Keyword research is the process of finding popular search terms and subsequently using them to perform search engine optimization (SEO) for a website. Internet Marketers and SEO professionals use keyword research as a part of their inbound marketing strategy. Once a niche keyword is found, it is being expanded upon to find similar keywords. The process is usually aided by keyword suggestion tools, which offer thesaurus and alternate keyword suggestion functionality. Most of the time the various search engines provide their own keyword suggestion tools as well which also include the number of searches made for each of those keywords. This information is then used in order to select the correct keyword depending on the SEO goals of the website.
Importance of Research
The objective of keyword research is to generate, with good precision and recall, large number of terms that are highly relevant yet non obvious to the given input keyword. Process of keyword research involves brainstorming and the use of keyword research tools. In order to achieve best results with SEO, it is important to pick the most relevant keywords. It is a good practice to pick keywords that have little competition and high amount of searches. Little competition will make it easier to achieve higher rank in search engines and high amount of searches will guarantee that the keyword attracts web traffic. The downside of this practice is that usually keywords that have very little competition get less searches while those who get millions of searches per month are very difficult to rank for. There are three important concepts to consider when conducting a keyword research. Good keywords are related to the theme of the website. search engine algorithm has the right to ban or exclude from search results websites whose content is not relevant to the keyword. Good Keyword that are highly competitive are less likely to rank in the top. Keywords that have no monthly searches will not generate any traffic therefore rendered useless for SEO.
A very popular and highly competitive keyword on Google search engine is "making money". It has 2 890 000 000 search results, meaning that millions of websites are competing for that keyword. Keyword research starts with finding all possible word combinations that are relevant to the "making money" keyword. For example a keyword "acquiring money" has significantly less search results, only 47 900 000, but it has the same meaning as "making money". Another way is to be more specific about a keyword by adding additional filters. Keyword "making money online from home in Canada" is less competitive on a global scale and therefore easier to rank for. Multiple tools are available (both free and commercial) to find keywords and analyze them.
Keyword Research Tools
Google AdWords Keyword planner
- Get traffic estimates for the keyword.
- Generate new keywords by combining different keyword lists.
- Create new keyword variations based on initial keyword.
Wordtracker is a commercial product with a 7-day-trial period offering some advanced options: 
- Information on the popularity of the given keyword.
- Lists of popular searches based on the given keyword.
- Lists of keywords that are used by competitors.
- Suggestions on how to expand current keyword.
- Generates new keywords from the list of existing once.
- Ability to work with high amounts of data (2,000+ keywords)
- Google traffic estimator,[unreliable source?] Webmaster Tools; Google Suggest and Google Trends
- MSN Keyword Forecast
- "Keyword Suggestion Tool". Retrieved 30 March 2014.
- "Keyword suggestion tool - Google suggest scraper - Übersuggest". Retrieved 30 March 2014.
- Joshi, A; Motwani, R (2006). "Keyword Generation for Search Engine Advertising". Data Mining Workshops: 493. doi:10.1109/ICDMW.2006.104. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
- Jerkovic, John (2009). SEO Warrior. O'Reilly Media. pp. 213–236. ISBN 978-0596157074.
- Ross, A. Malaga (2008). "Worst Practices in Search Engine Optimization". Commun.ACM 51. doi:10.1145/1409360.1409388. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
- McGaffin, Ken (2012). Keyword Research Guide. WordTracker. p. 9.
- Patricia, Redsicker. "Findable Content Marketing: 3 Google Keyword Tool Tips". Retrieved 13 February 2013.