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Why Your Keyword Research Isn't Working 1
Why Your Keyword Research Isn't Working

Why Your Keyword Research Isn’t Working

You probably know that keyword research is essential, right? It’s a necessary part of content creation. 

You’ve been told to do it, you’ve read about how to do it, and now you’re doing it! But…no matter what you do, your rankings or traffic won’t budge. And, what’s worse, they might even go down instead of up! This is a clear indication that your keyword research isn’t working. 

Find out why your keyword research isn’t working and how you can make them work in this article.  

Why Is My Keyword Research Not Working? 

The majority of business owners know that before you can even open your doors to customers, you need to figure out who they are and what they’re looking for. After all, how will you provide a product or service without first knowing what people want? 

This is where keyword research comes in. It’s a valuable tool for learning about your target audience and their needs so you can create content that speaks directly to them. However, many businesses struggle with keyword research because it doesn’t produce results as expected.

In fact, some companies have tried keyword research but still haven’t been able to attract many new clients or customers, which means their efforts were futile from day one! 

So this makes them frustrated and asks questions such as, is Google keyword working? Below we have highlighted reasons why your keyword research isn’t working!

  1. Only focusing on search volume.

If you have ever been worried about Google keywords not working, it could be because you are focusing on search volume only.

Think about it. You take a look at your competitors’ organic results to see what keywords they’re targeting. Then you run some keyword research and add those very same terms to your site’s SEO strategy

Why Your Keyword Research Isn't Working
Search Volume

And yet, despite all of that effort, you end up with no or low search engine traffic from search engines for those very exact keywords. Why isn’t keyword research working? The answer is simple: You only looked at the search volume. 

That’s not enough! To get more out of your keyword research efforts, use these few tips below. They’ll help you choose better keywords that drive real traffic—and boost your website’s search engine rankings in the process.  

  • Focus on search intent. When analyzing search data, don’t just look at how many people are searching for specific keywords; also, pay attention to why they’re searching. Are they looking for product reviews? A coupon code? Information on a particular topic? Each type of query has different implications for optimizing your content and even where you should be placing links (in articles vs. landing pages).
  •  Look beyond Google AdWords: If you rely solely on Google AdWords Keyword Planner when doing keyword research, you’re missing out on valuable insights. If you want to learn which keywords your customers actually search for—instead of which ones they might search for—try using a tool like SpyFu

SpyFu lets you view paid and organic competition across multiple platforms, including Google Ads, Bing Ads, Yahoo Search Marketing, Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads, LinkedIn ads, Pinterest Pins, Instagram photos/videos, and more. 

This way, you can ensure that your target audience is searching for exactly what you want them to search for. It’s time to stop settling for less than ideal keywords. 

  • Start tracking trends. If you aren’t already keeping an eye on trending topics in your industry, now is an excellent time to start. 

Tools like Trend Spotter and Cyfe make it easy to monitor meaningful conversations happening online right now—and identify popular questions being asked by your target audience and potential brand advocates who may be willing to share their experience with your company via social media or other channels.

  1. You’re Pulling Your Keyword Data From A Single Source. 
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We’ve all done it. You look up your keywords in Google, copy and paste them into a keyword research tool, and never look back. But what if that approach doesn’t get you to where you want to go? Some keyword tools—especially those that are free or low-cost—will let you pull results from only one of their sources at a time. 

That means you could be missing out on valuable search volume data that would otherwise help guide your content strategy. For example, I recently ran a report for blogging tips using both SEMrush and Ahrefs; SEMrush pulled data from its database, while Ahrefs pulled data from Google AdWords. 

In total, I got over ten times more search volume data by pulling my report with Ahrefs than I did with SEMrush! So why aren’t you looking at data from multiple sources when conducting keyword research? If you aren’t sure how to do so, check out these helpful guides: How To Find & Use Multiple Sources For Keyword Data

  1. Ignoring contextual relevance

The truth is that Google doesn’t care what search terms people use when searching for something; it only cares how relevant your content is to a given search term. 

