5 Best Keyword Research Tools Compared For 2019 (And How To Use Them)

Point out the term Keyword Research Tools to any blogger, they usually’ll most probably think of the Google Keyword Planner.

It has Google on the label, so it have to be good, right?

Nicely, it’s value checking and using for preliminary key phrase research, however keep in mind that the device is, and all the time was, meant for Google Adwords campaigns.

So, whereas a number of the knowledge is beneficial, most is irrelevant.

And since Google made it even more durable to get accurate knowledge by introducing search volume ranges and grouping key phrases with comparable which means, you must think about wanting elsewhere.

On this publish, we’re going to try five other Keyword Research Tools. Some are light-weight and budget-friendly, while others are heavy-weight and costlier. So wherever you’re in your running a blog journey, you’ll find a device that suits you.

Before we take a look at the tools, let’s cover a couple of essentials:

The two strategies of key phrase analysis

The first objective of keyword analysis is to seek out keywords that you would be able to rank for in the SERPs; i.e. the Prime 10 search outcomes on your term. Why? Because should you’re in the Prime 10 search results on your goal key phrase, then you definitely’ve received more probability of getting the suitable visitors to your website.

There are two methods of key phrase analysis used in the instruments:

Traditional key phrase analysis tools allow you to enter a ‘seed’ keyword, and then they return a load of key phrases. From there you consider how troublesome will probably be to rank for every suggestion.

Competitor-based key phrase analysis instruments use reverse-engineering. They assess what key phrases your rivals are already ranking for and consider for those who might do better.

Every technique has its advantages, and if attainable, it is best to think about using each when researching your key phrases.

Keyword problem score defined

Most keyword research instruments now embrace a key phrase problem score. The thought behind this metric is to allow you to spot low-competition key phrases that you could out-rank.

The problem is that the majority vendors don’t all the time explain what their score means in understandable terms. And every vendor calculates their key phrase problem rating in a different way.

As you verify the 5 key phrase analysis tools under, you’ll see that they returned totally different scores for our check keyword. We’ve included some notes along the best way to help explain the scores.

5 highly effective keyword analysis instruments (Google Keyword Planner options)

There’s been lots written about the best way to use the GKP for key phrase research. Most occasions it includes downloading knowledge into a spreadsheet, and then sifting and sorting until you might have some significant consequence.

But with these five key phrase analysis tools, you can do all your looking and filtering inside the software after which save or obtain your outcomes as you would like.

Observe: Each software enables you to search knowledge from totally different nations, however to keep things consistent I’m utilizing the US knowledge and the keyword: herbal cures.

With out further ado, let’s get started.

1. Ahrefs

Ahrefs is an all-in-one Search engine marketing platform that helps both traditional and competitor-based key phrase research. Its background lies in backlink evaluation, nevertheless it now provides a full suite of Search engine optimisation instruments.

Keyword analysis

Ahrefs released a model new model of their keyword research device – Keywords Explorer Three.Zero – in February 2019. The previous version has been rebuilt from the bottom up and now incorporates more knowledge.

You start by getting into your seed key phrase and choosing which platform to generate key phrase ideas:

At the prime of the outcomes display is the Overview panel with widespread metrics like Keyword Problem and Search Volume, plus advanced metrics like Return price, Clicks, and Clicks / Search:

Observe: If you select Google, you will notice knowledge pulled from that particular key phrase when searched by way of Google. For some platforms chances are you’ll not see metrics resembling key phrase problem or click via charges.

This is because of the limitation of clickstream knowledge from sure platforms. With the ability to do platform-specific KW analysis for the likes of Amazon and YouTube, and so forth. is a welcome addition to the device.

Keyword Problem estimates how exhausting it will be to rank on the first web page of search results in your given keyword, using the variety of backlinks that current prime search results have.

In our instance, the score is 19 and suggests, “You’ll need backlinks from ~21 websites to rank in top 10 for this keyword.” Ahrefs is built across the Search engine marketing worth of backlinks, so it’s no surprise that their KD metric should embrace this.

Search Volume exhibits how many searches your goal key phrase gets per 30 days in a given nation (common for last 12 months). Ahrefs calculates this metric by processing giant amounts of clickstream knowledge.

