written by
Ilias Ism

10 Clever Keyword Research Examples for SEO

Search Engine Optimization 1 min read

Keyword research is the foundation of any successful SEO strategy.

By identifying the words and phrases your target audience is searching for, you can optimize your website's content to rank higher in search results and drive more relevant traffic.

Whether you're working on a blog, e-commerce store, local business site, or any other type of project, these examples will provide actionable insights you can apply to your own keyword research process.

Let’s walk through some specific examples of effective keyword research for different types of websites and content.

1. Blog Post Keyword Research

Let's say you run a food blog and want to write a new post about easy weeknight dinners. Some potential keywords to target could be:

  • "quick weeknight dinners"
  • "easy dinner recipes"
  • "30 minute meals"
  • "one pot dinners"

Using a SEO tool like Google Keyword Planner or Ahrefs, analyze the search volume and competition for each keyword.

Showing keyword data in Google with Keywords Everywhere & Ahrefs

"Easy dinner recipes" has a high monthly search volume of 60,000 with medium competition, making it a great focus keyword.

You can use the other related keywords as secondary keywords throughout the post.

2. Ecommerce Product Page Optimization

For an online store selling running shoes, keyword research is crucial for optimizing product pages. If you're selling a specific shoe like the Nike Pegasus 37, some relevant keywords might be:

  • "nike pegasus 37 review"
  • "nike pegasus 37 women's"
  • "nike pegasus 37 sizing"
  • "best price nike pegasus 37"
Keyword data for sub-terms in Google Autocomplete

You can use a tool like Keywords Everywhere to see the keyword volume in-depth like in the screenshot above. Just type in a search term into Google and see what shows up in the autocomplete.

Another way to find these is with a free tool like AnswerThePublic, it will use this autocomplete data and check the keyword volume for each term automatically, like this:

AnswerThePublic keyword data

In addition to using the exact product name, include keywords covering key customer questions like sizing info, reviews, gender options, and pricing.

Optimize your product titles, descriptions, meta tags, and image alt text to include these terms.

3. Local Business Keyword Targeting

Local SEO keyword research is essential for brick-and-mortar businesses looking to capture search traffic from nearby customers. For example, a dentist in New York City would want to rank for terms like:

  • "dentist in nyc"
  • "best dentist new york city"
  • "teeth whitening new york"
  • "dental implants NYC"
Local SEO keywords in SEMrush

Be sure to include location-based keywords as well as terms related to your specific services. Optimize your Google My Business listing, build local citations, and create localized content to rank for these geographic searches.

4. YouTube Video Keyword Optimization

If you create video content on YouTube, keyword research can help your videos show up in both YouTube and Google search results. For a video about making homemade pizza, target keywords like:

  • "homemade pizza recipe"
  • "how to make pizza at home"
  • "best homemade pizza dough"
  • "easy pizza recipe"
homemade pizza recipe in YouTube with Keywords Everywhere data

Include your focus keyword in the video title, description, tags, and transcript to fully optimize it for YouTube search.

Aim for the sweet spot of keywords with decent search volume but lower competition from other videos.

5. App Store Optimization Keywords

Keyword research is important for getting apps found in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store (ASO or App Store Optimization). Let's say you have a new meditation app. Your keyword list should include terms like:

  • "meditation app"
  • "mindfulness app"
  • "best meditation apps"
  • "guided meditations"
  • "daily meditation app"
meditation app in App Store
App Store for iOS

Include the most relevant keywords in your app name, subtitle, and description to improve discoverability. Monitor your app's rankings for different keywords and adjust your targeting over time.

6. Amazon Product Listing Keywords

Selling products on Amazon requires a targeted keyword strategy. For a natural dog food product, your keyword research may uncover terms like:

  • "organic dog food"
  • "grain free dog food"
  • "all natural dog food"
  • "healthy dog food brands"

You can do keyword research in Amazon using Ahrefs, just set the filter to “Amazon” instead of Google nad you will get the search volume (SV) for all the relevant terms.

In addition to your product's brand name, include relevant keyword phrases in your product titles, bullet points, descriptions and backend search terms. Analyze competitor listings to find untapped keyword opportunities.

7. Niche Blog Topic Research

Keyword research can spark new topic ideas for your blog. If you blog about personal finance, you might uncover topic opportunities like:

  • "how to create a budget"
  • "best credit cards for travel rewards"
  • "how to invest in stocks for beginners"
  • "ways to save money on groceries"

An easy way to find great ideas is to find competitors in Ahrefs and look the “Top Pages” report. Look at what competitors are ranking for and write down a bunch of ideas you can improve upon as well.

Dig into the related keywords for each topic to flesh out your blog post outline. Cover the most important subtopics and aim to be the most comprehensive resource on the subject.

8. B2B Marketing Keyword Targets

For B2B companies, keyword research often involves longer-tail, industry-specific terms. A marketing automation software company may want to target keywords like:

  • "what is marketing automation"
  • "marketing automation platforms"
  • "email marketing automation software"
  • "best automation tools for small business"
conversion funnel keyword research for StoryChief

Make a mindmap of your bottom-of-the-funnel keyword. Those are the best keywords to start with, as they lead to a higher conversion rate and a quicker impact in your SEO ROI.

Focus on keywords that show commercial intent and align with your product's value proposition. Optimize your homepage, product pages, blog content and ad copy to rank for these terms.

9. Question-Based Keyword Variations

Many searches are phrased as questions. Targeting these question-based keywords can help you show up in featured snippets and voice search results. For the query "how to train for a 5k", keyword variations might include:

  • "how long does it take to train for a 5k"
  • "5k training plan for beginners"
  • "what is a good 5k time for a beginner"
  • "how many miles should i run to train for a 5k"
Ahrefs Questions Keyword Research

In Ahrefs, you can filter on “Questions” in the Keyword Explorer, then you will find the questions people ask with the highest keyword volume for each.

