‘The times they’re a changin’-so crooned Bob Dylan in the 60s of the last century. The internet emerged on the scene some three decades later but the relevance of the song’s essence remained and it still does. In this context, it can be stated that keywords which used to be the mainstay of any SEO strategy or promotion have been through an evolutionary phase whose across-the-board repercussions have been felt by everybody having a stake in the online realm. Keywords for a long period of time had been the be-all and end-all of all SEO techniques and stratagems-your site’s SERP ranking would’ve got a boost if you managed to create or spin content around relevant keywords.
However, of late, Google, the world’s most preferred search engine has gone in for a flurry of updates with respect to its SEO ranking algorithms including PageRank, Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird to name a few. As a result, the prescribed parameters or yardsticks based on which these algorithms ranked websites were re-examined and subsequently tweaked. So, the long-established mode of creating site-specific content, inserting keywords perfectly germane with the content, and regularly updating content were no longer a priority as far as resting a good rank on Google’s SERPs was concerned.
Google was also apprehensive of becoming unpopular with smartphone users whose numbers were swelling day by day. Smartphone users complained that the sites and portals did not download as quickly on their handsets as these did on desktops and laptops. Additionally, they also had issues with regards to clarity of the web pages and navigating smoothly through the same. Therefore, the search engine went into an overdrive in order to make its servers readily accessible to and user-friendly for smartphones.
- Ubersuggest: Ubersuggest is a versatile keyword exploring a tool that helps you to envisage or think up more specific keywords relevant to your site content, particularly if you’re uninitiated in researching for the same. Though Ubersuggest is not as resourceful as Moz’s or Google’s keyword foraging tools, but it at least assists you in brainstorming on keyword concepts.
- Keyword Explorer from Moz: The best things in life are free including Keyword Explorer from Moz. Moz has earned its goodwill by providing exclusive SEO tools free of cost and that includes the state-of-the-art Keyword Explorer. Apart from offering recommendations on site-specific keywords, the tool lets you know straight away the collective value of every keyword you key in.
- Keyword Planner from Google: Your keyword researching toolkit is incomplete if it doesn’t have the Keyword Planner from Google. What makes the Keyword Planner the most coveted amongst all the available keyword rummaging tools? For a start, it is accurate, it’s open sourced (free), and most importantly it’s from Google.
- Soovle: Soovle is another resourceful keyword research contrivance that adopts a somewhat analogous technique as that of Ubersuggest. Nevertheless, the fact that Soovle draws heavily from the automated recommendation specifics of a range of search engines including Yahoo, Bing, Amazon, YouTube, Wikipedia, and Google differentiates it from Soovle. Soovle is a multifarious research tool that comes in perfectly handy especially when you intend to promote you brand on a range of platforms.
- SEMRush: SEMRush, unlike most of the other keyword exploration tools, doesn’t come free. However, what or whatever you get in return by paying upfront is nevertheless of great value. Since proof of the quality of the pudding is in the eating, just insert the domain name of your site, and you’ll be bombarded with a deluge of data pertaining to your portal.
- SpyFu: SpyFu is an adaptable keyword analysis tool that allows you to fairly gauge the degree of competitiveness your business is confronting vis-à- vis your closest adversaries. With this tool, you just key in the domain of any of your competitors to get a clear idea of the keywords being used. SpyFu enlightens you on where you exactly stand compared to your rivals.
Google also brought about corresponding or analogous changes in the manner in which the organic SEO algorithms ranked websites to make the ranking tools amenable for smartphones. These adjustments implied that all webmasters who designed and developed websites reviewed/graded by Google were now required to upgrade the portals to make the same conveniently accessible for Android-based and iOS phones. In this context, any site which is not smartphone-friendly is reprimanded by downgrading its ranking. Nevertheless, the fact remains that keywords still continue to be a strategic determinant considerably affecting the outcome of any SEO promotion campaign undertaken by the website owner or administrator responsible for maintaining the portal.
Researching on keywords lets you keep track of search trends and patterns of users as well as enables you to leverage your online marketing strategy. In order to add more teeth to your SEO campaign with the overarching objective of improving the site’s SERP ranking, you can take advantage of the following tools for focused keyword research.