Return Fee is a relative worth that illustrates how typically individuals seek for this keyword once more. It doesn’t show the precise variety of “returns” and is just useful when comparing key phrases with each other.

Clicks is the entire variety of clicks (natural and paid) on the search outcomes that folks perform per thirty days whereas looking for that key phrase. Some searches end in clicks on multiple outcomes, whereas others won’t lead to any clicks in any respect. As Tim Soulo places it:

For example, individuals search rather a lot for “donald trump age”, but they don’t click on any results as a result of they see the reply immediately.

Clicks Per Search (or CPS) exhibits how many totally different search results individuals click on on common after performing a seek for this key phrase.

Within the subsequent section, beneath the Overview panel, you get entry to hundreds of related keyword concepts:

Ahrefs estimates the Visitors potential by wanting at the natural search visitors of the current #1 ranking end result for that keyword.

So, in our example, they estimate that for those who’re in #1 position for the keyword herbal cures, then you definitely’d get 1000 visits out of the entire 6000 searches per 30 days.

Like we’ve seen with different instruments the key phrase recommendations are cut up into three teams:

  • Having similar phrases – Exhibits you all key phrases that include all the terms of a goal keyword in them (in any order).
  • Questions – Exhibits you an inventory of keyword ideas phrased as a question.
  • Also rank for – Exhibits you all key phrases that the Prime10 rating pages in your goal keyword additionally rank for.
  • Search recommendations – Exhibits you all search queries recommended by way of “Autocomplete” when looking for your goal key phrase.

That you must click the View full report button to see the complete extent of the key phrase ideas. Here’s an instance of the ‘Having same terms’ report:

Along the highest are the totally different filters you should use to slender your selection. For example, solely present key phrases with a KD rating from Zero to 40.

You might have observed that some key phrase ideas have a ‘Get Metrics’ button. This implies Ahrefs has the info cached and you may entry it instantly.

With such a huge database of keywords, you would be hanging round a while for all the outcomes to load, so this feature means you’ll be able to access the info you need, whenever you need. It takes a number of seconds for the chosen key phrase knowledge to load.

One thing we’ve not seen but is the SERP knowledge for the key phrase. In case you press the SERP button of the keyword you want, you get a drop down display of the current Prime 10 results like this:

Competitor-based research

Ahrefs, like SEMrush, also provides you competitor-based key phrase analysis by way of its Website Explorer Software.

Right here you’ll be able to enter your competitor and discover what keywords they’re rating for. Then you’ll find the low-competition keywords through the use of the filters.

In this instance, I’ve used the domain and added the following filters:

  • Search Place 1-10
  • Search Volume higher than 500
  • Keyword Problem up to 40

Like we noticed on the Keyword Explorer, you possibly can increase every line to see the complete SERP analysis.

Other Ahrefs options

  • Alerts – Get notified of latest and misplaced backlinks, net mentions and rankings
  • Content material Explorer – Discover the preferred content for any matter
  • Rank Tracker – Monitor your desktop and cellular rankings for any location
  • Backlink Checker – Analyze backlink profiles and uncover hyperlink alternatives
  • Hyperlink Intersect – Discover the websites linking to your rivals but not to you
  • Damaged Hyperlink Checker – Hold your website free from lifeless hyperlinks


Ahrefs gives a 7 day trial for $7. The premium plans are expensive when you’re on a decent finances, and more suited to experienced bloggers.

  • Prices begin at $99/month or $990/yr

Word: In the event you can’t justify using Ahrefs on a month-to-month foundation, you might join a month, do your KW research and cancel. That stated, in case you can justify the monthly pricing it’s nicely value preserving since you’ll get entry to the continued performance resembling rank monitoring and net monitoring. It also means there’s no need to make use of another tools to track rankings or monitor mentions on the internet.


  • Limited free trial
  • Dependable key phrase problem metric
  • Largest database of backlinks and keywords
  • Larger accuracy by processing giant amounts of clickstream knowledge
  • Combines conventional and competitor-based key phrase analysis strategies


  • It’s expensive, however they claim to be the perfect.

