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11 Best Keyword Research Tools to Try (From Least to Most Expensive)

Finding the best keyword research tools on the market can be a daunting task. Different tools with different price ranges can be overwhelming and intimidating to find one that meets the needs of your business and budget.

Keyword research is the cornerstone of successful SEO and content marketing. To boost your website’s visibility and engage your target audience effectively, choosing the right keyword research tool is essential.

I have used the majority of these on this list, with the exception of Surfer and Moz.

Some are easy to use, and some have a steep learning curve. The learning curve is something to keep in mind when choosing the tool that is right for you.

You don’t want to waste the entire month of subscription trying to learn the tool. I recommend studying the tool first by watching videos and reading blog tutorials to learn more about it. And if possible, use the trial period to get at least a feel of it.

Many keyword research tools are available, ranging from free to premium options, each with its own set of features and pricing.

This article will explore the 11 best keyword research tools, from the least expensive to the most costly, helping you decide which suits your needs and budget.

This post contains affiliate links.

  1. Google Ads Keyword Planner (FREE)
  2. Keyword Everywhere
  3. Mangools
  4. Keysearch
  5. UberSuggest
  6. LowFruits io
  7. RankIQ
  8. Surfer
  9. Ahrefs
  10. SEMRush
  11. Moz

What is a Keyword Research Tool?

best keyword research tools

A keyword research tool is a software or online application designed to help individuals and businesses identify and analyze the keywords and key phrases that people use when searching for information, products, or services on search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo.

Keyword research is a fundamental aspect of search engine optimization (SEO) and online marketing, as it helps website owners and content creators understand what their target audience is searching for and optimize their content accordingly.

The primary functions of a keyword research tool include:

  1. Keyword Discovery: Keyword research tools allow users to discover new keywords and phrases related to a specific topic or niche. These tools often provide suggestions, variations, and related keywords to help users broaden their keyword lists.
  2. Search Volume Data: Keyword research tools offer insights into the search volume of specific keywords, indicating how often people search for those terms. This information is crucial for understanding the potential traffic and demand for particular keywords.
  3. Keyword Difficulty: Many tools assess the competitiveness of keywords by providing a keyword difficulty score. This score helps users determine how challenging it is to rank for a specific keyword, considering factors like competition and backlinks.
  4. Trend Analysis: Some tools provide historical data and trends, enabling users to track changes in keyword popularity over time. This is useful for planning content strategies and identifying seasonal trends.
  5. Competitor Analysis: Many keyword research tools allow users to analyze the keywords that competitors are targeting. This information can help identify gaps and opportunities in your own SEO strategy.
  6. Long-Tail Keywords: Long-tail keywords are longer and more specific keyword phrases. These tools often help users find profitable long-tail keywords, which can be easier to rank for and highly targeted.
  7. Cost-Per-Click (CPC) Data: For those running pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaigns, keyword research tools often provide CPC data, helping users estimate the cost of bidding on specific keywords in ad campaigns.
  8. Content Ideas: Some keyword research tools go beyond keyword data and provide content ideas or topic suggestions related to the selected keywords. This can assist in content planning and generation.

Keyword research tools are essential for creating a well-informed SEO and content strategy.

By using these tools, website owners, content creators, and digital marketers can identify the most relevant and valuable keywords for their specific goals, whether it’s improving organic search rankings, increasing website traffic, or running effective paid advertising campaigns.

Why Do I Need to Use (Invest) in a Keyword Research Tool?

Using or investing in a keyword research tool is crucial for several reasons, whether you’re an individual blogger, a small business owner, or a digital marketer. Here are some compelling reasons why you should consider using a keyword research tool:

