How to Do SEO Keyword Research with Google Keyword Planner

SEO is one of the most cost effective and profitable ways to generate traffic, and grow your ecommerce business in the long run. However, there are various components in SEO such as keyword research and analysis, onsite SEO and offsite SEO. Since it is important to identify the keywords your website needs to rank for, the focus of this article will be about SEO keyword research and demand analysis using Google Keyword Planner.

Introduction to Google Keyword Planner
Google Keyword Planner usually displays the average monthly search volume for keywords that are searched on Google and its Search Partners. While it focuses mainly on Google search results, it can give you a rather accurate account of audience search patterns since Google is currently the leading search engine used by most online users.

Google Keyword Planner is free to use and all you need is a Google Ads account to start using it. However, if you do not run paid Google Ads in your account, you can only see the estimated number of audience searches per month for each keyword. As such, it is advisable to run some paid Google Ads (even if it is a minimal sum) so that you can get more precise audience search volume and other relevant data.

Using Google Keyword Planner
Here are the steps to utilize Google Keyword Planner:

1) Login to your Google Ads account. If you do not have one, sign up here.

2) Click “Keyword Planner” under the “Tools and Setting” tab.

3) Next, click “Discover new keywords“.

SEO keyword research

4) Under “Enter products or services closely related to your business” section, type in keywords that are related to your business niche. Then click “GET RESULTS“.
The type of keywords to choose should have the following properties:
a) As specific as possible and not too general.
b) Ideally long tail keywords consisting of a phrase with a few words, and not just one single word.
c) For example, if you are running a food delivery business, you should enter keywords like “food delivery”, “food delivery service”, “food delivery {Name of country/state}”, “meal delivery” instead of just food or meal.

SEO keyword research

5) You will be taken to a page which displays all the keywords (usually in hundreds to thousands) related to the keywords you searched. You can refine your search by selecting the countries/states to target under “Locations”. Since they are usually tons of keywords to analyse, we recommend downloading the data to your computer by clicking “DOWNLOAD KEYWORD IDEAS“.

6) Since the downloaded file is a saved in comma-separated values (CSV) format, you can use either Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel to open it. Once open, omit all other rows and columns except for the following:

  • Keyword – Some of the keywords may not be related at all to your niche so be sure to narrow down the keywords further to the ones that are really very closely related to your niche. If possible, target only about 50 – 100 niche related keywords.
  • Avg. monthly searches – Target keywords with at least 500 or above monthly searches. If your niche is very small, then target keywords with a minimum of 100 or more monthly searches.
  • Competition (indexed value) – This is an indicator of how competitive the keyword is from a range of 1 to 100 with 1 being the least competitive and 100 being the most competitive. Although this metric is mainly for Google Ads keyword bidding, it can give you a rough gauge of the competitiveness of the keyword.

In the next article, we will look at how to use Ahrefs for a more accurate measure of keyword competitiveness and further analysis. So stay tuned for it. In the meantime, if you are interested to engage an ecommerce SEO company for your business, contact us today!

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