A Step-by-Step Guide to Local Keyword Research


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Keyword research is a major step in any well-planned SEO strategy. This is due to the significance of keywords in things like content optimization and improving ranks on search engine results pages. Usually, keyword research is conducted as the first step to lay the foundation of the whole SEO strategy.

Additionally, they are conducted globally, as the main aim of any website is to appear on results pages for people from all around the world and achieve global success. Little did they know that they needed to start locally to succeed globally. But how, you may ask? Easy — local keyword research!

Related: Local SEO Has a Surprising Impact on Your Business. Here’s How to Use It

What is local keyword research?

You know how sometimes when you type something into a search engine and then your location, it returns websites that are exactly what you are looking for? Well, I used to think this was magic back in the day. It turns out it is not; it is just a very good local keyword research process. Local keyword research is the process of finding and identifying keywords used by users in your local area.

What should you look for in a keyword?

Before using any keyword, there are some characteristics that you need to carefully look for. These characteristics are volume, relevance and difficulty. So, let us look into each one.


The first thing is the volume. The volume of a keyword is the number of searches that have been conducted in search engines for these specific keywords. This volume will be global, with many tools breaking down the global volume to the top countries using it. This is rather beneficial, as it can show you whether or not this keyword is used heavily in your country.


The second thing you need to keep an eye on is relevancy. This includes analyzing search intent and seeing which keywords match your content or query. This will help you target keywords that relate to your industry and niche and avoid wasting your efforts on irrelevant keywords.


Difficulty is a major element that you need to keep a good eye on. Keyword difficulty is the extent to which a keyword would be hard to rank on result pages using it. Difficulty usually happens due to a large number of websites using this keyword or the authority of the websites using it, making it hard for others to do the same. Difficulty ranges from 1 to 100, so it is better to choose keywords with low keyword difficulty so it is easier to rank quickly and effectively.

Related: 5 Common Research Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Benefits of conducting local keyword research

Competitive advantage:

With the mistaken belief that local keywords are less competitive than global ones, many businesses ignore local SEO. You can gain an edge over rivals who aren’t investing as much time and energy into local SEO by conducting local keyword research and optimizing your website for targeted local keywords.

Enhanced user experience:

Including helpful details like your store’s address, hours of operation, phone number and contact information is a crucial part of local SEO. Streamlining the process by which users can locate certain pieces of content improves the overall quality of the site’s usefulness.

Higher conversion rates:

Doing some localized keyword research might help you focus on search terms that have a significant commercial purpose. People who are actively looking for a product or service in their area are more likely to buy it, increasing your conversion rate and improving your return on investment.

Build local authority:

Building local credibility for your business can be accomplished through the consistent use of local keywords in content and the optimization of a website for local search results. When search engines see that your content is relevant to a specific geographic region, they may give you a higher page rank and earn the trust of those users.

A step-by-step guide to conducting local keyword research

1. List your services and products and the potential keywords

The first step is listing the products and services that your business offers. For instance, if you own a barber shop, you will list down some things like hair coloring, hair straightening, haircuts and so on. You would need to think about all the possible outcomes. Based on all of these, you would be able to list potential keywords that customers might use as well. For instance, if you are based in Colorado, there is a chance that potential customers will search for “affordable haircuts in Colorado.” Try to be as creative as possible and think of all the variations that customers could think of.

2. Find your target keywords using a keyword research tool

After coming up with all the potential keywords that customers might use, it is time to validate them. In this step, you will use the powerful capabilities of any local keyword research tool to find which keywords match the ones on your list so that you can start using them.

3. Time for a competitor analysis

Think you are done with the local keyword research tool? Well, think again. One of the most important steps of keyword research in general, not only locally, is getting a glimpse of your competitors and seeing what they are doing and what keywords they are using. This will help you get a better understanding of the keywords used in this industry or market and find a way to be ahead of the competition.

Related: 14 Easy Ways to Rank Your Website Higher on Google

Best local keyword research tools

There are many local keyword research tools that you can find on the market. Therefore, let us suggest a few that you might like.

The first one is Ahrefs. Ahrefs is considered one of the first SEO tools on the market, which gives it an authoritative position among all tools. The local keyword research tool on Ahrefs is one of the best among thousands of tools. It allows you to analyze each keyword both globally and locally to get a complete picture of it.

In addition to being completely free, Google Keyword Planner is also a very trusted local keyword research tool that you can use. Google Keyword Planner will provide you with accurate insights about any keyword. Additionally, it has a filtering option where you can filter keywords by location to find trending keywords in your local area. I mean, it’s Google; what’d you expect?

In summary, local keyword research is crucial for optimizing SEO. By focusing on local keywords, businesses can achieve improved visibility and relevancy in their area. The benefits of this localized approach include a competitive edge, increased map visibility, better user experience, higher conversion rates and local authority building.


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