SEO Research as a Process

SEO research is a critical component of any business’s on line presence. It is a core task and makes the backbone of SEO.

SEO research could involve identifying popular keywords and discovering link building opportunities from competitor back links. The research gathered can be harnessed into a strategy that will improve your online presence and increase your brand awareness.

What is Involved in SEO Research

SEO research involves working on at least three fronts at once. In order to have the best chances of effective promotion that will help bring viewers to your amazing content, all new projects should revolve around these three cornerstones: researching competitors, researching keywords and researching backlinks.

Read through the following sections for a technical overview of this matter, including suggestions on the best audit tools and link analysis software that you can use to develop a keyword strategy.

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What Exactly is Competitor Research and Why Does it Matter?

What do we mean by competitor research? Before diving deep in to SEO research, you need to discover who your top competitors are. So competitor research is a strategic technique used to identify weaknesses and strengths of you competitors.

There are a few techniques you can use to determine your competitors. One of them is simply typing your main keywords into a search engine and discovering who else is ranking for these keywords. A good practice would be to noting down the competitor websites that appear within the top 2 pages, and you’ll have a list of competitors.

Another competitor research technique would be to use SEO tools such as SEMRush and Ahrefs. They both have tool sets with the capability of finding out competing websites/domains using your own website or keywords.

You can enter your URL and the tools will bring domain that are considered competitors. You can also enter search terms/keywords and the tools will bring competitors for them terms.

Use metrics such as traffic, keywords and backlinks to analyse and determine who your main competitors are.

SEO Competitor Research

Competitor research is very important as it provides you with information and data regarding what SEO strategies are working within the industry. You can discover which competitors are performing well in terms of Organic Traffic, what keywords are of value and link building strategies. This will form a base on what you need to do to start improving the quality and quantity of traffic.

What is Keyword Research and How Should You do it Right?

Keyword research is the art of finding the most important search terms in any given niche. Its aim is to develop working strategies to eventually make your website rank first for those terms.

A great starting point for doing keyword research that brings results is to use the keywords and phrases your competitors are targeting.

SEMRUsh, Ahrefs, Ubersuggest and Google’s Keyword Planner are some of the leading tools/software within the industry for carrying out keyword research. Some of these tools will return a list comprising of phrase match terms along with related keywords. The related search terms can sometimes be the most interesting, since they’re often important terms that competitors may be overlooking, which could potentially make it easier to secure top rankings.

Some of the software and tools show you the keyword volume and a keyword difficulty rating. The volume shows you the average number of times a keyword was searched for per month. The difficulty rating determines how easy it is to rank for certain keyword terms. High volume keywords are generally difficult to rank for due their high difficulty rating.

What is Keyword Research

Another technique of doing keyword research is creating a keyword gap analysis. This is a process of discovering what keywords your competitors are ranking for which you are not.

When carrying out keyword research you’ll realize that some key phrases have buying intent (especially those including terms such as “review”, “coupon”, since they’re closed to the end of the buying cycle), while others have informative intent – implying that people looking for those terms are still in the early stages of their research.

While you will want to create a comprehensive plan that allows your website to rank high for as many relevant terms as possible, it’s crucial to realize that pages focusing search terms with buying intent will tend to generate the most revenue – which means those are the likely cornerstones in your digital marketing efforts.

A typical approach for most websites looking to dominate a niche is to focus heavily on creating and promoting pivotal pages optimized for terms with high search volume and/or high buying intent, while also working on creating somewhat more peripheral pages optimized for less profitable and/or non-competitive terms.

The more pages a website has with good search rankings for key terms in a niche, the higher its authority in that niche, which will in turn help raise rankings across the board.

How Can You Use Backlink Research To Cut Through the Competition?

Backlinks are a major part of Off-site search engine optimisation. The number of inbound links is an indication of how popular your website is according to search engines.

Link building is a very time consuming process. However, there are a number of technical tools such as SEMrush, Ahrefs, Majestic SEO and Serpstat that can help you in carrying out backlink research.

Using one of the back-link analysis tools above you can get an insight into your competitor’s backlink profile. You can get insights such as backlinks, anchors, referring domains, traffic and keywords which is all important data when it comes to backlinks. All this will help build your link building strategy.

Backlink Research for SEO

As with the keyword gap analysis you can create a backlink gap analysis to discover link opportunities. You will be able to see what high quality backlinks your main competitors have that you should be taking advantage of. By replicating these links your chances of outranking them increases.

As mentioned earlier backlinks are an important part of SEO, as they can help your website’s popularity on search engines. High quality backlinks will push Google to index your website, which means more traffic and becoming more relevant in user search queries.

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