Get Ahrefs

2. SEMrush

SEMrush is another nice all-round Search engine optimization software that helps both traditional key phrase analysis and competitor-based research methods. SEMrush prompted a stir out there when it launched in 2008 because it was the first competitor-based Search engine optimisation device.

Lewis from Authority Hacker explains competitor-based analysis with this analogy:

As an alternative of on the lookout for the needle in a haystack, it allowed you to seek out the suitable haystacks with the appropriate needles.

Competitor research

Because SEMrush is primarily a competitor-based analysis device, we will’t comply with our instance of getting into our trial keyword natural cures. As an alternative, we’ve to flip issues around, and search our rivals to see what keywords they are rating for.

For this example, I’m using as our competitor.

Word: For those who’re unsure who your rivals are then you’ll be able to all the time enter your personal area first:

And from there, you possibly can click every domain to start out checking their keywords.

If you enter your competitors area, SEMrush returns a load of knowledge. For instance, this is just the highest a part of the Domain Overview display:

Keep in mind that is an all-round Search engine optimization software, so we’ll ignore a lot of the info now and concentrate on the Organic Search Positions function.

Right here you’ll be able to see that SEMrush has discovered four,863,217 key phrases that our competition domain ( is rating for:

SEMrush routinely types the results by Visitors% as these are the keywords which are more likely to appeal to probably the most natural visitors. From right here you can start to reverse-engineer your competitor’s best-performing keywords.

Listed here are the other metrics for each key phrase:

  • Place – The place the URL presently ranks in the SERP, and their position from the earlier update.
  • Quantity – The estimated month-to-month visitors generated from these keywords (i.e. what number of occasions individuals seek for them).
  • KD – Keyword Problem – the higher the quantity, the more durable it is to rank for these keywords.
  • CPC – The typical Value-Per-Click if somebody marketed based mostly on this keyword.
  • URL – The online page generating the visitors.
  • Visitors % – The typical proportion of all visitors the website is getting from this keyword.
  • Prices % – The share of complete visitors value driven to the web site from the key phrase over the precise time-frame.
  • Competitive Density of advertisers using the given term for his or her advertisements.
  • Results – Variety of search leads to the database.
  • Development – The modifications in curiosity for the given key phrase over 12 months.
  • SERP – A snapshot of the SERP supply the place SEMrush found the end result.
  • Last Replace – The time when the given keyword was final up to date in our database.


Utilizing the filter, you possibly can enter your key phrase; e.g. herbal cures, and slender the search additional:

Traditional research

For those who don’t like the look of competitor-based research, then SEMrush also has a standard research device. This is the way it works:

Keyword Magic Software

Start by getting into your key phrase into the Keyword Magic Device search bar:

SEMrush returns the results.

In the prime half of the display is an summary of your ‘seed’ keyword:

Under, SEMrush provides you an enormous record of associated key phrases which you can break into teams by matter:

For example, you may decide ‘pain‘ from the left-hand panel and get outcomes like herbal cures for again pain.

You possibly can filter these keywords by metrics like search volume, CPC, competitive density, and key phrase problem to get your good listing.

Keyword Analyzer

After filtering, you’ll be able to ship your more targeted listing to the Keyword Analyzer to refresh metrics on demand. In this example, I exported our pain group and refreshed the first keyword:

From here you’ll be able to determine metrics like Keyword Problem, Click on Potential and, unsurprisingly, the Prime Rivals that appear on each keyword’s results page.

Different SEMrush features

  • Advertising Research – Discover your rivals’ Adwords finances and keywords
  • Backlinks – Monitor the quantity and quality of backlinks to your domain
  • Video Advertising Research – Uncover the top advertisers so you possibly can create an effective ad marketing campaign
  • Website Audit – Find and repair your On-Page issues and increase Search engine optimisation-optimization


The SEMrush free plan limits you to a handful of searches a day. If you already know what you’re on the lookout for you’ll find some wonderful key phrases, however the results are limited. The premium plans are costly when you’re on a decent finances, and more suited to experienced bloggers.

  • Costs start from $99/month or $999/yr


  • Restricted free plan
  • Combines conventional and competitor-based key phrase analysis methods
  • Wonderful competitor-based research device


  • Cluttered consumer interface
  • The Keyword Magic Device is in Beta part and nonetheless catching up with other traditional analysis instruments.

