4 ways to do simple SEO research

Surprise simple SEO tools are included in Google searches woman on telephone Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums 1963 courtesy Flickr Commons

Surprise! Some of the most powerful, easy to use SEO tools are right on Google’s search engine results pages. (photo courtesy Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, 1963, on Flickr Commons)

What if we showed you a simple SEO research technique that is right under your nose?

Many destination marketers and tourism partners are a little intimidated by SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for their websites and blogs.

Let’s make it easier for everyone by showing you how to get a lot of solid SEO information by paying closer attention to the data that Google already gives you, plus tell you about another fun tool that’s perfect for blog post headlines/content that answer questions people are asking.


1) Pay attention to the drop-down words when you first start typing a Google search


As soon as you start a search, Google starts guessing what you are looking for, based on what everyone else is Googling.

Again, they are telling you, right there, from their own Google data, what people are searching for related to that topic, in the words they are using to search for it. Pay attention!

Here is an example. Visitors often search for “things to do in” a destination. Hopefully your CVB, DMO, or Tourist Board website and blog posts always show up on Page One of results for that phrase.

Let’s take the phrase “things to do in Waco,” a city in Texas.

Notice the search suggestion words that drop down as you type in the “things to do” phrase in the search box:

Google search example things to do in Waco simple SEO

Google trying to guess what you are looking for, as you type a query.


Many of those items could be the subject of a blog post.

They would do very well in search results if you match the post title to the search term, because then you would be answering people’s actual search queries in the words they are using to search for it.

  •  “Things to do in (your town’s name) with kids”
  •  “Things to do in (your town’s name) on Sunday”
  •  “Things to do in (your town’s name) with dogs”


… and so on. Your blog’s content marketing plan is writing itself.

Now, keep scrolling down the SERP (Search Engine Results Page.) Google will tell you more.


2) Google will often tell you what “People also ask”


More ways to see what users are searching for will often pop up partway down the results page, as “People also ask.”

This is more free search data, straight from Google.

Google search suggestions People also ask things to do in Waco simple SEO

Google’s “People also ask” suggestions for more simple SEO insights. “Magnolia” is a well-known U.S. attraction in Waco, based on a TV show and magazine.


These give you a few more ideas for web pages and blog posts. Looks like Waco tourism saw those searches about free activities because this free stuff to do in Waco page comes right up for that search term.

Related: Get more links to your CVB, DMO, or tourism partner website.

Keep scrolling to the bottom of the search results for some more data you can use.


3) Look for Google’s “Related searches” at the bottom


Even more simple SEO goodies, right there…

Related searches at the bottom of the search results page.

“Related searches” at the bottom of the search results page. Not every search query brings back this many related searches; keep experimenting with wording.


You know a blog post about “Romantic things to do in Waco, TX” is going to be an evergreen SEO winner every Valentine’s Day, right?

Here is one more free tool that returns search results with mind-map-like images of people’s actual search queries, on the who, what, when, where, why model, plus a few more questions.


4) Try “Answer the Public” to see questions people ask


You can get a few free searches on Answer the Public, certainly enough to give you even more ideas for blog posts and content.

The power of the tool is that these are questions people are really asking on search engines. You need to tweak your content and titles to provide the best answers to what they are seeking.

The default is to get UK results in English. You may want to change that before you get started, for the most accurate results for your location and situation.

Answer the Public results things to do in Waco simple SEO

Results are first presented as an image like this, but you can scroll down for a word listing. Darker green dots mean a more popular search term.


Answer the Public does better with one- or two-word searches than with longer phrases and sentences, so experiment with how you do your search there.

RelatedPhoto SEO – images can help people find you.

Results are downloadable, and include search questions broken out alphabetically, which can make content ideas easier to find.

Answer the Public results alphabeticals things to do in Waco

Alphabeticals are easier to skim on Answer the Public.


See? You can do this SEO stuff without breaking a sweat! 😊

Use the buttons below to share this post with your tourism partners and destination marketing friends, and bookmark it for yourself; this is SEO that’s easy to do and pays big dividends.

If you would like a quick content audit and/or advice on getting more out of your blog and websitecontact us and let’s talk.

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