inbound Marketing.”

As you can see, interest in “SEO Marketing” is growing fast… and fewer people are searching for “Inbound Marketing” than ever before.

This isn’t to say that “Inbound Marketing” is a bad keyword. But the fact that it’s trending down is one factor to keep in mind as you decide on your next keyword.

Favorite Feature: YouTube Search

See whether a given keyword is growing on the world’s 2nd most popular search engine: YouTube.

BOTTOM LINE

If you write lots of evergreen content, you NEED to use Google Trends. That way, you can see if a keyword will bring you traffic over the long haul before you write a word of content.

SEMrush

The Free Keyword Research Tool from SEMrush is a powerful tool that would help you find your competitor’s most profitable keywords. With this Free Keyword Research Tool, it has been possible for you to identify the competition and the most profitable keywords in the market. 

The Free Keyword Research Tool from SEMrush would be an essential tool in building your website Free Keyword Research Tools.

SEMrush works a little differently than the other tools I’ve shown you so far.

Instead of entering a seed keyword and getting a long list of keyword ideas, SEMrush shows you keywords your competition already ranks for.

(These are usually outside-the-box keywords that would be impossible to find using any other tool)

Here’s how it works:

First, enter a competitor’s domain name in the field at the top of the page.

If you’re doing SEO in a country outside of the US (for example, in Google.co.uk), you can choose to see information about that specific market. Just choose that country from this menu:

Next, take a look at the “Organic Search” section:

Here’s what the different terms in that section mean:

  • SEMrush Rank is where the site ranks in SEMrush’s database (like Alexa, the lower the number, the better). SEMrush rank is based on total estimated organic traffic.
  • Keywords are the estimated number of monthly organic visitors that come from Google.
  • Traffic Cost indicates how valuable this traffic is (based on Google Ads CPC).

So if you see a domain with a lot of Organic Search Traffic but a low Traffic Cost, you know that they’re ranking for keywords that don’t convert into buyers.

But the real value of SEMrush comes from the “Organic Keywords” data:

This box will show you 5 of the top keywords that your competitors are ranking for. To see more, click on “View full report”:

And you’ll get a list of all of the keywords that the site or URL ranks for:

This page alone will usually give you a handful of solid keywords.

But if you want more ideas, go back to the domain’s overview and check out the “Competitors” in the sidebar.

And you’ll see that website’s first-page competition:

When you click on one of THOSE results, you can see the exact search queries they’re ranking for.

There will be some overlap from what you just saw, but you’ll also (usually) dig up some real gems.

You can also start your SEMrush search with a keyword instead of a competitor’s site:

SEMrush will show you a “Phrase match report,” which is a list of long-tail keywords that include the keyword you entered:

The ‘Phrase match report’ helps find long-tail variations of Head and Body Keywords.

For example, if you wanted to rank for the keyword “content marketing services,” you’ll quickly find that it’s simply too competitive.

But SEMrush will show you long-tail variations, like “weight loss calculator,” that are much easier to rank for:

Favorite Feature: Keyword Magic

This tool pulls keyword suggestions from SEMrush’s massive database of 800+ million terms.

Summary of Free Keyword Research Tools

Keyword research is a vital part of any SEO strategy, but it can be incredibly time-consuming and difficult to get right.

Most keyword tools are either too expensive or limited in some way that makes them useless for serious marketers. Our tool has no limits on the number of keywords you can check at once, and our keyword suggestions are generated by real people instead of algorithms. 

Our data is also updated every hour so you’ll always have fresh new ideas for your campaigns.

By using our free SEO keyword research tool you will save hours upon hours each week while still getting high-quality results from real humans who know what they’re doing. 

This means that your marketing team will spend less time searching through lists of keywords trying to find ones that actually convert into sales or leads, which means more time focusing on other important tasks like content creation and social media outreach!

Free Keyword Research Tools can help you find out what people are looking for online so that you can better target your website and content to them. 

Free tools like Google Adwords, Wordtracker, and FreeKeywords will provide insight into the right keywords to use in order to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPS). 

Consistent keyword research also helps with SEO best practices because it allows you to create a plan of action for how you want your site structured across multiple platforms. 

Free keyword research tools should be just one part of an overall marketing strategy that includes strong branding, social media outreach, and email campaigns as well. 

What have been some challenges or successes when using free keyword research tools? Share below!

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