Sadly, the Google AdWords Keyword Tool is another favorite Google tool that is on its way out. In the coming months, it will be completely replaced by the new Google AdWords Keyword Planner, which is why you have been seeing the following message:
In this post, we’re going to look at how you can use Keyword Planner for your keyword research.
You Must Have a Google AdWords Account
While this tool is similar, the one main difference is that you must log in to your Google AdWords account. If you don’t already have a Google AdWords account, signing up is a piece of cake. Simply log in with your current Google account (ie., what you use for Gmail, YouTube, Analytics, Webmaster Tools, etc.) and sign up for Google AdWords. The signup process consists of confirming your timezone and preferred currency. Fortunately, you don’t need to create a Google AdWords campaign to use the new Keyword Planner tool.
Using the New Keyword Planner
Once you’re logged in to Google AdWords, you can find the Keyword Planner by looking under the Tools an Analysis menu. Once you’re there, you have three options:
Search for Keyword and Ad Group Ideas
The first option is similar to the options on the Google AdWords Keyword Tool, now with a simpler interface and the ability to use local targeting all the way down to the city and state level.
The Keyword Planner results page defaults to ad group ideas.
You can click on the keyword ideas tab to see a set of results similar to what you would have seen in the Keyword Tool.
Here, you can see ideas based on keywords you enter along with average search volume, competition, and CPC. You can hover over the graph to see the search volume by month for the past 12 months.
To download your keyword ideas, click the download icon at the top of your results. You can choose to include just the average monthly searches in the Excel CSV or have the searches segmented by month.
If you are planning an AdWords campaign, you can add ad groups or keyword ideas to your plan. When you click the Review Estimates button, you can get daily estimates on clicks, impressions, average position, and cost based on your budget.
Enter or Upload Keywords to See How They Perform
If you have a list of keywords already planned out, you can enter or upload them using the second option in the Keyword Planner.
You can use this to get estimates about your proposed AdWords campaign or see additional keyword ideas, average search volume, competition, and average CPC.
Multiply Keyword Lists
The third option in the Keyword Planner is to multiply keyword lists. This simply allows you to add different keywords and have Google combine them for you.
You can then get estimates about your proposed AdWords campaign or see additional keyword ideas, average search volume, competition, and average CPC.
This is a great option for local keyword research as you can add different cities in one column and primary keywords and phrases in the other. This will save you time from having to copy and paste different groups of keywords with locations in oder to find the most popular ones to optimize for.
Things to Keep In Mind
There are a few key differences in the data that the Keyword Planner provides compared to what the Keyword Tool provided. For starters, the Keyword Tool defaulted to giving you historical search volume statistics for broad match, whereas the Keyword Planner gives you historical search volume statistics for exact match.
Also, the Keyword Tool gave you average search volume for users searching on desktop and laptop computers by default, whereas Keyword Panner gives you average search volume across all devices. You cannot filter the keyword data by specific devices.
Last, but not least, you may have noticed that there is no longer a column for average local searches. Instead, you would target your search for a specific location in the beginning to get average search volume in that region.
This targeting is similar to what you would see when actually planning your AdWords campaign.
If you need more information for a paid search campaign, be sure to also look at the Display Planner, which will ask you for keywords your customers are interested in along with your landing page.
You can use this to get ad group and keyword ideas, demographics, placements, interests, and other valuable information for your campaign.
How do you use the new Keyword Planner tool for keyword research? Please share in the comments!