Basic Keyword Research Tutorial: Find Low Competition Keywords with Ahrefs Keywords Explorer
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Basic Keyword Research Tutorial: Find Low Competition Keywords with Ahrefs Keywords Explorer

Hi everyone, Kathryn Aragon here. If you’ve done much SEO work, you
know how hard it is to rank on page one. One solution, which we’ve reviewed in previous tutorials, is to research your competitors so you can go after their best keywords and
replicate their high ranking content. But in this video we’re going to take a
different route and find some amazing keyword opportunities that your
competitors might not even know about yet. In particular, let’s look at a
process for finding some easy keywords that you can potentially rank for within a month or two. Step 1: finding tons of great keyword ideas. For this, we’ll use Ahrefs’ powerful Keywords Explorer. This tool runs on a massively large database of
about 3 billion keywords, which is updated with fresh keywords every month. That’s something no other tool can match. So let’s look at how you can do it. To begin, we’ll enter one or two
top-level terms related to your website. For example, let’s use ‘backpack’
and ‘backpacks’, then click explore. Scroll down and you’ll see a section with keyword ideas. Let’s focus on the first list, ‘having same terms.’ Above the list, we tell you how many keyword suggestions there are in this list;
in this case, well above 200,000. Click to view the full report and you’ll
see the list ordered by search volume. Remember, this number tells you how
many times people search for the keyword in Google each month in your
chosen country and notice also how relevant this list is, since all the keywords
have your original search terms in them either backpack or backpacks. Step two: finding the best keyword opportunities for you. With such a huge list to sort through, you need some metrics to help you find your
best keyword opportunities. Search volume is one of the first things you’ll look at. The second is another interesting metric, KD, or keyword difficulty. It’s an
estimate of how hard it will be to rank for this keyword based on the number of
backlinks the top 10 ranking pages have. When you first open the report, the
keyword difficulty scores will be grayed out. The number you see here is the one we have in cache. To refresh it, click on the get metrics button. This gives you our most current data. As you can see, you can push several buttons at the same time and just wait while it’s being refreshed. Once it’s updated, the color changes,
so you can see at a glance that the difficulty score is fresh. The color also gives you an idea
of how hard it will be to rank for this keyword. It ranges from red to bright green,
with red meaning it will be very hard. Green means it could be relatively
easy if you do some link building work. Under each term, we also give
you a few icons to show you what people see in the search engine
results pages. For instance, this one has shopping, an ad, site links, and an image. And if we put this keyword into
Google, you can see them. Here are the search results for ‘JanSport backpacks.’ Just like the icons indicated, we have shopping an
ad, site links and images. Notice that all of these features take up room on page
one of the search results, which means people have to scroll further to see the
organic search results; even the top three results. And they may not actually click on any of them,
but we’ll talk more about that in a minute. For this demo, let’s take ‘waterproof backpack’. First, I’ll refresh the metrics. Then we’ll open it in a new tab and look
at the overview page for the keyword. Once we do this, we’re ready for step 3: researching the number of referring domains you need. At the top of this page, you can see
the keyword difficulty score for this term. Remember, this is a score from 0 to 100 that indicates how hard it will be to rank for the term. And below the score, you have a hint that tells
you how many backlinks you’ll need to rank in the top 10 for this keyword. For this
keyword, the keyword difficulty is very low. Let’s scroll down to the search
engine results page overview and see why. Here, you can see all the top ranking pages at a glance. Under referring domains, notice that most
have low numbers, so you won’t need a lot of backlinks to compete with these
pages and rank well for this keyword. Based on this information, it looks like this
keyword could be a good opportunity since it has a relatively high search
volume and a low keyword difficulty score. But there’s one more metric we
need to look at to be sure. Step 4: reviewing clicks and clicks per search. Traditionally, we use search volume to determine how much traffic a keyword could send
your page, if you rank well for this keyword. But just because people search for a term, it doesn’t mean they click on the results. That’s why we developed the ‘clicks’ metric. This is something that only Ahrefs shows you. No other tool tracks clicks and gives you this kind of depth for researching keywords,
at least at the time of this video tutorial. It’s likely, they’ll add this functionality
once they see how useful it is. And here’s why: You can use this metric to confirm that a keyword doesn’t just have a high search volume, but can actually send traffic to your page. Let’s look at two search terms
to show you what we mean. First, let’s look at ‘Donald Trump age.’ Notice that even though the
search volume for this term is high, the number of clicks is very low. Let’s take it into Google to see why. Some search queries, like this one are
made when people want a quick answer. So Google gives it to them at the top of
the page in a knowledge card. For a keyword like this one, even the top 10
pages don’t get many clicks. You can see that reflected in the ‘clicks per search’
number, which represents the number of clicks divided by search volume. And as you can see, it’s way below 1, which means that only a fraction of the searches results in a click. Now let’s look at ‘iPhone 7 case’. For this keyword, clicks are
higher than the search volume, even though only 70% of searches
seem to be resulting in clicks. And if you divide the number of clicks by
the search volume, you get a ‘clicks per search’ number that’s greater than 1. Any time this number is higher than 1, it means people tend to click multiple pages
when they search for this keyword. And that’s a good thing because
even if you rank below number one, you could still get a lot of traffic. As a result, this term is definitely worth targeting. Can you see how valuable this
metric is? Instead of finding keywords with high search volume and assuming they’ll send you a lot of traffic, you can verify that the term actually gets
clicked in the search engine results, so you know for sure how much traffic you can get from it. So let’s review. In Keywords Explorer, enter one or two
top-level keywords that relate to your niche. This will give you a huge list of potential keywords. Start by looking at the search volume because this is the basic metric
we show for all keywords at once. And it’s easy to order or filter your results by it. Same with the keyword difficulty score. It’s already cached for the best
keywords in our database, so you can order and filter by it, use it to
know how much link building work it will take to rank in the top 10 for that keyword. Then, once you see some potentially cool keywords based on search volume and keyboard difficulty, it’s time to pull their advanced metrics
to make a more educated decision. For that, look at the ‘clicks’ metric. The idea is to review these numbers
for several keywords at once. Then select the keywords you like and add them to a list for future optimization. In this video, we’re only scratching the surface of the advanced keyword research you can
perform with the Keywords Explorer tool. There are many other features and
metrics that we didn’t cover, but we’ll explain everything in future tutorials. We’ll also give you some ideas on how to create high value pages for the keywords
you choose, so you can rank higher and get more search traffic to your site. In the meantime, add ‘clicks’ to the search metrics you review when picking your best
keyword opportunities and create a list of the easy keywords that you can
possibly rank for in just a few months.


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