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Never do keyword research again. Do this instead

What! are you crazy? “Never do keyword research again”

No, I’m not crazy and I’m not really saying never do keyword research again because to do no keyword planning at all would indeed be crazy.

What I am saying is instead of your conventional keyword research do “this” instead…


So what is keyword research?

Here is what Wikipedia has to say

Keyword research is a practice search engine optimization (SEO) professionals use to find and research alternative search terms that people enter into search engines while looking for a similar subject. Search engine optimization professionals research additional keywords, which they use to achieve better rankings in search engines. Once they find a niche keyword, they expanded on it to find similar keywords. Keyword suggestion tools usually aid the process, like the Google Adwords Keyword Planner, which offers a thesaurus and alternative keyword suggestions or by looking into Google Suggest

Th keywords that jump out from Wikipedia’s opening phrase of their definition are “search engine optimization (SEO), professionals”.  

SEO, Keyword research, all the optimization tools that we are told that we need, Its all part of an industry niche. And we are told that in order to rank well on Google, to do well on the SERPS to get page 1 rankings we have to run our sites like SEO professionals and Marketing Gurus.

We must SEO Optimize our pages diligently do our keyword research because we have to find that “low hanging fruit” those apple type keywords that are nice and juicy for traffic yet have low enough competition for us to rank for. We have to fit into that professional persona if we want to get results.

Well yes you do… and no you don’t

I bet you’re confused now. I’m not saying don’t do your keyword research. I’m not saying don’t implement a great SEO strategy that will help you rank for your chosen keyword phrase. What I am saying is to flip it on its head and come at it from another angle.

Keyword research and SEO is an industry. People make money off the story that you need this keyword tool, you need that keyword tool. We are told that you need to employ a SEO company to get you ranking on Google and Bing.

You just don’t need to worry about any of this, especially if you are a blogger. I’m not saying that keyword research tools are bad or that SEO companies are a waste of money. If you have a budget for this kind of stuff then cool go for it. Pay you’re $50-$70 a month for that keyword research tool. Employ that SEO company that guarantees page one results but do it as a way to save time because time is money.

But if you are a regular blogger then. It’s my opinion that all Keyword Tools and SEO companies are a frivolous expense.

All the experts say “Use this keyword tool”

Well, that is because it fits in with the professional image and because there is probably a big affiliate commission for referring the tool. I’m not pointing any thingers here all I’m doing is pointing out that Keyword Research Tools are big business for those who create them and those who then refer them to others.

The creators of these tools are very good a leveraging the visitors they get to their sites. Using their knowledge of how the marketing and sales game works. Even going as far as to become bloggers themselves to create “how to do keyword research guides” on their own sites which of course link into their own sales pages. They then also utilise guest posts on their own sites from SEO experts to build their own authority.

They market to the hilt and leverage others to sell for them. This has a knock on effect for their SEO and their Google profile and TrustRank. They very quickly become authority sites in their own right. 

Other authorities link to them as information sources. It’s all just a big marketing game to sell the tools they create. The perfect marketing SEO strategy.

Do this instead of conventional keyword research

We all know that Google is smart, super smart in fact. Google wants to give anyone searching the most relevant content to match the searches they make. And when you make searches you are also shown suggestions and related searches designed to further guarantee that the search finds what they are looking for.

The searches and suggestions shown can be used as possible keyword phrases for your site and articles.

We know they are popular. They are shown to you because others are searching them. What we don’t know is are these keyword phrases easy to rank for. But that is easy to find out. Just follow the searches that appear and you see exactly what sites and pages are ranking for those keywords.

At this stage, there are two questions to ask yourself

  1. Is the content shown related to your niche and would your content sit in nicely with what is being shown?
  2. What is the competition like for the keyword phrase that you are looking for?

Take a look at the screen capture below. It shows the results of the search terms “Never do keyword research again”

So what do these search results tell us?

Never do keyword research again
Search term “Never do keyword research again” search results

Well in position one we have Search Engine Land, a big SEO/Marketing authority site. So that is a tough site to compete against

But what do we see below? In position 2 we have a Pinterest Pin so we should be able to outrank a pin with minimal content associated with it. Position 3 is basically a bookmarked share of the Search Engine Land article with just a couple of lines and position 4 is another share of the same article to Disqu

So there is very little in the way of competition for this keyword phrase.

What do we see if we search the term Do keyword research?

Well if we narrow the phrase down a bit, instantly we can see a lot of related search suggestions and People also ask questions. This tells us that the phrase Do keyword research is really where the competition is.

Never do keyword research again
Never do keyword research again – “Do keyword research” search results

We have Moz in position one with Google also showing some very cool additional schema information for the post. We then also have content coming in from Hubspot and Backlinko.

The Search Engine Land article we found from searching the keyword phrase Never do keyword research again comes in at position 11 for the keyword phrase Do keyword research.

The keyword phrase Do keyword research is the high hanging fruit, its a phrase with a lot of competition with some big authority sites ranking for it. Whereas the phrase Never do keyword research again is low hanging with a lot less competition. This is a keyword phrase closely related to a very popular phrase, with very little competition other than a few shares and bookmarks.

As you can see this is a much simpler way of doing keyword research. This is a way that is just a common sense approach that absolutely anyone can quickly understand and implement at no cost. You don’t have search numbers and volumes in front of you, but do you need them?

You will always be told you do need them. And yes to see they would be useful. But are they even ever correct? If you check between different keyword tools and run some cross-references they never seem to give you same volumes, so which keyword tool is correct?

So how do we implement this and take action?

Just ask yourself “what would I search to find the type of content I am creating”

That gives you your starting point. As you type in your search your see suggestions and people also ask results. Use these to check the content that is ranking for these terms.

Does your content fit in with what is being shown?

