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On Friday 18th April I spoke at ION Search on the Keyword Research panel, alongside James Murray of Experian/Hitwise, Stephen Emerson of The Scotsman and moderated by Kevin Gibbons of BlueGlass UK.
My short presentation looked at how one element of keyword research (looking at existing organic search visits by keyword) is becoming less and less meaningful, thanks to how much of that data is no longer provided. I presented some "hacky" solutions to extract some meaning from that data but on the whole my focus was around accepting that this data-source is no longer statistically viable and instead we should be looking more towards researching what our potential customers want to know in relation to our products; what problems are they seeking to solve - and by that token what keyword inform these requests for information.
My premise is that we need to move away from keyword research towards a rounded-content research process that identifies topics/keyword ideas that speak to all stages of your customers' purchase-journey (through search.)