16 Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO (2023)

Ask any SEO pro and they will tell you that trying to do keyword research without a keyword research tool is a thankless task – and it’s pretty much impossible to build a comprehensive list of keywords with monthly search volumes.

As keyword research is one the most important parts of any search engine optimization strategy, the right keyword research tools are an essential part of your SEO tool stack.

If you’re new to SEO or just looking for new tools to try, we have the list for you.

We’re going to take a look at 16 of the best keyword research tools used by SEO professionals and help you choose the right one for your needs.

The Best Tools For Keyword Research

1. Semrush

One of the most popular keyword research tools on the market, Semrush offers a comprehensive suite of SEO tools.

Specifically for keyword research, it includes:

  • Keyword Overview: Just like its name suggests, this provides an overview of keywords, including search volume, difficulty, CPC, and variations.
  • Keyword Magic Tool: This tool gives you keywords by broad match, exact match, phrase match, and related words, alongside relevant metrics about search volume, intent, and competitiveness.
  • Keyword Manager: Only available to paid Semrush users, this tool supports deep analysis and data export.
  • Position Tracking:This feature allows you to monitor how your site is ranking alongside the competition on a daily basis.
  • Organic Traffic Insights: Combining Google Analytics and Search Console with its own data, this helps you identify the keywords that are actually driving organic traffic to your site.

Price: $99.95-449.95/month

2. Ahrefs Keywords Explorer

Another all-in-one SEO toolkit, Ahrefs includes a Keyword Explorer that provides incredibly in-depth information on keywords.

Using data from 10 different search engines, it provides more than keyword suggestions; it also provides information about search volume, ranking difficulty, and keyword movement.

Particularly useful is the insight it provides into your competition, helping you identify which keywords they’re ranking for that you’re not.

This information can then be used to create new content to target and capture that traffic.

Price: $83-999/month

3. Google Keyword Planner

It’s only logical that the world’s most dominant search engine would provide a tool to help you identify useful keywords.

Google Keyword Planner doesn’t offer as much functionality as some of the other tools out there, but it does have something they don’t: direct data from Google.

Primarily intended for digital marketers who are advertising on Google, it’s a free-to-use tool for anyone with a Google Ads account.

Using it is simple – just type in a keyword and it will give you data on approximate monthly searches, related keywords, and bidding information.

Price: Free with a Google Ads account.

4. Serpstat

Another full-service SEO suite, Serpstat includes tools for link building, PPC campaign management, and local search optimization, as well as keyword research.

Claiming to use the biggest database, it can help you identify keywords, analyze volume, popularity, and competition, and track your competition.

(Video) BEST Keyword Research Tool - I got 1,000,000+ VISITORS using THIS!

What’s really cool about Serpstat is that its results include the site in the featured snipped as the first result, to help you claim that spot for your own.

It also includes tools for monitoring trending keywords, including searches by region, rank tracking, and content analysis.

Price: $59-499/month

5. KeywordTool.io

The most useful part of KeywordTool.io is the sheer volume of keyword suggestions it provides.

A search for [pharmacy], for example, returned 669 total keywords.

These words are provided with all the relevant data an SEO professional could want, including competition (both average and by specific keyword), search volume, and trend information.

16 Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO (1)Screenshot from KeywordTool.io, February 2023

KeywordTool.io also allows you to filter results based on your needs. You can specify region, language, platform, and even type.

Like most of the other keyword research tools listed here, it allows you to analyze your competitors and identify words and phrases that they’re ranking for, but you are not.

Price: $69-129/month

6. Moz Keyword Explorer

In the world of SEO tools, Moz is one of the biggest players. It’s no surprise, therefore, that it includes a keyword research tool.

Offering both a paid and free version (limited to 10 queries per month), Moz Keyword Explorer has comprehensive analysis tools, robust keyword suggestions, and predictive metrics.

It also gives you detailed information on SERPs, tools for identifying long-tail keywords and search questions, and suggestions to help you rank internationally.

Price: $79-599/month

7. Google Trends

Another tool from the biggest name in search, Google Trends is a free-to-use keyword research tool that lets you search by specific words and phrases, or related queries.

16 Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO (2)Screenshot from Google Trends, March 2023

It breaks down results in a variety of useful ways, including interest by region, interest over time, and related topics and queries.

