27 Keyword Research Tools Every Marketer Should Know

SEOs all around the world take part in the endless chase for right keywords. These keywords play a crucial part in getting tons of traffic to websites and it brings a solid revenue as result.

However, sometimes it is rather hard to target a specific keyword for your niche. I believe you agree with me that “reading coffee grounds” is not a great idea. Especially, when it comes to getting more traffic to your own website.

If you have a perfect gut feeling and you can predict what keyword will bring you traffic, then you can stop reading this post. But if you are an ordinary man who is afraid of being mistaken, thus you should check out keyword research tools I want to introduce in this post.

The only thing you will have to do is to decide for yourself which tool fits you the most.

Ahrefs Keyword Explorer 2.0

Ahrefs has recently released a new keyword research tool. It is pretty handy in use and is good for searching keywords you need.

The more detailed review on all features this tool has you will find in Keyword Explorer 2.0 guide.


  • Lots of data
  • Fast
  • Easy in use
  • Keyword Explorer + Site Explorer + Content Explorer tools (All tools in one package)
  • Free 14-days trial


  • Price (Pricey in comparison to other tools; Lite package costs $82/month)


SEMRush is another one great solution in Digital Marketing, especially in SEO world. If you want to be ahead of your competitors, thus SEMRush is a tool for you. It lets you find the right keywords in your niche. Especially, if you have a limited budget – SEMRush is an ideal opportunity for you.



  • Free 30-days trial
  • Find the right keywords for SEO and PPC campaigns
  • Gather phrase matches and related keywords
  • Get long-tail keywords
  • Explore multinational and multilingual environments


  • It is expensive as well (PRO package costs $69.95 per month)

Google Keyword Planner

Despite the fact that the major part of keyword research tools costs some money, Google Keyword Planner is still for free.This free tool helps you search for keywords relative to your niche, see how a list of keywords performs. Moreover, you will be able to create key phrases by multiplying a few lists together.


  • It is free
  • Easy in use
  • Filters
  • Easily export data
  • Nice and competitive targeting


  • No negative keyword list
  • No suggestions for long term keywords for a huge part of categories
  • No “keyword density check” option


Keyword Tool.io

Keyword Tool.io is a nice tool for those marketers who want to generate long-tail keywords and make an analysis of your competitors’ keywords as well. Basically, the tool is free; however, you can get a pro version for ‘hunting’ more keywords you might need. It is easy in use, well-designed and fast.


  • User-friendly
  • Generate long-tail keywords (hidden by Google Keyword Planner)
  • No need registration for free users
  • It provides with accurate results


No drawbacks haven’t been noticed.

Longtail PRO

If you need to find more long-tail keywords, thus Longtail PRO is the tool you should use. The tool generates data from Google’s Keyword Planner, which you can use for searching long-tail keywords. With the help of filters that are available in this tool, you will be able to narrow down the results and get the most related keywords for your niche.


  • Free 10-days trial
  • Keyword research feature
  • Competitor analysis feature
  • Rank checker feature
  • Calculate keyword competitiveness
  • Save favorite keywords
  • Import list of keywords
  • Affordable price (annual starter plan costs $25)


  • You can’t use it without installation on your PC
  • Downloading of results is a bit slow


BuzzSumo is a wonderful tool for content marketing. Basically, the main purpose of this tool is providing you with the most shareable content on the Internet. Yes, this tool doesn’t do any keyword research; however, it shows you the most desirable content on social media. In other words, you can identify, which content will be in trend related to your keyword’s inquiry.


  • See the most shareable content
  • See how competitive keywords are to rank for
  • Look for influencers in your niche
  • Research your competitor’s content
  • Create alerts
  • Free 14-days trial


  • It is expensive ($99 per month for Pro plan)

Google Trends

Do you want to know what is going to be trending in Google search? Then, use Google Trends tool for this purpose. This tool allows you to see whether some particular keyword is still ranking high. Moreover, you can compare a few keywords from your niche identifying which one is far better to use for today.


