What is keyword difficulty?

Keyword difficulty is an artificial metric that is supposed to show, how difficult it is to rank for a keyword. We consider it an artificial metric, as there is no official keyword difficulty released by any search engine. However, all major keyword research tools have developed their own metric for keyword difficulty. Usually, it’s a scale from 0-100 or similar. The higher the difficulty, the harder it is to get into the first page of search engine rankings.

Is keyword difficulty accurate?

Usually, it is not the most accurate metric. First of all, every research tool uses different methods to determine the difficulty. Due to this, the keyword difficulty can be different among the tools. Additionally, no tool sees all backlinks to a website. This means, that sometimes a website will be stronger than they appear to the particular tool.

Rather than taking keyword difficulty at face value, you can use it as a base. Select a couple of keywords that seem to be a low difficulty, then conduct your own research. This is especially recommended for long-form articles.

April 16, 2021
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