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Q: Determining interest in local consumer reviews & ratings based on searches ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Determining interest in local consumer reviews & ratings based on searches
Category: Business and Money > eCommerce
Asked by: mdw-ga
List Price: $15.00
Posted: 18 Jun 2002 11:07 PDT
Expires: 18 Jul 2002 11:07 PDT
Question ID: 28562
How can I determine the level of interest in consumer reviews &
ratings, as reflected in search engine inquiries? This would be for a
specific metropolitan area, focusing on local businesses and services
(as opposed to products). I know that has a "suggestion
tool" that lets you know the number of searches on given keywords in
the last month. But this is only one search engine and I don't know
how popular it is (I only use Google, of course). The purpose of this
information is to gain a rough measure of interest in a website that
provides local ratings & reviews of local businesses and services.
Subject: Re: Determining interest in local consumer reviews & ratings based on searches
Answered By: xemion-ga on 18 Jun 2002 12:45 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
You appear to be looking for a "suggestion tool" from Google.  Google
does have such a tool, though it's pretty difficult to find and if you
didn't know it was there, you probably wouldn't find it.

To access Google's suggestion tool, I suggest looking at:
Sign up for an account and then add a campaign.  When you get to the
section where you add your keywords, there will be a "suggestion tool"
(or something like that) link.
If you're looking too see how many searches are in a month, I'm not
sure if you can do this in the select campaign.  But if you go to and demo an account, you can view the number
of searches daily, weekly and monthly.
As for the popularity of Overture, Overture search results displayed
on almost every major search engine with the exception of AOL Search
and Google.  It's suggestion tool is considered to be the most
accurate tool of it's kind.  I would suggest it over Google's
suggestion tool to be honest.  That said, I only use Overture for it's
suggestion tool.  I do almost all my internet searches on Google.
Thanks for the question and if you require more information regarding
my answer, don't hesitate to ask for clarification.  And if you find
this answer satisfactory, please feel free to rate it. Thank you!

Request for Answer Clarification by mdw-ga on 18 Jun 2002 13:26 PDT
The first part of your answer is not helpful because it does not
answer my question. In addition, I read it previously on one of your
other answers. You seem to have cut and pasted your previous answer on
to your answer for me--okay to do in some instances but it makes it
seem like you didn't carefully consider what I was asking.

I am already an AdWords Select customer (for a different business), so
I'm familiar with Google's Keyword Suggestion Tool. It does not
provide the number of times individuals have searched using a given
keyword or phrase. I guess I could create a demo account for the new
business idea but then I'd have to wait around to see how many
impressions I had. I'd also need a website for them to click to and
I'm not ready for a beta website yet.

The second part of your response is helpful because I did not know
that Overture search results display on almost every major search
engine other than Google and AOL. Thus, I conclude from your response
that by using Overture's Suggestion Tool, I have done everything I can
to obtain a rough estimate of the number of searches for given
keywords. If this is not correct, please let me know. Thanks.

Clarification of Answer by xemion-ga on 18 Jun 2002 13:44 PDT
Yes, I copy and pasted the answer a previous answer mine since the
question was the same.  I was not aware that you knew of the Google
suggestion tool already.

You stated that "it does not provide the number of times individuals
have searched using a given keyword or phrase."  That is true.  The
Adwords SELECT program does not.  However, if you use the REGULAR
Adwords program, they have a different tool that will.  There are two
different Google tools.  It's sort of confusing.  Use this link to
demo the regular Adwords program (just fill in bogus information):

My initial response would be that, "yes, you've done everything you
can do."  I have lots of business experience in the area of search
engines and suggestion tools.  However, let me do some further
research and get a more detailed answer back to you.

Thanks and I apologize for including information that didn't help you.


Request for Answer Clarification by mdw-ga on 18 Jun 2002 15:41 PDT
To XEMION: Thank you for the clarification. I will check out the
regular AdWords program. Thanks for looking into this question a
little further. I appreciate your responsiveness.

Clarification of Answer by xemion-ga on 18 Jun 2002 19:21 PDT
I'm going to post a number of links and suggestions here.  You may
already be aware of some or all of them, but I'm going to post them
anyway just to be safe.  The quality of these services and techniques
depends on the type of keyword you use.  Some keywords work better
with one service, other keywords with another service.  You just have
to experiment.

First off, you need to make sure you have the correct keywords.'s service will provide additional keyword matching a
keyword you input using "parallel" technology.  Basically, they search
for keywords that are the same as the keyword you've already got. 
This insures that you get all the keywords people use.  For example,
when searching for "e-commerce", it returns "ecommerce", "ebusiness"
and "b2b".  Their results are pretty rough, so you have to filter
through them by hand, but it's still very useful.  They have a free
trial that will return a short list of keywords.  I recommend that you
try it if you have not done so already.

Another good tatic is to review your competitions keywords.  Search
for your search term on Google and look at top 10 ten listings'
keywords, descriptions and titles.  This is a great technique for
finding keywords you might have missed.

Once you're sure you've got all the keywords you want, you want to
measure the interest in the keyword.  We've already discussed the
Overture suggestion tool, but I'm going to give you a brief overview
on Overture anyway.

Overture search results appear on:
MSN Network
Yahoo Network
Lycos Network
Infospace Network

I say "network" because these search engines operate more than one
website or search engine.

Overture claims to reach "85% of all active Internet users".  They
have a bigger search reach on the internet than practically any other
company or website.  It's really quite amazing to me :-)

Google actually just started their Adwords Select program a few months
ago.  Until the Select program, only large advertisers were able to
advertise on Google using the normal Adwords program.  I personally
use the Select program and I find Overture's suggestion tool to a more
accurate measure of a keywords popularity on the internet.  That said,
Google stats are very accurate for their search engine.  But for
overall "popularity", you can't beat Overture's reach.

Another good idea to obtain a term's popularity is do a normal search
for it and see how many results come up.  This is a not a real
accurate method and results vary from keyword to keyword, but it's
still interesting.  I suggest trying this a on multiple search
engines.  Google, Wisenut, Altavista and MSN are the ones I would
recommend.  Use this method to compare your different keywords.

To summarize, the only real accurate methods of obtaining the number
of searches at this time are the Overture and Google suggestion tools.
 Overture gives you a much more definite number than Google, but
Google is still useful.

You may also find the below website interesting.  It has a number of
search engine keyword links.  Please note, however, that most of these
are smaller search engines.

The above website lists the Google Zeitgeist, but I find it
interesting enough to make a separate comment on.  It's really a very
cool little page.

I hope I've been able to answer your question and if you have any
questions about my answer, please don't hesitate to ask.  Thank you!

mdw-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Thank you for the excellent follow-up in response to my Answer
Clarification query. I understand the subject much better, thanks to
your research.

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