  • It is completely free
  • Real-time search
  • Keywords comparison
  • Figure out what is working for today
  • Find content for backlinking
  • Monitor your brand and your competitors


  • It doesn’t provide you with search volume data


Ubersuggest suggests you a huge variety of keywords, which you won’t find in the Keyword Planner Tool. Even if you don’t know the right keywords you need for your business, Ubersuggest will provide you with a list of keywords related to your inquiry; this list will be based on the single keyword you typed into a searching box.


  • Free
  • Easy in use
  • Suggest a list of keywords related to your inquiry


  • It is not as powerful as other paid keyword research tools

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a free tool from Google that fits perfectly for earning traffic to your site. With the help of keyword report you will see all paid and non-paid keywords that people use to find your site. Thus, you will be able to choose only those keywords that will bring you paid customers.


  • It is free
  • Can be used via PC, mobile devices
  • Goal tracking
  • Fresh data
  • Keyword analysis


  • It is a bit complicated in use for a newbie


KWFinder helps you search for long-tail keywords with a high search volume and less competition in SEO. Yes, it reminds a bit Longtail PRO; however, the features KWFinder has are much better in use.


  • Find long-tail keyword (plus search volume on every keyword/local keywords)
  • Provide with SEO difficulty to rank a keyword
  • Create and save a list of keywords
  • Import/export keywords
  • Free plan is available
  • Affordable price (basic plan costs $29 per month)


  • Sometimes it provides with inaccurate results

Moz KW Difficulty Tool

Moz KW Difficulty tool is a great solution for you in searching and analyzing keywords. It offers you using search volume and opportunity scores for thousands of keywords downloading data for further analysis. Make a comparison of yourself to the competitors and get a comprehensive list of keywords from the largest English language database on the Internet.


  • Free 30-days trial
  • Get metrics that matter (volume, difficulty, opportunity, potential and customizable scores)
  • SERP analysis
  • Imports/exports of data you need
  • Get an access to the largest keyword database


  • Price (standard plan costs $99 per month)

Market Samurai

Market Samurai is a keyword research tool that is very popular among the marketers for its incredibly high-quality database of keywords. The tool is focusing on providing you with a detailed analysis of keywords. Alongside with keyword research, this service offers you keyword tracker, SEO competition module as well. By the way, you can upload this software on your PC or Mac.


  • Powerful keyword research
  • Rank tracker
  • Easy in use
  • Database of keyword constantly updates
  • Free trial is available


  • It works slow sometimes
  • Doesn’t provide with a detailed information on competitor’s backlinks
  • Must be installed on your PC
  • Price (a full version of the software costs $149)


WordTracker is a tool for searching any kinds of keywords. As long as the other related keyword research tools have almost the same features, WordTracker has one unique feature called Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI). The primal goal of KEI is to show you the most profitable keywords marked by a high rate of traffic and low competition.


  • Fast keyword results
  • A huge database of keywords
  • Free 7-days trial
  • Save up to 40% of your money buying annual membership plan
  • Not too expensive (bronze plan costs $27 per month)


  • Not user-friendly
  • You might be a bit confused with filter and metric figures


As it is understood from the name – SERPwoo is, perhaps, the best SERP tool ever. Moreover, this tool works great in terms of searching keywords. It will analyze the TOP 10 websites ranking for your keyword and will find those keywords that had been hidden before (keywords your competitors are ranking).


  • Deep SERP analysis
  • Online reputation management (ORM) analysis
  • SERP alerts
  • Mobile SEO tracking
  • Keyword finder is perfect for generating long-tail keywords


  • It is a bit pricey (bronze plan costs $49.95 per month)

Topic Explorer

The Topic Explorer is built on a groundbreaking technology that “understands” semantically-connected keywords, independent of their wording. It searches through billions of semantic connections, to create the whole universe of keywords forming a topic. It enables a bird’s-eye view of an “intent” topic or a niche, which can further be explored at a keyword level.


