KWFinder Review & Tutorial

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KWFinder Review & Tutorial

I’ll tell you a secret. A few years ago I kind of sucked at keyword research. Which isn’t great as an SEO and content marketer.

It’s not that I wasn’t getting results, it’s just that the whole process seemed so boring – and I often found myself making excuses not to do any at all.

​But if you want to promote your small business online or build traffic to your niche sites, there’s no shying away from both content and search marketing as the most cost-effective way of attracting more buying customers to your website – and this means doing keyword research.

* If you're interested in trying KWFinder, they have a free plan with 5 daily keyword searches here. ​

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​​​Free Website SEO Checklist

​​Follow this essential PDF guide to make your website or ecommerce store SEO-friendly...

​Accurate Keyword Research Is Essential

​For most small firms and solopreneurs, the most efficient way of gaining traction online is through strategic blogging – and I mean ‘strategic’ because your content marketing and SEO efforts have to rely on solid keyword research in order to grow your site traffic exponentially over time.

So keyword research is something you have to get a handle on - as everything you do with online content comes out of it.

But you also have to learn how to perform keyword research effectively – ​because if you ​don't your site traffic will never grow, even if you create high quality content and promote the hell out of it.

The solution ​is learning how to use the right professional keyword research tools to find low competition keyword phrases ​with ​commercial intent – ​that don’t have too much competition in Google - so you have a ​good chance of ranking for those terms on page one.

Sounds easy right? Well it can be if you choose the right tool…

However, this is where the confusion starts for most small business bloggers – as there are literally hundreds of keyword research tools available online – each claiming to be the next best thing since the last one.

I should know – I’ve spent hundreds of dollars and hours trying loads of them.

From the free Google Keyword Planner to SEM Rush at $100 a month, to Long Tail Pro at $40 a month and Ahrefs at $100 a month (to name but the tip of the iceberg), the amount of tools, feature sets, bells and whistles available is mind boggling.

What I need as a small business owner – and what you really need - is a trustworthy and reliable tool that’s easy to use and doesn’t cost loads of money – with data you can rely on to grow your blog, leads and sales.

​Which is why I literally breathed a sigh of relief when I found KWFinder from Mangools, which I now use in combination with Ahrefs for all of my keyword research - and have done for the last year.

Meet The Mangools Team: The People Behind KWFinder

Mangools team

With offices in the dynamic Slovakian cities of Bratislava and Prievidza, Mangools is an exciting young company founded by Peter Hrbacik in 2014 and now run by a total of four online entrepreneurs.

Mangools Bratislava

Mangools office in Bratislava

In the last few years they have expanded upon their original keyword research tool KWFinder, with SERPChecker (Google SERP competitor analysis), SERPWatcher (rank checker), and LinkMiner (backlink analysis) – with the accuracy and usability of their tools really helping to set the company apart in a crowded marketplace.

Based on my personal experience as a premium account holder, I’ve found their email support and online chat very responsive – meaning they stand behind their products with excellent customer support and are constantly updating the feature sets of each tool based on customer feedback.

In this context, Mangools are everything you would expect from a software as a service firm who are serious about building their brand and making a name for themselves with top quality products.

​This is very important for me, because if you’re going to invest in a software product or service, you need to know the company behind it can be trusted to update their tools and not run a mile if you need some help.

What Does KWFinder Do?

When it comes to conducting keyword research there are two ways of going about it…

Firstly, you can engage in what is called ‘traditional keyword research’ – which is when you use seed keywords to find what your target audience is searching for online – then assess the various traffic and competition metrics of those keywords. You can then create long-form content based around these phrases and should rank well for them if you’ve chosen them carefully.

Secondly, you can research keywords by reverse engineering what your competitors are doing (this is called ‘competition keyword research’), so you can see what proven keywords they are targeting - or have overlooked - that you can ‘steal’ to create your own content with.

KWFinder is exceptional at the first of these two keyword research methodologies, but doesn’t do competitor keyword research at all – which is why I double it up with an Ahrefs subscription which handles everything else.

​However, if you’re just starting out with niche site building or are a newbie level or intermediate business blogger – KWFinder is all you need to quickly and easily find valuable, low competition keywords you can rank on page one for and that will actually grow your traffic going forward.

​KWFinder Metrics

The tool is so easy to use because it literally gives you the ‘green light’ for low competition keywords – deploying a nifty traffic light system for easy, medium and hard to rank for phrases.

Keyword research metrics

* If you're interested in trying KWFinder, they have a free plan with 5 daily keyword searches here. ​

seo checklist

​​​Free Website SEO Checklist

​​Follow this essential PDF guide to make your website or ecommerce store SEO-friendly...

