The Only Keyword Research Template You'll Need - Free (SpreadSheet)

The Only Keyword Research Template You'll Need - Free (SpreadSheet)

One way to rank higher on search engines is to conduct SEO keyword research.

[Actually, it's niche keyword research _We'll go there in a moment_]

If you're an absolute SEO beginner or even a content writer with previous experience, then this SEO keyword research template will save you tons of effort and time.

You can jump there directly👇, or stay with us and go through a detailed keyword research guide with all the free tools that you might need.

What Is Keyword Research?

To make a long story short, keyword research is the process of finding what your target audience is looking for (on a specific search engine such as Google or Bing), how many websites are providing them with what they need, and how hard it is to compete with them.

The ultimate goal of this practice is to rank higher on search engines, and although it is not the only factor that SEs use to rank websites, it is relatively important to your success. 

Before we go on, if this is the first time you read about keyword research, I highly recommend that you read our beginners guide the first blog, which defines SEO and its basics in a very simple manner.

Free SEO Keyword Research Template (Google Sheets)

Grab the all-in-one sheet that you will ever need for your website to rock!
Free Keyword Research Template

Grab Your Free Template

Before we start our guide, let's understand what each term on the sheet refers to, and how you're supposed to use it.

1. General Topic

SEO Keywords Sheet- Topic
Our first column is for the topic or the main keyword. 
Suppose you have an IT website and you are preparing a new SEO strategy. The first step is to organize the main topics your target audience wants to read about. I.E:
  • Web development
  • Software development
  • Business Intelligence
  • App Development
  • Laptops 
  • etc.

2. Keywords

SEO Keywords Sheet- Keywords
Keywords are sub-topics related to the main topics you've chosen above, and I'll be giving you a list of FREE tools here, and in the sheet, that will help you accomplish this research effectively.

3. Global Monthly Searches

Global Monthly Searches
A keyword's global monthly search volume is the average number of times it has been searched for in a given month. They give you an insight into how popular that term is.
Of course, if you're targeting a particular county, then you shall focus on the monthly searches in that country.

4. Keyword Difficulty

Keyword Difficulty

Difficulty (KD - competition) is a scale from 0 to 100, given to each keyword based on the number and authority of domains that are linking the first pages that appear on search engines.
Although SEO tools differ in the way they scale this difficulty, we have chosen the one that most of them follow:
  1. From 0 to 10: EASY
  2. From 11 to 30: MEDIUM
  3. From 31 to 70: HARD
  4. From 71 to 100: SUPER HARD
Of course, this scale is relative to your website's position: so if you have some linking going on, with good SEO practices, you might consider mediums easy, hard to be medium, and super hard to be just hard.

5. CPC


Cost per click (CPC) is the average amount that advertisers are bidding on a keyword on Google Ads.
It is really important to have this metric studied in case you ever run a campaign. 

6. Keyword Relevance

keyword relevance

Unlike CPC and KD this metric is not given by a tool on the internet, but by You. You have to measure how close the keyword is to your niche, which takes us to the:

Niche Keywords

Niche keywords are directly related to your niche, they're long-tail keywords that you don't want to miss, because ranking on them has never been easier.
However, this type of keyword is usually not accessible using free tools, as most of these tools won't show you all results until you subscribe. 

So how to determine the relevance?
Lets me give you an example: 
You have a web development blog, where you post your projects, explain certain concepts, and review technologies, ...
The word "Symfony" is specifically related to web development, so it's classified as high relevance.
The word "3D Development" might not be 100% related to your niche, but to an extent, it is close, so you can classify it as medium relevance.
However, the word "accounting" is way too far from your niche, so you might classify it as low relevance.

Rule of thumb: Avoid, as much as possible, targeting low-relevance keywords!!

Free Keyword Research Tools

Before we jump into a fast guide for our keyword research template, I'd like to present you with the tools that I personally find helpful, and that I've used working with an eCommerce agency for their website. Here we go:
  • SEMRush 
  • Key Search
  • Wordstram: if you're targeting Bing users, then this is the one Bing keyword research tool you'll ever need!
  • Ahrefs Free Difficulty Checker
  • Small SEO Tools Keyword Difficulty Checker
  • H-Supertools for bulk keywords (MY FAVOURITE)
and one more unmissable tool that I personally use daily, is my Notion blogging template which has everything you might need, from brainstorming to editing and publishing a blog.

How to Use This Template?

Let's go step by step, and fill out our keyword research template.
First, let's pick the Marketing niche as our niche (see what I'm doing?). Let's think of general topics related to marketing and fill out the sheet.
Our main topics are:
  • Marketing
  • Digital Marketing
  • Advertising
  • Branding
Of course, the list goes on, but we're just taking a few examples.
Once that's done, we're starting our research.
The first tool you might want to use is H-Supertools:

Once you find most of the keywords, you're going to check each one's difficulty using one of the tools above. Here is a demonstration using a few tools:

  • Ahrefs Difficulty Checker

Ahrefs Difficulty checker

Here we checked the difficulty of the word "Marketing Funnel" and it's 71/100 (71%)  which means this keyword is relatively hard to rank for.

Ahrefs Difficulty checker

  • Small SEO Tools Keyword Difficulty Checker

Small SEO Tools Keyword Difficulty Checker

Small SEO Tools Keyword Difficulty Checker

Long-tail Keywords

Throughout your keyword research process, you'll stumble upon some of these, and you should not miss them!
Long-tail keywords are one the most effective SEO targets, and if you find the right ones, you're all set!
They're usually made of 3 to 5 words, 
Here's how you specifically look for them using SEMRush:

Long-tail Keywords SEMRush
Long-tail Keywords SEMRush

Long-tail Keywords SEMRush

Long-tail Keywords SEMRush

What Keywords Should You Focus On?

Now, once you've filled your sheet, it's time to pick the keywords you're going to prioritize over others.
Rule of thumb: the best keywords have:
  • high search volume
  • low difficulty (less than 50 on average)
  • high relevance
although you might not find keywords that follow these 3 requirements, you should try to, at least, have two. 
If you're starting out, with a fresh new website, then the metric you should focus on the most is KD: choosing the easiest keywords will help you make some progress and get noticed.

After reading this short guide, were you able to use our keyword research template and apply it to your blog? 
Do you have any remarks or questions? Feel free to leave a comment and let me know your thoughts.

Yasmine Jedidi

If I'm not writing, I'm drinking tea! Apart from being an introverted tea lover, I am also an SEO content writer✍️, a freelancer, and a BBA student. It is my humble intention to use this blog to share my knowledge and experience in the field of marketing and SEO. Ever since I started The Marketing Recipe, it has turned into my secret addiction. Without skipping a beat, I continually think of ways to enhance your knowledge and benefit you. Your feedback on our content is greatly appreciated, so don't be shy, drop a comment and I'll make sure to answer you.

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