Seed keywords are the unsung heroes of SEO, holding the power to make or break your website’s visibility, yet they remain a mystery to many budding bloggers and website owners.
Imagine a new blogger, enthusiastic but navigating the vast digital landscape without a map. Unaware of seed keywords, their blog struggles to reach its desired destination. This lack of direction in keyword strategy leads to missed opportunities in search engine rankings, lower traffic, and diminished visibility. As a result, their valuable insights and unique perspectives remain hidden treasures in the blogosphere, unseen by it’s target audience – or anyone.
We’ll cover seed keywords, explain what they are, how to identify them and when to use them when blogging.
Let’s dive in to the topic of seed keywords!
Table of Contents for Seed Keywords
What are Seed Keywords?
Seed keywords are the initial keywords you research when thinking about a topic. These are the words you think you want to write about.
These keywords “seed” your keyword research strategy. Based on the results you find from a keyword research report you can find keywords phrases that you can target based on difficulty, monthly volume and other relevant criteria.
Think of seed keywords as:
- Basic starting point: They are where you keyword research journey starts. They are usually short, only one or two words long, for instance “keto diet”, “baking recipes”, “knitting”
- Foundational: From seed keywords you expand into longer and more specific keywords which have more context and are usually easier to write for.
- Understanding your Niche: Starting with seed keywords will help you understand what your target audience consider important topics, issues and questions. This will then help you create relevant content for your audience.
- Guiding your content strategy: Seed keywords are essential for helping you guide your content strategy. They help ensure you are producing relevant content for your audience which is crucial for your success.
The Importance of Seed Keywords in SEO Strategy
When building a keyword list you have to start somewhere – this is what seed keywords are, your starting point. It’s these seed keywords that you input into a keyword research tool. They act as a springboard to more useful and relevant keywords you can target.
Unlocking the door of a seed keyword could open up a goldmine of low competition keywords just waiting to be targeted by you.
Think of them as a compass that points you in the right direction of travel. Once you know the seed keywords for your blog or website you can keep generating content that is relevant and useful for your audience.
Seed keywords indicate topic clusters you should target. For instance, for the “keto diet” seed keywords you will find many related keywords around meals such as snacks, dinner and dessert.
Another topic would be around plans, schedules and charts for keto diet – you can probably write a series of blog posts on how to plan and schedule your keto diet.
Look at your competitors websites, ideally with a keyword research tool, to identify what seed keywords they use. Perhaps there are some important ones you have overlooked? Don’t seed your ground to the opposition by neglecting important seed keywords in your content.
How to Identify Your Seed Keywords
Start by brainstorming ideas that are relevant to your blog, your niche and your target audience. What topics are your readers interested in? What is the news, fashion or trends in your niche?
Use Google autosuggest to help your brainstorm ideas. For example, let’s use the “keto diet” seed keyword again:
So we write about meal planning, recipes, food list, the benefits of keto diet and what food items are allowed or not allowed. That’s not bad from just typing keto diet into the Google search bar!
Use Google Trends to explore a seed keyword over time. See what regions, countries it’s popular in. Google Trends also shows related topics and related queries which can helpful in generating new blog post ideas.
Ask ChatGPT or other generative AI tool for related keywords. Unlike Google, which will give you suggestions that are currently being searched for, you may get results that have low – or no search volume – so I suggest checking with a keyword research tool first before deciding to write blog posts posted on AI suggestions.
Ask Reddit or other online forum or discussion boards. For most niches you will find dedicated online forums where people are asking and answering questions. These boards can be useful to you by suggesting all manner of questions, issues and related topics you hadn’t thought of.
Reddit top post this year on the ketodiet subreddit:
And, of course, the best way to find and research seed keywords is with a dedicated keyword research tool. There are plenty of these tools on the market, the premium tools can be expensive though, typically over $100+ per month. For the new website owner or blogger just starting out I suggest a mid-tier tool like SE Ranking. I use this tool myself and find it useful for researching keywords – as well as many other tasks such as SEO audits, competition research and more.
Try out SE Ranking below. You can generate a small number of free keyword research reports every day. Just type in a seed keywords such as “keto diet” or even better, a possible seed keyword for your blog or website and see what the report looks like.
Here is a keyword research report using the keto diet seed keywords:
This gives you much more information about keywords than you can get from Google or other free tools. Notice you get a keyword difficulty score, monthly search volume and historical search traffic.
Other criteria are available and can be used to filter the list down. I suggest, for beginners, to filter the keyword difficulty so only easy to rank for keywords are shown.
Beyond Basic Search Terms: The Power of Long-Tail Keywords
Long tail keywords are keywords that are longer than typical seed keywords. They are usually 3+ words in length and huge numbers of these keywords exist.
For beginners, or for sites that don’t have much traffic, I suggest targeting long tail keywords for most of your blog posts. This is because they are easier to rank for and give you a realistic chance of getting onto the first page of Google which is really important if you want to receive organic search traffic. No-one visits the second page of Google.
Long tail keywords are also easier to write for because you have more context. For example, let’s look at this list of keywords:
- keto diet
- keto diet plan
- keto diet plan for weight loss
Which keyword would be easier to rank for? I would say the last one because it has the most context. You would write about a keto diet plan specifically aimed at people that want to lose weight. The other keywords would be harder to write about and you would likely be longer to cover many areas since you lack specific context.
The searcher intent is clearer. What is the underlying motivation the searcher has? Is it to be introduced into a topic they know nothing about? Research a topic they know in more detail? Are they thinking of buying a product or service? That’s why knowing the searcher intent is important. Longer tail keywords have more context and therefore help you understand what the searcher wants to achieve.
Final Thoughts on Seed Keywords
Thanks for reading this article, I hope you found it informative and useful. Here is a quick recap:
- Seed keywords are the starting point for keyword discovery
- They help you understand the niche you are writing for
- Use seed keywords to guide your content strategy
- Keyword research tools will help you narrow down your targetable keywords
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