Two Free and Awesome Alternatives to the Retired Google Keyword Tool
Robert Gibb, November 11, 2013
It was all too easy. You didn't need to sign in ... you didn't need an Adwords account ... and you didn't get bid suggestions when you didn't want them. It was an easy, ultra-credible source of search traffic statistics directly from the source – Google.
Replaced by the Keyword Planner, the Google Keyword Tool is no more. So we have to move on without it. We have to find new ways to find the best keywords for our Internet marketing efforts. And, in my opinion, there's no better way to do so than going directly to the source once again – Google.
Google Keyword Planner
Yes, although the new Keyword Planner is slightly more complex and geared toward people interested in starting online ad campaigns, it still serves a purpose for those uninterested in ads.
We can still get all the monthly traffic and competition data we received with the Keyword Tool. The main difference between the old system and the new Keyword Planner is that, with the latter, your results page is muddied with bid suggestions. Also, more steps are needed to get to the information you want.
But you still get the information – the most dependable variety -- from Google. Without a doubt, this is information worth taking a few extra steps to get.
When using the Keyword Planner, here are some things to keep in mind:
- You're given four options instead of one on the main Keyword Planner screen. To get results similar to those produced by the Keyword Tool, choose option 2 – "Get search volume for a list of Keywords..."
- As you did with the Keyword Tool, use [brackets] for exact match and "quotations" for phrase match. Broad match is standard.
- Use the first option to get keyword ideas, as you automatically did with the Keyword Tool.
As you can see below with Keyword Planner, with keyword ideas absent on the main screen, the display of information is less obtrusive. The only information we don't care for is located in the last 3 columns – suggested bid, impression share and "Add to plan" options. To break it down simply, the retired Keyword Tool was more consolidated and the new Keyword Planner is more broken up.
Note: You must create a Google Adword account before you can begin using.
Created in the UK, Keyword Eye embraces a fun, minimalistic approach to keyword research and is the easiest keyword tool to use. It's also 100% reliable. Powered by SEMrush, it delivers keyword search volume, PPC competition and relevant keyword ideas. Also, if you do some tests, you'll see that it produces information nearly identical to that produced by the Keyword Planner.
According to the website and confirmed by me, the free version includes:
- 10 keyword searches per day
- 10, 50 or 100 keyword suggestions per search
- 10 Google country keyword databases
Referring to this last point, since Keyword Eye is based in the UK, the search results for it are automatically based there. All you have to do if you're running reports in the U.S. is switch results to "Google US" before you begin your search.
Having the ability to only choose results for one country per search is the tradeoff you make for the simplicity and freedom of Keyword Eye. And, of course, the ability to only complete 10 searches per day. But if you need to run a country-specific report in a quick, efficient manner, Keyword Eye is what you want.