How to Do Keyword Research in 2021: The Ultimate Guide


If you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur, you know how difficult it is to rank higher on Google and get more customers.

It’s even more complicated if you don’t know about SEO, Ahrefs, keyword research, etc.

But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t hope!

In this article, I’m going to teach you exactly how to do keyword research in 2021 for your website so that you can rank higher on Google and save yourself months of frustration!

Keyword Research 101

Let’s start with what keyword research is, why it matters, and the basics involved.

What is Keyword Research?

Keyword research is the process of finding out which keywords will be most likely to generate traffic for your website.

In other words, keyword research helps you understand what keywords your potential customers are using and what they’re searching for.

Why is Keyword Research Important?

Keyword research plays a pivotal role in every other SEO task that you perform such as finding content topics, on-page SEO and email outreach.

Think of Keyword Research as a compass for your ship. It tells you where to go and if you are getting closer to your goals or not.

Keyword Research - The Compass that helps you rank higher on Google.

Without further delays, here are 4 tools you can use in your quest for keywords!

Let’s get started.

How to use Google Search for Keyword Research

This is a manual way to explore keywords by using Google’s search box.

Type your keyword of choice into Google and you’ll be provided with a list of related keywords.

These related keywords are what people search for, so you’ll know exactly which ones to include.

For example: Let’s say you are researching the topic “Cryptocurrency”

You would type “Cryptocurrency” into Google Search and you’ll be provided with a list of related keywords to include in your Keyword Research.

You can also get ideas for long-tail keywords under the “People Also Ask” section:

With this keyword research method, you can quickly find the keywords you need to optimize your SEO and generate more traffic.

How to use Google Keyword Planner to generate Keyword Ideas

This is a free tool by Google that you can use to find keyword ideas.

It helps you identify what keywords your competitors are ranking for and which ones you should be targeting as well.

Head over to Google Keyword Planner and type in a specific keyword or an entire topic (e.g., “Cryptocurrency”) into the search bar.

You’ll get a list of keywords that you can choose from and it will tell you how many clicks per month they generate (e.g., “Cryptocurrency” generates about 120,000 monthly searches).

Google will also tell you other details such as the competition level for each keyword and suggestions on how to optimize that keyword.

How to use Google Trends to find Keyword Ideas

Google Trends is a free tool provided by Google which allows you to see the popularity of certain keywords over time.

You can discover information on how popular certain keywords are and when they’re most often searched for.

This tool can help you identify popular SEO topics and how often they’re searched for.

For example:

If you search “Cryptocurrency” on Google Trends, it will provide information about the popularity of that keyword over a certain time frame (e.g., 2016-2021).

Scroll to the bottom and you’ll find related topics and queries that are popular trending.

By running these SEO queries on Google Trends, you’ll have an idea of what keywords to include in your SEO efforts.

How to use Ahrefs for Keyword Research

Ahrefs is a powerhouse tool because it provides keyword research opportunities that other tools do not provide

You can gain access to keywords that your competitors are ranking for, backlinks (An important ranking factor), and also generate keyword ideas with the Keyword Explorer feature.

Head over to Ahrefs > Keyword Explorer and type in a specific keyword or an entire topic (e.g., “Bitcoin”) into the search bar.

The results will provide information on how popular that particular keyword is and what content might work well with it if you’re struggling to decide which way to go.

Select “Phrase Match” to view related keywords that you can target for SEO.

As you can see in the image above, there are more than 500k keywords that you can potentially rank for with the topic “bitcoin.”

Pro tip: Filter your results with Keyword Difficulty (KD) to look for easy keywords you can target and rank for.

I’ve got an in-depth article about how you can use Ahref to do SEO and Keyword Research, so be sure to check it out!


If you want to rank higher in SEO and get more traffic, then Keyword Research is a must.

Before doing any other work, do some keyword research to ensure your content will rank well in search engines for the right keywords.

Do your research ahead of time so you don’t have to worry about it once the article is published!