What is the competition like?

You can easily check your competition to see how they have structured content, how they use images and how long their content is. If the ranking content is 1000 words in length, make yours 1500

Set achievable goals

For this article “Do keyword research” is a phrase you would really like to rank for. But can we optimize and rank for this phrase? We can probably get a page 3 result as a guesstimate. But if we went for a less popular phrase, a long tail phrase like “Never do keyword research again” could we get better results? My best guess is that we could get page 1 results. Less competition equals fewer views but your getting seen so you’re getting free traffic from Google. For a keyword phrase with more competition your going to get more traffic, but only if you can compete on page 1 or 2 if not your going to be down the list and the search query will be answered before they do eventually get to you.

Once you have your keyword phrase you can then use the suggestions and people ask results as secondary keyword phrases within your article to further prove content relevance and help you rank.

Mix this in with some search engine optimization. We cover this with my SEO guide 2018 (Incidentally on page 1 of Google 😉 ) and you have all the tools you need to start ranking for keywords and rising up the SERPS.

And you haven’t spent a single penny.

Never do keyword research again, do this instead.

Never do keyword research again. Do this instead – Takeaways

This article although it is titled Never do keyword research again is not really about not planning your keyword strategy. It is really about just making it easier. Google gives you the popular searches, why do you need a complicated $70 a month keyword tool to tell you what is popular? Yes, search volumes are useful to know. But you can see the competition and who is ranking where and what they are doing.

Keyword research and SEO work hand in hand. If you don’t plan the phrases you want to be found for then Google will struggle to know where to place you. If your SEO is poor then it is not really going to matter what you plan. It takes time to rank until you can build some trust. While you wait I suggest you just use social media to drive your traffic. Pinterest, StumbleUpon and Reddit are all great traffic generating sites

Yes, there is a place for keyword research tools, especially if you have time and a budget to spend on them. But if your looking for a free no bs common sense approach then you are now covered.

Now that you know how to do keyword research would you like to be able to optimize for multiple keywords on a single page?

Now it’s over to you.

How do you do your keyword research? 

Do you use an overcomplicated expensive keyword planner to do your research?

Or are you like me and prefer to let Google show you what is popular?

Join the conversation.

Subscribe to the comments and let us know what you think.

We would love to hear from you.

Regards Dexter


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Never do keyword research again. Do this instead
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Never do keyword research again. Do this instead
What! are you crazy? "Never do keyword research again" No, I'm not crazy and I'm not really saying never do keyword research again because to do no keyword planning would indeed be crazy.But, what I am saying is instead of your conventional keyword research do "this" instead...
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Follow Dexter Roona:
Social Media Expert and Blogger. I love all elements of social media and my InfoBunny Blog is now really just about providing help for those looking to build their Social Media Authority.

17 Responses

  1. Lesly Federici
    | Reply

    Hey Dexter..
    GREAT post! I absolutely agree with you about using what Google is already applying. I have to get better at this.

    • Dexter Roona

      Thanks, Lesly. If you have any questions just let me know.

  2. Elise Ho
    | Reply

    I do my research through simple searches and I see what comes up and then I play around with some other ideas I have read about how to do the research. I have not so much landed on what works as much as explored possibilities.
    Elise Ho recently posted…Join Link Party 40 Today 🙂My Profile

    • Dexter Roona

      Sounds kind of like how I’m saying do it 😉

  3. Taiwo Emayosanlomo
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,
    I learn so much from your post. I need to start applying this as soon as possible.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Dexter Roona

      Thanks, and thank you for taking the time to comment.

  4. Janice Wald
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,
    I do my own keyword research. I don’t outsource. If I could afford Ahrefs, I’d pay for it. Instead,
    I use Google Keyword Planner lately. I used to use KWFinder, Moz, and Semrush.
    We need low hanging fruit but in our niche, that’s hard to find. Great post.

  5. Samir Khan
    | Reply

    Excellent post from you!!!! I liked your post and I need to apply this for my website as soon as possible.

  6. Lisa P Sicard
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter, I love the new Ubersuggest tool by Neil Patel, it makes it so much quicker and easier. I also look at Google trends from time to time. I have a free trial of SEMRush which is cool – I love the suggestions they give along the way. I try not to spend as much time as I once did as quality content is key and Yoast plugin helps me as I write each new post.
    Excellent points Dexter!

  7. qasim
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,

    I don’t do a detailed Keyword research and that could be a mistake that I am doing and I should start doing more of that. The reason why I wasn’t into it that I don’t like to spend a lot of time using different keyword tools to find which keyword has lower competition and look to search volumes. I was doing a little bit basic steps of the procedure you presented here, I do search on Google directly and look at the very first few results and maybe a suggestion for alternative keywords. Thanks for your detailed procedure. As always another article with many useful tips.

  8. google rank checker
    | Reply

    I like the way you have explained everything step by step.I am happy to visit your website and learn new ideas.It is informative and helpful post .I am very happy to visit such a wonderful post .Keep sharing:)
    google rank checker recently posted…Want to increase the traffic? Get the 10 incredible ways ahead !!!!My Profile

  9. stlouis
    | Reply

    The post made excellent points about seo .And writing often does grow the skill although it takes much practice and planning. Your writing style is very simple & attractive. Moreover that It’s very useful.Thanks for sharing & Keep smiling.

  10. Yaseen Saleh Mohamed
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter, so I may not be the best at this but I have started doing online marketing for about 2 months for a company I work at. While doing research on online marketing I came across a site by Niel Patel in which he has a keyword search tool ” https://neilpatel.com/ubersuggest/ ” which shows you what keywords your competitors are using and gives you suggestions for keywords. I have been using his site for the past month and well even though I’m still getting the hang of it, I have really learned a lot .

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