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Keyword difficulty in SEO – Web Marketers Guide

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What is Keyword Difficulty?

The Keyword Difficulty is an SEO metric that indicates how hard it is or the level of competition it has to rank for your site on the first page of SERPs.

Keyword Difficulty Score ranges from 0 – to 100

Why Keyword difficulty?

Finding the keyword difficulty of the target keywords is a crucial keyword research and content creation process. It gives sufficient realistic information about the resources to be allocated and the time it takes to outrank the existing content from competitors.

Keyword difficulty analysis help in choosing the best Keyword for targeting in SEO 

Tools to find keyword Difficulty

There are many Keyword difficulty checker tools available online. Each tool measures it differently based on metrics like content relevance, link profile, Domain Authority, Page Authority, Search intent, Content relevance etc. 

  • KWFinder
  • Moz
  • SEMrush Keyword Difficulty Tool
  • Twinword Ideas
  • Ahrefs Keywords Explorer
  • SECockpit
  • Alexa’s Keyword Difficulty Tool
  • Twinword Ideas

These tools assist you in finding the low and medium-difficulty-level keywords in your industry and make your keyword research process easier.

It is also suggested that you also recheck the real keyword difficulty through manual research. As these tools are not 100% reliable and the scores vary in every tool.

Quick Guide to Keyword Proximity and how it influences SEO

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How to find the real Keyword Difficulty Manually?

Domain Authority and Page Authority:

Check the displayed top 10 results DA and PA for the target keyword in SERPs.

This process can be made a lot easier by Signing up and installing the MozBar Chrome extension. Activate the Mozbar and enter the target Keyword in the search engine.

Now, You can see at the bottom of every result Mozbar displays its respective DA, PA and LD values.

If the top 10 results have low DA and PA values, then the Keyword is considered as a less-competitive keyword and can be easy to rank with.

PA is considered as an important factor than DA in knowing the keyword difficulty.

Link Profile: 

A link profile is a greater factor than DA and PA in determining the keyword difficulty.

To find the link profile of the results, click on link analysis of Mozbar extension, which directs you to Mozbar link explorer. This link explorer will fetch you all the external links pointing to the results page.

Check the quality and relevance and the anchor text of backlinks to find whether the links are due to black hat SEO practices or naturally built. 

If the links are due to black hat SEO, then it is easy to rank for. If the links are from quality sites like times of India, Deccan Chronicle, then it is highly difficult to rank for.

Content Quality and Optimization: 

Content Quality: 

Check the quality of the content writing, whether it is semantically organized andor naturally written for readers. Then, to outrank the content, it is recommended to write better content than the competitors.

Content Optimization: 

Check the on-page SEO of the page, how the content is structured, and keywords are spread across the page. 

If the page is not optimized, then you can outrank that content even if it has decent Page authority.

Some other signals that indicate low competition

If the results contain pages from the free blog creation sites like Blogspot, Ehow eBay, Buzzle, HubPages, yahoo answers, then it is likely that the Keyword is less-competitive.