12 Best (FREE) Keyword Research Tools SEO Experts Should Know About


Let’s talk about all the most important keyword research tools you need as a content expert.

Keyword research is one of the first things taught to beginners learning SEO and is still very effective to this day.

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However, keyword research is evolving as semantic search and Google’s Knowledge Graph evolves.

These technologies allow Google the ability to understand your searches, regardless of how you phrase them. They are by no means perfect (yet), but are getting much better.

To come up with keywords for my content, there are certain keyword research tools that I use and you will be getting all of them in this article.

I would as well be sharing several other keyword research tools used by different content experts.

But before we delve right in… let understand what keyword research really is.

What is Keyword Research?

How To Use Google Keyword Planner Tool For SEO Keyword Research

Keyword research is a core SEO task that involves identifying popular words and phrases people enter into search engines -make in an attempt to figure out what to rank for (Click here to learn why keyword research is important).

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While we’re clarifying things, let’s look at two more important terms:

  1. Short Tail Keywords: Short keywords that are 1-3 words.
  2. Long Tail Keywords: More specific keywords that are usually three words or longer.

Now that you have figured out the definition, let’s look at the importance Keywords play in our SEO efforts today.

Importance of Keywords play in SEO

Basically, keyword research allows you to discover untapped keywords in your niche.

So just like in this article, I’ve optimised this blog post to rank for ‘Keyword Research Tools‘.

Thus, If this blog post was able to make it to Google Page 1.1. This will eventually drive traffic to the website for keywords related to Google keyword planner.

With that said, Keywords when executed correctly in our On-page SEO strategy, here is what we stand to enjoy:

  1. ROI: Great return on investment in most cases.
  2. Long term: Keeps bringing you clients for a very long time.
  3. Easy to start: Just like running, easy to get started, hard to master.
  4. Increase sales: You will drive customers who are looking to buy a product.
  5. Traffic: You will get a traffic boost.

So remember that anytime someone tells you meta keywords matters for traffic, without doubt, tell them YES!


Now we know the meaning and benefits of doing keyword research, I think you should also check out my previous article on how to choose an effective keyword before testing out some of the keyword research tools you are about to see.

Let’s get underway.

10 Best Keyword Research Tools (FREE)

1. Google Keyword Planner

Did you know that Google Keyword Planner (formally Google Keyword Tool) is one of the few free keyword research tools for SEO?

As a matter of fact:

This AdWords keyword research tool is not just an SEO tool, it also allows you to source for untapped keywords for your SEO content.

This keyword tool is one of the best around, and believe me… if you ask other digital marketers out there.

I am sure they would include this as part of their keyword research tool.

The first step is to open keyword planner.

Click the link below to visit Google Adwords keyword planner tool: http://adwords.google.com/ko/KeywordPlanner/

Enter your product or service keyword.

Google Keyword Planner Tool For Keyword Research

This is the space where you will type in your target keyword.

For example:

If I am writing an article to teach people how to do keyword research using Google keyword, I will have to come up with a primary keyword of what people are likely to type on Google if they want to learn how to do a proper keyword research for their content.

In that case, I will type Keyword Research to know the exact average search volume that keyword gets monthly. The idea is to discover untapped keywords that will produce get a good global search volume for my article. If

Now that you have an idea of how to choose a less competitive keyword, you will agree that it will be better for me to start with “How to do keyword research“. Thus, I could rank for the initial keyword which is “Keyword research“.

Click “Search for new keywords using a phrase, website or category“.

Google Keyword Planner Tool For Keyword Research

From there, everything you need is laid out in a clear and concise manner.

In addition to your search term(s), you’re provided with many other ideas. Some of these will work, some won’t. Either way, you want to pay close attention to all of the keywords. You never know when you’ll find a gem.

Along with the keyword list, you’ll find:

  • Average monthly searches
  • Competition
  • Suggested bid (if you’re using AdWords)

I’ll be the first to admit that the Google Keyword Planner doesn’t do anything special. However, it does everything right and that’s what matters most.

If you’re seeking keyword data from the source, you can’t go wrong with this tool.

