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How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner

As the Google AdWords Keyword Tool is unfortunately on its way out, learn to use the new Google AdWords Keyword Planner that will be replacing it.

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.

Additional Tools

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!

31 responses to “How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner”

  1. […] The Google AdWord Keyword Tool is now Google Keyword Planner. Find out how to use it for your keyword research.  […]

  2. Jason Diller says:

    Kristi,

    great stuff as always. I’ll share this with my team. Cheers

  3. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner […]

  4. The one big issue I have with the new Keyword Planner is that there doesn’t seem to be a tick box for ‘Only show ideas closely related to my search terms’ as there is in the old Keyword Tool – which is not ideal for SEO research as the keyword ideas the tool gives me are not very granular. Am I missing something or is this functionality just no longer going to be available?

    • Kristi Hines says:

      You’re not missing it – it’s just not there. You have to use the include / exclude filter to get stuff you don’t want out of the results. 🙁

      • Fred van Engelen says:

        I wonder how the elimination of this tick box relates to the Google mantra Relevance, Relevance, Relevance. In the new Keyword planner you get a lot of related but totally irrelevant suggestions, and it’s a huge task to filter all the bad ones out.

  5. Augh, I hate the new Keyword Planner SO MUCH. It doesn’t give you nearly as many keywords as the old tool did. Still, thank you for the overview and tips.

    • Kristi Hines says:

      I’m going to miss GAKT too. With as many products as Google shuts down, I’ve just learned to make the best out of whatever happens next.

      • Very true! I wonder if Google’s shift towards the knowledge graph and “gist” searches is the reason behind the fewer number of keywords. If they’re trying to attune their algorithm in a way that is less dependent on specific, word-for-word keywords then it would make sense to offer a shorter list.

      • Amber Rose says:

        Keyword planner was active in my account before and now when google disabled keyword tool the Keyword planner is not showing up in my account. Do you know about this issue. It’s worth mentioning that I only use my account to get keyword ideas and not use to run Adwords campaign.

        As you mentioned that ” you don’t need to create a Google AdWords campaign to use the new Keyword Planner tool ” . Are you 100% sure about it?

  6. […] tools – Google AdWords Keyword Tool – has undergone a drastic renovation, now known as Google AdWords Keyword Planner. And the general consensus seems to be that this was not the best of all ideas. If you aren’t […]

  7. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner […]

  8. […] The first time I used the Keyword Planner, that worry became a reality and I was suddenly facing a big problem in terms of agency processes and campaign planning. I naturally searched high and low for a good guide on using the Keyword Planner for SEO keyword research, but was not able to find one that sufficiently answered the question of how to focus it away from AdWords research and onto SEO research. There are some good all-round guides to using it out there though, in particular this one by Larry Kim at Search Engine Land and this one by Kristi Hines on the iAcquire blog. […]

  9. […] How to Use the New Google AdWord Keyword Planner […]

  10. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner […]

  11. jlcoleman71 says:

    Is it just me or does the exact match functionality not work in the new keyword planner? Even if I select exact match, the results don’t appear to change…..any ideas on this? Thanks!

    • Allie Edwards Williams says:

      Exact match is the new default result. When you enter keywords, if you enter them as exact, phrase or broad and then select “Get estimates” instead of “Get search volume”, it will show estimated daily clicks. I’ve been playing with entering a very high bid, like $100, to get estimated volume.

      It’s wonky though – sometimes GAKP returns zero results for keywords. Frustrating!

  12. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner (iacquire.com) […]

  13. […] tools – Google AdWords Keyword Tool – has undergone a drastic renovation, now known as Google AdWords Keyword Planner. And the general consensus seems to be that this was not the best of all ideas. If you aren’t […]

  14. […] research tools – Google AdWords Keyword Tool – has undergone a drastic renovation, now known as Google AdWords Keyword Planner. Its one of the best free keyword research tool on the World Wide Web, none are a replacement for […]

  15. Allie Edwards Williams says:

    Hi Kristi,

    I’m missing the average ad position feature that was available in GAKT. Any thoughts on the best way to pull estimated average ad positions?

    Thanks!

  16. Suresh Kumar says:

    Hi Krisiti,
    Everyone who migrates from the old keyword tool to new keyword planner finds difficult to use . Now you have solved that problem by this article.

    Thanks for the great write up !
    Regards
    Suresh

  17. Great post as always…Thanks

  18. […] How to Use the New Google AdWord Keyword Planner – iAcquireJul 8, 2013 – […]

  19. […] How to Use the New Google AdWord Keyword Planner – iAcquireJul 8, 2013 – […]

  20. […] Google Keyword Planner also shows that there is a decent amount of search volume for various keywords. […]

  21. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner (iacquire.com) […]

  22. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner […]

  23. […] How to Use the New Google AdWord Keyword Planner – iAcquireJul 8, 2013 – […]

  24. […] The Google AdWord Keyword Tool is now Google Keyword Planner. Find out how to use it for your keyword research.  […]

  25. jay howarth says:

    How many keywords can be entered into the planner to get an idea of traffic and estimates?

    • Kristi Hines says:

      You can paste in up to 1,000 keywords or upload a file with up to 250,000 keywords under the “Get search volumes for a list of keywords or group them into ad groups” section.

  26. […] source for determining how much traffic is available per keyword. Take a deep sign and go to the Keyword Planner and get what you […]

  27. Artem says:

    Hi 🙂
    Thank you for the article. One question 🙂 How can or output just keywords? I want to copy them & input in my campaign site. Just keywords, without other stuff. Is it possible? 🙂 Thank you

  28. wsierocione says:

    Hello, Nice article, Keyword Planner is rather tool for ad campaign planning, try Metrics11, it is really interesting tool to find out about keyword niche opportunities in Google organic results.

  29. […] How to Use the New Google AdWords Keyword Planner (iacquire.com) […]

  30. E.S. Ivy says:

    Thanks! I just couldn’t figure out where to start on this.

  31. […] This is basic stuff, but you’ll want to search for New Keyword and Adgroup Ideas and head straight to the to theKeyword Ideas tab. For a more complete guide to using the planner, Kristi Hines wrote a great guide here. […]

  32. ronmartin05 says:

    Probably the biggest mistake people make when doing their own PPC advertising is choosing the wrong keywords just because they want to get traffic. A couple of things to know are 1) General keywords get lots of searches and traffic but are less qualified and less likely to buy. When you’re paying for visitors, you want results, not just traffic. 2) The keywords that are being bid on must be extremely relevant to the product/services you are offering. If it was a retail store, would you want to pay for male motor bikers to walk into Victoria’s secret? Nothing against bikers, it’s just not the target market – and that’s what happens when you bid on general, broad keywords. You get lots of untargeted visitors so your ROI doesn’t work. If anybody wants help with this, call my buddy Simon here: 256-398-3835.

  33. A very good guide indeed, I will use this as a reference, now I’m clearer on the subject

  34. Nick Convertd says:

    Great guide! Thanks Kristi! Here’s another take on Keyword Planning that you may find interesting?
    http://convertd.co.uk/teaching-analogies-part-1-think-empires-keyword-planning-search-engine-marketing/

    Let me know what you think, always good to be discussing & learning!

    Nice to meet you,

    Nick

  35. sunny brown says:

    awesome information

  36. George Coem says:

    Using KW Planner to maximize keyword pool and then Serpstat for semantic expansion. IMHO Keyword Planner could’ve set few more filters but we still can’t do without it:)