(Video) 16 free keyword research tools for SEO in 2021

You can also compare two keywords to determine if one is trending more than another.

Price: Free

8. AnswerThePublic

Billing itself as a “search listening tool,” AnswerThePublic taps into autocomplete data from search engines and uses this to determine useful search questions and phrases.

This information is then presented in a visual format that makes it easy to identify search volume divided by questions, prepositions, comparisons, and related searches.

It also provides an alphabetical list of keywords.

16 Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO (3)Screenshot from AnswerThePublic, February 2023

It has a free version, which is useful if you’re only doing a small amount of research.

The Pro plan is better if you’re regularly performing SEO, as it gives you unlimited daily searches, priority customer support, and customization options.

Price: $9-199/month

9. QuestionDB

QuestionDB is a great way to discover relevant keywords that other keyword research tools may not suggest.

You enter a broad keyword, and it returns a list of highly specific questions related to it.

With this in mind, you can create content to target low-competition, high-potential words, and phrases, as well as establish authority within your niche.

It has both a free and paid version, with free accounts being limited to a maximum of 50 results per search.

Price: $0-50/month

10. Jaaxy

Claiming to be the “world’s most advanced keyword tool,” Jaaxy is an easy-to-use tool that gives you a lot of keyword ideas.

Developed for affiliate marketers, it provides a huge list of related words and phrases, as well as useful data on search volume, traffic, and competitor performance.

It also includes information about how your website is ranking under tracked keywords.

(Video) 13 best FREE keyword research tools for SEO

Price: Free (limited to 30 keyword searches per month)-$99/month

11. Long Tail Pro

Designed specifically to help SEO professionals identify long-tail keywords, Long Tail Pro includes five tools to cover all things SEO:

  • Keywords.
  • Rankings.
  • Backlinks.
  • SERP Analysis.
  • Site Audit.

Its keyword research tool offers a lot of functionality marketers may find useful, including keyword grouping, campaign metrics, and competition analysis.

But its true strength lies in its ability to uncover long-tail keywords from a broad seed, returning as many as 400 highly specific words and phrases in seconds.

Price: $24.75-

13. Majestic

Majestic has three keyword tools included in its suite of SEO tools:

  • Keyword Generator, which can be used to discover new keywords for content ideas and targeted advertising.
  • Keyword Checker, which provides an extensive index that tracks words and phrases.
  • Search Explore, which explores competition for keywords and provides a more granular view of ranking difficulty. This is only available in Pro-level plans.

Price: $41.67-399.99/month

14. Soovle

Combing sites like Google, Amazon, Bing, Wikipedia, and YouTube, Soovle suggests keywords that you may otherwise have overlooked.

16 Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO (4)Screenshot from Soovle, February 2023

Results are displayed by website, allowing you to optimize your content for each one specifically.

It lets you save suggestions for future reference, or download them in a .CSV file.

It also provides an alphabetical list of the top internet keywords, with the platform each one ranks highly on indicated by an icon.

Price: Free

15. Keyword Surfer

This tool is a bit different from the others listed here, in that it’s not a standalone platform, but rather a Chrome plugin.

Keyword Surfer gives you an intuitive way to collect and analyze search data, as well as separate your keywords into collections.

This plugin makes it easy to monitor search intent, uncover topic clusters and evaluate search volume at a glance.

Price: Starting at $49/month

(Video) The 12 Best Free Keyword Research Tools For 2022

16. Google Search Console

No list of keyword research tools would be complete without a mention of Google Search Console – even though it’s not technically one.

It’s included on this list for one primary reason: the performance report.

By breaking down your website’s performance, it tells you where your traffic is coming from, which queries are driving people to your site, and which pages are your best-performing.

This data can then be mined for new keyword opportunities and to optimize your existing content.

Even better, it lets you custom configure your reports, so you can include the data that’s most important to you.

Price: Free

Choosing The Right Keyword Research Tool

The tools listed here are just a few of your many options.

So, how do you choose the right platform for your needs, especially when many of them have the same, or similar functionality?

To help you decide, you should consider:

  • Your budget –Obviously, you need something that will give you the functionality you need at an affordable price. Free options can be useful, but they tend to be less robust than paid tools.
  • Your overall SEO strategy – What is the primary focus of your search engine optimization efforts? Are you seeking to establish yourself as an authority? Or do you want to attract new customers? Are you targeting people locally or internationally? Each keyword research platform has different strengths and weaknesses. Select one that’s well-matched to your goals.

