In light of the current situation where many businesses are facing challenges, I think we can all agree that anything FREE – whether it’s a tool, webinar or other resource – comes in handy. While you can manage PPC using only Google Ads and Bing Ads online interfaces, doing so will be less than optimal. Tools are essential for professional marketers, and it’s very important to choose the right ones. There are many great and free tools that can save you time, provide essential insights into your data and ultimately improve and grow your paid media accounts.
Would you like to find out what tools can help your PPC account? Then read on as we’ve created a list of 8 completely FREE tools which you can start using today!
Free Google Tools
Might seem a very obvious one, but Keyword Planner is a really useful tool that you can use to search for new keywords, check historical search volume data and forecast potential results within your Google Ads account.
While figures from Keyword Planner are not completely reliable, they can give you some great insights of where you may expect to be in terms of reach and performance.
Keyword planner is a very easy to use tool. All you need to do is provide several top-level terms or a website URL and you will be given a list of relevant keywords, their average search volume, competition score and if you’re lucky (it’s not always available) some other metrics like top of page bids, ad impression share, etc.
Personally, my favourite thing about Google Keyword Planner is that you can add the newly founded keywords into the advertising plan which will then allow you to create a campaign in your Google Ads account, without even entering the Google Ads interface.
Please note that you will need to have a Google Ads account to use Keyword Planner.
Google trends is a very powerful PPC tool that is often underused when it comes to PPC marketing. And the best thing about it is that it’s completely FREE! Google Trends can give you great insights into what’s popular in the world, and what is seeing a decline in interest at any given time. It can also help you find profitable PPC keywords for your campaigns.
The way Google Trends works is you need to type in any search term or topic, and Google will instantly show you an “Interest over time” graph for that term. The numbers on the graph (differ from 0-100) represent search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given region and range date. For example, a value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term, whereas a value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. A score of 0 means that there was not enough data for this term.
Google Trends can be very useful for seasonal changes, any major events or festivals or unpredictable times like we’re in now. Just search for a few terms around your main product or service to see if Google has seen any rise or decline in the last 30 days. I’ve already used it myself to send some useful data to clients and they really appreciated it!
Google Search Console is another great and FREE tool provided by Google that can help with PPC marketing, even though it’s most commonly used for SEO purposes.
The main area of the platform I want to focus on is Search Analytics, which gives you insights into what keyword variations brought traffic to your website from Google Search Engine Results.
The metrics we can find in Search Analytics are the query variations, impressions, clicks, CTR, and the current position in Google. These can be very useful if you’re looking at different keyword variations and match types to use in your PPC campaigns, or negative keywords you want to avoid by adding them to your negative keyword lists in your account.
Additionally, Search Analytics can also outline your current organic listings issues that PPC can help with. For example, if you see a keyword variation with a high number of impressions but a low number of clicks and a low position, you can use this keyword in your PPC campaigns to improve its’ visibility in the SERP.
Other Free PPC Tools
The Keyword Tool is another great platform for finding new keywords. Similar to Google’s Keyword Planner, you can specify the region and language in which you want to see the performance of the searched keywords.
The tool is very simple to use. Simply type in a word in the search box of Keyword Tool, press “Enter” and the tool will immediately pull a big list of long-tail keyword suggestions for your seed keyword. Keyword Tool gets keywords directly from Google Autocomplete which is why with Keyword Tool you will be able to find keywords that are hidden in Google Keyword Planner.
A big advantage of Keyword Tool is that it’s free and you do not need to create an account for it to work. There is however a paid version of the tool if you want to get more insights into the data.
According to Answer The Public, there are 3 billion Google searches every day, and 20% of those have never been seen before. They’re like a direct line to your customers’ thoughts. The way Answer The Public works is that it listens into autocomplete data from search engines like Google or Bing and then gives every useful phrase and question people are asking around the searched keyword.
Personally, I think that Answer The Public is a great tool to start the keyword research with as it allows you to display keywords in a more visual way. To get your results, you just need to type in a term (this can be a topic, brand or product) you want to research and choose your language and the country you want to target. You should then see the many keywords segmented into different groups including questions, prepositions, comparisons, alphabeticals and related terms. The idea is to give you a human like long-tail search terms.
With this completely FREE Google Ads Performance Grader from Wordstream, you can get a thorough audit of your Google Ads account in just 1 minute. According to Wordstream itself, you will get a free report, including a final grade on your overall Google Ads performance, based on a detailed review of the following areas:
- Wasted Spend
- Quality Scores
- Click-Through Rates
- Account Activity
- Text Ads
- Long-Tail Keywords
- Impression Shares
- Mobile Advertising
- PPC Best Practices
So basically, Google Ads Performance Grader works as a generic audit of your account and gives you feedback on what could be improved in order to get better results. It’s free so why not try it!
The Facebook Text Overlay tool is for marketers who manage Facebook Ads accounts and it can really save you a lot of time on communications with the client and help you make sure that your ads will get a high reach.
As you probably know, Facebook prefers advert images with little or no text, because images with a lot of text may create a lower-quality experience for users. This essentially means that your image shouldn’t contain more than 20% text, otherwise, your advert’s reach may be very low or ads may not run at all. And this is where the Facebook Text Overlay Tool comes in place. It’s very simple to use, you just need to upload your ad images and wait for a rating to appear. If the rating says “Image text: OK” that means there are no further improvements needed to be made.
I really recommend sending a link to this tool to all of your clients who create graphics for Facebook ads. It will save you time going back and forth with communications in order to get the image in line with the Facebook guidelines.
The last but not least, Moat is a great tool for Display network that allows you to spy on your competitors display ads and gives you inspiration on designing creatives for your ads. The downside of it is that it only has the data for bigger brands so you won’t be able to spy on every business. To start using Moat, just go to moat.com, input the name of your competitor in the search box, choose one of the suggestions given by Moat and wait for the results to appear. You should now see lots of display ads being populated for that competitor.
Small tip: Hover over each creative to see ad’s device, dimensions and dates active.
Hopefully, the above list of 8 Free PPC tools was useful and will allow you to save some time and improve your PPC accounts starting today. Please leave a comment below if you have any questions about the article or you know any other Free PPC tools that could be added to that list.
If you feel like you need some help with your PPC marketing or any other aspect of your digital strategy, get in touch with our friendly team today!