Keyword Difficulty: And Why Is It Important

May 18, 2021
May 18, 2021 Mehr Jan

Writing and ranking are two concepts. In SEO, the latter is highly critical.

By now as we continue talking about how SEO writing plays a key role in the way you rank, we will also hit upon another major topic that really matters- keyword difficulty.

Before continuing, let me give you a quick overview on what do we mean by ‘keyword’.

So this basically stands for the word or set of words around which you try to rank. This comes from the fact that there is someone who is trying to look for something.

In today’s day and age, you will not type out a whole inquiry. You just put in the key words and Google does the rest.

These are basically what we call keywords and they help in giving you a ranking when you focus on optimizing your blog post around these.

But then what is meant by keyword difficulty?

This is what we will be covering today, also highlighting the importance of it.

So let’s start:

What is Keyword Difficulty?

what is keyword difficulty

This is what we also call SEO Difficulty.

It is what is known as understanding how hard it is to get a ranking on Google’s organic results.

This is extremely crucial for the kind of writing you are putting out there.

It is all about getting a high ranking in Google’s search engine.

Remember how we have already talked about how the search engine is the holy grail to all your efforts.

Get that working and make sure you utilize and represent your quality work by choosing out keywords which are of great value.

Now we will talk about all the elements that impact the keyword difficulty:

Importance of Keyword Difficulty

why its so important?

It is of key importance. You first need to know how there are a number of different factors which actually play a role in determining the worth of the keyword. These include:

  • domain authority
  • page authority
  • content quality

It is this trio which will decide on where should the keyword ranking should be falling.

See having a keyword rank means to understand where it plays a role in keyword research.

You will need to understand how monthly search volumes also play an integral role in understanding the keyword difficulty.

There are actually different tools which measure the keyword difficulty and take different factors into consideration.

But the main objective and idea is pretty much the same.

Let’s now talk about how it is used in different ways to determine how Google ranking will be done and how hard to difficult it is to get that kind of ranking for it.

Keyword Difficulty as Metric

metrics that matter

Firstly lets see how we use a metric system for ranking each keyword’s difficulty.

This comes in a scale of 0 to 100.

It is quite basic in concept-this means that if you are getting a high score, it means it becomes harder for you to rank for it.

There are different tools and programmes that help you to get into the ranking mechanism. Some tool aids also make use of colors to differentiate and navigate through the list of keywords.

The easy score usually comes with a color of green, light green means still easy, orange suggests its possible to get a good ranking, dark orange means it is becoming harder.

Red means very hard and dark red, which falls under the scale of 85-100 means that it is almost impossible to even think that you will get a ranking.

How the keyword difficulty is calculated?


When you are trying to get a good understanding of how keyword difficulty ranking is done, you need to also understand another element that comes into full play- this is the backlink profile

Did you know that websites ranking get a first SERP on the basis of an important factor- how many quality and quantity of backlinks do they have?

This calculation comes into the forefront as different quality metrics are used to ensure that quality backlinks are being utilized to give you that quality rating.

Some of these are :

  • Domain authority
  • Page authority
  • Citation
  • Trust flow

Factors to Consider in Keyword Difficulty

When it comes to ranking for quality keywords, we have already mentioned how a few factors-both internal and external have to be considered.

Let’s now talk about those in detail:

Your Competition

There are no two ways about it. This is the most important factor you should know of. SEO means you want to outrank all the good competition out there.

So this basically means you are looking into the  keywords of your competitors and when you do, you should focus on a few important points as you try to define their quality of work. This includes:

the quality of the content- see how does your competitor’s work is rating by analyzing the quality of their blog posts and writeups

on page optimization– its all about how quirky and fast they are in representing their work in terms of how it falls parallel to quality on-page SEO ranking

backlinks- we have already discussed this, you want to take on quality keywords only when you know there is a strong competitive and authoritative links which are linking to your site

The higher the authority there is for websites ranking for a keyword, the more difficult it becomes to be able to outrank them.

Your Website’s Authority

So this basically means you are not just looking into your competitor’s site but you are also finding out how your own website plays a role in keyword ranking.

This is very important especially if you have created a new website.

The aspect of having zero backlinks makes your content fall flat, despite you working so hard to create quality content.

There are again a couple of metrics you need to follow and understand which will ensure that despite being new in the market, you will still be able to get a good ranking for keywords and have a better understanding on how does keyword difficulty plays a role in it.

The Content’s Quality

It is important that you also look into ways in which you keep the quality of your content at an all high.

Know this- even if you are getting quality links, it will  not be possible for you to get high rankings if your content is not of high quality.

So a few things you should definitely get a clear check on:

How is my content coming in parallel to that of my competitor’s?

Is it possible for me to bring my work to the same level and work in the same way as my competitor’s when it comes to getting good rankings?

When it comes to my content, is it possible for me to provide benefits on the same level as that of my competitors? One of the major things you have to always remember is that your content’s quality is measured by the advantage they are giving to the readers.

Getting the Right Kind of Search Intent

This is an integral part of creating quality site with quality webpages. When you are working on a keyword, understand that what kind of content is the keyword leading towards.

Did you know that there are actually four kinds of search intent. You need to get a clear understanding on what kind are you looking for.

From your keyword to the content you have written, everything comes into a framework of intent.

The four main types of search intent types are:

  • Navigational
  • Informational
  • Transactional
  • Commercial

Make Use of Keyword Difficulty

So now that you know what keyword difficulty is, here’s looking into how you can make use of keyword strategy to get your SEO strategy optimized in the best possible way:

Analyze the importance and the relevance of the keyword. That is your biggest criteria in knowing if you are on the right track or not.

This means you can check onto the SERP results as well. And see how different websites are ranking for the exact same keyword.

And yes, when it comes to ranking for a highly competitive keyword, don’t freak out. It is actually possible to rank for such keywords. It is when you know what you are doing.

A few things to keep in mind include:

  • Focus and aim for outstanding content- this means you create content which shows your expertise in the matter
  • The relevance of the topic in hand is integral
  • Make sure you are having quality backlinks. When you are able to hold onto domain authority, your chances of getting a keyword, even if its is difficult, a good ranking on Google’s search results.
  • Compare the keyword’s difficulty score on various search tools. This one is important and also tricky. You can ensure a good quality ranking if you are able to follow these simple steps.

Remember your keyword and how you use it to get quality ranking is an interesting combination. This article provided you an overview on how you can attain amazing results and work out the dynamics of keyword difficulty.


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