If your keyword research tools are failing to provide you with valuable information, it may be because they are not taking into account contextual relevance. 

The reality is that many (if not most) keyword research tools leave out some or all of the contexts that matter in determining a keyword’s level of competition and relevance. 

For example, let’s say you sell men’s pants. One of your main keywords might be pants for men. However, if I type that exact phrase into Google, it will tell me there are over 60 million results—more than I could ever hope to compete against!

 But if I add one word—say blue pants for men—the results drop from 60 million to just over 1 million. 

Suddenly, my chances look much better. So why don’t keyword research tools consider these kinds of contexts? 

Because doing so would make them much more complicated and expensive to create. 

Instead, they focus on using simple metrics like monthly searches and the average cost per click to determine which words are worth targeting—and which ones aren’t.

How Can I Make My Keywords Work For Me? 

When it comes to keyword research, many marketers face the same problem: they find some keywords, and they run with them but aren’t getting any results from their efforts. Don’t be one of these people! Find out how you can make your keywords work for you. 

  1. Are Your Keywords Relevant?

There are a few things to consider when you’re trying to determine if your keywords are relevant: First, how closely does your content match what people are searching for? 

Why Your Keyword Research Isn't Working

If you’re writing an article on how to make a pizza, but people are searching for pizza recipes, then you have a problem. 

You need to re-evaluate your keywords and find ones that better match what people are looking for. 

Second, do your keywords describe what your content is about? 

This one can be tricky because sometimes it’s hard to know what exactly your content is about until you’ve written it. 

But try to think of some possible keywords before you start writing to write towards them as much as possible without going off-topic. 

  1. Be Specific

The more specific you can be with your keywords, the better. 

Using broad terms like pizza or car won’t help anyone find what they’re looking for. 

Instead, try using phrases like how to make homemade pizza or best cars under $30k. 

  1. Include Location in Your Keywords: 

Including location in your keywords is another way to narrow down what people search for. If you’re writing about New York City, then include words like NYC, Brooklyn, and Harlem.

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You’ll get fewer searches but also less competition. 

  1. Use Long-Tail Keywords

Long-tail keywords are more extended versions of short-tail keywords.

They usually have less competition because not many people use them, but if used correctly, they can really boost your search rankings. 

Check out Moz’s guide on long-tail keywords here. 

  1. Find Related Topics

Find related topics by checking out other websites ranking for your target keyword(s) and seeing what else they write about. 

Do some digging into those topics, too; you might find even more opportunities! 

And don’t forget to look at Google Autocomplete – it can give you a lot of ideas on what people are interested in. 

  1. Check Out Google Trends

Google Trends will show you how popular specific keywords have been over time. 

This can help you decide which ones to focus on and which ones may not be worth pursuing. 

  1. Don’t Forget About Local Searches

Even though local searches aren’t technically keywords, they should still be part of your keyword research process. 

It’s imperative to understand where your audience lives to know where to advertise, where to host events, etc. 

Most importantly, though, it helps you tailor your content to their needs. 


Try including city names and state names in your keywords. 

  1. Get Creative With Keyword Match Types. 

Broad match is excellent for beginners, but if you want more control over who sees your ads, then use phrase match or exact match instead. 

These types allow you to specify exactly what words you want to be included in a search query before one of your ads shows up. That means no more wasted clicks! 

Remember that exact match has much higher minimum bids than broad match, so it’s only recommended for experienced PPC marketers. 

  1. Check Out Google’s Keyword Planner.

While there are several keyword research tools, none of them compare to Google’s Keyword Planner. 

Why? Because it’s powered by actual data from Google searches! Not only that, but you can enter multiple keywords and get results for each of them. 

Tools You Can Use To Solve The Problem:

Why is Google keyword not working? Below are tools you can use to solve the problem.

  1. Google Keyword Planner

 This tool can be very helpful for identifying new keyword opportunities and analyzing your existing keywords. 

The data provided by Google Keyword Planner should be used with other keyword research tools mentioned above. 

