Keyword Difficulty is an SEO metric showing how hard it would be to rank in the top 10 results for any given keyword in Google or any other target search engine of your choice.
The algorithm behind the Keyword Difficulty score is dead simple. Our tool compares top-ranking pages for the main ranking signals, such as domain authority, the number of backlinks and their quality, and estimates the score based on how strong your page is against all other competing pages.
Not sure how it works? Give it a try with the Keyword Difficulty checker in Rank Tracker – one of the best SEO tools for estimating your traffic potential. See it yourself – download the software and do keyword research absolutely free of charge.
How our Keyword Difficulty tool works
To assess the Keyword Difficulty score, the checker analyzes the top 10 ranking pages for a certain keyword according to a wealth of important metrics like:
After analyzing all the factors, the tool checks the page strength against the top 10 competing websites and comes up with the total value for the keyword. It forecasts how hard it will be for the page to outrank each individual competitor in the top 10 on the SERP for this query.
How exactly the Keyword Difficulty metric can help you
Prioritize the right keywords
Spot keywords that have the highest chances of bringing tons of organic traffic and don't require much optimization work. The checker determines keyword difficulty as Low, Medium, and High. Examine the phrases colored with a green marker – these are your best optimization opportunities.
Take a look at the Keyword Difficulty metric in combination with Search Volume and Competition. To choose the right keywords quicker, consult the Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI) which is based on all the three metrics above.
Find the right balance between Keyword Difficulty and search volume
Usually, these are long-tail keywords that enjoy a higher click-through rate from organic search. They are easier to rank for because pretty often they have low competition (which is not a strict rule, though).
Rare but lucky finds especially helpful for niche topics. If you find low competition keywords with considerable search volume, organic traffic won’t keep you waiting. These are the perfect keywords for new websites and the easiest to rank for.
These are for a long-term SEO game. With time, you will find your site competing for high-search volume keywords as well. To catch up with the competition level, you will need to create great content and get yourself high-quality backlinks.
Analyze your SERP competition for organic growth
Now in the special SERP Analysis module, you can compare the top 50 ranking competitors' pages for every keyword and pick the right optimization strategy for your pages.
Get a handy overview of the SERP with all competitors conveniently laid out in a single dashboard. See their domain authority for the ranking pages and the strength of their link profile.
The checker will calculate Keyword Difficulty by analyzing the top results for some vital metrics, including:
On top of that, the checker discovers correlations between factors and positions in organic search results (low, moderate, or high) and gives a clue which factor requires more attention.
Bulk-check and automation for long-term SEO strategy
If you have hundreds of suggestions on your keyword list, clear up the data with your custom filters and tags built into the checker. Group keywords and check the keyword difficulty score for the whole list of keywords in bulk.
Likewise, examine the average difficulty for all keywords mapped to an individual landing page. These features are especially useful for those who do keyword research and have to deal with a large amount of data.
With super fast-changing competition landscapes, Keyword Difficulty is the kind of metric that needs to be constantly monitored. You can get your stats calculated completely on autopilot. The results will be brought to you as an in-app or downloadable report. Note that the automated tasks are supported in the Enterprise version only.
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