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Can SEO Keywords be Phrases? 3 Tools for Finding the Best Keywords

The key to successfully ranking your content on Google is to optimize your site and SEO meta tags for the correct keywords. However, choosing the correct keywords and phrases can be a little confusing.

So, can SEO keywords be phrases? It's recommended that your keywords be phrases and not single words. Think about what someone will type into the search engine to find your content. It's not likely that they'll only type in one word.

As a rule of thumb, the fewer the words in your keyword phrase, the harder it will be to rank. For example, which of these examples do you think will rank better... "raising rabbits" or "how to raise rabbits while living in the city"?

There will be a lot more competition for the keyword "raising rabbits" than there is for a keyword that is specifically for people who want to raise rabbits in the city.

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Tools for Finding Keyword Phrases

Finding keywords is extremely important for your SEO efforts. You want to make sure that you're targeting the correct keywords that people are searching for.

Google Auto-Suggest

One of the best tools to use is Google itself! Using Google's auto-suggest feature, you can get a lot of great keyword phrase ideas. Simply start typing your topic into the search bar on Google and they will drop down auto-suggest ideas that you can use.

These auto-suggest keyword phrases are searches that Google already identifies as popular search phrases.

How to use Google Auto Suggest to find SEO Keyword Phrases

Answer the Public

Another great tool is where you can type in your topic and see various keyword phrases and questions based on your topic.

This is a great start to getting popular search phrases that you can use on your website. You'll get keyword phrases that are questions, prepositions, comparisons, alphabetical, and related keyword searches.

Keywords Everywhere

One of my other favorite tools to use is Keywords Everywhere, a Chrom and Firefox extension that will give you an approximate monthly search volume in addition to other long tail keywords that you might want to write for.

There is a free version of the extension that will give you limited results. You can also purchase an upgrade which unlocks all features. The cheapest plan is $10 for 100,000 keyword searches. I do a lot of searches, and this lasted me about 6 months. You can also disable the plugin while you are not doing keyword research so that you don't waste them on searches not related to your blog or website.

Here you can see that raising rabbits approximately 1300 monthly searches and it displays directly below the Google search bar:

Additionally, on the right-hand side of the search results page, you can see other keyword phrase ideas. You can also export the ideas to CSV for further analysis (button at the bottom):

In Conclusion: Using & Finding Keyword Phrases

The best way to maximize and optimize your SEO is to find the best and most relevant keywords. Using one or two word phrases will almost always be way to broad and the chances of ranking are slim.

Therefore, finding keyword phrases that are 4-5 or more word is a great way to rank quicker and easier for relevant searches. The tools mentioned in this article are great for finding these longer keyword phrases.

I'd love to hear about your keyword research strategy in the comments!


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