Google Keyword Planner Tool For Keyword Research

The picture above shows that the keyword ‘How to do keyword research’ is getting between 1000 to 10,000 average monthly search for the last 12 months.

Now, that’s what I call… a good long tail keyword.

Keyword analysis using the Google keyword planner tool is relatively simple and effective.

The steps you have just read is all there is to using Google keyword planner to find new and low competitive keywords.


READ: Click here to check out my detailed Google keyword planner guide.

2. Keywordtool.io

Keyword Tool is free online keyword research instrument that uses Google Autocomplete to generate hundreds of relevant long-tail keywords for any topic.

Google Autocomplete is a feature used in Google Search. Its purpose is to speed up the searches performed by users on Google.

The search terms suggested by Google Autocomplete are selected based on many different factors. One of them is how often users were searching for a particular search term in the past.

Keyword Tool helps you employ Google Suggest for keyword research. It extracts Google keyword suggestions and presents it to you in an easy-to-understand interface.


To generate long-tail keyword suggestions, Keyword Tool prepends and appends the search term that you specify with different letters and numbers, places it into Google search box and pulls out keyword suggestions.

You can quickly find and analyze thousands of relevant long-tail keywords with free or paid version of Keyword Tool and use them for content creation, search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising or other marketing activities.

Best part, all of it happens in a split of a second!


The free version of Keyword Tool can generate up to 750+ keywords from Google autocomplete in seconds.

The advanced version of Keyword Tool, Keyword Tool Pro, provides on average two times more keywords in comparison to the free version and offers a handful of other useful features.

3. MOZ Keyword Explorer

Keyword Explorer is a very fancy and modern looking keyword tool.

It is not like any other ordinary keyword tool. The features and the way it works is a little different from other keyword tools I have used.

MOZ also claim their Keyword Explorer to be 95% accurate which is pretty good.

MOZ eyword Explorer - keyword-research-tools

If you don’t want to pay for a keyword tool, Moz may not be the most effective choice for you.

You can search for two queries per day for free, but you need to upgrade to a paid plan if you want to search for more than that.

MOZ Keyword Explorer - keyword-research-tools

Since you almost definitely need to search for more than that, you’ll be paying $150 a month for their basic plan. They do have a free 30-day trial, though, so you can test it and see how you like it, first.

4. KW Finder

KW Finder is similar to the Google Adwords Keyword tool listed in number 1; it even pulls up similar results, which aren’t as entirely on-point as the immediate results from MOZ.


From my experience with KW Finder, the searches are a lot better if you put some time into manually adding in filters like negative keywords and additional keywords you do want to include.

Like the other research tools, this one shows you keyword suggestions, how they’re trending over time, the number of searches, CPC, and difficulty level. It does this all effectively and cleanly.

KWFinder - keyword-research-tools

And the best part of the tool is… It’s is totally free to use! It is one of the best free keyword research tools out there and one of my favourite!

You should test it out as well.

5. Yoast Suggest

Joost developed his own keyword research tool to come up with keywords as well!

Yoast Suggest  keyword-research-tools

Although, not as detailed as some of the ones I have mentioned above but this does a decent job as well as a free keyword research tool.

Yoast Suggests uses the Google Suggest functionality you know from searching on Google.

It finds the keyword expansions Google gives and then requests more of them.

So if you type ‘example‘, it’ll also give you the expansions for ‘example a…’ till ‘example z…’ etc. Just go on and try it and fill out some of your potential keywords.

Yoast Suggest

It’s a great way to quickly find more long tail keywords you can focus on and it’s completely free.

6. Google Trends

You are obviously thinking… What’s this?

This one isn’t another common keyword research tool. The ways Google Trends works differ from all other tools mentioned so far.

Google Trends allows you to compare the traffic for sets of keywords. You can even see the difference for numerous geographical regions. This tool is totally free to use.

For example:

Wakanda is a fictional place in the movie Black Pantha, well let’s check how trendy this probable keyword could be.

Google trend

It’s very important to check Google Trends if you expect that some of your keywords are seasonal, for instance, due to regulations, holiday seasons etc.

