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Maximizing Your Online Store’s Potential with Strategic Keyword Research


When beginning a business, entrepreneurs must tackle many responsibilities, from creating operational structures to devising marketing plans to attract customers. Many businesses prioritize the first aspect of their venture over the second when the opposite is true. 

Strategic Keyword Research

There are countless instances of companies selling low-quality products at an inflated price due to successful marketing strategies, while creative ideas with little promotion may be unsuccessful.

When you run an online shop, it is crucial to reach your target audience and make a mark in the niche. Search engine results are your primary ‘arena’ since the success of your business will largely depend on where your site is placed in the rankings. Many website owners aim to achieve high placements for relevant searches, but only a few can accomplish this.

You can either engage an SEO agency or learn some basic SEO principles to reach the top of search engine results. Hiring a professional SEO expert with experience may be expensive, and hiring someone with less experience will cost even more (have you ever had to fix somebody else’s errors?). Taking the time to understand basic SEO concepts can be much more cost-effective.

For those new to the concept, keyword research can seem intimidating: search volume, keyword difficulty, and user intent might be unknown concepts. However, as it is one of the most critical factors in helping your site rank high for relevant keywords, neglecting it would not be wise. Therefore, here is a comprehensive guide to keyword research for store owners to quell any apprehensions.

Why you need proper research

If you’re opening a sports equipment store, you need more than just simply using random keywords to get your site the visibility it needs. To ensure you’re on the right track, you’ll need to do proper keyword research and use key phrases that are specifically related to your business. This will help ensure that potential customers see your online presence.

Your objective is to encourage search engines to recognize the relevance of your pages concerning user queries. The initial step towards achieving this goal is to gather relevant keywords. After that, it is necessary to narrow them down and pick appropriate ones for your needs, and then you can incorporate them into your webpage content and other elements.

Collecting the right keywords is compiling words, phrases, and search queries related to your business activity, products, service, and the overall topic of the website. These keywords should be in-line with user needs and expectations as well as relevant to the goals of your business.

This article demonstrates how to perform keyword research to optimize an online store. The process consists of following steps.

  • Brainstorm

Before utilizing various keyword tools, consider which phrases best describe your business. For example, if you have opened a sports equipment store, related keywords might include ‘sporting gear,’ ‘kids sports equipment,’ and ‘basketball gear.’ If your topic spans multiple topics, write out all the ideas that come to mind when thinking about your Store.


Try to create as many keyword phrases as possible to maximize your chances of being ranked for different search requests.

  • Collect search suggestions

Once you have a list of phrases pertinent to your topic, it’s time to expand on it. The most efficient way to do this is using Google’s related searches feature. For example, search for “football training equipment” and scroll to the bottom of the page. You’ll likely see some related searches such as: “soccer training equipment,” “basketball training gear,” and “athletic training products.” You can then add these additional phrases to your list of research keywords.

Collect search suggestions

Select appropriate keywords for your topic, and do not focus on branded terms (unless it is your brand). To gather more key phrases, click on the related searches in the box to continue building up a list.

Collect search suggestions 2

Add all the queries you have discovered to your list of keywords to group them later.

  • Consider user intent

This step is critical to comprehend and meet customer requirements. Most e-commerce pages focus on high-value commercial keywords such as ‘buy,’ ‘price,’ or ‘on sale’ and do not consider information intent. However, individuals usually search for details before making a purchase. So why not provide them with the answers they need?

As we are selling sports equipment, people often have queries with informational intent. For example, they may want to know which equipment is needed for tracking or how to make their tracking bag lighter. You can create a FAQ page or run a blog to answer such questions. This will help improve your website’s visibility, rank for informational queries and turn prospects into customers.

Consider user intent

Using Answer the Public, you can uncover the questions people are asking about your topic. Input your main keyword into the search field, and a list of popular queries will be provided. For example, when searching for ‘camping gear,’ some questions may include ‘what camping gear do I need?’, ‘how to pack camping gear for a flight?’ and ‘where to buy camping gear?’. Answering these questions on your website can help attract more prospects.

