This process on Keyword Research I am about to teach is one of many that I will be sharing with you on systems that I use in my daily business for myself, clients, and students. It is a proven system that I use that is simple, free, and powerful. Oh, did I mention it is Free?

Keyword research is by far the most misunderstood, misused, and unappreciated process in Search Engine Optimization and marketing in general.


So why do we miss the boat on keyword research? It is because we do not understand why we are doing it, or how it should be done. When I say misunderstood, I am totally serious. There are so many people teaching incorrectly, generalizing, or even over-complicating the subject of keyword research.

misused Misused

If we do not understand Keyword Research then it is more than likely that we will misuse it. I see so many students and clients that believe that they know the keywords and phrases that their target market is searching for. This is one of the biggest mistakes and misuses of keyword research. Let the search engines tell you what your target market is searching for.

unappriciated Unappreciated

If you ask me, I believe that Keyword Research is one of the most unappreciated steps to online success. Businesses and individuals don't spend enough time researching their market and finding those "Gold Nuggets" as I like to call the keywords that bring in targeted traffic.

So you are probably asking yourself, "Ok Garrett, so how do we understand, use, and appreciate keyword research better?" Great question!

I believe you must spend at least 2-3 days and at least 1 hour a day, just doing research. Spending the correct amount of time will help you find the Gold Nuggets. Here are five (5) simple steps that you can use to help in your keyword research efforts:

Step 1 - Use FREE tools to help you do your research. Tools such as:

Start off by using free social media tools like the Twitter Search and Facebook Lexicon to research exactly what your target market is talking about socially. Another great tip would be to research in niche related forums. Simply search "{your niche} + forum" in any search engine and that should give you a great starting point.

So for a quick example of where to start.

If you are in the real estate market in Denver Colorado, then start searching that very keyword "Denver Colorado Real Estate" and see what people are conversing about online. This should give you a good amount of keywords/phrases that you can then take to the Google Keyword Tool to see the search volume and get more keyword suggestions.

Using powerful free tools like the ones mentioned above will guide you by going directly to the source where people/consumers spends their time.

Step 2 - By using the Google Keyword Tool (which I believe is one of the most powerful keyword research tools), you will be able to find those keywords/phrases that people are actually searching for. This is key!

Take the list you gather from Step 1 and plug them into the powerful Google Keyword Tool and let it do the rest. Google will then spit out a good amount of keywords/phrases that you can now start researching.

Step 3 - As you are researching, do not go after keywords/phrases that are too broad and too competitive. An obvious example of too broad and even too competitive would be the keyphrase "Real Estate" or "Realtor". Try and find keywords that are focused around your market, example "Denver Colorado Real Estate" or "Denver CO Realtor", these keywords still get tons of traffic and they are not as competitive.

Step 4 - As you do your research, focus on your top 10 keywords/phrases. Once you have your top 10, spend some time narrowing it down to your top 3 (but make sure you keep your top 10).

So many people think they need tons of keywords, but when is the last time you actually focused on more than 3-10 at a time?

Step 5 - Now that you have your top 3 keywords/phrase start over with "Step 1" and spend the time again making sure those are the best 3 to focus on for your target market. Once you have dominated those keywords then pick another top 3 to focus on. If you try and rank for too many keywords/phrases at once I can guarantee you will fail.

To some of you these steps may sound too simple. Well, it is because they are! Don't misunderstand, misuse, and be unappreciative of the power of simple and effective Keyword Research.


Online Marketing consultant, Garrett Pierson, is the creator of Building Social Equity, also the Operations Manager at Trust Guard. His knowledge of Search Engine Optimization and Marketing background has helped online businesses around the world for years.