The metrics KWFinder produces are easy to understand too – starting with a host of helpful options on the left hand side of the screen based on your chosen keyword and related terms, including:

  • Arrow next to main keyword = Search related terms
  • Trend = Search volume trend in last 12 months
  • Search = Average monthly search volume in last 12 months
  • CPC = Average cost per click in Google Adwords (to gauge commercial intent)
  • PPC = Level of competition in Pay Per Click in Google Adwords (to gauge ad competition)
  • KD (Keyword Difficulty) = Overall keyword SEO difficulty from 0 = ‘easy’ to 100 = ‘don’t do it’

(Calculated as the average link profile strength [LPS] of URL’s ranking on the first page of Google)

Here’s the full traffic light system chart:

  • 0 - 9: effortless
  • 10 - 19: go for it
  • 20 - 29: easy
  • 30 - 39: still easy
  • 40 - 54: possible
  • 55 - 74: hard
  • 75 - 89: very hard
  • 90 - 100: don't do it

  • Keyword SEO Difficulty

    Below the list of keywords you also have two blue buttons, one to add your selected terms to a new or existing list (great for writing blog posts), and the second to export your chosen keywords and their metrics as a CSV file or copy them to a clipboard.

    On the left hand side of the keyword research screen you’ll see the top 10 in Google for that particular keyword, together with a large visual representation of the keyword difficulty and the monthly search volumes over the course of a year – starting with the month you’re currently in.

    Below this you’ll see the 10 URL’s in order from the Google first page SERP, followed by the following key metrics:

  • DA = Moz domain authority for the URL, min = 0, max = 100
  • PA = Moz page authority for the URL, min = 0, max = 100
  • MR = MozRank of the URL, min = 0, max = 10
  • MT = MozTrust of the URL, min = 0, max = 10
  • Links = Number of external authority passing links to the URL
  • FB = number of Facebook shares for the URL
  • LPS = Overall Link Profile Strength of the URL,
    calculated from DA, PA, MR, MT and other metrics
    Min = 0, Max = 100
  • Est. Visits = Estimated visits per month on this SERP position.
    (Calculated from the average monthly search volume)

  • Below the top 10 Google SERP screen you’ll find a blue button to load another page of SERPS, and a button to further analyse the top ten rankings in Mangools other tool, SERPChecker.

    Additional KWFinder Features

    Keyword metric filters

    When searching for keywords in the main ‘Suggestions’ pane, KWFinder lets you search using a variety of languages, countries and states (for local keywords) – or the default region of ‘Everywhere’, and also lets you search Google ‘Autocomplete’ suggestions and Google Questions to further refine your keyword search.

    In all panes you can toggle the ‘Results Filter’ and set your search preferences based on all the key metrics outlines above, plus also ‘included’ and ‘excluded’ keywords and ‘number of words’.

    ​The net result is you can slice and dice your metrics any way you like to get really refined and accurate results.

    Proof KWFinder Works

    With such a wide variety of keyword research tools available, it’s important to remind ourselves of the central tenets of what small business owners looking to grow their blogs require – namely good pricing, trusted customer service, ease of use and accurate data.

    And while KWFinder ticks all the boxes for the first three of these requirements – it’s the accuracy of its data where this tool really excels.

    Here’s an example from the Content Champion blog – I’ve picked something realistic so you can see what can be achieved by any small business starting from scratch.

    A few months ago I wanted to create a power post on building a customer avatar (one of the essential first stages of your content marketing strategy), so I fired up KWFinder and identified a keyword I could potentially rank for given my site authority – ‘customer avatar’ – that had decent search volume of 320 a month. I also chose some associated keywords that I wanted the article to rank for as well on a thematic basis (more on this below).

    KWFinder review

    I then created a 3,000-word power post with custom graphics, resources and some related videos - and formatted it all with Thrive Architect with a table of contents and coherent subsections. Naturally I made sure to optimize the page properly for SEO purposes using my target keyword phrase and related terms.

    I find it usually takes about 6 months for a new post to start gaining serious traction in Google (when promoted), but you can see after 4 and a bit months this post has already attracted over 200 page views a month and growing.

    KWFinder Tutorial

    It has also started to rank for multiple keywords, not just my target phrase - which is already on page one.

    Seed keyword research

    Wow you might be saying. What a lot of work for such a small amount of traffic.

    But look at that traffic screenshot again – these are highly targeted and engaged readers who spend an average of nearly 9 minutes on the page. So the key thing here is that they are interested enough to read most or all of the article – which builds trust and credibility.

    And of these unique visitors, 112 of them have signed up for the page specific lead magnet of the customer avatar template (a 16% content upgrade conversion rate), and a further 6 of these went on to request more information on our content and search marketing services after receiving targeted emails on the back end.

    KWFinder keyword research tool

    At the time of writing - one of these has become a monthly retainer client and another has signed up for a one-off smaller project. Here’s an example of the types of enquiries this generated:

    KWFinder from Mangools

    This targeted email list will keep growing over time and no doubt attract even more business – so this is totally worth doing even with the relatively low numbers – due to the high engagement levels this kind of marketing achieves.

    ​Multiply this by each content asset you produce and you can quickly see how content marketing can generate some seriously good leads – and certainly enough leads for a niche virtual agency like ours.

