B2B companies struggle with keyword research for various reasons. One of the causes is that the core topic’s search volume is highly focused around a few highly competitive keywords. Every niche is different when it comes to B2B keyword research.

The basics

The first step of keyword research is to build out a list of possible keywords. At this stage, you can be liberal with adding keywords here as all of them will not make their cut as potential targets. A few fundamental keywords will have a role to play in the b2b keyword strategy. They may be terms that are obvious descriptions of your product or service. It could also be frequently used buzzwords in your space that are good additions to the list.

b2b keyword research
B2B Keyword Research: Best Practices For A Successful SEO Strategy


We always start a new project with a B2B client with a kick-off questionnaire which asks the client to share relevant information

  • The major products or service competitors
  • The biggest competitors in B2B keyword research
  • Publications both online and offline that the prospects and customers read.
  • Through leaders in their space

Even if you are working in-house, reviewing and revisiting them can be a great jumping point for B2B keyword search.

Historical data

Looking at the site’s or the client’s historical PPC and SEO statistics might be a good way to generate ideas. An ignored opportunity for an older site may be to step back and observe individual searches.. Then you want to refresh or create new content around those assets.

Pain points

Pain points are important in B2B keyword strategy that it allows you to demonstrate to searchers that

  • You understand the problem
  • You have solutions

There are several ways to locate these types of keywords.

Mining reviews, testimonials and customer interviews

A mere observation of customer and prospect data can be helpful as well. You need to look at

  • Your own customer testimonials
  • Testimonies of competitors
  • Customer interviews your customer service and sales teams have conducted
  • Talking to sales and customer service representatives.

All these can get you started from many fruitful keyword paths. Another great source is third-party reviews. This is a lot similar to forums where you can listen in to what users will be saying about their competitor’s products.


There are a few handy tools like SEMrush and Ahrefs to see what your competitors are ranking for a common and effective B2B keyword strategy. There are various types of competitors include

Search result competitors

The sites that you compete against in search results may not always be the product or service competitors

  • Coming to information glossary you may be competing against publishing websites or Wikipedia.
  • For review, comparison or the best of reviews you may be competing against a third-party review and comparison site.

Product and service competitors

Observing the direct product and service competitors is a viable approach. You need to be aware of a few possible pitfalls.

  • Competitors may or may not be less authoritative, so you may not target the right items.
  • Competitors may be focusing on phrases that generate traffic but do not convert. So, make certain that you understand the objective of distinct things and how you intend to convert traffic to your site.
  • Mostly the competitors would generate much of the SEO traffic outside of the branded queries. So, it all depends upon your niche and this will not work.

Industry resources

Another great way to formulate a B2B keyword strategy is by leveraging industry resources.

Conference agendas

The agendas for the conference of the prospects attending can give you an understanding of the hot topics in this niche. In addition, the things that are part of your interest can be part of your keyword list.

Publishing sites

Niche publications play an important role in B2B keyword research.  Just with competitors, you may look for terms and pages that rank and drive traffic to the site. But make it a point that these sites have a similar topical theme along with the same level of authority.

Overlooked keyword opportunities

Many B2B companies are operational in regulated industries and are specific about the type of content they publish on their blog.

Top funnel glossary content

In some cases, certain content that may be viable for a B2B company may not be suitable for other targeted audiences.

  • It may speak to different audiences in an organization. The content could be a touch point for certain users when they are searching for certain features.
  • The assets are known to frequently generate passive links from authoritative and relevant sites where they start to rank in search results. It helps the lower funnel pages rank and generate traffic.
  • The pages also signify topical authority to Google by allowing you to fill relevant topics around some of your better-converting terms.

Mentioning competitors

Many B2B websites are reluctant to include competition for a variety of reasons. However, if you are ready to do so, you will open up specific keyword opportunities farther down the funnel.

The first one is the” best of queries”. When a searcher is looking for the best result, they want a series of options. This would mean listing out the competitors where you need to mention good things about them.

Mapping terms to topics along with a content plan

Finally, you need to take a series of keywords that will provide insights on how to do b2b keyword research. You need to start to both cut and pull and then turn it into action. All of the terms can be run through your preferred keyword tool to assist you in prioritizing depending on keyword difficulty and search traffic. Hence it is important

  • Go to the search results and analyse the SERP to make sure that you are likely to rank. Do you think there are sites like yours in terms of content that you are looking to create? 
  • Confirm that the terms are relevant to your site and audience
  • Determine whether you can create relevant content around the topics you’ve chosen to establish topical authority.

The last step is crucial in understanding how to do B2B keyword research. The reason being you are able to obtain a potential list of keywords from the above process. There are various tools along with Process or even Google to find related terms and search suggestions.

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