You likely have a few keywords in mind that you would like to rank for. These will be things like your products, services, or other topics your website addresses, and they are great seed keywords for your research, so start there! You can enter those keywords into a keyword research tool to discover average monthly search volume and similar keywords. We’ll get into search volume in greater depth in the next section, but during the discovery phase, it can help you determine which variations of your keywords are most popular amongst searchers.
Given you have a good idea of where to start and are fairly confident you are speaking the same language as your client, jump start research by generating related keyphrases and long tail variants with the ever so easy to use Google Autocomplete. This tool makes predictions based on what you are typing that are a reflection of Google search activity.
Ever given thought to what you can do to increase your site’s search engine visibility? If yes, a website audit is sure to go a long way towards achieving your goals. As a business, it’s critical to run website audits on a regular basis especially if you want to stay on the good side of Google — you wouldn’t want to get penalized for things you can handle, right? 

Keyword research is a constant process. Trends change. Seasons change. Popular terms and catch-phrases change. SEO and marketing agencies are a great resource for ensuring that keyword research is done on a regular basis. You should refresh your research at least quarterly, ideally monthly, to stay ahead of your competitors. Partnering with a reputable SEO agency is a great way to ensure you’re always ahead of your competition.
Yes solid keyword data dramatically changes the game as far as rankings go. I have seen many tools that provide Cost per click stats and meaningless charts that confuse most users. the data Jaaxy provides helps drive “organic” traffic to your site on a consistent basis which will out perform PPC sites every time. I like how you say thinking like the end user, as I feel that way when I search. I dive into what people are looking for and it really helps drive content idea’s. I have seen great results from that.
So after seeing the keyword “blogging” is hard to rank for, what should you do? Well, this is where I use another free tool to even more quickly generate long tail variations. KWFinder does this as well, but not as quick. So I launch a tool called Ubersuggest . It is 100% free and no subscriptions required unlike keywordtool.io. So I input the keyword “blogging” into it and I search for a better long tail variation. I see one that catches my eye, “blogging away debt.”
If you have not setup a Search Console account - you may check if your site is penalized by searching for the title of any page or post in quotes in Google and checking if the appropriate page/post shows up as the fist result. If not - then you need to start checking the severity of the penalty. This can be done by entering your domain name directly in the search and seeing what happens, or just searching for your domain brand name without the TLD or the TLD after a space separator.
1) Ahrefs to quickly see “the big picture” when it comes to any keyword I'm researching. I can instantly see the top holders in the SERPs. I then immediately take the top holders list and go check out their sites. I need to make sure I can beat them content-wise, otherwise I will search for another keyword to try and rank for, or perhaps go down the long-tail route. The Ahrefs tool and data quality get better and better every year. It's one of my favorite tools.
Jaaxy keyword research tool is a web-based tool which requires a membership to use. Providing High-quality SEO keyword research information to the user to allow them to produce content on their site that will rank and get actionable traffic. Jaaxy pulls information from Google, Bing, and Yahoo, to show the most relevant information regarding keywords. Not just pay per click data, but the right data that shows you what you need in order to properly put together a post or a page and get it on page 1

I recently decided to go with ahrefs after using spyfu for a couple years and trialing secockpit. I was a moz client for awhile too about a year ago. I found spyfu data to be sketchy (or just plain wrong) fairly often, and moz, I don’t know, just didn’t seem like they were really into supporting what I wanted to know. secockpit was achingly slow for a trickle of data. ahrefs isn’t nearly so graph-y as spyfu, but they are so blazing fast and the data is so deep. I enjoy it a great deal, even if it is spendy.
QSR (Quoted Search Results) – This is your competition. This is the number of websites using the same exact keyword you searched for.  If you aim under 400, you have a good chance of getting ranked (300 is ideal). I try and keep mine below 150 so I have a much better chance of getting results much quicker  The opportunities are truly endless for keywords and having this information is extremely helpful
However, this does not mean you cannot topple them. It just takes more of an effort in terms of content as your page has to build the trust. That is why you will see the "Google dance" happening for fresh content from a site that is not yet trusted or is not very authoritative. Google gives your page a chance and measures user click-throughs when it pushes you to certain spots in the SERPs and then measures user engagement levels when the traffic hit your site through those positions in the SERPs.
We do a weekly checkup of our traffic count and once we saw the sudden drop, we knew something was wrong. The problem was, we didn’t do anything. I just published a new post and it suddenly became that way. I won’t go into how we investigated and fixed the cause of the drop, but this just goes to show how important it is to do a regular check of your traffic in Google Analytics. If we didn’t do the regular checks, then our traffic count might have just stayed that way until it becomes a crisis.
An SSL certifcate is an absolute must. Even if you are not giving visitors a login, for them to access certain areas of your site - getting an SSL is essential now and does help in boosting your trust and help in ranking higher. For ecommerce sites and other sites that provide login areas - its an absolute must, or users of chrome will see a "red screen" while they access your site.
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