Is Ahrefs keyword difficulty metric reliable?

13 replies
  • SEO
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I've been using Ahrefs and Kwfinder for my keyword research for a while now.

However, i have noticed something weird in Ahrefs, when i find a few keywords with a 4 value keyword difficulty when i check the same keyword in Kwfinder i get a keyword difficulty of around 30-45.

This is a dilemma to me, which one of those to believe to determine the actual keyword difficulty. One says the keyword is easy the other one says it's hard.

Does anybody have a serious opinion on the matter?

Thank you

NOTE: My site is still quite new and not ranking for any content in the first page yet.
#ahrefs #difficulty #keyword #metric #reliable
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  • Profile picture of the author Kopely
    I am new to the online marketing world but I too have noticed different keyword rankings between online keyword tools. My guess is that each company has their own unique algorithm to "rank" keywords. My recommendation is to use the tool that you like most and that is highly regarded from successful online marketers.

    I help people feel better and stronger through posture correction exercise programs and content. Please say hello!

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  • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
    None of the tools are super accurate but they are OK for giving you some guidance on KWs you MIGHT look at. I would plug the keyword into a Google search, see what websites show up on the first page and make the judgment, yourself, about whether you can overtake any of them.
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    • Profile picture of the author kurosaki4d
      I see, thank you for your insight.
      Based on what you said, on what criteria do you rely on to make the choice to go for a keyword or not?
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  • Profile picture of the author msulcs
    Not really. There are way too many factors to consider.

    Also, your own page authority makes a big difference whether you can rank the keyword easily or not.
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    • Profile picture of the author kurosaki4d
      Thank you Msulcs!

      Would you be kind enough to elaborate on the factors.
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  • Profile picture of the author ozstylo
    Its damn near impossible to compare keyword difficulty or search difficulty or whatever each tool calls it. They are proprietary metrics based on a number of signals that each tool uses and weights uniquely to themselves.

    Those numbers are useful only to compare to other keywords on the same tool.

    Further, I wouldn't take a difficulty number by itself when evaluating keywords. You can use it as an initial filter, but then go deeper. Look at the SERP and the attributes of each site that ranks. I've seen low KD for keywords but the SERP had top sites with lots of back links and vice versa where a medium KD showed a SERP that had low quality sites (this is a gold mine).
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  • Profile picture of the author AlwayzBluFFinG
    Actually, Ahrefs published a video a few days ago titled: How Reliable are Keyword Difficulty scores?

    here is a link:

    They cover exactly about why different tools show different metrics and what's the best way to extract more value from them.
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  • Profile picture of the author samsabir
    I would suggest using SEMrush to do extensive and detailed keyword research, its is ten-times more precise and comprehensive than ahrefs.
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  • Profile picture of the author idbssoftware
    I think Ahref far better compare to Kwfinder
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  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    Tools are unreliable... especially for highly saturated or high competition niches

    Here's a FREE WORK AROUND: Load your keywords onto the local version of Google you want to rank for

    Pay attention to the top 10 results

    Are they blog posts or quora posts? If so, competition is easy


    Are they MASSIVE blog posts with lots of authority? If so, competition is tougher

    Pick out the RIGHT writers for your project - only $0.0075 per word - DIRT CHEAP!
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