Keyword Research Tools that Make My Short List

Confused about all the keyword research tool and service options available to you?

No small wonder — it seems like there is a new piece of keyword research software or a new service on the market every other day.

So, I’m going to help make choosing the right market research (or PPC campaign helper) simpler for you with my ‘short list’ of keyword software and services… those that I’ve used and recommend.

But first, a quick blurb about keyword research…

Keyword research is essential for determining market size, competition in the marketplace and zeroing in on the specific products that your target market is searching for. To gather all that information, internet and affiliate marketers use keyword research tools.

Note: The following keyword research software and services are listed in alphabetical order, so you’ll have to check through each summary description to learn which is my personal favorite. :-)

  1. Google Cash Detective

    Returns real-time information FAST unlike other tools for which you can wait days (sometimes WEEKS) for competitive intelligence. GCD is powered by vast server clusters capable of tracking millions of keywords, advertisements, landing pages and dozens of other pay per click metrics.

    Google Cash Detective Review | Visit Google Cash Detective

  2. Google Keyword Tools

    For those quick keyword and keyword checks, I usually go first to Google’s Keyword Tool to glean some basic insights into my target market. However, for more indepth information, I tend to use one of the tools below, preferable Wordtracker. To find out why, read my | Google vs. Wordtracker article.

    Google Keyword Tool, Google Insights

  3. Keyword Country Software

    A comprehensive and complete keyword research tool, Keyword Country connects to major search engines for keyword research (including Google, Yahoo, MSN, ASK) and also connects to the industry by performing a deep analysis of the competitor websites. It also steals the niche keywords that competitors in your industry are using.

    Keyword Country Review | Visit Keyword Country

  4. Keyword Elite

    Keyword Elite (updated) lets you build long tail keyword lists with lightning speed to generate the largest, most diversified keyword lists imaginable and uncover keyword phrases I guarantee you had absolutely no idea people actually searched on!

    Keyword Elite

  5. Keyword Spy

    KeywordSpy really does spy on top affiliate marketers and then gives you a list of all the keywords that make money for them. So you can let all those smart Super Affiliates do the hard work of researching and testing to find the most lucrative keywords – and then you can turn around and use them in your own PPC ad campaigns.

    Keyword Spy Review | Visit Keyword Spy

  6. Speed PPC

    Developed by Jay Stockwell – a qualified AdWords Professional – Speed PPC is a keyword research tool for more advanced Internet and affiliate marketers who want to lower their bid costs, increase CTR (click-through-rates), CR (conversion rates) and increase their Adwords quality scores.

    Speed PPC Review (V.2), Review (V.3) | Visit Speed PPC

  7. Wordtracker

    Wordtracker is my personal favorite amongst all the keyword research tools available and perhaps the most popular keyword analysis tools being used today. From a massive 340 million keyword database you can learn exactly which terms your target audience are search for and how many times each keyword has been entered.

    Visit Wordtracker | Wordtracker Review

Note: Most of the paid services listed above also offer a free trial version.


  1. Cathryn says

    Can I just say what a comfort to find someone who actually understands what
    they are discussing on the internet. You actually understand how to
    bring a problem to light and make it important. A lot more people ought to
    read this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised that you aren’t more popular given that you definitely have the gift.

  2. Design says

    Off topic: Anyone here know’s what are the best or popular Adsense nowadays?
    Thank you so much for a reply..

  3. Kaito says

    Wow, thank for the tools..just right on time..I’ve been searching on popular keyword for my blog..thank you so much…

  4. says

    Wordtracker is my favourite tool too. And the company is extremely generous – you can use the full account for 7 days free – no questions asked, before the 7 days expire you simply cancel the account. If you are like me (I know that’s not best practice), and you do extensive keyword research only once a year – you can use Wordtracker completely free (!!)


  5. List Building Site Blog says

    Cool list Rosalind. These are very useful and i love most all the tools.
    Nice post. Keep it up!

  6. Charles Nicholas says

    Thank you Ms. Gardner.

    I am using Keyword Elite and Speed PPC tool because of this article.

    Its really very helpful to and I am intended to use all that are listed here.

    Hope to find more articles from you

  7. Sid says

    Hey Rosalind,

    Just wanted to mention another Great tool, which also applies to PPC, but especially for SEO, and that is Market Samurai. I got a chance to use it (free offer) when I took the Thirty Day Challenge, and holy guacamole, this is much more than a one trick pony. I’ve tried most of the tools that you listed above (except for Speed PPC) and for casting a wider net in both SEO and PPC, the Noble Samurai team have created a monster winner, and it’s still in beta! Another plus is the low price… oh yeah, the other must-use tool is of course, the Google Keyword Tool. Put these together and watch out!

    -Sid (hi from Vancouver!)

  8. Larry says

    What is your opinion of Google Cash Detective? Is it worth the money? More importantly, are there ways to “clone” a campaign that will work on Google?

  9. says

    Hi Rosalind,

    Thanks for sharing this article.

    Really appreciate it.

    Actually I want to ask you about keywords tools above, from your opinion which is THE BEST?
    And all those tools are free?


    • says

      Hello Joe,

      I’m glad you appreciate the article.

      It’s hard to say which is best — that depends on what you want to achieve with your research and your budget as most of these are paid keyword research services and tool — most with free trials.


  10. says

    It’s a bit depressing WT is still your fave after all the new ones that have come out. I’ve got a list over at mine too and it’s actually called alternatives to Wordtracker. I’ve had some intersting results from Google Insights, you obviously know it and I’m surprised you don’t mention it. Each to their own I guess. SEMrush can be very useful too for competition research.

    See ya :-)


    • says

      Hi BB,

      Excellent point about Google Insights. I’ll add the link within the Google section now. Thanks for reminding me. :-)

      As to Wordtracker still being my favorite, that could have something to do with familiarity… been using it for years and years and I’m an old dog. :-)

      BTW, I really like GCD too.


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