Create blog posts or FAQ pages that directly answer these common questions, incorporating the question keywords verbatim. Use clear headings and formatting to make your content easy for search engines to parse.

10. Competitor Keyword Gap Analysis

Finally, analyzing the keywords your competitors rank for can uncover gaps and opportunities in your own strategy. Say you sell handmade jewelry and notice a competitor ranks for terms like:

  • "unique wedding jewelry"
  • "handmade bridesmaid jewelry sets"
  • "custom engraved couple bracelets"
  • "matching anniversary jewelry"

You can find your organic competitors, and use the keyword gap or content gap tool to find more ideas.

Ahrefs Organic Competitors

If you don't have content covering these angles, they could represent untapped keyword opportunities. Look for competitor keywords with high search volume where you currently don't have visibility and prioritize accordingly.

Keyword Research in Ahrefs

Here are some key ways to use Ahrefs for effective SEO and keyword research:

1. Analyze competitors' websites with Site Explorer

  • Enter a competitor's domain into Site Explorer to see an overview of their organic search traffic, backlink profile, top pages, and more
  • Check their top organic keywords to see what they rank for
  • Analyze their backlink profile to see referring domains and identify link building opportunities

2. Do in-depth keyword research with Keywords Explorer

  • Enter seed keywords to get keyword ideas and analyze search volumes, keyword difficulty, clicks, CPC, etc.
  • Use the Matching terms and Related terms reports to find more keyword variations
  • See keyword metrics like Clicks per Search, Return Rate, and Parent Topic to gauge a keyword's value
  • Use filters to find low-difficulty keywords with good traffic potential

3. Audit your website's SEO with Site Audit

  • Crawl your site to find technical SEO issues like broken links, duplicate content, missing tags, etc.
  • Use the Site Structure and Internal Links reports to optimize your site architecture
  • Monitor your site's SEO Health score over time

4. Track keyword rankings with Rank Tracker

  • Add your target keywords and monitor rankings across 170+ countries
  • See ranking progress over time with interactive graphs
  • Identify pages with ranking potential using the Rank Tracker Competitors report

5. Find content ideas with Content Explorer

  • Search for any word or phrase to find relevant content that's performed well
  • Use filters like Domain Rating, organic traffic, language, and publish date to narrow results
  • Analyze top performing content to inform your own content strategy

6. Monitor SEO changes with Alerts

  • Set up alerts for new & lost backlinks, web mentions, keyword rankings
  • Get automated reports delivered to your inbox on a daily, weekly or monthly basis

The key is to leverage Ahrefs' extensive data and flexible reports to gain competitive insights, find keyword opportunities, audit your site, and track SEO progress over time. By analyzing what works for top performing sites in your niche, you can optimize your own site's content and link building strategy for maximum organic search traffic.

Keyword Research in SEMrush

Here is a summary of how to effectively use Semrush for keyword research based on the examples provided:

1. Start with the Keyword Magic Tool.

Enter a seed keyword to generate a large list of related keyword ideas and analyze key metrics like search volume, keyword difficulty, intent, CPC, and more. This helps expand your keyword list and find long-tail opportunities.

2. Use the filters

Use the filters in Keyword Magic Tool to drill down and find specific types of keywords relevant to your content and goals. For example:

  • Filter for question keywords to find topics to address in FAQ pages or blog posts
  • Look for keywords with commercial intent (marked with "C") for bottom-of-funnel pages
  • Filter out branded keywords or irrelevant terms

3. Analyze the keyword clusters

Semrush automatically generates in the Keyword Magic Tool. The clusters group related keywords by topic. Identify high-volume, low-competition clusters to prioritize in your content plan.

4. Use the Keyword Overview tool

To quickly get in-depth data on up to 100 keywords at once, including SERP features, trend graphs, CPC data, and more. This is useful when you have a defined list of keywords to analyze.

5. Find competitors' keyword gaps

With the Keyword Gap tool. Enter your domain versus competitors to see keywords they rank for that you don't. This uncovers keyword opportunities to target.

6. Streamline your workflow

By sending keyword lists from Keyword Magic Tool to other Semrush tools:

  • Track rankings for target keywords in Position Tracking
  • Get optimized content briefs in SEO Content Template
  • Organize keyword lists in Keyword Manager

7. Beyond keyword research

Use Semrush's other tools to put your keywords into action:

  • Optimize new and existing content with the SEO Writing Assistant
  • Monitor keyword rankings with Position Tracking
  • Analyze competitor keywords and backlinks for inspiration

By leveraging Semrush's extensive keyword database and flexible research tools, you can generate tons of keyword ideas, analyze key metrics, prioritize the best opportunities, and integrate your keyword plan into your content workflow. The key is to use the filters, metrics, and related tools to continually find and target the most relevant, high-value keywords for your site.


From blogs to ecommerce to local businesses, keyword research is a critical piece of the SEO puzzle. By analyzing real examples of keyword targeting across different industries and types of content, you can apply these insights to create your own effective keyword strategy.

Remember, keyword research is an ongoing process. As you publish new content, track your rankings and traffic to see what's working. Continuously update and expand your keyword list based on new opportunities and changing search trends.

With a commitment to strategic, data-driven keyword research, you can improve your search visibility, reach your target customers, and drive meaningful results for your business. Happy optimizing!

Now is the time to shift towards a customer-first, content marketing mindset - before your competitors do. Want to learn more about content marketing?

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