  1. Optimizing SEO: Keyword research tools help you identify the most relevant and high-traffic keywords in your niche. By targeting these keywords in your content, you can improve your website’s search engine ranking and increase organic traffic. This, in turn, can lead to more visibility, higher click-through rates, and potential conversions.
  2. Understanding Your Audience: These tools provide valuable insights into what your target audience is searching for online. By knowing the language and phrases they use, you can tailor your content to address their specific needs and interests, improving engagement and user experience.
  3. Competitive Analysis: Keyword research tools allow you to analyze your competitors’ keyword strategies. By understanding what keywords your competitors are targeting, you can identify gaps and opportunities in your own SEO strategy, ultimately gaining a competitive edge.
  4. Content Planning: These tools often provide content ideas and topic suggestions based on keyword research. This helps you plan and create content that resonates with your audience, answering their questions and addressing their pain points effectively.
  5. Higher Conversion Rates: By targeting keywords that are highly relevant to your products or services, you can attract visitors who are more likely to convert into customers. Well-researched keywords can lead to better quality traffic and higher conversion rates.
  6. Cost-Efficient Advertising: If you’re running paid advertising campaigns, keyword research tools can help you find the most cost-effective keywords to target. By choosing the right keywords, you can reduce ad spend while still reaching your target audience.
  7. Tracking Trends: These tools often provide historical data and trends, enabling you to identify seasonal trends, changes in search behavior, and emerging keywords. This information is invaluable for staying ahead of the curve and adapting your strategies.
  8. Avoiding Guesswork: Keyword research tools provide data-driven insights. They eliminate the need to rely on guesswork or assumptions when creating content or optimizing your website for search engines. You can make informed decisions based on concrete data.
  9. Time Efficiency: While it’s possible to perform manual keyword research, it can be time-consuming. Keyword research tools streamline the process, saving you a significant amount of time and allowing you to focus on other aspects of your business.
  10. Scaling Your Business: As your business grows, you’ll likely need to target a wider range of keywords and niches. Keyword research tools help you scale your SEO and marketing efforts effectively by providing insights into new areas of opportunity.
  11. Data-Driven Marketing: In the digital age, data is king. Keyword research tools provide you with data that can drive your marketing decisions and strategies. By using data to inform your choices, you’re more likely to achieve successful outcomes.

Investing in a keyword research tool is a smart decision for anyone looking to make a mark in the online world. These tools empower you to make data-driven decisions, optimize your content, and stay competitive in the ever-evolving digital landscape.

*The advantage of these paid tools, whether low-cost or expensive, is that there is no contract. You can cancel at anytime if you need to. You can invest for just one month and then cancel.

Or if you like it, and can afford it then continue with using the tool.

Whether you’re focused on SEO, content marketing, or paid advertising, a keyword research tool is an indispensable asset that can significantly impact your online success.

The 11 Best Keyword Research Tools to Try (From the least to most expensive)

Below is a list of the best tools to use, or at least try, for your content marketing strategy. Some of these tools offer free trials, allowing you to try them before making a purchase.

*Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links at no additional cost to you. I only recommend products I would use myself; all opinions expressed here are mine. In addition, I may earn a small commission.

We begin our list with a free and reliable tool provided by Google. The Google Ads Keyword Planner offers valuable insights into keyword data, search volume, and competition. While it primarily targets advertisers, it’s also useful for SEO keyword research. This tool is perfect for beginners and those with a limited budget.

Pros:

  • Free to use.
  • Accurate keyword data from Google.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Provides historical data and search volume trends.

Cons:

  • Limited features compared to dedicated SEO tools.
  • Designed for advertisers but can be adapted for SEO.

Keyword Everywhere ($15/annual plan)

Keyword Everywhere is a browser extension that offers an affordable solution for keyword research. It seamlessly integrates with your browser, showing keyword metrics directly on Google search pages, making it convenient for on-the-fly research.

Pros:

  • Low cost with an annual plan.
  • Simple browser extension integration.
  • Keyword data displayed directly on search engine results pages.
  • Provides valuable metrics like search volume and CPC.

Cons:

  • Limited to basic keyword metrics.
  • Not as feature-rich as standalone SEO tools.

Mangools ($29/monthly plan)

Mangools is a suite of SEO tools, including KWFinder for keyword research, that offers excellent value for money. It’s known for its user-friendly interface and comprehensive keyword data.

Pros:

  • Affordable monthly pricing.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Keyword difficulty analysis.
  • SERP analysis and competitor research.

Cons:

  • Limited in terms of other SEO features.
  • Limited to a fixed number of keyword lookups depending on your plan.

