The Google Adwords Keyword tool is one of the most useful tools on the web. I almost always have it open in one of my many tabs in chrome. I have begin to also use a few other tools when doing researching for article, domain names, and competitor research. Keyword research is so useful in many parts of domaining and development.
The google adwords keyword is of course only limited to google's data so there are other tools you can use to see other types of data.
SEMRush Keyword Tool
I really love the SEM Rush website and if you have not already checked it out you really need to. One of my favorite parts of the site is being able to research what terms companies are advertising for via PPC. I use this information when I am trying to pitch them domain. Their keyword tool is limited in the free version, but is much easier to read and provides more data than the google tool. From a simple keyword search you can see the CPC, trends, and also the top organic and paid results to see who you will be competing against or who you should be selling you name too. You can also export the results easily.
SEO Book Keyword Tool / Wordtracker
SEO Book also has a great keyword tool that utilizes wordtracker and gives you combined search data from Google, Bing, and Yahoo. We all sometimes that there are tons of people searching on places other than google. In many cases Yahoo and Bing rank exact match domain better than google so their visitors will be easier to grab. It provides the wordtracker estimate, plus the google and the yahoo + bing combined. This is just more data to look at, because the more you know the better decisions you will be able to make. Like SEM Rush you can also export the results easily. You do need to register for a free account to use the tool at SEO Book.
This is not your traditional keyword tool, it is completely free and what is does is you search a term and it will scan the first number of results in google and see what other words and phrases come up most often. I really like this tool because it can give you different results that normal keyword tools might miss.
None of these replace the Google Adwords tool, but make great additions to your tool bench.
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