Don’t Miss AdWords’ Updated Keyword Planner

If you haven’t done keyword research in Google’s keyword planner in a while, there is an update in the new UI that you may have missed. There are several updates that I think makes the tool easier to use and more useful than before.

Let’s hop in.

What is Google Keyword Planner?

If you haven’t used Keyword Planner before, it is a tool that helps advertisers quickly research and expand keyword lists while also seeing data on the traffic, trends and costs they can expect. You can adjust your bids and budgets to see how differences might impact results.

Using Google Keyword Planner

While signed into the account you want to conduct research for, click the wrench button dropdown in the top navigation bar. Under “Planning”, select “Keyword Planner.”

The first page you’ll come to will give you two options: you can enter keywords, phrases or your landing page URL to find new keywords or you can enter an existing list of keywords to see traffic and trends.

Let’s look at finding new keywords.

I added a few florist and flower delivery keywords. Choose your keywords carefully. After entering 3 keywords, you’ll get a warning that you can only enter up to 3 keywords plus a URL. This is much different than the previous version of Keyword Planner, where you could add what seemed like unlimited keywords at this point.

The next screen is where you’ll see traffic, trends and Google’s suggestions.

The top navigation bar allows you to change geographic locations, languages and to add Google Search Partner Network. You can also look at different timeframes by changing the date.

Google now shows you what portion of your traffic you can expect to be on mobile devices. Just hover your mouse over the bars on the graph.

Now let’s move on to the suggested keyword section.

Filtering is much easier. I like the ability to exclude adult ideas. You just click the “exclude adult ideas” and it is added as a filter.

Another feature I like about this update is the ability to add, reorder and save your columns. To do this, simply click the column button (it looks like 3 rectangles) in the top navigation.

Once you have selected, organized and saved your columns as you prefer, we can take a look at utilizing Google’s suggested keywords.

Adding Suggested Keywords

When you come across a keyword that you would like to save, click the box to the left. You’ll see that it’s selected with a blue checkmark.

Once you have selected all that you want to save, you can select the ad group to add the keywords to as well as the match type. Then click “add to plan.” When you do this, the Account Status column will populate with a green “In Plan” status.

I very much like this visual way to quickly be able to tell if you have added a keyword to your saved list. This Account Status column will also populate with a gray “In Account” bubble if the keyword being displayed is already in your account.

Once you have selected all of your keywords, let’s take a look at the Plan Overview.

Keyword Planner Plan Overview

In the side column, select “Plan Overview.”

This is by far my favorite feature of the updated Keyword Planner due to the ease of interpreting the results quickly.

You’ll have a high-level overview plus Google’s estimates with device breakdown and locations.

In the Keyword square, you can sort by different metrics from low to high or high to low for a different view of the data.

In the Device square, you can hover over the different bars in the graph to see details on Google’s estimates.

In the Location square, you can select different geographic layers to see how selecting cities vs. Nielsen DMA regions will impact traffic.

Hover over the pie pieces to see the estimated percentage breakdown.

If you’re looking for simple data tables for download, you can select Ad Groups or Keywords in the left navigation bar.

The Ad Groups view will show you a total of the traffic for your different ad groups. You can easily download this report or save to your account at this point.

If you want to see a breakdown of Google’s estimations for individually selected keywords, you can get those from the Keyword section of the left-hand navigation. (See the previous screenshot.)

Similar to the ad group view of this information, you can download this information or save it for later use.

Note that this view is looking at future months. If you want to see historical performance for your keywords, select “Historical Metrics” in the top navigation.

You can adjust the geography, add or remove Search Partners, and add different match types to see how traffic and estimates change.


Overall, the updated Keyword Planner allows advertisers to quickly and efficiently research new keyword opportunities and view performance estimates.

If you want to read more about the new AdWords user interface, check out this guide.

Join us tomorrow to read more about a new keyword research tool that we love!

Have you used the new Google AdWords Keyword Planner? We’d love to hear your favorite features in the comments below!