Keyword Planner isn’t the only free Google keywords search tool!
A large population of the SEO elite use their favorite brand of keyword research tools. I see many using Market Samurai, WordTracker or Keyword Canine, all respectable tools in the marketplace. Others will take the Adwords route and go directly to the Google Keyword Planner tool. In fact, this is usually the first thing someone teaching keyword research will lead you to, mostly because its all they were ever taught.
Now, for the ones paying for advertising or actually using Adwords, this is a good way to go. But, what if you’re not a big PPC advertiser type and all you’re looking for is some quick-n-dirty keyword research? All you want to do is find some good keywords to rank for before writing your next epic blog post? Well, I’m about to expose a free Google keyword search tool you may not have thought of before, even though it’s right under your nose!
Alphabet soup never tasted so good!
Ever since Google initiated the instant search feature in its search engine settings, the playing field has changed. This feature can be turned on or off in the settings of most browsers, though I highly recommend that all of you out there looking for high traffic keywords leave it on indefinitely!
In my previous post called “Keyword Research? Help!” , I touched upon how this technique is used to acquire search strings people are already using in their everyday Google keyword searches. Now let’s look at another way to use this nifty little feature for all it’s worth.
“Autocomplete predictions are automatically generated by an algorithm without any human involvement based on a number of objective factors, including how often past users have searched for a term.” ~The Google Team
Let’s take a common search phrase as an example and apply the “alphabet soup” technique to come up with a slew of high ranking keywords for our next big feature article.
Go ahead and open your browser and enter the phrase “how to make money”. You should see something similar to this:
As you can see, Google has already added 3 other alternative search ideas for you, underneath of your original search. If you’re so inclined to write about any of the topics Google has offered up here, I would advise you investigate these terms, its very likely they are searched quite regularly. But anyway, let’s start to make ourselves some alphabet soup.
The process is about as simple as it gets. We begin by adding the letter “a” to the end of our original search string like so:
Now we have a new list of instant keyword strings in the “a” category. We’ve just derived 4 awesome long-tail keywords that could be used to perhaps write a really cool post about “How to Make Money at Home as a Teenager”. Considering the number of awesome keywords that Google just came up with for us, it will likely be one of my future posts!
Now we can run through the entire alphabet to see what kind of cool ideas we can come up with about various ways of making money. Not only that, but we could take any one of these Google keyword searches and place them into a more advanced keyword tool such as WordTracker (which cost BIG bucks!) or my favorite “go-to” Market Samurai and have the software generate tens, if not hundreds of other related keyword search terms that we can focus on for our niche. From there we’re bound to also discover some other fresh low-hanging fruit.
Let’s go ahead and try one more real quick example and see what we get, let’s go with “b”:
Are you beginning to see the power behind this mostly overlooked search feature that’s been right there all along? I sure hope so…it’s invaluable. By now you should understand why this is called the “alphabet soup” technique. Work your way through each letter of the alphabet “A-Z” to get the bigger picture and biggest possible array of search terms that relate to your particular niche.
The real kicker here is that this isn’t the only information that this free Google keyword search is providing each time you change up the letters. Let’s pick the first search term above “how to make money blogging” and hit the enter key. Then we’ll scroll down to the bottom of the page and see what we discover.
Low and behold! (no pun intended) Look what that Google keyword search has also done for us!
Google has already determined eight more of the best possible related keyword searches, based of course on it’s own infinite knowledge of what people are looking for! Could Google make it any easier for us?
The Upside of What’s Going Down
One thing we have to keep in mind here is that this method is based on Google keyword search volume only. There is no consideration taken or metrics available to make a determination related to number of daily searches, competition or one’s ability to effectively rank for these keyword strings. But one has to admit it’s a great place to begin our keyword research!
So before you go and completely dismiss Google (which it seems a lot of people want to do?) and just start plugging keywords into your favorite research tools, consider this… Google knows better than anyone what people are looking for on the internet. Don’t go and ignore this simple, yet powerful feature of the Google keyword search engine.
Use this “alphabet soup” method to site in on some really great keywords then take those you find over to your favorite keyword research tool to work through the metrics. Target in on the ones with reasonably low to medium competition and decent search volumes and your on your way to ranking on the 1st page of Google in short time!
I use this technique everyday when I’m out to find new search phrases for my posts. It makes brainstorming keywords one hundred times easier and gives me the peace of mind that I know people are using these terms on a regular basis.
Here’s a video of me using the alphabet soup method in real time:
Until then… eat your alphabet soup!