International SEO involves optimizing your website to rank well in search engine results across different countries and languages. Keyword and market research are crucial components of international SEO as they help you understand the preferences, behaviors, and needs of your target audience in various regions.

To start, identify the countries or regions you want to target and determine the languages spoken there. Conduct thorough keyword research for each target market to discover the terms and phrases your potential customers are using when searching for products or services like yours. Use tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs to gather relevant keywords with high search volumes and low competition.

Next, analyze the search intent behind these keywords. Understand what users are looking for when they enter these search queries. This will help you tailor your content to match their needs and provide valuable solutions.

Consider cultural differences in language usage between countries. A keyword that works well in one country might not yield the same results in another due to linguistic variations or cultural sensitivities. Adapt your keywords and fresh content accordingly to resonate with each target audience effectively.

Furthermore, study your competitors in each target market. Identify the keywords they’re targeting and analyze their content strategies. This can provide valuable insights into market trends and help you refine your own SEO approach.

Regularly monitor and track the performance of your chosen keywords across different regions. Adjust your strategy based on the data you gather to improve your website’s visibility and rankings in international search results.

By conducting comprehensive keyword and market research, you can create an effective international SEO strategy that drives targeted traffic to your website and helps you expand your global reach.

What is SEO keyword research and why it is important?

SEO keyword research is the process of identifying and analyzing the specific words and phrases that people use when searching for information, products, or services on search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo. These keywords are crucial because they help determine which terms to target in your website content, allowing you to attract relevant traffic and improve your search engine rankings.

Here’s why SEO keyword research is important:

1. Understanding User Intent: By researching keywords, you gain insight into what your target audience is searching for and why. This understanding enables you to create content that aligns with user intent, addressing their needs and providing valuable solutions.

2. Improving Relevance: Targeting the right keywords ensures that your content is relevant to your audience’s queries. When your content matches what users are looking for, it’s more likely to appear in search results, increasing visibility and driving organic traffic to your website.

3. Enhancing Competitiveness: Keyword research helps you identify the terms and phrases your competitors are targeting. By analyzing competitor keywords, you can identify gaps or opportunities in the market and adjust your SEO strategy accordingly to stay competitive.

4. Optimizing Content: Incorporating targeted keywords into your website content, including titles, headings, meta descriptions, and body text, helps search engines understand the relevance of your pages to specific queries. This optimization increases the likelihood of your pages ranking higher in search results for those keywords.

5. Attracting Qualified Traffic: Focusing on relevant keywords ensures that the traffic you attract to your website is more likely to be interested in your offerings. Quality traffic not only improves your chances of conversions but also contributes to a better user experience and higher engagement metrics.

6. Maximizing ROI: Conducting keyword research allows you to prioritize your efforts and resources by focusing on high-value keywords with significant search volume and reasonable competition. This strategic approach maximizes the return on investment (ROI) for your SEO efforts.

SEO keyword research is essential for understanding your audience, improving your website’s relevance and visibility in search results, staying competitive, attracting qualified traffic, and optimizing your overall SEO strategy for better results

International SEO through keyword and market research

Conducting international SEO through keyword and market research involves several steps to ensure that your website is optimized for global audiences across different countries and languages. Here’s a simplified guide:

1. Identify Target Markets: 

When planning international SEO, analyze language preferences, cultural nuances, and market potential. Consider factors like dialects, consumer behavior, and competition. Assess regulatory requirements and emerging trends. Tailor strategies to each target country or region to optimize effectiveness and resonate with local audiences effectively.

2. Keyword Research:

Utilize keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs to identify relevant keywords for each target market. Translate keywords into the local language(s) to ensure they align with the search terms used by your international audience. Analyze search volume, competition, and search intent behind the keywords to prioritize your efforts.

3. Cultural Considerations:

Understand cultural differences in each target market to adapt your content and keywords accordingly. Avoid literal translations that may not resonate with local audiences and instead focus on creating culturally relevant content.

4. Competitive Analysis:

Study competitors in each target market to understand their keyword strategies and content approach. Identify gaps or opportunities where you can differentiate your content and target untapped keywords.

