The Keyword Overview is our top-level report that can be generated for any search engine keyword in the SEMrush database. After entering your word or phrase in the search bar you’ll see the keyword’s volume, number of results, CPC, Competition level, trend, and more.
- Instant top-level examination of any keyword in the SEMrush database
- Ability to research in all country databases, mobile databases
- Portal to deeper keyword research reports in the software.
In digital marketing, keywords are the intersection of you and your potential customers. You can target keywords by writing content on your website or through an advertising budget on Google Ads.
But before you can bring in any traffic from search, you need to decide which search terms are worth targeting. This is where keyword research becomes so important.
The Keyword Overview report is the easiest place to start your keyword research and grow familiar with SEMrush's reports and metrics.
- Analyzing a keyword's value
- Finding the right keywords to target
- Checking the trend
- Difficulty and cost metrics
- Find phrase matches and related keywords
- Analyze a keyword's organic value
- Analyze a keyword's advertising value
Analyzing a Keyword’s Value
When you launch a Keyword Overview report, SEMrush will provide you with an initial assessment of a keyword’s value.
Volume: the average number of times per month that a keyword was queried in a search engine (on the national level).
- Number of results: the number of URLs displayed in organic search results for a given keyword.
Knowing search volume allows you to estimate how popular a keyword is.But popularity isn’t the most important thing when picking your targets.
Finding the Right Keywords to Target
High-volume search terms are great for driving a lot of traffic. These are often called “body” or “short-tail” keywords and consist of only a few words. However, actually ranking for a high volume keyword is easier said than done.
The more popular a keyword, the more competition there will be to go after that sweet traffic. So, the higher the search volume, the harder it is to overrun your competition.
Let’s say you run a website for a local electronics store. If you want to outrank your competitors on Google, it would probably be better to look for keywords with low volume and a low keyword difficulty score. These opportunities have the least amount of competition - perfect for quick wins.
Tip: use the Keyword Gap tool to find gaps in multiple competitors’ keyword strategies.
SEMrush can also show you long tail keywords that you may not be targeting in your current SEO or PPC campaigns.
Long-tail keywords are generally better to target than short-tail keywords because they are more specific with their intentions. For example, the long tail keyword “best wireless headphones for working out” is much more specific compared to simply “headphones.”
While it may have less search volume, this keyword is more valuable for an SEO strategy because its intentions are more clear. In the SEO industry this is called “searcher intent.”
With a more specific keyword, you can be more effective targeting searchers by providing super-specific content on your website. In contrast, “headphones” would likely be too broad and competitive of a keyword to effectively target with SEO.
When thousands and thousands of people Google “headphones,” you can never know what they all want. But, when only a few hundred people search for “best wireless headphones for working out,” it’s easier to offer them exactly what they want.
Checking the Trend
- Trend: how much interest web searchers have shown in a given keyword in the last 12 months.
A keyword’s trend helps you understand the seasonality of your target audience and predict when driving traffic with a particular search term will result in seasonal spikes. If you see that a keyword’s trend doesn’t peak and stays at the same level, then you’ll need to make sure that you're targeting this search query year round.
However, if a keyword has a seasonal spike, then you can plan accordingly. For example, a keyword like “bathing suits” may trend higher in the summer months.
As a website, you could strategize with seasonal website content or an advertising campaign to target this keyword.
Difficulty and Cost Metrics
Keyword Difficulty: an estimation of how easy it would be to rank your website for this keyword with SEO
- CPC: the average minimum price that advertisers pay for a user’s click on a Google Ads ad for the keyword. If you’re a country that uses another form of currency, you can open the drop down and choose your currency.
If you are running or considering launching Google Ads campaigns, a keyword’s CPC can help you understand which keywords are worth bidding on.
- CPC Distribution: the average price for a user’s click throughout different regional databases.
- Competition: the density of advertisers bidding on this keyword for their ads on the national level. A score of 1.00 indicates the highest level of competition, and a score of 0.00 indicates no competition. Although this metric refers to competitors in paid search, it can be representative of a keyword’s organic value as well.
Having a list of metrics is helpful for initially estimating a keyword’s value. But the Keyword Overview report allows you to conduct even deeper keyword analysis. Read on to learn about more features!
Find Phrase Matches and Related Keywords
You will also see the top five phrase matches and related keywords (2) in the Keyword Overview report. Phrase matches are longer search terms that include the queried word within their phrase.
Related keywords are keywords that have similar results as the queried keyword.
You’ll find common misspellings and topically related search phrases that trigger similar search results with this report.
Related keywords make for excellent keywords to target with PPC, because misspelled keywords generally have a lower CPC and competition level.
Please note: the full Related Keywords and Phrase Match reports now live within the Keyword Magic tool.
Analyzing a keyword's organic value
The Keyword Overview report lists the top domains (3) whose landing pages pop up for the search term you are analyzing.
If you find your website in this list, congratulations! Google considers your page one of the best and most relevant to the given keyword. But don’t miss the chance to strengthen and improve your ranking.
Improving your search rankings organically can be the biggest factor when it comes to beating out your closest online competitors. Since billions of searches happen every day, getting your site up in the rankings for the right keywords can really pay off.
Whoever is ranking currently on the first page of results are your SEO competitors. You can check each competitor’s web page and analyze its content, structure and usage of the particular keyword. You can click on the small arrow to open the page in a new tab or click on the URL to open an Organic Research report for that webpage.
From that report you’ll be able to see this page’s keywords, backlinks, traffic share and more.
If your domain isn’t at the top of the search results, you should then analyze the content of those pages in order to learn from them.
One of our Project tools, On Page SEO Checker, can help you generate ideas for improving your content.
Tip: You can export each part of the report in XLS or CSV formats.
Analyzing a keyword’s advertising value
If your site doesn’t naturally rank for keywords, you can still get search traffic by bidding on keywords through Google Ads.
You can also find the top text ads (4) that appear for a keyword in paid search results. Take these as inspiration for writing your own ad copy and analyze the landing pages they are pointing to.
If you’re an ecommerce website, pay attention to the top product listing ads (5). These advertisers are your top Google Shopping competitors.
The Ads History widget (6) will show how actively websites bid on the keyword in the last 12 months on the national level. Click it and you’ll be forwarded to the Keyword Ads History report, which will have more information.
By using SEMrush Keyword Analytics you can determine your best performing ads over the past year. With this information you will be able to see which strategies are bringing in the greatest ROI and use this for continued success in your future search advertising.
If you have already been using the analyzed keyword for your advertising campaigns, you can use this data for improving your ads’ search visibility.
Now that you're comfortable querying a Keyword Overview report, be sure to check our the Keyword Magic Tool to dive even deeper into keyword research.
Tip: To view historical data for a keyword, use the selector at the top.