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Google Finally did it! Keyword Planner is now totally useless!



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Google Finally did it! Keyword Planner is now totally useless!

Notice this last week just before I started my vacation, I was trying to research some certain keywords from my personal Google account and I notice Keyword Planner stopped showing me the estimated number of average monthly searches per keyword.

Instead of getting a direct number, now I'm getting a range of possible searches, like this:

Google Finally did it! Keyword Planner is now totally useless!

Between 10K and 100K? Jesus that's totally useless information right there!

Here are the full possible ranges:

  • 0
  • 1–100
  • 100–1K
  • 1K–10K
  • 10K–100K
  • 100K–1M
  • 1M+

I also got a couple of emails from SEO tools that were apologizing for their now broken tools since they were heavily reliable on keyword planner data to function correctly.

I've tried doing my research from an account with active AdWords campaigns and everything worked find, there were no restrictions.
Also, I've read multiple articles online and some people are saying that all you need is an active campaign but others are claiming that "lower spenders" are still restricted. More info here

What do you think about this move? I think it was inevitable.
Any good Keyword planner alternatives out there? What can we use for our research?

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RaduV

Indeed it was a nice tool. I've used it for few campaigns a while ago. However, I think that you shouldn't rely solely on one tool for your campaigns. I will give Jaaxy a try to see how it goes, from what i've read on their website sounds quite promissing. I see that they have a 30 days trial so i will let you know how it goes.

Anyhow, their move with the ranged results it's just another way to get more money from the advertisers.




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Lynne

It is 30 free searches, not 30 days free trial and I love using Jaaxy!

Yes they are just trying to grab more money but I'm not so sure that will work so well.




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Rwakefield87

I feel like it was a bad move, at least for us. How can you really gauge things with ranges like that. To me its more important to see what I am looking at in real time numbers, not a guess.




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Cristian

Exactly. Well, I guess we need to start investing in having active Adwords campaigns. I'll use the ones from work, we have a lot of active campaigns at the moment. But what about people that are just doing SEO?




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idealmike

Yeah I hear you! 10K–100K. So what is it? Is it something like 11k or something more near 90k? Or perhaps it's more actually near 50k. How are you supposed to know? Back when I posted about it in my thread on Why You Shouldn't Trust in and Rely on Google's Keyword Planner Tool Numbers. Where I mentioned how the results are now even less accurate than before. Not only that, but they have also bundled anagrams, acronyms and regional spellings together as well. They put abbreviations like "SEO" and "Search Engine Optimization" together. But that's not right. "SEO" and "Search Engine Optimization" both have different search volumes. It's not just that abbreviation but many more. And some regional spellings get more search volume than the others. American versions of spellings for example, get considerably more than the UK counterpart. I just can't get my head around it. There doesn't seem to be any real value to end users like you and me. It could be that's the obfuscation has been done in a bid to get people to rely less on the numbers and more on context and performance of their landing pages and things rather than the actual numbers. But if the numbers aren't worth creating landing pages for there's not much point in it.

I get that the Keyword Planner tool is a free gift to us in effect so we can't really complain. Hey never look a gift horse in the gob right? The Keyword Planner tool is mainly there to help people to optimize their paid advertising campaigns and related research. Rather than for market research or for help in building content. But it's also one that only rewards big spenders now. Those with smaller budgets wont be able to access and see the more accurate numbers unless they are spending huge amounts through Adwords. What then this looks like to me, is a way to get people to spend more money on Adwords.

What Google say

These changes will ensure that AdWords advertisers are able to get the data they need to optimize their accounts.

What they really mean
These changes will ensure that AdWords advertisers will increase their ad spend in order to get full search volume data.




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Cristian

On point Mike. Yes, Keyword planner is a free gift and we should be grateful with whatever small info we are getting.
BUT as an SEO this really bothers me, keyword planner used to be one of my main tools for figuring out stuff.
Now that I think of it, this won't be as bad as I think, small SEOs that don't have access to an active campaign account will just give up on doing a proper keyword research.




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Lynne

Oh my gosh that is awful Cristian!

I have heard a few things about Google Keyword Planner and I'll be honest here none of it was good except for the fact it is free. I heard that the results given weren't accurate by a long shot in the first place so even though it might have given specific information on the monthly searches those were not accurate anyway.

The next thing I heard is exactly what you have said happened, that the Keyword Planner Tool will soon only be available to people with active Adwords campaigns.

I have always used Jaaxy, it is a really awesome tool that you access online and it costs $19 a month. You get 30 free searches to test them out so I suggest you give them a go. I personally love them.




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Cristian

I remember you talking about Jaaxy a while back. Now that Keyword Planner is officially over for non-paying accounts, maybe I'm gonna give Jaaxy a try, the only problem I remember having with this tool was the lack of country-based statistics. For example, I want to know how many searches a certain keyword has for users in the UK.

Does upgrading the tool offer any additional benefits and features, hidden to the trial version? Keyword planner allowed me to create individual country based searches to establish exactly how saturated and how much potential the market haves in a specific niche.




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Lynne

Nope they don't have country-based statistics unfortunately! This would be a really great thing for them to add!

I believe that there are tools that offer more details but they are often very expensive and cumbersome to use from the ones I checked out. Jaaxy is really well priced at $19 a month and it is so quick and easy to use.




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jaymish2

I knew this will happen. What we are seeing is Google trying to monetize its tools(like they don't make enough money already). I think they should have a free version especially for something as basic as keyword volume. I don't understand why Google would want to take what has been a free tool away. They should allow especially people who have been using this tool to continue to use it for free.




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Corzhens

I have read so many good things about Google keyword planner that gave me an impression that it was a standard tool for webmasters. Do you mean to say that it is useless for your purpose? If the range is that too large then I think it has really no use anymore because you are like guessing the keyword that you will choose. Perhaps you can turn to other SEO methods instead of spending your time with the Google keyword planner which doesn’t give you what you needed.




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