Next-Gen Keyword Research & Strategy: Navigating Google’s Latest Ranking Signals

Recently updated: June 1st, 2024


To make your website different from the others in the market, it is important to conduct thorough, high-quality keyword research. Finding the right keywords that are reliable, relatable, and effective to your target audience will always help you with the proper execution of the strategies.


It will boost search engine rankings of your pages and generate organic traffic. There are multiple factors responsible for the ranking of websites on the Google search engine.


“For people to discover your website, you need to build pathways and big, flashing signs that lead them there. In digital marketing terms, this means you need links, links, and more links.”

Luisito Batongbakal


In this guide, we will discuss the importance of keyword research, how to conduct keyword research, and how to choose the right keywords for your website.


What is Keyword Research?

Keyword research is the process of finding, checking, and analyzing the right keywords for your website so that it can rank higher in search engine result pages. Use that data for content creation, for search engine optimization, and general marketing.


Keywords are crucial words or phrases that people use to search for information about different products and services in search engines. It also helps you to target the most effective keywords in your content strategy.


For example, if you want to buy a jacket for a year-old kid, you might type the keyword “Jackets for one year child” into Google Search.


If you conduct proper keyword research, then it will help you: in many ways:

  • Better understand your target audience.
  • Enhance your content strategy according to the needs of your audience.
  • Drive relevant leads and organic traffic to your website.


If you optimize your website without keyword research, you might target keywords that no one uses.

The best way to optimize your website is to use keyword research tools to find the best keywords that your target audience uses and get information about their search volume, competitiveness, and keyword difficulty level.

Why Is Keyword Research Important?

Keyword research plays a very important role in optimizing your website. It helps you find which keywords are best to target and provides valuable insight into the queries that your audience is searching on Google.


Through these insights, you can create better content marketing strategies.


Everyone uses keywords to find solutions whenever they are conducting research online. So if your content is ranked successfully in search engines, you stand to gain more traffic.


In the inbound methodology, we don’t create content around what we want to tell people; we create content around what users want to search.


Conducting keyword research provides us with many benefits, that are:

Provide insights into marketing trends

Conducting proper keyword research can give you insights into current marketing trends, and help you upgrade your content on relevant topics.

Increase traffic growth

When you identify the right keywords for your content, you will rank high in search engine results.

Customer acquisition

If your business has content that your target audience is looking for, you can meet their needs and provide them with a call to action that will lead them to the buyer.

Elements of Keyword Research

The main elements need to be kept in mind while anyone is conducting keyword research:


Search engines rank content according to relevancy. Your content will only rank high for a keyword if it meets the searchers’ needs. In addition, your content must be the best resource out there for the user’s query.

Search volume

Volume is measured as MSV (monthly search volume), which means the number of times the keyword is searched per month across all audiences.


Using keyword research websites and tools, you can get up the worldwide MSV of a keyword or even narrow it down to a specific city or place. Higher MSV means more potential traffic for your website and it also implies heavy competition.

Understanding the Evolution of Keyword Research

There are some crucial keyword research fundamentals that you should know.

User\Search intent

Search intent also called user intent, is the reason why a user types a query into a search engine.


It shows you what the user is trying to know with their search, whether they are finding an answer, or facts, looking for a website, purchasing a product, or exploring different topics to get information.

For example: if people search for “best leather jackets” on Google. It means they want to do their research before making any purchase for the best product.


That means the keyword has commercial intent and you can use this information to improve your content to target this keyword better.

Natural language processing (NLP) and long-tail keywords

Natural language processing is a part of artificial intelligence that studies the interaction of computers and humans via natural language. It enables computers to expand, interpret, and produce human speech.


Long-tail keywords are longer and more specific keyword phrases that users are more likely to use when they are closer to a point of purchase or when they’re using voice search. Utilize long-tail keywords to capture specific search intents and enhance content relevance.

Entity-based SEO and structured data

Entity-based SEO is the new trend that SEO considers nowadays, search engines try to generate accurate search engine results by connecting user intent, context, and the relationship between keywords.


It is important to understand the significance of entities and how a search engine emphasizes entity-based SEO.

Implement structured data markup to enhance content visibility and relevance in search engine results.

Implementing next-gen keyword research strategies

  • Use and explore advanced keyword research tools that offer valuable insights and competitor analysis.
  • Understand user intent behind search queries and align content accordingly.
  • Create comprehensive and high-quality content through different optimization technique that helps in fulfilling user intents.
  • Optimize the website for mobile interface and make the responsive design to ensure seamless user experiences across devices.
  • Incorporate artificial intelligence-driven insights into keyword strategies for detailed analysis.
  • Adapt strategies based on search engine algorithms, user behavior shifts, and trends.

How to Do Keyword Research

As for now, you understand the importance of keyword research and get familiar with its most important terms and concepts.

The next step is to identify how one can do keyword research in the right way to target and attract the audience.

Make a list of broad keywords that are relevant to your topic

The first step you will take in keyword research is creating a spreadsheet of different general categories for the keywords you want to rank in search engines.


These keywords might relate to product categories or anything you thought your target audience would be interested in.

Try to keep this list short and simple, with nearly 8 to 12 topics at most. It can be helpful to create full-fledged content with proper structure.


For example: Let’s take one general category for a website that sells organic food products that include:

  • Organic diet
  • Natural Health
  • Non-toxic ingredients
  • Healthy cooking

Expand each topic with a list of phrases your customers use

With the list of general categories ready, it’s time to identify the keywords and phrases your target customer might type into the search bar to search for information, products, or services.


You can collect data from website analytics software like Google Analytics or many more present in the market. Go through your organic search traffic list to identify keywords consumers already use to land on your website.


This is not your final list of keywords but this list will help you to brainstorm and make your research more targeted and impactful.