  • Analyze your niche

The next step to expanding your keyword list is to utilize SEO tools. I usually opt for Serpstat, which is user-friendly even for those not experienced in SEO. Type in your primary phrase > choose the region you want your website to be ranked in > apply filters if needed. I am launching my sportswear brand. I would then exclude branded keywords such as ‘Nike,’ ‘Adidas,’ ‘Champion,’ etc., from my list.

Analyze your niche

You can sort your list based on factors like keyword difficulty (the level of competition for ranking your site in the top 10), search volume, cost per click, PPC competition, and the number of results. As you are starting, focus primarily on keyword difficulty and search volume. For starters, aim for keywords with difficulty between 10 and 50, as anything lower may not be valuable, and anything higher is too tricky.

If you have multiple product categories on your website, conduct this same research for each one and export the words that will be beneficial to you.

  • Check your competition

If your website is already established, you can compare it with your key competitors’ websites. You may find that you are missing out on potential opportunities while your rivals rank for keywords you have yet to optimize. To identify these keywords, you can either stick with Serpstat or switch to Ahrefs. Here’s how Ahrefs can help you with this task.

Enter your domain in the search field and navigate to ‘Organic Search > Content Gap’ on the tool. You will be prompted to enter the URLs of your main competitors and select whether you want to see the keywords for any one domain/ two domains/ all of them that are ranking. To exclude brand queries, choose the second option.

Check your competition

Once you’ve done this, the tool will display a list of keywords for which at least one/ two/ all domains are ranking. This will help you understand where there is a content gap in your strategy and what topics to focus on.

  • Group the keywords

The last step will assist you in determining your future steps. To create a well-defined layout for your site, you should organize the keywords into separate categories. If the list is brief, this can be done manually.

Group the keywords

Divide your keywords into categories based on their specificity and mark each group with a different color. This may be time-consuming, but SEO tools can make the task much more manageable since many have a feature for grouping relevant keywords.

For instance, the Serpstat Keyword Clustering tool can sort a set of keywords into distinct groups depending on their semantic connections. The degree of distinction is determined by the parameters you define when initiating your project. To use this feature, go to the Tools section > select Keyword Clustering and Text Analysis > Create project > adjust the settings to your preference and download the list of keywords.

Group the keywords 2

When the report is done, click on “View Results” to access the generated report.

Group the keywords 3

You can use the tool to build or refine your website’s architecture by working with various keywords. The great thing is that it combines clusters into larger groups called superclusters and protoclusters so that you can see which topics are most closely related. Moreover, you can combine some clusters, move words to different groups, or add new keywords within the same project.

Every task can be made more straightforward when you have a plan of action. Keyword research is a prime example of this.


Q: What is keyword research?

A: Keyword research is finding and analyzing words and phrases related to your business that will help you optimize your website for higher search engine rankings.

Q: How can Serpstat help with keyword research?

A: Serpstat’s keyword analysis tools allow users to find the best website keywords and track their competitors’ rankings. It also helps users identify content gaps in their SEO strategies.

Q: How can Ahrefs help with keyword research?

A: Ahrefs’ Content Gap tool allows users to compare their domain to that of a competitor and find out which keywords the competitor is ranking for that they aren’t. This can help them determine where their content strategy needs to be improved.

Q: What are protoclusters and superclusters?

A: Protoclusters and superclusters are larger groups of related keywords combined by the Serpstat Keyword Clustering tool. These clusters can be used to understand the relationship between different keywords better and build a comprehensive SEO strategy.

Q: What is the best approach to keyword research?

A: The best approach to keyword research starts with understanding your target audience and competitors. By doing this, you will be able to identify the most profitable ideas for optimizing your store.


Following the proper steps can make keyword research more straightforward and more manageable. By understanding your target audience and competitors, you can identify the most profitable ideas to optimize your website. With tools like Serpstat and Ahrefs, you can group keywords into distinct categories that will help you build a comprehensive SEO strategy for your business. With the right approach, you can ensure that your Store is always one step ahead of the competition. So don’t delay – take action now by choosing Shopiroller!

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