It’s a pretty good bet that, as a media buyer, you’re overly familiar with the AdWords Keyword Planner and Google Analytics to isolate data that drives results.

But did you know there’s life beyond Google? Heck, even Google has a few keyword-related products you might not be aware of. Carve out a few minutes and check out some other options. You’ll be glad you did!

1. Google Trends

Google Trends wants to keep you in the know with what its users are searching for. With Google Trends, you’ll see what’s popular, what’s losing ground, and can do a deep dive on topics important to your business. And if you’re looking at a new keyword, you can take a look at its performance history. Plus, you’ll get the topics you care about submitted directly to your inbox anytime they’re trending.

How This Helps You

Imagine knowing how potential customers are searching for your client’s brand. Not only are you able to monitor a brand with Google Trends, but those insights can help you identify how searchable the brand is.

It allows you to recommend actionable steps to help increase brand awareness or simply position yourself against a rising trend. For example, if your sports client’s customers are football fans, it might be worth adjusting your keyword strategy during playoffs and the Super Bowl.

Google Trends

2. Google Correlate

Google Correlate also pumps out a list of queries, but based off a set of provided data. How is this different from Google Trends? Trends pushes out data based on queries. Google Correlate does the opposite. If you have data from past campaigns, Google Correlate can help identify the next series of popular keywords, based on prior trends. Pretty neat, huh?

How This Helps You

You consistently whitelist sources and remove underperforming keywords to get the most out of your budget. Now imagine being able to dial into specific trends. You’ll not only be able to see how people are searching for keywords, but where they’re searching, as well.

Google Coorelate

3. Keyword Combination Tool

Internet Marketing Ninjas specializes in PPC management, but also provides free tools to do it yourself. We recommend checking out the Keyword Combination Tool. You enter a list of keywords on one side, and a second list on the other. It will then give you an aggregated list of all possible combinations, taking one term from each side.

How This Helps You

When was the last time you went crosseyed over a keyword list in Microsoft Excel? If you said, “all the time,” there are easier ways to look at your data. It allows you to identify the base words typically used, along with terms they’re frequently paired with. Simply clicking ‘create queries’ results in a large master list that’s sure to save you a significant amount of time.

4. Bing Keyword Research

Yeah, you use Google’s tools. But don’t forget Bing! Bing Keyword Research shows you organic keyword info for the past 6 months. This data, combined with the ability to discover new keywords, can be incredibly powerful.

How This Helps You

While Bing and Yahoo have less market share, there’s still a good chance you have a large audience there. Don’t limit yourself to just Google AdWords. Branching out, even if it’s only to the other “big guys,” will help you reach new people looking for your product or service.

And if you’re already familiar with Google’s AdWords Keyword Planner, Bing has a similar service called Bing Ads Intelligence, which is an excellent Excel plugin.

5. Moz Keyword Difficulty Tool

This one’s a little different from the other tools. Moz’s Keyword Difficulty Tool won’t tell you what terms are being searched for, or with what other terms. Instead, it gauges how difficult it will be to rank for them.

How This Helps You

Not only can you see what kind of competition you face for each keyword, it helps you identify which keywords to target first, and which to monitor. There’s a lot you can do with that.

Sometimes you can identify competitors that are ready to be bumped out, or becoming less aggressive in certain areas. You can then be the first to swoop in and grab up part of their impression share. Conversely, if you have a tight budget, it can help you identify whether a specific keyword is a viable target, or you’re better off spending your budget elsewhere.

6. Wordtracker

Wordtracker is a personal favorite of the eZanga account managers. It features a proprietary Keyword Effectiveness Index, which gauges the competitiveness of each keyword. Wordtracker’s paid service also partners with SEMrush to provide robust paid search data.

How This Helps You

Wordtracker not only helps you identify long-tail keywords, but also niche segments. Some keywords are particularly popular, while others might be relatively underused or undiscovered.

Why do you want long-tails and niches in your campaign? The volume and audience for them may not be as large, but neither is the competition. Combine that with their high probability of clicks and conversions, because of their specificity, and they quickly become hidden weapons in your PPC campaign.

WordTracker's Keyword Exploration Tool

7. SEMrush

Helping webmasters and marketers alike, SEMrush tracks search engine keywords to help optimize content on websites, copy, and PPC ads. Marketers and webmasters dream of this kind in-depth analysis (seriously, our dreams are weird). If your competitors are running any paid search campaigns, you can see the keywords they’re bidding on. Plus, you can see their ads and ad history, which gives you insight on their copy and A/B testing, too.

How This Helps You

Not only can SEMrush tell you how your clients’ brands rank, but their competitors, too. Consider this the PPC industry’s low-hanging fruit.

In your analysis, you might find your clients’ competitors are ranking fairly high in three of the five segments your client wants to target. To compete, you’ll want to increase your budget in these campaigns. However, don’t overlook the opportunities the other segments provide. They’re potential areas for your client to dominate the market.

SEMrush's Competitor Brand Rank Tool

8. Ubersuggest

If you’re on a tight budget, or just looking for free option, try Ubersuggest. You simply type in your keyword or query, and what to search (Web, Images, News, Shopping, Video, Recipes) and Ubersuggest works its magic.

