Using Google’s Wonder Wheel For PPC Keyword Research

In the highly competitive world of PPC, sometimes it’s necessary to think outside of the box to keep ahead of other advertisers in your vertical. In this post, I’d like to introduce you to a secret weapon in the world of keyword research: the Google Wonder Wheel.

There’s no lack of good (and free) keyword tools out there. To get a basic list of keywords, you can try the Google External Keyword Tool, WordStream’s keyword tool, or Microsoft Advertising Intelligence. But, as reliable as these tools are, they do have an upper limit on the keyword suggestions you can get. Eventually, you’ll reach the point of diminishing returns and will only find keywords that you’re already bidding on, or ones that just are not relevant to your business.

This is when you’ll have to bring out the big guns. Here’s what you need to do:

First, go to www.google.com. Enter one of your most profitable or popular keywords into the search box and execute a Google search. In this example, we’ll use “web design training.”

On the left side navigation of the search results page, click on the “Wonder Wheel” link:

Wonder Wheel Link In Google Navigation

On the next page, you’ll find the infamous “Wonder Wheel”:

Google Wonder Wheel

Now, the fun begins. You’ll probably get some pretty good suggestions for relevant keywords off of the first wonder wheel, but you can dig even deeper by clicking on any individual keyword. This will spawn a brand new wonder wheel, with even more suggestions related to the keyword you clicked on. Even better, you have a dynamic list of top search results to the right of the wonder wheel to help you determine the user intent behind the query, and whether or not the suggested keyword is a good fit for your advertising campaigns.

This is a great method to both expand your current campaigns and ad groups, or come up with new ideas for areas you haven’t covered. There’s really no limit to how many new keywords you can discover with this – each new keyword you add creates potential for new suggestions. If you see some success after a few test runs, you should definitely add this method to your regular keyword research.

About Shawn Livengood

Shawn Livengood is a search engine marketing professional based in Austin, Texas. He has extensive experience managing pay-per-click ad campaigns for clients in various industries, from small home-based businesses to large international companies. You can connect with Shawn on Google+.
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One Response to Using Google’s Wonder Wheel For PPC Keyword Research

  1. Brandon says:

    You can also use the Wonder Wheel for building out a good Display Network campaign. For me, it hasn’t been much help for long tail terms but more for brainstorming new ad groups. After you have a good set of groups, use the other keyword tools to build out some keywords for the groups.