  • It’s absolutely free and it offers unlimited access to all features.
  • It helps you analyze the opportunity of a topic and all of the competitors on that market.
  • It aggregates close variations of keywords sharing the same search volume so that it avoids any misinterpretation of the total search volume, that thus remains relevant.
  • It delivers accurate search volumes and trends, for both the entire topic and each keyword.
  • It immediately gets fresh ranks and calculates Visibility Scores for all of the competitors on the searched topic.


  • For the time being, it is available only to a few markets, including the UK and the US, but it will soon extend to other European markets.
  • It may be a bit slow when analyzing large topics.



With SECockpit your keyword research and analysis will be easier and more advanced. This tool is one of the best options for those people who have been doing SEO for a long time. And here is why:



  • Keyword research at Warp speed
  • Tracking your SEO campaigns
  • Superior keyword analysis data
  • Get the juiciest keywords on the web
  • Find the best keywords opportunities


  • Not cheap (personal plan costs $40 per month)

BrightEdge Data Cube

What is the best way to find various keywords related to different niches? It is to find the tool which has this massive database. BrightEdge Data Cube has an impressive storage of data, such as search terms, content, rich media etc. Thus, there are no doubts that it is a perfect place to start a keyword research for you.


  • Get keywords based on your target audience behaviour
  • Receive the information about any keywords + its related keywords
  • Sort keywords by categories (long-tail keywords, high-volume keywords, high-value keywords)
  • Discover the TOP-10 pages for any keyword


  • Company keeps its price plans in secret


I believe you have already guessed what this tool does. Yes, KeywordSpy spies (sorry for a tautology) on keywords and ads your competitors use. With this tool, you will get a chance to be ahead of your competitors and build tactics for your marketing strategy.


  • Spy on keywords for your niche
  • Creating targeted campaigns
  • Real-time tracking for keywords
  • ROI indicator
  • Advanced searches
  • Free trial


  • Price ($89.95 per month for research or tracking)
  • If you want to get both options, you should buy ‘Professional’ plan for $139.95

Seed Keywords

Seed Keywords tool decided to gain its popularity by offering an interesting service. Yes, it is about getting high-quality keywords but not in an ordinary way. Have you ever thought about asking people of what keywords are popular in your niche? That’s right! Seed Keywords tool is here to help you find out what keywords people suggest you use. Keyword analysis with the help of human intelligence might be useful for your business.




  • Create your own scenario (describe people your needs and ask them how would they search for the solution in Google and what keywords they would use)
  • Send URL of your scenario to people via email, forums, and popular social networks
  • Get keywords insights people suggest you


  • Completely free
  • You can’t be 100% sure in data people give you


HitTail was developed to help you find long-tail keywords based on your current keyword data. It will provide you with relevant long-tail keywords related to your particular niche. These high-quality keywords will help you gain more traffic on your website. Especially, the tool is very useful for those who want to create profitable content.


  • Get great long-tail keywords
  • User-friendly interface
  • A bunch of tutorial videos and emails (if you can’t still understand how to use the tool)
  • Option of buying SEO articles (you can buy some SEO article that is targeted on a particular keyword)
  • Free trial
  • Nice price ($19.95 for Pro plan)


  • You might be a bit confused with using it (however, tutorial videos will help you)


Linkdex is a wonderful SEO platform that fits those marketers who know this business inside-out. You might think this tool is all about link-building. Wrong! It is a multifunctional service that has a bunch of useful features such as keyword research, site optimization, rank analysis etc.


  • Easy keyword research
  • Identify keyword opportunities that drive customers to your competitors’ websites
  • Add keywords to your Linkdex project
  • Use other features of the tool (SEO forecasting, crawl analytics, backlink analysis etc)
  • You can book a trial


  • Expensive ( £600 for starter package)


BulkWords makes your keyword research easier. It helps you generate search phrases for your SEO campaigns. You just create separate columns of keywords and afterward combine them by your preferences. The rest will be done by this tool. It will offer you a list of all possible combinations that you can use for your own purposes.