    * If you're interested in trying KWFinder, they have a free plan with 5 daily keyword searches here. ​

    seo checklist

    ​​​Free Website SEO Checklist

    ​​Follow this essential PDF guide to make your website or ecommerce store SEO-friendly...

    KWFinder Pricing

    At the time of writing there are three price points for KWFinder, which you can pay in either Euros or Dollars on a monthly or annual basis. KWFinder is bundled together with the other three tools in the range and the main difference between the pricing levels is the access limit thresholds at the basic, premium and agencies levels.

    The tools starts at $49 a month for 100 keyword lookups per 24 hours and 200 keyword suggestions per search, so this or the $69 premium plan is all most small business bloggers will need.

     Here are the current different pricing levels so you can compare them. Just click on the image to enlarge it…
    KWFinder pricing

    ​How To Do Keyword Research For Blog Posts Using ​KWFinder

    The best way of teaching you how to use KWFinder for your blog posts is to show you how I research main phrases and associated terms to form the basis of a power post.

    So in this video I’ll outline the process from start to finish based on a completely new site with no authority – and explain all the metrics the tool uses to assess your keywords. You can read the transcript below.

    ​Read The Video Transcript

    KWFinder Review: My Verdict

    OK – so with everything said above, here’s my conclusion on KWFinder…

    What I Like

    • ​Ease of use and user friendly interface
    • ​Trusted and authoritative keyword metrics (that get results)
    • ​A great customer service team with regular updates
    • check
      Part of a suite of complimentary software products
    • check
      Competitive pricing compared to other similar tools
    • check
      Great at traditional seed keyword research

    What I Don't Like

    • ​Only does traditional seed keyword research (but does it very well)
    • ​Keyword threshold of 200 keywords on lower plan could be increased
    • ​Very occasional ‘false positive’ glitch, where initially ‘green’ easy keywords become harder ‘yellow’ ones when you click through for more information (see video – but this is extremely rare as is a result of real time updates which is a good thing overall). * As of September 2018 this now been dealt with in a new major update.

    I don’t recommend many tools because most don’t live up to the hype – but KWFinder does what it says on the tin in a user-friendly, accurate way – and the company standing behind it offers excellent customer service.

    With prices starting at just $49 a month (which also gives access to all the other software), this tool is well within reach for every small business looking to grow their online leads and sales through blogging.

    If you’re just getting started with content and search marketing, and have never carried out any keyword research before – then KWFinder is the only tool you need to make informed, trusted decisions about the keywords and phrases that will provide the essential foundation to your online success.

    I use this tool several times a week at Content Champion – for client work and for our own blog marketing – and I’ve always been impressed with the reliability of the metrics it produces and the simple way you can create valuable lists of longtail keywords to use in the creation of power posts and pillar pages.

    When it comes to choosing the right keyword research tool for your small business, don’t get confused by the myriad options available – simply forget the rest and go with KWFinder. In my opinion it’s currently the best keyword tool on the market for traditional style ‘seed’ keyword research.

    * If you're interested in trying KWFinder, they have a free plan with 5 daily keyword searches here. ​

    This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure for more details.

    KWFinder seed keyword research software

    This article has 15 comments

    1. Martin Lindeskog


      Thanks for the thorough review! I would like to use a keyword tool for SEO in the future, but I can’t add extra $50 per month at the moment. Do they have a trial period, or do you think they will add a pay-as-you-go/”per keyword” in the future?

    2. Brian

      Does it do anything that Ahrefs doesn’t? Seems like everything you mentioned, I’ve seen in Ahrefs? What made you leave Ahrefs?

      • Loz James

        Hey Brian

        I still use Ahrefs for backlink audits, site audits and competition keyword research – but find this easier and faster for seed keyword research when creating blog posts. I do cross reference the metrics though as it’s good to get a second opinion sometimes.

        KWFinder is also great for newbie bloggers who want to get started with keyword research without all the extras that Ahrefs offers.

        So to answer your question they compliment each other perfectly and I have accounts with both 🙂

        Thanks for dropping by!


    3. Julian Ann

      Good to know the premium version of KWFinder is available at a discount here 🙂

    4. Malik Tabish

      Is it better than google’s keyword planner? I am using its premium version right now. But When I compare the results of Google keyword planner and Kwfinder there is a bit difference in both of the results.
      Which one should I trust?

      • Loz James

        Hi Malik

        I wouldn’t trust any keyword tool 100% – but seeing as the Google KW tool is free then why not use both?

        Happy New Year!


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    6. Rahul Yadav

      It is so practical and detailed! Thank you for your sharing about KW Finder, especially for the functions you shared which I didn’t know before.

    7. Arooba

      I am new in content and search marketing, i think this will help me doing it in a better way. Thanks for sharing such an informative post.

    8. Shan


      I am using Keyword planner, Kwfinder and Ubersuggest right now. In your opinion which the best tool to check the Keyword difficulty?

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