Google Ads Keyword Planner: What’s Changed and How to Use It
Google’s keyword tool, formally known as Google’s keyword planner, is a great place to explore the 2020 keywords for a PPC campaign.
They offer many free resources that can help you find new terms in just minutes.
In addition, with a few basic tricks, you can discover data that would normally be difficult to find. Recently, Google launched the new Google Ads experience. In 2020, they have completely overhauled the keyword planner.
Previously, the Keyword Tool offered you a few options to choose from. Now, when you explore keywords, it’s simplified into two simple options; discovering new keywords or focusing on volume and forecasts. Get metrics and forecast costs for a list of predefined keywords.
When trying to find ideas for new keywords, you need to use option one. You can use the forecasting tool later to validate these keywords before deciding to include them in your campaigns, but volume forecasts are also automatically included in the new keyword research tools.
To generate some basic ideas for terms in your niche to target, start typing the description of your product or service. A new option here is that you can also start with a relevant website or landing page. However, do not write an entire sentence or paragraph; try to summarise your business in two or three words. Such as Company Incorporation and Maintenance, International and Foreign Incorporation; Accounting, Taxation and Legal Assistance; or Digital Marketing and Web Hosting are some examples.
(Or use specific keywords that have worked well for your campaign in the past.) Instead of just an average bid or CPC, you get specific, actionable numbers based on your bids. No more guessing and adjusting.
With the updated filter feature, you can exclude specific keywords and filter your data based on bids, competition, volume and more. You can choose whether or not to include keywords from different categories in the list.
For example, if your coffee only served lunch and is mainly vegetarian, you can focus only on the related keywords from those two sections. This helps to decrease the number of potential keywords to a much more manageable and relevant amount. However, the most useful part of the upgrade for PPC marketers is the ability to filter the keywords that you’ve already included in your account or plans.
Another update came directly on the chart of trends search volume on your page keyword ideas; Google Ads now shows mobile and total search volume trends first. In the previous version, this was only available in the drop-down selections.
When modifying columns in the update, you will also see three new metrics that are cleared by default:
- Competition (indexed value).
- Organic impression share: What percentage of clicks on the search term is organic or paid?
- Organic average position: If you rank organically for these terms, this is a valuable metric.
How to see volume / trend in Google’s keyword discovery tool
For a PPC professional, search trends for individual keywords can be just as interesting and productive as trends across the industry. With the new update, you can easily download search volume / trend data for a single keyword.
Rather than searching for each keyword specifically with your search, or searching each one thoroughly with a different tool like SEMrush, or downloading a CSV of possible keywords and running it in the volume and forecast tool, it’s possible to download historical data directly this gives you the same ideas.
After creating a plan, you can download the keyword ideas as a CSV file with historical data added. When you open the file in Excel, by default, it includes the historical search volume for the previous 12 months.
How to filter keywords within the account / keyword ideas plan
When you’re looking for new keyword ideas, the last thing you need is to see the keywords you already use in your campaigns. The new Google Ads keyword planner actually communicates with your Google ads account. It now shows which keywords are already included in your account and allows you to filter them.
When you do a search on the new keyword tool, you can immediately see which keywords are already included in your campaign. This is shown in the “Account status” column. All keywords that show the tag “In account” are already included in one of your campaigns.
Note that it does not differentiate between paused and active campaigns. So if you’ve tried keywords in the past without removing them, you may want to compare a list of filtered and unfiltered results. You can also filter keywords related to competing brands and companies, which can generally have very high CPAs.
Adding negative keywords
The last step is to add any negative keywords you can think of. Negative keywords will help you eliminate results that don’t apply to you. In the previous version of Google’s keyword planner, you can easily add negative keywords to the top of your generated list:
You can now add negative keywords by checking irrelevant keywords in the list and clicking on the “more” link. You can add a negative keyword or multiple keywords at the same time with specific match types, such as phrase or exact match. If you are using phrase or exact match exclusively or the keyword planner for SEO search, you can filter out irrelevant keywords.
(Most companies that advertise with Google Ads have a long list of keywords that they should avoid, but they don’t. Generally, it’s not as simple as avoiding a word like “delivery” or “deals”.
Finding trends with the updated Google Keyword Tool
After generating a substantial list, you can start filtering your graphical data by different trends in your list of ideas. For example, if you plan to run a location-based campaign, you can look for hyper-specific trends and details for factors such as region, state, county, and more:
These new features allow you to get more specific data without leaving the planner.
These small factors, such as location, device usage and mobile device breakdown, will determine the right combination of keywords you should choose. How to find keywords with high commercial intent to create a profitable SEO campaign.
If you are looking for keywords with high commercial intent, with a high conversion rate for your SEM or SEO campaigns, the Google Ads keyword planner will provide you with all the necessary data. Generally speaking, most digital marketing campaigns are performance-based, so marketers pay only what is worth.
That’s why analyzing how much other PPC marketers are spending on keywords can be a shortcut to finding keywords with high conversion and high commercial intent. (This means phrases that users who are close to making a purchase would search.)
This data makes Google’s keyword planner an effective keyword research tool for SEO, even if you can’t see organic competition. You can use third-party SEO tools to further explore the viability of this new shortlist of potential keywords for content.
After researching potential bidding keywords, always check them with a tool such as SEMrush. Try to sort the data by cell phone or computer to compare and contrast the “Trend” data as this will show the term’s performance over time for each device, giving you ideas of where your money is best spent.
How to find meaningful keywords with better competitive metrics
Finding relevant keywords with decent volume, high purchase intent and low competition used to be the ultimate goal of every SEM marketer when doing keyword research.
However in any competitive industry, these keywords no longer exist. In 2020, you can’t expect to bid in generic terms like “web design” or “meal delivery” and get your money’s worth. The new objective is to find a greater number of clear winners who offer better value for money than “big words”.
However, when “High, medium, low” is as specific as Google used to get, the keyword planner was not very useful in finding them, and you needed to use different tools that showed more detailed competitive metrics.
Thanks to the more granular competitive rankings in the new Google Ads Keyword Planner, you’ll be able to find more keywords that are worth your time.
The index number is generated by dividing the total number of filled ad slots, divided by the number of available slots. In other words, if there were ten spaces and all ads were filled all the time, the competition would be ranked 100.
Basically, the further the number is to 100, the greater the chance that you will get ad sharing without having to go into a bidding war with top spenders.
You can use these scores, along with the difference between high and low reach bids at the top of the page to gauge how many advertisers are competing for spaces. You can also organise the list of relevant keywords with a much more precise measure; or you can filter out the keywords that you think are very competitive.
If your strategy involves low bids and getting cheap ad sharing for low-competition keywords, it will be useful to set exactly the threshold required for a keyword to be interesting for your website.
In our Google Adwords series, we have also written about how to spy on competitor keywords in Google’s new keyword tool. Click here to read more.
Contact us to see how we can assist you build a successful Google Ads campaign for your business today!