Moz Keyword Explorer 2: Unpacking the Keyword Suggestions List (Blogging for Beginners!)

In my last blog post,  I showed you the Moz Keyword Planner and my very first term, “beginning bloggers.”  It did not do all that well.  Moz identified a better search term was “blogging for beginners.”   Okay, let’s take a look at that search term!  While the scores monthly volume is much better, the difficulty is still high (62 vice 64). and the the organic CTR is fairly similar (64% vice 60% — 60% is a little bit worse) and the overall priority score, 52, is quite a bit better (than 41)

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Are there search terms (keywords) which would be better?

On the first page, the Moz Explorer gives you a list of suggestions that it thinks will be good matches with good metrics.  But unlike our previous list of keyword suggestions, these have very low volumes.

Here’s the list for our first search, beginning blogging:

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And, when we put in “blogging for beginners” instead, we get THESE suggestions:

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None of these are better than our current choice, “blogging for beginners.”  But perhaps there are other keyword search terms that are better?

Moz’s Keyword Planner Suggestion Page

You can either follow the link or you can see, over on the left of the page,  near the top, another link, “Keyword Suggestions,”  that will return the very same page.

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Open up that link and you’ll get a page of hundreds of suggestions, along with their relevancy and volume:

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The more relevant the keyword search term, the more little bubbles (a maximum of five bubbles).   You can export the entire list is csv form to study at your leisure by clicking the “export CSV” link. In this case, I got 1,000 suggestions! So csv is your friend. (You can open the file in Excel to see your results.)

Here’s a short screen shot of the 1000 entries I got from this (which I opened in Excel).  You can see the minimum volume (0 for lots of these keywords) and the maximum, 118,000!

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Useful!   Now, I’m beginning to see that my target keyword choice, “blogging for beginners”  is okay but maybe I could do better. Let’s see!  I’m going to use my Excel spread sheet, because with it, i can easily scan the best candidates in terms of relevance and volume.  And here they are (I cut and pasted them into this list in Excel):

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We can see from this list that there are way better keywords in terms of volume than our initial candidates,  “beginning blogging” and “blogging for beginners.”  The question is, would they be more difficult–because of all the competition?   Remember, when I started out with Moz and the “beginning blogging” idea,  Moz’s number one suggestion was “blogging for beginners.”   Sometimes, high volume will also mean higher difficulty.  Better to sit alone on a pumpkin than be crowded on velvet cushion. 


Filtering the Keyword Suggestions List

Moz Keyword Explorer allows you to sort the keywords and filter them in various ways.

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The defaults are easy and give you the simple list we’ve just seen.    Here’s the drop down menus to give you an idea of how you can filter beginning with the first drop down on the left (see above).

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In other words, you can dink around with these settings or let Moz pick the sources that their algorithms think would be most helpful by leaving the default where it is at “include a mix of sources.”. (I’m going with the algorithms’ picks for now.  I have the sneaking suspicious they’re smarter than me.)

The second option, “Group Keywords”  is also a little technical.

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“Lexical similarity” has to do with how similar the meanings of two words happens to be.   Low similarity means not very similar, medium and then high similarity are the values you can choose.   This would be more useful if, for example, the keyword suggestions list were five or ten THOUSAND.  A thousand is pretty simple to handle.  Blogging is a pretty technical, specific term to begin with, so we probably don’t need to look at that too hard.  If you were selling birdhouses or makeup, however, then it might be more important.

For our beginning newbie needs, we’re more interested in finding the terms that searchers are using to look for our content.  The last dropdown menu, “Volume” could help us.  Here we get the slider bar with the minimum and maximum volumes already chosen for us.

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As we’ve seen, this might be a bit too rich for our blood.  That’d probably be heavy competition land.  We want to do better than our “beginning blogging” idea but also see if there are better options than “blogging for beginners.”  For funzies, let’s go with a more middling value than the “Top Eight” that I dragged out of the .csv file above.

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I hit “Apply” and I get this list:

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Well, I’m not ready to start saying that my blog will make you money until I, myself, start making coin!   Hopefully, one day both you and I will get there.

 Blogging platforms, the number two choice, isn’t really relevant.  The other two, “how to make a blog” and “start a blog” look kind of promising.  We’ll note those for later consideration.

Next up: SERP again! We’ll investigate the Moz Explorer Search Engine Return Page for “blogging for beginners.”  I’ll show you how to interpret those results and we’ll walk through the interface together.

Ciao!  ~ Lola















Author: Lola

Recovering academic, real-life, honest to cornflakes anthropologist (Ph.D. and fieldwork and everything), tech-head and social media researcher.

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