Be sure to carefully evaluate your options. If you work as part of a team, invite everyone’s opinions.

They may have platforms they have used in the past that did or did not work. Understanding why can help you pick the best one for your needs.

And once you find the perfect one for you, you can start going after and landing traffic from more queries and generating more conversions.

More Resources:

  • Google Keyword Planner: How To Use The Free Tool For SEO
  • Keyword Research: An In-Depth Beginner’s Guide
  • Rank Tracking: How To Do It The Right Way

Featured Image: Aysezgicmeli/Shutterstock

Category SEO Tools


16 Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO? ›

Semrush is among the premium tools most trusted for the accuracy of its keyword search volume data. Semrush gets its data from such reliable sources as Google Ads and Google Search Console.

What is the best free keyword research tool for SEO? ›

The best free keyword research tools
  • Moz Keyword Explorer for the best all-around free SEO keyword research tool.
  • Google Keyword Planner for researching paid keywords.
  • Ahrefs for simple SEO tools.
  • Semrush for advanced SEO professionals.
May 31, 2023

Which SEO tool has the most accurate keyword search volume? ›

Semrush is among the premium tools most trusted for the accuracy of its keyword search volume data. Semrush gets its data from such reliable sources as Google Ads and Google Search Console.

What are the 4 types of SEO keywords? ›

There are 4 types of keywords: short-tail, long-tail, questions, and intent targeting keywords.

What tools do you use in SEO keyword selection? ›

Here are seven well-known and time-tested tools for SEO that will get you well on the way to dominating your market.
  • Google Keyword Planner. Screenshot from Google Keyword Planner, January 2023. ...
  • Keyword.io. ...
  • Semrush. ...
  • Moz Keyword Explorer. ...
  • Ahrefs Keyword Explorer. ...
  • SERanking. ...
  • BrightEdge Data Cube.
Feb 1, 2023

How do I improve SEO without any paid methods? ›

9 Ways to Improve Your SEO Without Creating Content
  1. Remove Low-Quality Content From Your Site. ...
  2. Historically Optimize Outdated Posts. ...
  3. Fix Your Broken Backlinks. ...
  4. Keep Local Citations (Name, Address, Phone) Current. ...
  5. Request Testimonials and Reviews From Customers. ...
  6. Build New Internal Links. ...
  7. Conduct Link Building Outreach.
Jun 15, 2019

Does Google have free SEO tools? ›

Google Business Profile is an important free local SEO tool. With it, you can create and manage your Google listing that pops up when someone searches for your business. This is also what shows up in Google Maps.

What are the 4 types of keywords? ›

The four types of keywords to classify search intent are informational, navigational, commercial, and transactional.

How do I find low competition keywords? ›

You can achieve this by simply copying/pasting the main terms into Google Keyword Planner. This will provide you with related metric information such as cost per click, competition, search volume, etc.

What are the 3 C's of SEO? ›

Simply put, the fundamentals of SEO can be boiled down to The 3 Cs: content, code and credibility.

What are the 3 core must haves of SEO? ›

The Three Pillars Of SEO: Authority, Relevance, And Experience.

What is the most important tool in SEO? ›

Google Search Console: Top SEO Tool

All you need to do is verify your website by adding a code to your website or going through Google Analytics and you can submit your sitemap for indexing.

How do I find popular keywords? ›

To see what type of keywords users are searching for to find your website, pop over to Google Search Console > Search Traffic > Search Analytics. Once you're here, you'll see a list of keywords that are getting some traction.

What is SEO keyword Planner tool? ›

Keyword Planner helps you research keywords for your Search campaigns. You can use this free tool to discover new keywords related to your business and see estimates of the searches they receive and the cost to target them.

How can I do Google SEO myself? ›

  1. Make your site interesting and useful.
  2. Know what your readers want (and give it to them)
  3. Act in a way that cultivates user trust.
  4. Make expertise and authoritativeness clear.
  5. Provide an appropriate amount of content for your subject.
  6. Avoid distracting advertisements.
  7. Use links wisely.