How This Helps You

Ubersuggest helps you think outside the box. It’s important to note, though, that the context of the search might be skewed, since Ubersuggest simply spits out the search term and the first letter of a potential query.

For example, you might be looking keywords associated with a medical doctor. Ubersuggest recognizes the term ‘doctor’ and returns terms specific to doctors (appointment, assisted death, and average salary), but also more general terms (bag, bees, and my personal favorite, it suggests Doctor Who). Those phrases can be tagged onto pretty much anything and make sense, but aren't right for your campaign.

Ubersuggest Keyword Tool

9. KeywordTool.io

Using Google Autocomplete, KeywordTool.io helps you generate relevant long-tail keywords for free. Our account managers love it because it helps them develop their keyword lists for clients simply and easily.

How This Helps You

Have you ever needed to do PPC in another country? It’s interesting, because what you thought might have been a universal word could actually mean something completely different elsewhere. KeywordTool.io can help you search these terms by simply using the drop down tool and switching the target to Google for the country you’re targeting. Cool, huh?

KeywordTool.io Term Search

10. WordStream’s Keyword Tool

With the ability to conduct your first 30 searches for free, target niche groups, and assistance in splitting off ‘adult’ keywords and negative keywords, WordStream is one of the premier tools available in the PPC marketplace. You can even group keywords to make it easier to organize new ad campaigns.

How This Helps You

It’s backed by Larry Kim, the most influential PPC expert in 2014, which means that he knows his stuff. His research and findings on the PPC industry are widely noticed. It’s safe to say, with this advanced knowledge of the PPC industry, that WordStream is reputable, accurate, and well-respected. You can be confident in the data generated from the tool.

WordStream's Keyword Suggestion Tool

11. Keyword Spy

It’s important to know your competitors’ keywords, and that’s precisely what Keyword Spy tells you. It’ll help you ‘spy’ on local competitors, identify which markets you could have more of an impact in, and determine what keywords they’re bidding on.

It’s updated regularly and lets you download results directly into a text document or Excel spreadsheet, for easy importing into Google AdWords.

How This Helps You

Keyword Spy also lets you to track keywords in real-time and perform an advertiser gap analysis across Google, Yahoo, and Bing. That will show you what gaps or weaknesses you can capitalize on. And, it supports several of the top affiliate networks, allowing you to uncover the top affiliate offers.

12. SpyFu

Just like Keyword Spy, SpyFu focuses on what competitors are up to and which keywords they’re bidding on. As an added bonus, it shows the last six years of a keyword’s historical data, shows which ads won and lost in A/B testing, and identifies profitable keywords for other domains. It’ll help identify keywords you might be missing out on, and which ones you’re spending money on without results.

How This Helps You

SpyFu keeps screenshots of every campaign publically available on search engines like Google for the last six years. Okay, that’s nice, but what does that mean for you?

Pitching a new client? Review their PPC history and see how you can help them improve their campaign. Or maybe you can razzle and dazzle the client by knowing exactly which domains are sending traffic to the brand. I would certainly be impressed by that amount of research!

13. Market Samuari

This one’s a helpful tracker that helps you see how you rank in Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Market Samurai can also help you keep track of specific domains and keywords with ease. Providing pagerank, backlinks, keywords, historical data, and URLs in a helpful table make this tool part of the arsenal of many digital marketing specialists.

How This Helps You

It can help you identify useless keywords that make people abandon your client’s website. This can help you project a keyword’s effect on their website traffic, before it’s implemented.

While the keyword tool isn’t all that different from other tools, it does provide you with valuable AdWords insights as well as perceived commercial viability.

14. Keyword Typo Generator

No fancy tools here, but humans without our immediate access to a ‘spell checker.’ Keyword Typo Generator allows you to submit a specific term and ‘misspell’ it.

How This Helps You

Surely you sometimes misspell searches, right? I do, all the time, and so do people looking for your products and services, especially those suffering from fat-finger syndrome. Of course, some misspellings are more common than others, but this generator can help you identify skipped letters, extra or reversed letters, skipped spaces, and more. Knowing we often misspell certain words, or are more inclined to misspell at times, helps brands like Snickers reach their target market, too!

Keyword Typo Generator Tool

15. Keyword Eye

Taking a completely visual approach, Keyword Eye’s not your regular, boring spreadsheet. By entering your keyword, you’ll receive a visual cloud with colors indicating the popularity of a specific search term. The tool allows for a quick, visualized view of how keywords are distributed and a grid view indicating the search volume, PPC competition, and its comparable score against other keywords.

How This Helps You

If you have Excel overload and need a little color and creativity back in your routine, Keyword Eye is a nice way to break up the monotony of spreadsheets from other tools. And, if you lead a team of people, this could make for a good visual to get creative juices flowing.

Keyword Eye's Visual Cloud

There you have it! An arsenal of helpful keyword research tools. But we know that there are many, many, many other tools out there.

If you have one you love that you think should make the list, let us know! You can find us on Twitter at @eZangaInc anytime. Good luck and happy keyword hunting!

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