From the organic food product website example above, under the category “Organic Diet” you might list keywords:

  • Organic food
  • Nutrition
  • Low carb diet
  • Vegan diets
  • Organic tea

You can create a list under each general category and add it to your spreadsheet.

Find related search terms

There are many creative ways to add keywords to your list:


Search a keyword on Google and scroll down the page; you will see a list of related search phrases in automated suggestions.

Many websites will help you to prepare a chart of phrases that people are searching for related to your topic.


In Google Keyword Planner or one of the other paid tools, just type your desired keyword in the search section and you can see the results.


Google Keyword Planner


Analyze the strength of your keywords

To check the strength of your keyword, you can use different tools like Keyword Planner, paid research tools, and SEO tools. Ahrefs, Semrush, and Wordtracker are some most popular tools.


Things to keep in mind when you analyze your keywords for your content:

  • Make sure your keyword phrase matches exactly with the search term people use while searching for any information.
  • Look for the highest search volume available for keywords and make your choice according to that.
  • The paid tools differentiate between competition for paid ads versus for organic search. So, search for the higher search volume with lower organic search competition and keep checking related terms you may have missed.

Consider how you rank in your industry

  • If you want to rank on the first page in search engine results and beat your competition, then you need to alter your strategies. Identify less competitive long-tail keywords to get the desired results.
  • Keep checking search engine result pages for your most desired search terms. If it’s up with renowned brand names with more influence and market share than your brand, go back and refine your list with long-tail keywords.
  • If your competitors fail to create quality content, then you can outdo their content in length, quality, and layout and maybe outrank them even if they spend more money on marketing their brand.

Identify the right search intent

Whenever a user enters a search query into search engines, they want some information and every question needs a relevant answer.


You have to make sure that you understand your customers’ intent by typing your keywords into the search engine. Along with this, you also keep track of what pages already rank for that phrase and what they offer.


Suppose a buyer is searching for information, and instead of providing relevant information, you try to sell them a product. In such a case, you may get a click, but they’ll bounce quickly, which will affect your ranking.


Make a note in your spreadsheet about the buyer intent for each keyword phrase before creating content.

How to Improve Keyword Ranking on Google

It is important to know your position in search engine result pages and improve it from time to time. There are many ways in which you can improve your keyword ranking on Google.

Choose relevant keywords

Every marketer has this aim to rank high on search engines and to accomplish that task, you have to follow some steps properly.


However, selecting the right keywords and targeting the right audience is an important part that will improve your website ranking. Along with that, creating well-optimized content can also give a boost to your website.


Points to keep in mind while selecting keywords for the website:

  • Make a list of all relevant keywords that are relevant to your subject.
  • Identify the ranking keywords that your competitors are using.
  • Use online tools such as Google Keyword Planner to choose keywords with less competition and more search volume.
  • Do brainstorming and identify latent semantic indexing (LSI) keywords on Google.
  • Stay up-to-date on the latest updates regarding your competitor’s brand.

Do search engine result page analysis

To stand out from your competitors in the market, you must keep tracking your and other’s performance on search engine result pages. To achieve this, you need to conduct a thorough SERP analysis. This can give you valuable insights into ranking higher on Google.


Start analysis by entering the keyword into Google and then analyze the top-ranking pages. You need to focus on some points that are:

  • Titles and descriptions
  • Assess format, structure, amount of text, and images of content
  • Keyword usage and related terms
  • Domain
  • Page speed, mobile-friendliness
  • Layout
  • Backlink profile

Identify search intent and match your content to it

Keeping a good understanding of what users are looking for when they type specific queries and changing your content to match that intent is important for users. It will provide you with satisfaction and search engine visibility.


Some points that help you effectively in matching your content with search intent:

  • Examine the keyword you’re targeting like if it is informational, transactional, navigational, or commercial.
  • Look at the top-ranking pages in Google for your keyword like they are blog posts, product pages, or articles.
  • Create your content to fulfill the user’s needs based on intent.
  • By matching your content to search intent.

Create high-quality content

When you produce quality content, it will automatically accomplish your marketing goals. Marketing goals include increasing brand awareness, improving click-through rates, gaining leads, and gaining maximum shares of a website.


About 90% of B2B marketers say they use content marketing in their overall strategy.


Below we have listed down some of the crucial steps that you can consider while creating high-quality content:

  • Perform research on your chosen keywords.
  • Create content that completes users’ requirements.
  • Make your content readable to your audience.
  • Ensure that the content flow is organized.
  • Include resources from authoritative sites in your post to increase the credibility of the content.

Optimize on-page SEO

On-page SEO is the practice of optimizing web page elements that include:

  • Title tag
  • Meta description
  • Header tags

Wrap Up

Next-gen keyword research requires a comprehensive approach that includes user intent, context, and technological advancements.


By using advanced strategies, including intent-driven content, mobile optimization, and AI-generating points, online businesses can use Google’s ranking signals effectively.


Conducting keyword research before creating a website can help you identify trends so that you can build your content around that only.


Always remember that keyword research is only an essential part of your SEO strategy. If you want to stand out from your competition in the market, you need to ensure that every blog post and article is more valuable and readable.


You also have to pay attention to the layout and on-page SEO and make your website loading speed fast and mobile-friendly.


Mridula Singh

Mridula is a seasoned content writer whose passion for words is matched only by her talent for creating compelling narratives. With a proven track record of delivering impactful content across diverse platforms, she has firmly established herself as an expert in her field. She excels in crafting web content that not only informs but also inspires. Her digital content strategies are tailored to optimize online presence, engagement, and conversion rates. She has a portfolio that includes articles, blog posts, e-books, and more, all characterized by her distinctive style and commitment to excellence.