What methods should be avoided for SEO? ›

Which SEO Techniques Should Be Avoided?
  • Keyword Stuffing. SEO basics are to make sure your site has relevant content that people are searching for. ...
  • Hidden Text. ...
  • Paid Links. ...
  • Cloaking. ...
  • Open Site Explorer. ...
  • Noindex Banners. ...
  • Keyword Density Keywords. ...
  • Flash Movies.
Mar 1, 2022

How do I get higher on Google search? ›

How to rank higher on Google: recap
  1. Target reasonable keywords.
  2. Check the intent.
  3. Write long-form content about it.
  4. Do your on-page SEO.
  5. Target long-tail, question keywords.
  6. Make your information skimmable.
  7. Make explicit statements.
  8. Include meaningful visuals.
Jul 6, 2022

Which is the best SEO tool for 2023? ›

10 best SEO tools for 2023
  • Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Level: Beginner through to advanced. ...
  • Clearscope. Level: All levels. ...
  • Semrush. Level: Intermediate through to advanced. ...
  • Ahrefs. Level: Advanced. ...
  • Moz. Level: Beginner through to intermediate. ...
  • Surfer SEO. Level: All levels. ...
  • SE Ranking. Level: All levels. ...
  • WooRank.

What is the oldest SEO tool? ›

Moz is one of the oldest and most recognized brands in SEO. In addition to providing a comprehensive SEO toolkit, it's great for understanding the competitive landscape of search results.

How can I learn full SEO for free? ›

Free SEO Courses with Certification
  1. Semrush Academy. Semrush Academy is one of the best courses available. ...
  2. HubSpot Academy. HubSpot Academy contains a more content-oriented set of courses, including videos on inbound marketing, email marketing and even Instagram marketing. ...
  3. Udemy SEO. ...
  4. Codecademy. ...
  5. Coursera SEO.
Aug 4, 2022

What are the 2 types of keywords in SEO? ›

When conducting keyword research it is important to consider two different types of keywords, one being high volume keywords and the other being long tail keywords. Knowing what each keyword type is can help you target the right keywords with your SEO strategy.

How many keywords is enough for SEO? ›

How Many Keywords Per Page Should I Use For SEO? Ideally, you should try to use one keyword per page, whilst also using three variations of keyword. Each page should focus on a single topic, including the main keywords within your content. You should choose one to three keywords per page.

How many keywords should you track for SEO? ›

Aim for one to four keywords around a single topic per page. Use those keywords and their reworded variations in your content and header tags. It's easier for pages to rank if they focus on one topic because there is limited space in the title and meta description tags, and you won't be able to fit all of them.

How do you find profitable keywords? ›

The most profitable keywords for your business are the ones that will attract relevant readers who are likely to purchase your product or try your service. Too many people try to choose these keywords by looking solely at metrics like volume, keyword difficulty (KD), and cost per click (CPC).

Which keywords are best to target? ›

Choose a mix of head terms and long-tail keywords

Mix head terms and long-tail keywords when choosing keywords. Head terms are short, competitive, high-volume keywords like “sound design.” They're hard to rank for, but it doesn't hurt to target them anyway as long as you also include long-tail keywords.

How do I get high volume keywords? ›

To find high search volume keywords, simply type in the main topic you are considering writing about. For example, if you wanted to find keywords related to building homes, you could type in 'building homes'. This will return a list of keywords related to this topic.

What 4 pillars are important in SEO? ›

Mitigation, reporting, project management, and relationship building are all important to the success of enterprise SEO.

What is the golden rule of SEO? ›

The Golden Rule of SEO is "create content for users, not for search engines". This means that when creating website content, the primary focus should be on providing value to users and meeting their needs, rather than trying to manipulate search engine rankings by using keyword stuffing or other unethical tactics.

What are eat signals? ›

E-A-T signals what Google and potential customers are looking for—expert-level content that answers all the right questions. E-A-T first showed up in Google's Search Quality Guidelines in 2014 and has progressively become one of the most important aspects of SEO.

What is SEO tactics? ›

An SEO tactic, is considered as Black Hat or Spamdexing if it has the following features: Attempting ranking improvements that are disapproved by the search engines and/or involve deception. Redirecting users from a page that is built for search engines to one that is more human friendly.

