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17 Google Keyword Planner Alternatives

Here is the bad news… You can no longer use the Google Keyword Planner to easily assess which keywords are the best for your search engine optimization strategy. The competition ranges are vague and you must start a PAID campaign to see more specific analytics.

Yes, this change to the Google Adwords Keyword Planner totally stinks.

Looking for Google Keyword Planner alternatives after the recent change in Google's keyword research tool? Find a new favorite here!Here is the good news…

You can piece together your SEO research by using various free keyword tools or invest in a Google Keyword Planner alternative that gives you all of the information needed in one location.

Alternatives for Google Keyword Planner

This list includes a mixture of free Google’s Keyword Planner alternatives and paid keyword research tools.

InstaKeywords – Probably the most inclusive FREE keyword planning tool currently available, InstaKeywords allows you to see extensive information about your keywords without registration. If you create a FREE account, you can access even more keyword results.

free keyword analysis toolSoovle – Not sure where to begin looking for keywords? Just start typing into Soovle and the database will pull the top related searches, automatically recommending related terms as you type.

Ubersuggest – If you know where to start but are looking for long tailed keywords, Ubersuggest yields the most comprehensive listing of keywords for free. You can even download your list as a CSV to help create a keyword strategy.

Google Trends– If you write according to trending topics, you can find exactly what has been the most popular over the last 24 hours as well as check on the popularity of other topics and categories.

Keyword Discovery – Check the popularity of keywords or use the free trends tool to research the best month to post your topic. Upgrade for access to additional tools.

keyword tool alternativeGoogle Search – Sometimes, we overlook the easiest solution. Using the Google search engine as a keyword tool is simple. Add your terms to the search bar and Google recommends the top searched keywords.

Once you click to search, scroll to the bottom of the search results page to find other related terms.

Pinterest Guided Search – Pinterest hosts the fastest growing search toolbar on the internet. Guided Search offers you the benefit of seeing the most popular keywords related to the terms you place in the search bar and even helps you refine your keyword choice by offering additional context words.

Bing Webmaster Tools – Understand the words people are searching to find your blog and research keywords to target with your content.

Wordtracker – Start your keyword research for free with the Wordtracker Keyword Tool. This is a very limited search that reveals the overall volume of the search. An upgrade is required for additional information.

Free keyword research tool like Google Keyword PlannerBuzzSumo – See how engaged social media users are with your topic by viewing the top trends for your keywords. You can also view current popular topics and trends.

HitTail -The simplest tool for locating keywords you should target based on your existing blog content. Have your website analyzed automatically and receive recommended keywords that fit the topics on your blog. You can try it for FREE and export the recommendations in a CSV file (which can be opened by Excel, Numbers, or with Google Drive.) This is the most affordable of the keyword tools at $9.95 per month.

alternatives for google keyword plannerSEMRush – See the keywords people are using to find your blog content and who is linking to you with SEMRush. Also use SEMRush to research keywords for new categories and see their popularity and the competition across the internet.

WordStream – Much like Google Keyword Planner, receive high-volume low competition niche longtail keywords. Receive 30 keyword reports for free but upgrade to receive more detailed analysis.

Keywordtool-io –  Without registration required, each search generates up to 750+ long-tail keyword suggestions but you must upgrade to see the important analytics.

Spyfu – The best keyword tool for affiliate marketing, you can see the most profitable keywords related to your search. A variety of analytical tools are available for free but an upgrade is required to see beyond the top results.

alternative keyword plannerKeyword Eye – Boasting 50,000 users, Keyword Eye offers competitor analysis, keyword finder, and popular questions tool. Pricing starts at $44 per month.

MOZ – You can search for two keywords FREE each day and get complete results including domain authority and page authority of current search results leading pages. A 30-day free trial is available.

Your favorite Google Keyword Planner Alternative?

If you have a favorite tool for researching keywords, let us know! What will you use as an alternative to Google’s Keyword Planner?

