Almost exactly one year ago I posted about Google’s then-new Keyword Planner tool. Now they’re back at it, releasing a new set of features with little to no accompanying fanfare. All of the updates seem to revolve around adding better visualization to assist advertisers with creating highly targeted campaigns from the ground up.

Will it Trend?

Seasonal trends in keyword search volume provide an excellent baseline for online advertisers. That kind of data can help determine budgeting and forecasts and explain the peaks and valleys inherent to the medium. Google now presents your keyword trends front and center from the moment you click “Get Ideas”.

Keyword Planner - Search Volume Trends
Here, you can see the expected search volume trends for “swimming pool installation” over the last year.

Not terribly surprising, what with most people wanting to take a swim when the weather starts to heat up. But there’s another layer beyond this data that Google now offers.

Keyword Planner - Mobile Trends
Volume can now be broken out to show mobile vs. desktop searches.

30% of traffic to the keyword in May of last year came from users on mobile devices. This chart is a major improvement and should help you determine how best to handle mobile bid adjustments. You can also use this information to determine the growth of mobile device use for keyword searches over time. For example, expanding the chart above tells me that mobile share for the term grew from 25% of searches in April 2013 to 33.8% in April 2014.

You can also compare the data against a different date range, but that only seems to apply to the overall Search Volume Trends chart. This could be useful for determining shifts in seasonality for keywords over a longer period of time.

Breaking it Down

In addition to the trend data, Keyword Planner can now show you which devices dominated the search landscape and which locations will provide the best bang for your buck.

Keyword Planner - Device Breakdown
From May 2012 to April 2013, Computers dominated the search landscape for this term…
Keyword Planner - Device Breakout
. ..but the growing presence of mobile is made clear when we look at more recent data

The new updates also offer breakdowns by location, enabling you to quickly determine where you might find the biggest concentration of traffic.

Keyword Planner - Location Breakdown
Philadelphia has about 300,000 more citizens than Dallas, but search volume tells us where to focus.

The new tool seems to be trying to refocus advertisers on the kind of targeting that should be kept in mind when first building a campaign. Starting off with strong keyword, device, and location targeting can set your campaigns on the right course from the outset, and these new features should help you do just that.