How To Use Google Ads Keyword Planner


What Is Google Ads Keyword Planner?

Google defines its Keyword Planner Tool as:

A free Google Ads tool for new or experienced advertisers that’s like a workshop for building new Search Network campaigns. You can use Keyword Planner to search for keywords and see how a list of keywords might perform. Keyword Planner can also help you to choose competitive bids and budgets to use with your campaigns.”

In other words, Google Ads Keyword Planner is an online tool to give you an idea of the search terms that you should be bidding on in Google Ads. It can also give an idea of which keywords to use in other areas of your website such as SEO. The keyword planner is a way to get inspiration for keywords and gives you information on how many people are searching for terms as well as historical statistics and traffic forecasts for your campaign.

It’s worth noting that this is a free tool and there are other keyword planner systems available. For example, here at Green Shoot, we use SEMRush for our client’s accounts. This is an incredibly powerful SEO platform that gives deep insight into keywords to use as well as competitor research and search rankings tracking. 

Google Keyword Planner is a fantastic tool to use as a small business who are starting out and perhaps are not able to invest in professional software. Below, we show you how to use Google Keyword Planner for your small business with examples and images.

What Are The Benefits Of Google Keyword Planner?

The main benefits of Google Keyword planner are that you can be as broad or as specific as you like to get options for your keyword strategy. 

  • For example, perhaps you have no idea where to start with your keyword planning, in that case, you can simply enter your website address for ideas.
  • You may already have keywords that you would like to have in your Google Ads campaign. If so then you can simply enter these to get an idea of search volumes and suggestions for others that will be suitable for your business.
  • You can include or exclude brand names in your planner search. Using this tool means that you can see which brands people are searching for and can be very useful to see how your competitors are performing.
  • Once you have a list of keywords you would like to use, Google Keyword Planner allows you to forecast how much to spend and how many clicks you may get. NOTE: These are estimates only.

How To Use Google Ads Keyword Planner

To use Google Keyword Planner you will need a Google Ads account. Once you’re logged in, click the TOOLS & SETTINGS icon in the top right corner of the screen.

Then go to the first column and click Keyword Planner:How to open the Google Ads Keyword Planner

You’ll then come to a page that looks like the below. Here you can find new keywords and get forecasts. Today we’re going to ‘DISCOVER NEW KEYWORDS’

The Google Ads Keyword Planner Interface

In this example, we want to get some inspiration for keywords for a hair salon and have added ‘hair salon’ and ‘hairdressers. We’ll include brand names on this occasion and we want to target the London area so we have clicked ‘United Kingdom’ to refine our results. If you have a website then enter your domain which will filter out services you don’t offer:

How to find new Keywords with the Google Ads Keyword Planner Location Targeting with the Google Ads Keyword Planner

The keyword planner will then give you information on the keyword you entered as well as ideas for other keywords. Information provided on each keyword includes:

  • Average monthly searches
  • Competitions level (High / Medium / Low)
  • Top of page bid – which is great for forecasting how much you are likely to spend (this is an estimate).

At the top of the results page, there is a graph to show you the search volume trends, data on devices the keywords were searched on and locations. 

Altogether we received 1,564 ideas for ‘hair salons’ and ‘hairdressers’. Below is a screenshot of the results page:

Results overview Google Keyword Suggestions

How To Use Keywords

One of the benefits of using the Google keyword planner is that if you would like to use any of the suggested keywords in your Google Ads campaign you can simply select any that are suitable and automatically add these. 

You can choose which ad group and which match type you would like to use before adding to your campaign. Ad groups are helpful to separate keywords by topic. For example, you could structure your keywords according to the services you offer. When adding new keywords, we would suggest using exact match types while you test and determine if they are suitable for your small business. If it generates clicks and conversions, we would then suggest moving this to the phase and broad match types. 

Additionally, it is good practice to also include your keywords in your ad copy to show searchers the relevance of your business for specific search terms.

Remember that it’s important to monitor your keywords regularly. This is especially true when starting a new campaign. You will be able to see which keywords resulted in most clicks to your website and can also add negative search terms to your campaigns. The optimisation is a key part of Google Ads and something that should be done on a regular basis, usually once a week.

If you would like more information on keywords or how we can help you with digital marketing in general then feel free to get in touch.