According to the image, you’d notice that the word Wakanda started trending in February 2018… If you are a smart content writing, you’d craft your next content around that keyword.

7. Google Related Search and Auto Suggest

Well, you shouldn’t be surprised by this suggestions.

Google Auto Suggest

People are certainly not looking at this as a way to discover what people are actually looking for on Google.

This is one of the easiest and fastest ways to do keyword research if you ask me.

Google Related Search

The only difference is, you won’t be getting the search volume of keywords mentioned in the related search section beneath the organic result, neither would you see them when it auto-suggests keywords as well.

You can use this free tool to supplement or discover related search phrases for your already found keyword.

8. Keyword Everywhere Chrome Extension

Keyword everywhere

The Keywords Everywhere extension is a free keyword research tool that shows you useful Google keyword search volume and cost per click data on multiple websites.

This tool saves you the hassle of copying data from various websites and using the Google Adwords keyword planner to see relevant.

9. Ubersuggest.io

Ubersuggest - keyword-research-tools

Are you looking for keyword ideas? With Ubersuggest’s free keyword tool, you can generate an unlimited amount of suggestions for free.

With this tool, you can get tons of keywords all for free. If you are looking for an alternative keyword research tool, then Ubersuggest is just a perfect pick.

10. Free Keyword Tool by Backlinko

The Free Keyword Tool by Backlinko is a valuable resource for SEO experts. It provides a user-friendly interface and generates a wide range of keyword suggestions. The tool’s keyword data is sourced through Google, ensuring accuracy and relevance.

Additionally, it allows users to filter results by industry, search volume, competition level, and estimated CPC, making it a versatile and comprehensive tool for keyword research.

11. Soovle

Soovle is a versatile and free keyword research tool that provides keyword suggestions from multiple search engines and platforms. It offers a user-friendly interface and the ability to generate keyword ideas across various platforms, making it a valuable resource for SEO experts.

With Soovle, you can access unlimited searches and an idea generator, making it an ideal tool for finding keyword ideas on search engines besides Google.

12. Your Internal Search Engine

What are people looking for on your site?

These terms are keywords in the vocabulary of your actual audience and should definitely be added to your keyword list.

Do not forget to look at the keywords people filled in that didn’t get any results: this was stuff people were expecting but didn’t find. You can look into the results of your internal search in Google Analytics at Behavior → Site Search → Search Terms.

Other Paid Keyword Research Tools include

Some of the paid keyword research tools include:

Semrush’s Keyword Magic Tool:

It has the largest keyword database on the market and provides a detailed overview of any keyword in the Semrush database. The pricing starts at $108.33 per month paid annually or $129.95 per month paid monthly.

Moz Keyword Explorer:

It is an all-around great free SEO keyword research tool. It offers tons of granular keyword data and a wide range of specialized keyword research tools.

Ahrefs Webmaster Tools:

It covers a broad array of SEO use cases and includes keyword research for non-search engines like YouTube, Amazon, and Bing. However, the amount of data available for free is limited.

There you go!

These keyword research tools should make it easier to create a list of useful search terms for your content. You should make sure to create awesome articles for keywords you want to be found on and thus, drive the right traffic to your website.

Let me know if there are other free keyword research tools you have used for your business.

As for those who want to start a career in digital marketing, click here to check out our course page to get started.


How to do keyword research as a beginner?

As a beginner, you can start with free keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner and Soovle. Focus on understanding search intent, relevance, and competition for keywords to lay a strong foundation for your SEO strategy.

How many keywords should I use for SEO?

There is no specific number of keywords to use for SEO. It’s more important to focus on using relevant and high-quality keywords that align with your content. It’s recommended to target a mix of short-tail and long-tail keywords to cover a wide range of search queries.

Is Semrush Keyword Tool free?

Semrush offers a free version of its Keyword Magic Tool, allowing users to perform 10 keyword searches per day. However, the available data is limited in the free version. To access the tool’s full potential, a subscription to one of the paid plans is required, with pricing starting at $108.33 per month paid annually or $129.95 per month paid monthly.

More reads:

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