  • Generate keyword phrases
  • Separate keywords by different columns
  • Free of charge


  • Limited in features


Soovle is an online keyword research tool that suggests you all possible variations of the keyword you are searching for. You will get the results from the most popular search engines: Google, Yahoo, Wikipedia, Ask, Amazon, Answers.com and YouTube. Soovle is good for you in the cases when you need fresh keyword ideas and if you don’t know what keyword better to use in terms of searching something.


  • Get keywords ideas
  • Keyword suggestions from 7 most popular search engines
  • Save your search terms during your work
  • Use other available resources for your search (eBay, NetFlix, GoodSearch etc.)
  • Free in charge


This tool doesn’t have any drawbacks in terms of the features it offers.


For those marketers who “hunt” for commercial keywords here is a solution called Freshkey. Especially, if your business area is places like Amazon or eBay, thus Freshkey will tell you what your customers want to buy. Armed with commercial keywords thanks to Freshkey.


  • Real-time commercial keyword results
  • Use keyword ranking filter
  • Get keyword trending results from Google Trends
  • The tool works on PC and Mac
  • 30-days money back guarantee


  • Pricey (one-time payment – $50)
  • Works great mostly for searching commercial keywords


SpyFu is all about competitive research. This tool helps you analyze what keywords your competitors buy, what organic keywords they rank for. Basically, you will get a chance to run an outstanding business campaign having in your arsenal your competitors’ best keywords.


  • Keyword research
  • Competitor analysis
  • PPC Ad copy research
  • Keyword tracking
  • 30-days money back guarantee


  • Not cheap ($49 per month for basic plan)
  • No local data


iSpionage is a “spy” tool that helps you research your competitors’ keywords. You may conduct keyword, domain or, even, competitive research uncovering keyword opportunities you might miss using some other tools. By entering any keyword iSpionage reveals you TOP 10 competitors on a particular market.


  • Find keywords related to your niche
  • In-depth analysis of your competitors
  • Create ad groups
  • Exporting lists of keywords/ads
  • Identify which ads get more traffic
  • Create better offers by spying your competitors offers and landing pages
  • Create alerts
  • Not expensive ($29 per month for basic plan)


The tool is really great; thus, no disadvantages have been found.

Wordstream Keyword Tool

Wordstream offers you its free keyword research tool. The tool offers you more keyword ideas and opportunities in contrast to other paid keyword tools. By entering a keyword, Wordstream will generate for 100 results (long-tail keywords as well). Furthermore, it allows you to export up to thousand keywords without paying any money. Wordstream Keyword Tool is a great solution for those who have no opportunity of using paid keyword research tools.


  • Absolutely free
  • It generates a list of 100 keywords
  • You can export up to thousand keywords for free


  • This tool does a shallow analysis in contrast to paid tools

Bonus tool for readers



GrepWords tends to be the fastest keyword research tool. As the company says about itself: “GrepWords merges a massive, fresh keyword database with intuitive tools and the industry lookup and related APIs to bring you the best keyword tool hands down”. And it is truth.


  • Keyword lookup
  • A wide range of Chrome extensions from Grepwords
  • Excel plugins (SEOGadget for excel)
  • API access
  • Free 2-week trial
  • Affordable price (basic plan costs $15)


No drawbacks were found (however, it is less popular in contrast to other keyword research tools)


As it was said at the beginning of the post, this endless chase for profitable keywords requires some additional helpers represented by keyword research tools. As you can see, there is a huge variety of these services (paid or free); each of this tool has its pros and cons and it is up to you which one is far better to use. Remember that a single right keyword might lead your business campaign to success.

Well, if I missed some tool, then, please, tell me about it in comments.Comment and share.


Sergey Aliokhin is an Outreach manager at Ahrefs. He spends most of the time discovering and learning SEO and Internet Marketing tendencies. His primal goal is to study and practice new aspects of an outreach strategy. In his spare time, he likes to spend his time with family, visit specialized sports club, study martial arts. If he has nothing to do at all, he prefers reading books on science-fiction and playing the bass guitar.

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