KeySearch ($17/monthly plan)

KeySearch is a budget-friendly keyword research tool suitable for both beginners and small businesses. It offers essential keyword research features and a user-friendly interface. Get a 20% off discount using code: KSDISC

Pros:

  • Affordable monthly pricing.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Keyword difficulty analysis.
  • Competitor research.

Cons:

  • Lacks some advanced features.
  • Limited to a fixed number of daily searches.

UberSuggest ($29/monthly or $290/lifetime)

UberSuggest, developed by Neil Patel, provides an affordable solution for keyword research. It offers keyword suggestions, competitive analysis, and content ideas, making it an excellent choice for bloggers and small businesses.

Pros:

  • Affordable monthly or lifetime pricing.
  • Comprehensive keyword research features.
  • Competitor analysis.
  • Content ideas and suggestions.

Cons:

  • May lack the advanced features required for large businesses.
  • Limited compared to premium tools.

LowFruits.io ($25 for 2000 credits)

LowFruits.io is a unique keyword research tool that focuses on low-competition, high-traffic keywords. It’s designed for users who want to uncover hidden gems in the world of keywords.

Pros:

  • Affordable pricing based on credits.
  • Specialized in finding low-competition keywords.
  • User-friendly interface.

Cons:

  • Limited to finding specific types of keywords.
  • May not provide a complete SEO solution.

RankIQ ($49 per month)

rankiq

RankIQ is a rising star in the world of keyword research tools. It focuses on helping you create SEO-friendly content by providing keyword recommendations and optimization suggestions.

Pros:

  • Reasonably priced for its features.
  • Content optimization recommendations.
  • Keyword difficulty analysis
  • User-friendly interface.

Cons:

  • Still relatively new and may not have as extensive a user base as other tools.

Surfer ($89 per month)

Surfer is more than just a keyword research tool; it’s a complete on-page SEO tool. It provides recommendations for optimizing your content based on top-ranking pages for specific keywords.

Pros:

  • In-depth on-page SEO analysis.
  • Keyword research capabilities.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Competitive analysis.

Cons:

  • Pricier compared to some other options.
  • May be overkill for users solely interested in keyword research.

Ahrefs ($99/monthly Lite Plan)

Ahrefs is a robust SEO suite, with keyword research being just one of its many features. While the Lite plan starts at $99 per month, it offers a wealth of SEO tools.

Pros:

  • Comprehensive SEO suite.
  • Extensive keyword research capabilities.
  • Backlink analysis.
  • Competitor research.

Cons:

  • Higher cost compared to some other options.
  • The Lite plan has limitations compared to higher-tier plans.

SEMRush ($129.95 per month with a FREE trial)

SEMrush is another all-in-one SEO suite, offering extensive keyword research and competitor analysis features. While it is pricier than some other options, it’s a favorite among professionals.

Pros:

  • Comprehensive SEO suite.
  • Extensive keyword research capabilities.
  • Backlink analysis.
  • Competitor research.
  • Social media tracking.

Cons:

  • Higher cost compared to many other tools.
  • May be overwhelming for beginners.

Moz ($99 monthly for the Basic. Comes with FREE 30-days trial)

Moz, known for its domain authority metric, also provides a range of SEO tools. The Moz Pro subscription includes keyword research, on-page SEO, and link analysis tools.

Pros:

  • Comprehensive SEO suite.
  • Keyword research and tracking capabilities.
  • Domain authority metric.
  • Backlink analysis.

Cons:

  • Higher cost compared to some other options.
  • Some features may overlap with other tools in the suite.

Conclusion

Choosing the right keyword research tool is a crucial decision for anyone involved in online marketing, SEO, or content creation. The tool you select should align with your needs, budget, and expertise level.

From the free Google Ads Keyword Planner to the premium offerings like Moz and SEMrush, there is a keyword research tool for every type of user.

Consider your specific budget, requirements, whether it’s affordable pricing, in-depth analysis, or a complete SEO suite, and make an informed decision. Ultimately, the best keyword research tool for you will depend on your individual circumstances and goals.


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