Get a 7-Day Free Trial of SEMrush

3. KWFinder

KWFinder is a part of the ‘juicy’ Mangools Web optimization suite, which additionally consists of SERPWatcher, SERPChecker, and LinkMiner.

KWFinder is a key phrase analysis software to seek out you a whole lot of long-tail key phrases with high search quantity and low Search engine optimization problem. It’s very easy to use, with a user-friendly interface, and most significantly, with metrics to offer an on the spot assist to your Search engine marketing efforts.

Let’s get started.

Keyword research

Once you log into your account you’ll see a easy search bar waiting for you to enter your keyword:

There are three keyword research options:

  • Strategies is the primary keyword analysis technique that we’ll check out in a minute.
  • Autocomplete uses the Google Recommend function to prepend and append your key phrase with totally different letters or words. For example, natural cures seems to be like this:
  • Questions is just like Autocomplete and will prepend the primary seed keyword with question words. For example, with herbal cures, you get questions like how much natural drugs, what natural cures are good for nervousness,


The screenshots above are from the left-hand panel of the display solely. Right here’s the complete picture to offer you an concept of the overall knowledge in KWFinder:

Let’s take a look at the metrics intimately.

On the left panel, you’ll be able to see the listing of ideas based mostly on your essential key phrase. Subsequent to each suggestion are the next metrics:

  • Development – The development of search in the last 12 months
  • Search – The typical month-to-month search quantity (actual match) within the last 12 months
  • CPC – The typical value per click of the listed keyword
  • PPC – The level of competitors in PPC advertising (min = Zero; max = 100)
  • DIFF – The Search engine optimisation problem of a keyword, based mostly on Search engine marketing stats from Moz (DA, PA, MR, MT) of the URLs on the first Google SERP (min = Zero; max = 100)

On the upper-right panel, you’ll be able to see an enlarged Search engine optimisation problem rating and a development graph of search volumes over the past 12 months.

Beneath you’ll be able to see the Google SERP statistics and different essential metrics calculated by Moz.

  • Google SERP – These are the highest results from Google seek for your selected keyword
  • DA – Domain Authority predicts how nicely an internet site will rank on serps
  • PA – Web page Authority predicts how nicely a selected page will rank on search engines like google
  • MR – MozRank of the URL represents a hyperlink reputation score
  • MT – MozTrust of the URL measures trustworthiness of the hyperlink
  • Links – The variety of exterior authority-passing links to the URL
  • FB – The number of Facebook shares for the URL
  • G+ – The number of Google+ shares for the URL
  • Rank – Search engine marketing competitiveness rank – the upper it is, the more durable it’s to compete. (min = Zero; max = 100)
  • Visits – The estimated visits per 30 days on this SERP place

Word: You will get extra detailed information about your rivals’ Web optimization metrics within the Google SERP utilizing the SERPChecker Software.

The Keyword Problem metric is the primary one to verify as it provides an early indication of whether you stand an opportunity to rank in your key phrase. Right here’s the complete range of the KWFinder Problem Score:

In our example, herbal cures is rated at 52, which means it’s attainable to rank on Web page 1.

However it’s essential to keep in mind that key phrase problem isn’t the one issue, and you need to weigh up the opposite metrics too.

Different options in KWFinder

There are three different features inside KWFinder value mentioning.

  1. Keyword lists management

Lists let you maintain and categorize the info you discover from your key phrase analysis. You possibly can verify every suggestion you need to maintain and add it to a new or an present listing.

  1. Import your personal keywords

You possibly can import your personal lists of keywords into KWFinder in numerous ways:

  • Write the keywords as separate tags
  • Upload your TXT or CSV file
  • Drag-and-drop your file
  1. Export your results

You can too export your keywords from both the “Suggestions” table or your key phrase lists. You’ve gotten the choice to export to a CSV file (with or with out metrics) or copy to the clipboard.

Different instruments within the Mangools Suite

Mangools additionally consists of three extra Search engine optimization instruments that combine with KWFinder and are included in the worth (see under).

SERPChecker is a Google SERP and Search engine marketing analysis software. It features a selection of 49+ Search engine marketing metrics and Social metrics. The software allows you to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of your rivals that will help you rank larger.