What is a list of 5 on-page SEO techniques? ›

On-Page SEO Checklist
  • Crawl your website.
  • Conduct an SEO audit and define your site architecture.
  • Update URLs, page titles, and meta descriptions.
  • Make sure your keyword is in your URL.
  • Include your keyword throughout your page.
  • Track keywords and topics for each page.
  • Don't keyword stuff.
May 19, 2022

How do I find emerging keywords? ›

It's relatively easy to do keyword research at the outset of a new campaign. Look at competitors, Google Suggest, Wordtracker, Google Keyword Adword tool – the list goes on. It's relatively easy to do keyword research at the outset of a new campaign.

Does Google have a keyword planner for free? ›

Yes, Keyword Planner is a free tool. But there's a catch: In order to use the Google Keyword Planner, you NEED to have a Google Ads account. (Just follow the prompts, enter some information about you and your business, and you're in.

Which Google tool is used for keyword research? ›

Google Keyword Planner

Google Keyword Planner is a keyword research tool for advertisers. But you can also use it to find keywords for SEO. It's particularly useful for finding related keywords that don't contain your seed keyword.

How to do free SEO keyword research? ›

8 free keyword research tools for SEO (that beat their paid...
  1. Rank Tracker. To find the most ample list of keyword variations and analyze their SEO profitability. ...
  2. Google Search Console. ...
  3. Google Ads Keyword Planner. ...
  4. AnswerThePublic. ...
  5. Keyword Tool Dominator. ...
  6. Google Trends. ...
  7. Google Correlate. ...
  8. Keywords Everywhere.
Jun 18, 2019

What is the best keyword research technique in SEO? ›

How to conduct keyword research
  1. Make a list of broad topics relevant to your topic. ...
  2. Expand each topic with a list of phrases you think your customers use. ...
  3. Find related search terms. ...
  4. Analyze the strength of your keywords. ...
  5. Determine how you rank in your industry. ...
  6. Verify search intent.

How do I find the best keywords for my website for free? ›

How to Find and Choose Keywords for Your Website
  1. Use Google Keyword Planner to cut down your keyword list. ...
  2. Step 2: Prioritize low-hanging fruit. ...
  3. Step 3: Check the monthly search volume (MSV) for keywords you've chosen. ...
  4. Step 4: Factor in SERP features as you choose keywords.
Jan 7, 2022

How do I find low competition keywords for free? ›

You can use the free keyword finder tool to get keyword ideas including:
  1. Google Ads keywords – find high-volume, low-competition keywords that your competitors haven't discovered to use in your Google ad campaigns.
  2. Keywords for websites – find popular and niche keywords for your website at scale.

What is the best keyword density for SEO? ›

What is good keyword density? While there are no hard and fast rules for keyword density beyond always-relevant "don't keyword stuff" advice, many SEOs recommend using approximately 1-2 keyword for every 100 words of copy. That factors in to about 1-2% keyword density.

What are the three types of SEO keywords? ›

The 3 General Types of Keywords

Keywords in SEO commonly fall into three general types: The short-tail keywords. The mid-tail keywords. The long-tail keywords.

How do I find most popular keywords? ›

To see what type of keywords users are searching for to find your website, pop over to Google Search Console > Search Traffic > Search Analytics. Once you're here, you'll see a list of keywords that are getting some traction.

What are some free keyword ranking tools? ›

Comparing the Best Google Keyword Ranking Tools
NameBest ForFree Trial
RanktrackerFinding high-performance keywords for local and global SEO optimization7 days
SEO PowerSuiteAll-in-one Keyword research and planning toolFree plan available
SerpstatCollecting international data, and tracking universal search results.30 Days
9 more rows
May 17, 2023

How many keywords should I use for SEO? ›

Aim for one to four keywords around a single topic per page. Use those keywords and their reworded variations in your content and header tags. It's easier for pages to rank if they focus on one topic because there is limited space in the title and meta description tags, and you won't be able to fit all of them.

What is the average cost for keywords on Google? ›

However, the average Google AdWords cost per click is between $1 and $2 on the Search Network(search results). The average CPC on the Google Display Network(on other websites) is under $1. The most expensive keywords in AdWords and Bing Ads cost $50 or more per click.

How much does Google keyword planner cost? ›

Google Keyword Planner is free. All you need is a Google Ads account to use it. To set one up, go to ads.google.com, click “Start now,” and sign in to your Google account.


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