  1. Ubersuggest

The most powerful keyword research tool you can find online! This free tool can help you generate hundreds of long-tail keywords with little effort on your part. 

Type in one seed keyword and then click suggest to get a list of related words. 

  1. SEMRush 

This tool provides an easy way to identify top-performing keywords based on search volume, CPC, etc… 

You can also compare your competitors’ keywords against yours using SEMRush, which will give you an idea of where they rank compared to you. 

  1. Google Trends

Provides information about specific searches over time to see if search interest has been increasing or decreasing over time.

It’s especially useful when trying to determine whether or not a particular keyword might be too competitive for your website. 

Is Keyword Research the Problem?

A common issue with keyword research is that we focus too much on volume without looking at value. If you have a low budget for PPC, you might try targeting less-expensive keywords—but it doesn’t always mean that you’ll get better results. 

Keyword Research Isn't Working

Google has algorithms to ensure that cheap keywords don’t give high quality and aren’t as relevant to searchers. It’s important to look at how many searches are actually being made for each term. 

For example, if you want to target hair extensions, but hair extensions near me get more searches per month than your keyword, then maybe hair extensions near me are a better option after all. You can also use tools like SEMrush or SpyFu to determine whether there are other factors that could affect search volume. 

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When you compare these factors, it will help you determine which keywords will be most effective for your campaign goals. In addition, it’s important to take into account seasonal trends and holidays when determining keyword volume. 

For example, if you sell snowboards during the winter months (and live in a snowy area), then you may want to avoid terms like summer sales or spring break since they may not be relevant during those times of the year. 

Additionally, seasonality affects conversion rates; people tend to buy products differently depending on their location and what time of year it is. For example, someone searching for ski pants in December probably isn’t going to convert very well compared to someone searching for them in July. 

Finally, make sure you check out trends over time: some keywords that were once popular may no longer be used by consumers today. This is especially true if your business sells items related to technology or fashion. With all of these factors taken into consideration, you should develop a list of keywords based on specific criteria.

How Has SEO Changed? Section

SEO has changed in recent years. 

It’s more a factor now than ever before, and it is constantly changing. 

Understanding SEO can be confusing, especially if you have never had any experience with it before. 

However, in order to ensure that your website is successful online, you must understand how SEO works. 

The first step to understanding what SEO is all about would be to figure out what it stands for: Search Engine Optimization. 

To optimize your site, you need to know what keyword research working is important

These are words or phrases that people type into search engines when looking for something specific. 

For example, someone might type how do I get rid of lice? Into Google as they are looking for information on how to get rid of lice at home. 

This person is searching for information on lice removal at home because they want help getting rid of lice. They don’t want to see their doctor or buy unique products from a store; they want to learn how to remove lice from their hair at home. 

If you were writing an informative post on lice removal, how do I get rid of lice? It would be an ideal keyword phrase for your post. 

By using that phrase in your post, you will be able to attract people searching for information on how to get rid of lice at home. 

You could also use other phrases like how do I get rid of head lice? or how do I remove head lice? – but make sure not to use too many different variations! 

Keywords should match precisely what users type into search engines. 

So, if someone types, how do I get rid of lice? It doesn’t mean they are going to click on your page if you used how do I remove lice? or how do I kill head lice? Be aware that there is some debate over whether exact matching keywords are still important. Some experts believe that long-tail keywords may be better for gaining traffic.


So you’ve done your keyword research. You’ve got a spreadsheet chock-full of keywords with little accompanying data to help you understand their potential and sales numbers. 

Nevertheless, regardless of the search volume these keywords have, you seem to be getting little to no traffic, these could be as a result of notable mistakes you overlooked, which is why the above guide is meant to place you on the right path. 

Let’s know if you find this helpful in the comment box. 

Richard Odds

Richard Odds is a Digital marketer SEO expert, and a business strategy planner, Chief Editor at Mss Resource where I help small business owners and marketers generate more leads, new paying users, and optimize their funnels with data-driven Marketing & SEO tips that work.

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