SERPWatcher is a rank tracking software, and like KWFinder, it’s straightforward to make use of. You possibly can monitor key phrase positions each day. In case you head over to the demo web page you possibly can see app monitoring some domains and key phrases.

LinkMiner is a backlink evaluation device. Use this software to find which hyperlinks are pointing to your web site. Metrics are given for every hyperlink and you may see a snapshot preview of the website on the appropriate hand aspect. Great for auditing backlink profiles and competitor analysis.


The Mangools freemium mannequin features a restricted free plan and a selection of month-to-month subscription plans. There’s additionally a healthy 50% discount once you opt for the annual subscription.

  • Prices start from $49/month or $349/yr


  • Free starter plan
  • Reasonably priced month-to-month subscription or discounted annual plans
  • Excellent consumer interface
  • Features a well-explained keyword problem rating
  • Integrates properly with different tools within the Mangools suite


  • If you have to gather a number of knowledge each day, the Company plan is dear in comparison with the Premium and Primary plans.

Get a 10-day free trial of KWFinder

four. Serpstat

Serpstat is an all-round Search engine optimization software with some nice features and reasonably priced entry-level pricing.

The all-in-one platform began in 2013 as a Keyword Research Software. Now it incorporates 4 more modules masking Competitor Evaluation, Website Audit, Backlink Analysis and Rank Monitoring.

Keyword analysis

Once you enter your key phrase into the search bar in Serpstat you’re introduced with the Overview report:

The Overview offers a taste of what’s contained within the four categories listed within the left-hand menu:

  • Search engine marketing Research – Consists of Keyword Selection (matched key phrases), Related Key phrases (LSI key phrases), Search Strategies, Prime Pages, and Rivals for the key phrase.
  • PPC Research – Consists of Key phrases, Rivals, Ad Examples, and Advert Research studies.
  • Content material Advertising – Exhibits Search Questions (interrogative questions like Ask The Public)
  • SERP Evaluation – Exhibits you the Prime 100 Google Leads to natural and paid search for the keyword.

For this evaluate, we’ll give attention to the organic results from the Web optimization Research part.

  1. Keyword Choice returns all of the key phrases related to your query.

The key metric in this report is Keyword Problem. Serpstat grades your probabilities of your keyword getting in the Prime 10 (Page 1) of Google as follows:

  • Zero-20 – straightforward
  • 21-40 – medium
  • 41-60 – troublesome
  • 61-100 – very troublesome

So, in our example, natural cures is rated at 16.55, which means it ought to be straightforward to rank within the Prime 10.

Other metrics on this display embrace:

  • Quantity Google – The typical month-to-month search quantity for the key phrase over the earlier 12 months
  • Quantity (last month) – The number of searches for the key phrase over the previous month
  • Results – The number of documents returned by the search engine for the question
  • Social domains – Social media domains that come up in search outcomes for the key phrase

The small icons to the suitable of the key phrase present that the search outcomes include some rich solutions like pictures, videos, maps, information graphs, and so on. For instance, should you search for “herbal remedies” in Google you may even see this in the outcomes:

Word: You may even see one thing totally different as a result of personalization and a bunch of different elements.

  1. Associated Key phrases returns an inventory of all keywords semantically associated to your query.

Here you possibly can see related key phrases like natural therapy and herb cures. For each related key phrase, Serpstat supplies the typical monthly search volume, plus some other PPC knowledge.

  1. Search Options are the popular search queries that you simply see beneath the search bar as you begin typing a query in Google.

At the prime of the display, you possibly can see the preferred phrases. Once you click on on considered one of these buttons, Serpstat does another search. For instance, if you select the ‘anxiety’ button, Serpstat now searches for the keyword: herbal cures nervousness.

To the correct, there’s an alternative choice: Solely Questions. The Solely Questions filter will return the interrogative types of search options like what, where, how, and so on.

  1. Prime Pages provides an inventory of all pages ranking for no less than one key phrase associated to your question.

For every web page, Serpstat supplies the variety of natural key phrases. Within the first line of our example, when you click on on ‘101’ within the natural key phrases column, you’re directed to the page analysis itemizing all of the key phrases:

This can be a great strategy to see what keywords your rivals are rating for.

