Free Tools from Google to Help Your PPC Campaign
The world is currently undergoing a global recession of epic proportions, and one of the tell-tale signs of belt tightening is the reduction of marketing budgets. Everything from employees to marketing tools are being examined with a different type of magnifying glass now versus 2005. With that being said, here is a list of tools offered by Google itself that are both free to use and surprisingly effective for your PPC campaigns.
1) Google Insights for Search – This is hands down one of my favorite tools offered by Google. There are several creative uses for this tool and you are bound to find more once you dive into your campaign. Uses include the following:
- a) Find out which countries and geographical areas have the most search volume. For example, search “lava lamps” in the search term box and explore its seasonal trends as well as chart search volume by country. We can see that the United Kingdom has a high interest in this term, so if you were running an international PPC e-commerce campaign for this term then that would be a great place to test a campaign.
- b) You can also figure out which search terms are poised to rise in volume; we can see that “argos lava lamps,” “giant lava lamps,” and “kids lava lamps” are potentially untapped niches.
- c) Explore seasonality: lava lamp search volume tends to pick up at around November, so that would be a good time to boost PPC bids in order to exploit the rise in search volume and interest
2) Google Keyword Tool – The granddaddy of all keyword research tools. Although its search volume metrics are highly inaccurate and its suggested CPCs seem to come from a search marketer on PCP, it’s still a great tool for general research and exploring trends. I tend to take the competition numbers with a grain of salt as well, but I also keep such factors in mind when I craft my campaigns.
3) Google Placement Tool – Do you often run big Display Network campaigns? The Google Placement Tool, combined with some aggressive and targeted filters, is often a nice place to start. Build a baseline of experimental placements and test extensively to see if you can make it work for you. If it works, it will pay off heavy dividends due to Google’s purported 98% reach.
4) DoubleClick Ad Planner – Get even more jiggy with your Display Network campaigns with the powerful DoubleClick Ad Planner tool. Get additional demographic data and related site information with age, gender, household income, and more with the DoubleClick Ad Planner. If you know your audience consists of bratty 17 year old girls with large trust funds, then you can target the sites they visit with this tool.
5) Google News & Google Blog Search – If you are stuck on your keyword research, go a little more meta and dive deeper, Inception style: search recent news articles, blog posts and other contextual trends with these two handy search tools. Spark new keyword ideas and trends by browsing through the latest in events and commentary.