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Keyword Research

How To Do Keyword Research in Google AdWords


Conducting Google keyword research is one of the first tasks you should do as part of setting up an AdWords campaign. It will help you find the right keywords to bid on.


And you’ll save a lot of money by not bidding on irrelevant keywords. Bidding on the wrong keywords can be costly and is one main reason why many campaigns fail.


The Keyword Planner Tool in AdWords is one of the best keyword research tools to help you achieve your goals. It’s a free tool and has many impressive features. One of them is the ability to forecast the potential of your keywords and then add them directly into your account.


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Here are some ways to conduct Google keyword research in AdWords:


Choose 5 primary keywords


To get started with keyword research, think of 5 keywords that your prospects are likely to use. You’ll use these to conduct research with the Keyword Planner tool.


These 5 keywords should cover the various ways that someone would likely look for your products or services. They should include a mix of general and exact keywords and be broad enough to find a wide range of short and long tail keywords.


And adding them into the Keyword Planner Tool will produce a list of targeted keywords and suggested ad groups that you can create.


Research competitors websites


You’ll use your competitors websites to conduct keyword research. Using the keyword planner tool you can scan their pages for related keywords that you can add to your campaigns


Keyword Planner - Competitor Research


Research competitors keywords


Using a tool like Spyfu and the SE Ranking Competitor Tool you can see what they are bidding on. You’ll be able to see their whole list of keywords and how much traffic they receive and what they spend per month on average.


You’ll also be able to see how competitive these keywords are and decide if they would be affordable. And next to each keyword you can see if it’s ranked at the top or bottom on Google.


Top ranked ads appear above the Organic listings. And bottom ranked ads appear below.


You’ll also see which of their ads are appearing for their keywords. And that will help you create differentiated ads that are better targeted.


Use the keyword suggestions tool


After setting up your first ad group, you can add more keywords by checking the suggestions provided. These suggestions are based on the content on your landing page and also the keywords in the ad group.


Keyword Suggestions


The suggestions here will also help you come up with ideas for new ad groups. You can then create tightly themed ad groups with relevant ads.


This tool can also help you find potential negative keywords to add. Negative keywords help you block irrelevant searches that won’t convert and will just use up your budget.


Check the Opportunities tab


The Opportunities tab is one area you should spend a lot of time in, looking for new opportunities. This section shows you the Health Score of your account and you should aim to achieve a 100% Score



AdWords Opportunities Tab


The Opportunities tab is where you’ll also get keyword suggestions. The AdWords system suggests new keywords based on your ad groups and gives you an idea of how many clicks you’ll get and at what cost.


Not all suggestions here will be relevant. Some will be vastly different from what you sell or promote but some will be keyword opportunities that you may not have thought of.


Use the forecasting tool


The forecasting tool is available in the Keyword Planner. If you have a list of keywords that you need to assess for potential volumes and costs you can plug them into this tool and adjust bids to see what you’re likely to get back.


Note that this is just a forecast and actual performance may differ at auction time. Bear in mind that this tool won’t help you find more keyword opportunities, but will help you see how viable your current ones are.


You can then decide if you’d like to add them in your campaign or ditch them altogether.




Before setting up your AdWords campaigns, make sure you conduct thorough keyword research. It will save you a lot of money in the future and will help you setup targeted campaigns. And you can do this with the Keyword Planner tool.


I'm a Certified Google Ads Expert and Marketing Author and in this blog I share my latest tips and secrets on how to promote your business successfully on the web and increase customer loyalty, retention and advocacy on Google Ads.

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