As well as the natural key phrases, Serpstat displays the variety of social shares each web page has acquired. So, like Buzzsumo, you’re capable of get an concept of how in style a bit of content material is.

  1. Rivals is an inventory of the domains which might be rating for numerous key phrases associated to your question.

So, as you may anticipate, you’ll be able to see at the prime of our Rivals record because it’s a well-established medical website.

For each competitor’s web page, Serpstat lists:

  • Widespread Keywords – The variety of keywords associated to the researched query.
  • All Keywords – The full variety of the area’s keywords
  • Visibility  – The area visibility rating

Serpstat additionally permits you to filter your queries and download your knowledge.

Other Serpstat options

  • Competitor Analysis – Routinely determine and research your prime rivals
  • Backlink Analysis – Monitor the backlinks of your and your rivals’ web sites
  • Rank Monitoring – Monitor your and your rivals’ webpage rankings
  • Website Audit – Carry out an in-depth analysis of your net pages


You should use Serpstat totally free. The Freemium model lets you analysis keywords and analyze rivals, however is restricted to 30 searches per 30 days.

The Premium subscription plans start at $19 per 30 days, however you will get a superb low cost by switching to the yearly subscriptions; e.g. 1-year (-20%),  Three-year (-40%).

  • Prices start from $69/month or $662/yr


  • Free starter plan
  • Reasonably priced month-to-month subscription
  • Straightforward to navigate
  • Features a keyword problem rating
  • Supplies further insights in the SERPs like rich knowledge and social shares


  • The Keyword Problem score is a new metric in Serpstat and seems slightly skewed in comparison with other instruments.

Get Serpstat

5. Answer The Public

Reply The Public is a useful software for these trying to get started without spending something.

The thought behind the device is to go with the auto recommend results you see in Google and Bing with some related words.

Appending a search term with phrases like “for” or “with” provides a much richer start line for content concepts.

Let’s take a look.

Whenever you arrive on the homepage, you’re greeted by the Seeker. He’s a bald, white-bearded, impatient-looking bloke who’s waiting so that you can enter your keyword concept and your location:

If you enter your key phrase, the Seeker returns with some content concepts, divided into three classes:

  • Questions – what, where, why, which, how.
  • Prepositions – with, to, for, like.
  • Alphabetical – a, b, c, and so on.

For example, I entered “herbal remedies” and obtained these results – Questions (42), Prepositions (48), Alphabetical (101):

You possibly can obtain the entire leads to a CSV file, utilizing the button in the top-right corner. But in the event you scroll down the web page, you then’ll see the outcomes introduced in two easier-to-read codecs.

The primary one is a one-page visualization of the outcomes:

Or you possibly can change to Knowledge to see the results listed in sections:


  • Free software
  • Wonderful visualization of content material concepts


  • No key phrase problem score

Go To Answer The Public

Ultimate thoughts

Now you’ve seen each of the key phrase analysis tools in motion, you need to have an concept of what every one can do.

Keep in mind, at first of this article I discussed how every device had totally different results? In case you’ve been taking notes you’ll have spotted some variances in the outcomes.

The underside line is that each vendor gets its knowledge from totally different sources and calculates its metrics in another way. It’s troublesome to match like-for-like. When you’ve selected a software, you’ll develop into more conversant in how its metrics are calculated.

Our verdict

Every of those keyword research instruments is beneficial in its personal proper. It is advisable select the perfect one on your circumstances. Listed here are our ideas:

Reply The Public is extra of a content generator or key phrase suggestion software. It’s a free software that you need to use to see what individuals are looking for, however there’s no keyword problem score included. Use it to get broader matter concepts or seed key phrases, fairly than specific key phrases.

For those who’re an up-and-coming blogger and you have a small finances, then choose the KWFinder Software. The consumer interface is great, and the key phrase knowledge appears quite accurate.

In the event you’re knowledgeable blogger, like Adam, then you definitely’ll need to spend money on the perfect premium software – Ahrefs. Yes, it’s expensive, but the volume and accuracy of the info mean you’ll get a strong return on your investment.

And should you’re trying to analysis key phrases for platforms similar to YouTube and Amazon, Ahrefs will help with that too.

Associated studying:

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