One of the first crucial questions that come to your mind as soon as you start doing business online and air your first website is what is the best free keyword research tool?
Because let’s face it: search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the staples of making money online. If you play your cards right, SEO will ensure that your content will be consistently discovered by potential readers and customers month after month, year after year. Without any additional investments whatsoever.
You write an article, people search for stuff, your website appears on the search results page—and voila, you have your traffic. The main trick here is to adjust your content to better fit what people search for (their keywords).
What are keywords?
Long story short, a keyword is anything entered into the search panel of a search engine (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.). There are two main types of keywords, and those are the short tail and long tail ones.
Short tail keywords consist of up to 3 words and usually describe a broad topic. Here are some examples:
- Money online
- Keyword research
- Affiliate marketing
- Do fish sleep
Long tail keywords are search queries made of more than 3 words. As a rule, they are much more specific, often describing a clear problem or target.
- How can I start making money online
- What is the best free keyword research tool
- Where can I learn about affiliate marketing
- Do fish sleep during winter
If you are serious about making money online, you can’t afford to create content chaotically, led by sudden bouts of inspiration. All of your articles, videos, and infographics should be perfectly aligned into a neat structure, and this is where keywords come in handy.
But how can you discover which keywords are important to you? Is a certain keyword highly competitive or easy like the summer breeze? Moreover, are there any tools that can answer this questions for free?
Yep, I’ve got a few services you should definitely try out.
The 5 best free keyword research tools
Google Keyword Planner
To become the best, learn from the best. Google is the most popular search engine of all times, processing over 60 thousand searches every second. Naturally, this should be your first instance to get some keyword knowledge for your business.
This is how the interface looks like.
The service is absolutely free, with a lot of valuable functions for you to benefit from:
- Monthly searches analysis
- Integration with Google Trends
- Basic keyword suggestions
- Keywords list combiner
Additionally, this is where you can get all the information you need to know on the matter of how much will it cost you to get a paid click for each given keyword. Of course, this is a matter for intermediate to advanced marketers, but you’ll absolutely be among them one day, won’t you?
Hands down, this is one of the most beautiful and stylish keyword research tools EVER, and its stellar features flawlessly match its looks.
Discover monthly searches and trends
Reveal related keywords
Check the average cost-per-click and level of competition in PPC advertising
Learn how difficult will it be for you to rank for each specific keyword
Filter your keyword research for specific locations and languages
Here’s a glimpse of what the search panel looks like:
And yes, this is a free tool with daily limitations. This means that after you sign up you’ll get 5 daily keyword lookups with 50 precise suggestions per each. For more searches consider purchasing signing up for one of the paid plans starting at $29.08 monthly.
My guess is that most beginner marketers will do just fine with 5 lookups per day, especially if they combine the power of KWFinder with another free keyword research tool without limitations.
Wealthy Affiliate Keyword Research Tool
This powerful tool is part of the Wealthy Affiliate paradigm, the world’s top community of affiliate marketers. Its main strength is that it was built BY marketers FOR marketers, with several functions that are almost exclusive to this specific tool.
- Article power checker: learn how valuable an article featuring this specific keyword will be for your overall SEO ranking
- Get detailed insights on how fierce the competition is
- Receive insights on monthly searches and how much traffic will you get if you manage to rank in the Google top 10 for this keyword
- Discover related keywords and topics with the Dig feature
Here’s the tool in action, after a search for “best free keyword research tool”:
Granted, the design is simple (almost ascetic, in fact), but don’t underestimate it. The full beauty of Wealthy Affiliate’s keyword research tool is that it’s just a part of the whole system, which is a world-class online boot camp that turns ordinary people into top-notch affiliate marketers earning money online by indulging in their passions and hobbies.
Premium Wealthy Affiliate members get unlimited access to this keyword research tool, as well as dozens of courses, hundreds of educational videos, and a vibrant community of online entrepreneurs who are always there to help each other in times of need.
Moz Keyword Explorer
If you are an SEO enthusiast, chances are you’ve already heard of Moz at least a few thousand times. This is one of the most reliable SEO authorities in the world, regularly providing insights that are hard (if not impossible) to match. Luckily, the company has a wide range of free tools you can use to skyrocket the quality of your keyword research undertakings.
Just take a look at this leviathan in action:
It’s sharp, elegant, and incredibly detailed. Moz Keyword Explorer provides you an end-to-end analysis of the keyword in question, including (but not limited to):
A range of monthly searches
Probability of getting organic traffic through ranking on search result pages
Importance of the specific keyword for your topic
Detailed analysis of competitors ranking for this keyword
Every user is granted 20 free monthly queries. For more data, you’ll have to become part of the Moz Pro plan, and this one is… Quite pricey, alas. It costs $99 monthly, or $79 per month if you pay for the whole year. Yes, I know that’s a lot, and not recommended for beginners. I included Moz Keyword Explorer into this list because the 20 free monthly queries are still WORTH GOLD. Trust me and try it out.
SEO Chat Suggestion Keyword Finder
Not as powerful as the other giants featured in this list, the SEO Chat Suggestion Keyword Finder is still fabulous for your inspiration—and absolutely free, at that. No limits on your daily or monthly searches, no hidden fees, no subscriptions: research to your heart’s content!
Take a look at what the process looks like, and then I’ll describe you what it’s all about:
Basically, this tool is one of the best ways to find related keywords and turn short tail queries into long tail ones (which are always the most valuable). In the screenshot above you see a two-level breakdown of the suggestions for the keyword “affiliate marketing.”
The first list (marked Level 1 on the right) features closely related short keywords which you can easily implement either in your mother article (dedicated to affiliate marketing, for example) or in a new one featuring a distinct cluster of keywords. The second list contains keywords that are extremely precise, but somewhat harder to implement without proper planning: you might need to create a separate article for each of them.
Finally, there is a third level of keyword research depth (not featured in the screenshot) that provides you with even longer keywords for incredible traffic coverage. I mean, you know that the longer the keyword is, the easier it is to rank for it?
Well, now you know. Start using the SEO Chat Suggestion Keyword Finder to see the results for yourself. 🙂
I know that picking the best free keyword research tool is impossible because we all have distinct needs and expectations. There is no “universal” solution, so I decided to summarize everything into a shortlist of bundle recommendations. For the best results, determine your experience level and use both tools recommended for it. Here it goes:
The best keyword research tools FOR BEGINNER marketers are:
Wealthy Affiliate Keyword Research tool (for the education and community that come with it)
SEO Chat Suggestion Keyword Finder (for the inspiration and help to pinpoint easy-to-rank keywords)
The best keyword research tools FOR INTERMEDIATE marketers are:
KWFinder (astounding in-depth insights for the quite affordable price)
Google Keyword Planner (mastering its full potential requires a bit of experience, no matter how you look at it)
The best keyword research tools FOR ADVANCED marketers are:
Moz Keyword Explorer (powerful but pricey, comes with a lot of bonus tools as part of the Moz Pro plan)
Google Keyword Planner (paired with Moz, this is an unbeatable combo)
And that’s all for today. I hope this article has shed some light on the matter of keyword research tools and provided you with the knowledge needed for success.
Good luck, and happy marketing!