5. Content Optimization:

Optimize website content, including titles, meta descriptions, headings, and body text, with targeted keywords for each international market. Create multilingual content to cater to diverse language preferences, ensuring a seamless user experience.

6. Technical SEO:

Implement tags to indicate language and regional variations of your webpages to search engines. Ensure proper internationalization and localization of your website, including language-specific URLs, currency, and contact information.

7. Monitoring and Optimization:

Regularly monitor the performance of targeted keywords in international markets using analytics tools. Analyze data to identify trends, opportunities, and areas for improvement.

Continuously optimize your international SEO strategy based on insights and market changes.

8. Local Link Building:

Build links from reputable websites in each target market to improve your website’s authority and visibility in local search results. Collaborate with local influencers or businesses to amplify your online presence in international markets.

What are the best tools for international SEO keyword research?

1. Google Keyword Planner:

Offers data on search volumes and competition for keywords across various countries and regions. Provides keyword suggestions and related terms based on user searches on Google. Allows filtering by language and location to tailor keyword research to specific international markets.  Integration with Google Ads allows for insight into the commercial viability of keywords.

2. SEMrush:

Provides comprehensive keyword data for multiple languages and regions, covering over 190 countries. Offers insights into competitors’ keyword strategies in international markets. Allows users to analyze organic and paid search results, including keyword positions and trends. Features keyword difficulty and search volume metrics to help prioritize keyword targeting.

3. Ahrefs:

Offers insights into keyword performance across different countries and languages, including search volume, clicks, and CPC data. Provides keyword ideas and suggestions based on competitor analysis and search trends. Allows users to track keyword rankings and monitor changes over time in international markets. Offers detailed backlink analysis and site audit features to enhance overall SEO performance.

4. Moz Keyword Explorer:

Provides keyword research data for international markets, including search volume, difficulty, and organic CTR. Offers localized keyword suggestions based on country and language preferences. Allows users to discover long-tail and related keywords to target specific niches in international markets. Integrates with Moz’s other SEO tools for comprehensive website optimization.


Offers keyword suggestions and search volume data for multiple search engines, including Google, Bing, YouTube, and Amazon. Provides localized keyword data for various countries and languages, helping users tailor their SEO strategy accordingly. Offers keyword research features specific to e-commerce platforms and social media channels, enhancing overall digital marketing efforts.

By leveraging these tools, digital marketers and SEO professionals can conduct thorough keyword research for international markets, identify high-potential keywords, and optimize their websites to improve visibility and attract targeted traffic from diverse global audiences.

Important things to do and not to do when researching keywords for international SEO


1. Research: Spend time understanding the keywords people use in different countries.

2. Localization: Adapt keywords to match the language and culture of each target market.

3. Competition Analysis: Look at what your competitors are doing and learn from them.

4. Tracking: Keep track of how well your chosen keywords are performing in each country.

5. Optimization: Use keywords naturally in your content to improve your website’s visibility.


1. Guesswork: Don’t assume you know what keywords people are using without research.

2. Literal Translation: Avoid directly translating keywords without considering cultural differences.

3. Ignoring Competition: Don’t overlook what your competitors are doing in international markets.

4. Set and Forget: Don’t assume your keyword strategy will remain effective without regular monitoring.

5. Keyword Stuffing: Avoid cramming too many keywords into your content, as this can harm your SEO efforts.


Conducting international SEO through keyword and market research is essential for optimizing your website’s visibility and relevance in global search results. By identifying target markets, researching keywords, considering cultural nuances, analyzing competitors, optimizing content, and implementing technical SEO strategies, you can effectively reach diverse audiences across different countries and languages. Utilizing the right tools and following best practices while avoiding common pitfalls ensures that your international SEO efforts yield positive results. Regular monitoring and optimization are key to maintaining and improving your website’s performance in international markets over time. By adhering to these guidelines, you can create a robust international SEO strategy that drives targeted traffic, enhances user engagement, and expands your global reach.