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How to Code a Nofollow Link

Unless your blog is set up to make all links nofollow, every link you publish is automatically a dofollow link, so you have to manually change the links when necessary.

how to make a nofollow link.

Did you read our post about dofollow and nofollow links?

While you could use a nofollow plugin, they can sometimes be buggy and cause other problems in your blog. Understanding how to build an HTML link can help you make each link nofollow by editing the HTML code in your post.

[A video is embedded. If you cannot view the video, please click here.]

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Understanding Dofollow and Nofollow Links

** Each time someone figures out what works best for SEO, the algorithm seems to change. The best way to attract search engines to your blog is create amazing content and use words to describe your topic accurately.**

Dofollow links. Nofollow links. What does it all mean?

An easy way to understand the difference between nofollow and nofollow links.

Blogging can be so confusing when you don’t understand the jargon. In this video, I explain what dofollow link and nofollow link are as well as which you should use in certain situations to make your links benefit your SEO.

As you watch the Educreations video embedded, remember that the internet is a web. There is a reason why we start every website url with WWW, short for world wide WEB. So, if the internet is a big web, the search bots are link spiders crawling the web and they report back to Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc with what they discover.

Adding nofollow coding communicates the links where you do not want to pass along SEO link juice.

[A video is embedded. If you cannot see the video, please click here.]

Important things to note about SEO link building

  • Any affiliate link on your blog as well as links for paid content should be nofollow links.
  • You need nofollow and dofollow links on your blog to prove your blog’s value to a search engine.
  • Links should be to relevant content and not randomly placed.
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How to Check Your SEO Strategy

So, you are working hard to improve the SEO on your blog, but how do you know if it is working?

Two ways to check your seo strategy

What NOT to do

You cannot search for your keywords and expect to get accurate results. Why? Because the Google algorithm is synced to show you results from the places you spend the most time online and the results that are closest to your geographical location.

So, how can you check your search engine optimization strategy?

1) You can open an incognito search window.

How to check your seo strategy with google incognito window

Inside Google Chrome, click the settings icon (three stacked bars at the top right of your browser, just below the X to close the window). Then, choose to open a new incognito window.

Searches from this window will mask any of your preferences although your geographic information may still taint the results slightly.

2) You can check your blog’s Webmaster Tools.

Visit Google’s Websmaster Tools and follow the instructions in this video.

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Hiding SEO Keywords in Blog Posts

Are you taking advantage of every opportunity to tell the search engine spiders what your post is about?

where to place keywords to help seo

Now, I am not talking about blabbing on and on with the same series of words or various combinations of keywords just to try to rank higher. I AM talking about natural places where your keywords should appear.

Check out this video to learn some special places you should be adding keywords.

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The Most Important Keyword Spots on Your Blog

**SEO changes all the time. I recommend that you stay up to date on best practices as the algorithm changes.**

This is PART TWO of our series, SEO 1.0.

If you think of your blog as a home, there are certain spots where you keep your valuable information. Your blog address (URL), site title, and tagline are prime spots for SEO.

where to place keywords on your blog

Have you neglected the tagline of your blog? For WordPress users, is your blog still “just another WordPress site” or have you completed the information in the “general” section?

If you are a Genesis framework user, your blog theme is ready for some heavy duty SEO boosting. Just make sure you are completing the homepage settings under Genesis > SEO Settings. If your blog title doesn’t contain keywords (cough… Meet Penny???), you want to have a rich META description and select to wrap your site description in the <H1> tag.

Now, this is something for EVERYONE regardless of your hosting or theme situation. Watch this video to learn the other MOST important spots on your blog for SEO.

Then, watch this video to know the most important places within a blog post for SEO.

Your homework: 1. Complete the most important information on your blog. 2. Stop using “cute” titles for blog posts. 3. Divide your content appropriately with subtitles in the H2 heading format.

