Top 7 Free Keyword Research Tools for Small Business Owners

Posted by Nic Bivens on February 20, 2024

No budget to buy a keyword research tool? No problem!

Here are the best FREE tools to use to get insights into what your audience might be looking for online 👀

  2. Google "People Also Ask" Section
  4. Google Autocomplete
  5. Google Search Console
  6. Reddit / Quora
  7. Google Trends /

#1 -

Overall, keyword research is OVERRATED.

You don't need to know how competitive keywords are or how much they are search a month (also called keyword volume).

What you need to know is how to help your ideal client/customer.

That's where Answer The Public comes in. This is a tool that shows you queries that someone might have about your business/industry/niche/vertical.

#2 - Google "People Also Ask" Section

Google "People Also Ask" Section

Here's a Google hack for you.

Piggy-backing off the idea that long-tail keywords that answers questions are a great place to start with keyword generation, try this.

The "People Also Ask" section of Google search is a valuable feature that provides users with common questions related to their original query. As an SEO specialist, this section can be an incredibly useful tool for performing keyword research on a given subject.

Simply click one of carets to bring down the answer to a given question. Then, keeping doing that. Soon you will have over a dozen questions that you can answer on your website or blog.

Google "People Also Ask" Section

By analyzing the questions and topics that appear in the "People Also Ask" section, we can gain valuable insights into the types of queries users have related to the keyword we are targeting for SEO optimization. This allows us to understand the nuances of user intent and tailor our content to address these specific questions and topics.

This can all lead to increased organic traffic and better ranking for our targeted keywords.

#3 - is another SEO tool for conducting topic cluster research...similar to AnswerThePublic. However, they'll give you 3 queries per day, which should be enough for a small business to effectively map out topics and construct an SEO content strategy around the results.

With AlsoAsked, you can visualize how people ask questions on a given topic and see how you can directly addresses the needs and questions of your potential customers.

If you decide to pay, one of the key advantages of is its potential for API access, making it a powerful tool for conducting massive SERP analysis across different niches and regions. This API access opens up the possibility for advanced data extraction and analysis...but that's more for the experts.

As a free tool, is accessible to businesses of all sizes when conducting their keyword research and is definitely worth a look.

#4 - Google Autocomplete

Google Autocomplete Section

Another Google hack from yours truly.

Google Autocomplete is a feature provided by Google's search engine that offers suggested search terms as you type in the search bar. You can use these to get even more long-tail keywords based on your existing ones.

By simply typing in a relevant subject or topic, you can observe the suggested search terms that appear, providing insight into popular search queries and long-tail keywords.

Unfortunately, it's a manual processing of transferring these autofill results into your Google spreadsheet, but it'll be worth it when you're driving more organic traffic and improving the visibility to your website.

#5 - Google Search Console

While this one won't give you many new keyword ideas, Google Search Console is still a powerful tool for SEO specialists nonetheless.

It helps to identify Opportunity Keywords and optimize existing blog posts for Google Search. By analyzing the performance of your website in Google's search results, you can see the specific keywords that are already bringing the most traffic to your site.

To start, log into Google Search Console and navigate to the Performance report. This will show you the pages on your site with the most clicks from Google and the specific keywords that brought users to those pages.

(Look for keywords with high impressions but low click-through rates, as these may represent opportunities to optimize your content and attract more traffic)

To gain even more in-depth keyword data, consider combining Google Search Console with Google Analytics. By integrating these two tools, you can get a comprehensive view of how users are finding your website and which keywords are driving the most traffic.

Once you have identified Opportunity Keywords, use these insights to optimize your blog content. By incorporating these keywords strategically into your posts, you can increase your chances of ranking higher in organic search queries and attracting more organic traffic to your site.

#6 - Reddit / Quora

Two valuable platforms for gaining insight into what your target audience is searching for and discussing are Reddit and Quora.

Reddit is a popular discussion platform where users engage in conversations and share information about a wide range of topics. By exploring subreddits relevant to your niche or vertical, you can identify common user queries and topics that can be used as keywords for your research.

Quora, on the other hand, is a question-and-answer platform where users ask and answer questions on various subjects. It will be harder to find relevant questions asked on Quora, but if you stumble upon them, you'll gain valuable insight into the interests and concerns of your target audience.

Utilizing these platforms will not only provide you with valuable keyword ideas, but also help you understand the language and terms used by your target customers. This will enable you to create content that resonates with them and improves your overall SEO strategy.

#7 - Google Trends /

Exploding Topics for Keyword Research

This is for keyword research as it relates to trends.

Yes, Google Trends is a great way to see if the interest in your vertical is waning or rising. But you can use a tool called Exploding Topics to further boost your keyword research.

By using Exploding Topics in conjunction with Google Trends, you can stay ahead of the curve and capitalize on rising topics and trending keywords that are gaining popularity at the moment.

Simply input your subject or industry into the platform and it will provide you with data on rising topics and keywords that are gaining traction. You can then compare this data with Google Trends to make informed decisions about keyword selection for your content and business strategy.

This tool allows you to identify emerging search trends and capitalize on them before they become mainstream. By monitoring these trends, you can adjust your content and business strategy accordingly, ensuring that you are always one step ahead of your competition.

Paid Keyword Research Tools

And if your budget changes, you can upgrade to a tool that rivals the best of the best with a paid keyword tool.

After using free ones for years, I do have to admit...the paid ones are way better!

However, it might not be worth it for your current budget right now, and I get that. I hate paying for services unless they are absolutely worth it.

That being said, SEMrush and Ahrefs probably are! I'll have a more detailed write-up of both in the future! Keep an eye out 👁️

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