Your keywords are what drive the Search Engine Optimization of your site. They are the bread and butter of making your website search engine friendly. That is why they are so important, and is also, why so many people spend so much money on keyword research. But, the truth is that there is no reason or need to spend money on your keyword research.
The fact is that when you type a query into the search engine, you are using the same words that most people would use. You are already (technically) an expert at what people are going to search for, with the added benefit that you are already close to your industry, so you are also going to know all the industry words to use too. Every shortcut on this article may be done for free.
Google Trends help you to figure out which words are popular
All you need to do is put your keyword(s) into the search bar and press enter to see how popular the keyword is. It shows you a graph going from 0 to 100. The higher up the line is then the more popular the keyword is. You can see how popular the keyword has been over the last few years. You will be able to judge to see if it has been briefly popular, or if it is growing in popularity.
You may also see where in the world the keyword is the most popular, and on the bottom right of the screen, you will see a few popular alternatives to your keyword(s). If you are trying to figure out if your word is going to remain popular, you will be able to see via this tool, with the added benefit that it is free to use.
Brainstorm keyword ideas yourself
You have a built in advantage when you are coming up with keywords, because you are already close to your industry. That means that you are exposed to words relating to your industry all the time, so it should not be too difficult to come up with quite a few related keywords. You are also more likely to have experience with your target audience and will have probably done a little bit of market research in the past. That is why you should come up with a list of your own keywords, and then pick through the keywords you come up with in order to find the best ones.
Do not forget that you are going to have a lot of pages to fill, so even if you come up with a few obscure keywords, then you can always optimize one of your less important pages with them.
Sign up for a free Google AdWords account
This is a tool you may use if you want to run PPC adverts with Google’s affiliate program. They allow you to use a tool where you put in your keyword and it suggests hundreds of others. It takes your keyword and links it to all the others that are used in your industry. It also categories them for you, in order to make them easier to look through.
The tool will also show you if your keyword(s) is searched for on a regular basis, and you can see how much the affiliate advertisers are paying for them (per click) on their affiliate adverts. It allows you to see which are popular keywords and which are not.
Google Suggestions is another free source of keywords
As you start to type your query into Google, you will see suggestions come up underneath the search bar. These are full of relevant keywords. All you need to do is note down the relevant suggestions and then steal the keywords. You have to remember that your target audience is going to see similar suggestions, which means that they are going to pick and run those searches. If you optimize your website for their keywords, then when people run searches through clicking the suggestions your website will appear on the results.
Copy your competitor’s keywords
You can always look at the source code of your competitors’ websites to see what they are optimizing their site for. You can look at their Meta keywords, and you can look at their web content to see if any relevant words appear more than once.