Updated on August 4th, 2022
So you’ve started blogging and you’re interested in finding the best keywords for WordPress.
By now you might have spent a lot of time and effort researching and writing your blog posts and web pages. Accordingly, your page deserves to ascend the rankings if you’ve put in all this effort.
In this article, I’ll explain the ways to find out what people are searching for in Google, and how to boost your traffic by structuring your posts to match these search terms.
Organic Traffic is King
But how to get traffic to your page? Organic traffic from search engines is the best as it’s free and long term. As Google currently holds 88% of the search engine market, you’ll need to concentrate your efforts here.
I believe that it’s often best to just blog on something that you feel passionate about. Having said that, if you want your post to rank in Google search you should pick a keyphrase that people are actually searching for.
You could then subtly integrate this keyword or keyphrase into your page so that Google can find it.
Keywords for WordPress – Why you need them
Firstly, it’s important to understand that the terms “Keyword” and “Keyphrase” are used interchangeably in SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). So by “Keyword” we could easily mean one word, a whole sentence or anything in between.
Here’s a few examples of keywords related to the word “blogging”:
SEO Keywords are the actual queries, questions and phrases that people type into the search engines every day. Luckily for us, there are various tools which aggregate these search terms for us.
What types of Keywords for WordPress are best?
If you’re starting out, It’s generally preferable to focus on longer keyphrases, often called long-tail keywords as there’s less competition for these searches.
For example, the keyphrase “Fishing” is very general and will be subject to huge competition. Considering that your goal should be to get your post ranked on the first page of search results, you would be better off with a long tail keyphrase.
Accordingly, you would be more likely to rank on the first page of Google for a search term such as “Bass Fishing in Michigan”.
How to find Keywords for WordPress
The Google Keywords Planner tool is one source of keyword search data, but it has its limitations. You’ll need to setup a Google Adwords account to use this tool. The one major limitation of this tool is that it will only give you search volume by ranges.
For example, using our example above: “bass fishing in Michigan”, let’s say it returns a search volume of 10,000 to 100,000 searches per month. This isn’t particularly helpful. You’ll also be required to spend money on an Adwords advertising campaign before you can unlock the full benefits of Google Keywords Planner, so this is a turn-off for a lot of people.
For the reason above, my preferred option is the Keywords Everywhere Tool. This is a Chrome browser extension which will allow you to obtain monthly search volumes, CPC (Cost per Click) and competition for any target keyphrase. You’ll save money on having to run a Google Adwords campaign.
The amazing part of Keywords Everywhere is that it will give you Keyword data on your normal search results page. It will also show you related keywords which you might want to target.
Keywords Everywhere was a free tool until recently. To use the tool, you now need to purchase credits and the credits are used against search results that the tool delivers to you. Pricing starts at $10 for 100,000 credits which is very good value.
I’d recommend to turn the Keywords Everywhere extension off when you’re not searching keywords so that you don’t waste credits. Additionally, I’d recommend to carefully check the settings in the browser extension to make sure that you’re only using credits for data that you need.
Some other excellent paid keyword tools that require you setting up an account are:
While these are all great products, I’d suggest that you don’t really need them when you’re first starting out blogging.
Do your Own Keyword Research
Once you’ve decided on some keywords or keyphrases to target, just go into normal Google or Bing and type in the keyword or keyphrase.
Look at what comes up on the first page of search results for your keyword or keyphrase. Are there specific, relevant and recent articles related to your keyphrase on the first page of search? If you see older articles, Youtube videos, Reddit or Quora posts coming up, it’s probably a good sign of low competition for that search term. So there is a good chance that you can get your prospective post ranked on the first page of search results. This will take time of course.
Also look to see if any snippets come up for your search term. Google feature-snippets are the summarised information boxes that you will sometimes see in Google search. If there are no snippets coming up for your search, that’s another good sign that there is lower competition for your keyphrase.
Use the Free Alphabet Soup Keyword Method
One way to find keywords that people are searching for is to use the Alphabet soup method. Using this method, you’ll type a few keywords into Google search and you’ll then be presented with a list of search terms that people are searching for.