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Choosing a Title for Your Blog Post

When I first began blogging, I let the writer in me choose my titles. The titles were poignaint, pretty, and meaningful to me. Sometimes silly. But, never clear to the reader what the post was really about.

Now, I let the computer in me decide. Why?

If your title is not clearly giving a summary of the post’s content to the reader, then it will never catch the attention of the Google Search Bot… the essence of SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Choosing SEO friendly titles for blog posts

Here is an example from my own archives:

From a Not-So Crafty Person

Can you guess what this post is about? I’ll give you a hint: The article was posted on February 15, 2010.

Still no clue? Can you believe it was a post about the Valentine’s Day treats I made for my children to hand out to their friends?

How to Choose an SEO-friendly Post Title

When you choose your title, ask yourself this question: “If I were to do an internet search for this information, what would my search words be?” Then, use those key words in your title.

  • If you are giving your readers a recipe, then have the name of the recipe AND the word RECIPE in the title of your post.
  • If you are posting about how to clean toilets, then name the post “How to Clean Toilets.”
  • If you are writing about your field trip to the zoo, the name of your post should be “Our trip to the Such-and-Such Zoo.”

Want more tips about choosing a title for your posts?

  1. Study the titles of articles on the cover of magazines. Just change the words where needed to fit your topic.
  2. Use a question. My posts that are titled with questions get more traffic from search engines than any other because people type in phrases like “What is Pinterest?
  3. Give the number of points from your post in your title such as “8 Tips to Help You Maintain Your Budget.”

How do you choose the titles of your blog posts?

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How to Link to Another Blog

Sometimes, I forget that what I consider as basic link coding is new to another blogger. Recently, I received an email from a sweet lady asking me to explain how to “link back” to a blog.

Great tutorial for linking to another blog. Includes instructions for Blogger and WordPress as well as a lesson in link building HTML. VERY informative and perfect for new bloggers.

Honestly, one of the best compliments you can give another blogger is to link to one of their posts, giving them credit for a job well-done. Also, in some linky parties, it is required. But, how do you do that?

The EASY Way ~ From Blogger

Type up your post and then highlight the words from your post where you want to insert a link. Then, click in the toolbar where it says link.
A box will pop up that already has the words in it that you have highlighted and then it asks you for the URL. That is the website address. 
Then, it is up to you whether or not you click for the URL to open in a new window. My strategy is to have links pointing away from my blog open in a new window (because I want a window to remain open with my blog) and have links within my own blog open in the same window to increase my page views.
Next, click OK. That should do it.

The EASY Way ~ From WordPress



Very similar to Blogger, type up your post and then highlight the words from your post where you want to insert a link. Look for the hyperlink icon in your menu and click it.

The box comes up and asks you for the URL and title. Again, it is up to you whether or not you click for the link to open in a new window. Again…

My strategy is to have links pointing away from my blog open in a new window (because I want a window to remain open with my blog) and have links within my own blog open in the same window to increase my page views.

Basic HTML Link Code Language

Regardless of whether you are on Blogger or WordPress or whatever, you really should start learning to read the HTML language.

In order to type into the HTML format, you would need to switch from COMPOSE  or VISUAL to the HTML language on your post. You will need to know where you want the link within your post. Find that spot and put in the correct code:

<a href=”INSERTWEBADDRESS” rel=”nofollow” target=”_blank” >WORDS YOU WANT YOUR READER TO SEE</a>

The “href” directs to the link you want. The “rel=nofollow” tells the search engine robots that you want them to stay on your blog. [Know when to use rel nofollow links.] The “target” tell the link to open in a new window.
As an example, your link might look like the image below (colors added for clarity):

Enhancing SEO with Link Code

Here is an important tip that will help your blog and those to whom you link… Instead of using the blog’s name as the text link, use the keywords describing the link’s content. Keyword-rich text links give you an added boost of SEO juice.

Learn More about SEO and Links