7 Top Keyword Research Tools for SEO in 2023

SEO.com Team

Your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy depends on choosing the right keywords. For that, you need a proven SEO keyword research tool. That’s why we’re compiling this year’s top keyword search tools for SEO. See which platforms made our list below!

1.      Semrush

Cost: Paid


  • All-in-one suite for digital marketing, from SEO to paid advertising
  • In-depth keyword research, plus SEO audits, competitor insights, and more
  • Extensive keyword database
  • Keyword tracking
  • Regular tool updates


  • Too expensive for small businesses and individual webmasters
  • Learning curve in understanding the various toolkits

Best for: Large organizations, digital marketing agencies, and online marketing consultants looking for an all-in-one digital marketing platform.

2.      Ahrefs

Cost: Paid


  • Custom keyword metrics, like traffic potential
  • Keyword tracking
  • Large keyword database
  • Additional SEO tools, like audits, competitor research, and more


  • Unpopular credit-based pricing model
  • Too expensive for smaller sites and businesses

Best for: Large organizations, SEO agencies, and SEO consultants looking for an SEO toolkit.

3.      Google Trends

Cost: Free


  • Real-time insights
  • Extensive historical database
  • Keyword comparison
  • Regional keyword data
  • Easy to use


  • Zero keyword metrics
  • No way to save keywords

Best for: Webmasters looking for a free keyword research tool for SEO.

4.      Keywords Everywhere

Cost: Freemium


  • Displays results on other platforms, like YouTube and Google Search Console
  • Provides keyword data in search results
  • Cost-effective pricing


  • Lower data accuracy than paid keyword research tools for SEO
  • Fewer features than SEO software suites like Ahrefs or Semrush

Best for: Small and midsized businesses, plus webmasters looking for an affordable, effective solution.

5.      Google Search Console

Cost: Free


  • Find keyword opportunities based on your site’s performance
  • Get search performance data, like impressions, click-through rate (CTR), and more


  • No keyword metric data unless paired with another SEO keyword tool like Keywords Everywhere
  • Limited to the site owner’s website performance

Best for: Everyone practicing SEO on their site. This keyword research tool is a must!

6.      Google Keyword Planner

Cost: Free


  • High data accuracy
  • Access keyword metrics like search volume, competition, and cost
  • Integrates with Google Ads


  • Built as a pay-per-click keyword suggestion tool vs. an SEO keyword research tool
  • Database focused more on bottom-of-the-funnel search terms

Best for: All business sizes and SEO professionals, though larger organizations will lean towards paid keyword research tools like Ahrefs or Semrush.

7.      Moz Keyword Explorer

Cost: Paid


  • Access keyword metrics, including opportunity score
  • Get competitor analysis insights
  • View search engine results pages (SERPs) opportunities
  • Includes access to a full SEO software suite


  • Higher price than other keyword research tools

Best for: SEO professionals and SEO agencies

Start your research with these SEO keyword research tools

With these SEO keyword research tools, you can start finding (and targeting) relevant keywords for your business and growing your visibility in search results. If you need professional help with keyword research and SEO management, consider the award-winning SEO.com team.

Contact us today to learn more about our SEO services!

FAQs about keyword research tools

Learn more about keyword research tools with these FAQs:

What is a keyword research tool?

A keyword research tool is a free or paid software that provides keyword metrics, like search volume, competitiveness, and cost-per-click (CPC), to help businesses identify the most relevant keywords for their target audience.

Which keyword tool is the most accurate?

Most SEOs will agree that the most accurate keyword tool is a keyword tool for pay-per-click called Google Keyword Planner. People believe Google Keyword Planner is the most accurate because the data comes directly from Google, the largest search engine in the world.

How do I choose the best keyword research tool for me?

You can help your business choose the best keyword research tool for its needs with these tips:

  • Outline your budget
  • Determine your tool needs
  • Demo your top tool choices
  • Get your team’s feedback on the tools

The biggest step you can take is getting hands-on experience with the different applications available. If you’re looking at a paid keyword tool, many offer free trials or discounted trials that you can use to experience the software first-hand.

How do I find the best keywords with keyword research tools?

You can find the best keywords with the above keyword research tools by:

  • Evaluating the keyword’s metrics, like its search volume and competitiveness
  • Researching the keyword’s relevancy to your business and its products or services
  • Determine the keyword’s search intent

For more information on this topic, check out our walkthrough on how to choose the best keywords.