Eg. If you search for the term “hiking” you might get the results below. These are some of the top queries that people are typing into Google search.
You can also get different results by typing in words before or after your keyword. Eg. If I type “The” before the same keyword:
You’ll see that we get totally different results by doing this. The advantages of this method are that it’s free and so easy to do. Everyone can access Google.
The disadvantage, however is that you can’t see any search volumes or competition. For this reason, I prefer the Keywords Everywhere method.
How to use your Keywords in WordPress
So now you’ve selected a keyword or keyphrase that you’d like to target. You should now use the keywords in your post title, SEO Title, first paragraph, sub-headings, text and last paragraph. Try not to over-use your keywords but carefully place them so that they appear naturally.
There are WordPress plugins to help you with this, the most popular being Yoast for SEO (our preference) and Rankmath.
If you’re starting a brand new site try Rankmath as it has a few extra features in the free version compared to Yoast.
These plugins will help you check your posts and categories to help you get the proper density of keywords included. To do this, you should make sure that your keywords or keyphrase are part of your Yoast SEO Title. Just as you can under-include your keywords, you shouldn’t over-optimise by using them too much.
For example, the keyphrase “10 of the Best Hikes” can be included in the SEO title using Yoast and then will appear in Google search results like this:
Conclusion – Keywords for WordPress
If you are maintaining a blog or website, you’ll want to be getting free organic traffic through the search engines.
So the best way to maximise this traffic is through targeting specific keywords or keyphrases that people are currently searching for.
While there are premium tools to obtain keywords, I believe the low-cost methods for obtaining these keywords are best when you’re starting out blogging.
Frequently Asked Questions – Keywords for WordPress
Is it critical to have green lights for every post in Yoast?
No. The traffic light system should only be treated as a guide. Don’t try to cram keywords for WordPress unnaturally into a post as Google is very good at working out variations of text. However, SEO plugins are still very useful for editing your meta description. They also help to remind you to have your keyword in titles, content and images. But they shouldn’t rule what you publish.
What are the best free SEO plugins for WordPress?
Yoast offers a free version which allows you to optimise posts for 1 keyword, edit meta descriptions and submit sitemaps to Google and Bing.
Rankmath is totally free and includes many options only included in the premium version of Yoast such as multiple keywords per post.
What is the simple definition of a keyword in SEO?
A keyword is a word or group of words (keyphrase) which is a search term or query entered into a search engine. The volume and statistics of these keywords are analysed and used by website owners to maximise their organic (search engine) traffic.
What’s the best length for a long tail keyword?
Three to Five words is ideal. Anything longer and you’ll run into difficulties feeding the key phrase into your web page. Also, longer terms may have lower search traffic.
Why are long-tail keywords better for a new blog?
It’s much easier to rank on the first page of google for longer keywords as there is less competition. As searches beyond the first page don’t get much traffic, it’s better to get some traffic than no traffic.
What does it mean to rank for a keyword?
To rank for a keyword (Google search term) means that your web post or page (containing the keyword) is appearing on the first page of search results.
What is competition for a keyword?
The competition score for a keyword shows the volume of competition from other websites that are trying to rank for that keyword. Each SEO tool has different ways of calculating this and results may be slightly different. The lower the competition rating, the more chance you have of ranking for that keyword.
What is CPC for a keyword?
CPC (Cost Per Click) is the amount in dollars that advertisers in GoogleAds will pay per click for leads based on articles containing your keyword. Keywords with a higher CPC tend to also have higher competition.
What is volume for a keyword?
Volume for a keyword is the average number of clicks that the keyword gets in the search engine for a given period. The time frame is usually one month.
What’s the best free SEO tool?
Type a search terms into Google and it will automatically give you a list of the best related search terms. We know with certainty that real people are searching for these specific keyphrases on Google. So these are confirmed keywords that you can use straight away.
What is the trend for a keyword?
A keyword trend chart shows if search volume is increasing or decreasing over time for that keyword. Those keywords with an upward tracking trend chart are the best search terms to rank for.
These plugins will also check all your other metrics for your post such as outgoing links and image selection are in place to maximise the SEO potential of your post.