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How to Use PPC Keyword Data for SEO
Remember when Google moved to secure search by default and we lost all our organic keyword data in Analytics to the oh-so-helpful keyword (not provided)? And then remember when we decided we didn’t really care?
When you work in an industry like ours, you have to adapt to the heat or get out of the Google kitchen. It didn’t take long for us to find new ways to report keyword data to our clients, and shape their SEO strategies with that new data as well.
One of those ways is using PPC keyword data for SEO.
Why PPC Keyword Data?
Sure, not all of our clients invest in both PPC and SEO (even though most of them probably should), so we can’t always use that data to help shape our SEO strategies. But when we do have the PPC keyword data, we find it more valuable than other sources, like impressions from Google Webmaster Tools.
My coworker Ryan has always been pretty savvy when it comes to keyword data (he blogged about how to find (not provided) keywords even before Google moved to secure search by default), so he was able to provide some insight on why PPC keyword data is especially helpful.
Webmaster Tools vs. AdWords Impressions
According to Ryan, “While it is great that Webmaster Tools (WMT) provides us with keyword impression data, it paints a less accurate picture than AdWords impressions.
“If you have a keyword that ranks on page 20 for a keyword phrase and you get an impression, it will register in WMT, but it simply shows you how many impressions you received and what the average position is. It will not give you a clear idea of how many people are actually searching for that keyword unless you already rank on the first page organically.
“With AdWords, our ads are presumably going to rank on the first page more often than not, meaning every time someone searches for a keyword we are targeting with our AdWords campaigns it will register as an impression. AdWords gives a very good, accurate look at how many people are generally searching for a keyword phrase in a given area while GWT is less precise and requires more assumptions and guess work.
“Both are highly beneficial and better than relying solely on the Keyword Planner data, but you’re going to get better impression data from AdWords than WMT if you are fortunate enough to have clients who are doing paid search.”
Where Can I Find My PPC Keyword Data?
Now that you understand how valuable your PPC keyword data is, you’re going to need to know where to find it. Luckily, one of Blue Corona’s PPC experts, Tara, agreed to help me out with this.
Once you’re logged into your campaign, navigate to the “Keywords” tab and select the “Details” drop down option. From here, click under “SEARCH TERMS” where it says “All.”
The most important thing to look at here is click-thru-rate (CTR). A high CTR is a good indicator that searchers find your listing highly relevant to what they’re searching for. The second most important thing to look at is impressions. If that keyword gets a lot of impressions, it can indicate a high demand for that product or service (which can be a good place to put some of your SEO efforts).
Additionally, you can also use the “Paid & Organic” view to determine if you rank organically for the terms you target with your PPC campaign.
To access this data, when you’re logged into your campaign, select the “Dimensions” tab and change the view to “Paid & Organic”:
Once in this view, you can compare the CTRs for keywords where you have paid and organic listings to see which listings are the most effective. Plus, if you see that your PPC campaign is killing it for a certain keyword but you don’t rank for that keyword organically, you should probably focus on improving your rank for search queries related to that keyword.
We recommend using this PPC keyword data to generate ideas for new landing page ideas, future blog posts, as well as FAQs.
Need Help with Your PPC Campaign?
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