Is wordtrack obsolete now?

Hi All,

I keep reading in books and old websites that one of the best tools for estimating the volume for a particular search term is Word Tracker because it gives exact search volume. However, Google’s keyword tool appears to do that now.

Are these simply old recommendations made before Google reported actual search number? Or am I missing something?


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Wordtracker is not obsolete but I usually use Google’s tool.

No you are not missing anything. Google’s keyword tool is more than enough. In my point of view as a search engine it knows about the search volume for a particular keyword.


Wordtracker extrapolates search numbers from those made on Dogpile and Metacrawler and makes a best guess about how many are being made on Google. Google gives you the actual figure but it’s skewed by people like us doing research for SEO and PPC etc. I’ll still take Google’s not very accurate but ‘from the horses mouth’ figures over Wordtracker’s best guesses anyday.

I would suggest you to go with Google Adwords tool, which would be very helpful, as since i have been benefited with this a lot.

Really? I guess then that what you didn’t read was my post just above yours because then you wouldn’t have needed to post your innacurate information.

Hi there,

I’m Mal, and I work for Wordtracker Customer Support. I’d just like to clarify a couple of points here, particularly as some readers may not have seen the new toolset that was released last year.

Wordtracker’s dataset is just under 1% of US search for the last 365 days. There’s no extrapolation of search volume, and the searches presented are raw numbers - each one has been typed in by a real person. The only treatment the data gets before it hits our servers is a ten-stage filtering process which removes bot searches and spam. We no longer present a predict figure as in the old tools, as this is an estimate and we’d prefer to deal in figures that can be more reliably trusted.

Google has not to date released details of the size of sampling it uses for its tool (it’s certainly not 100% of its searches) or the extrapolation methods used to arrive at the numbers that it’s presenting. Remember, this tool is geared towards users engaged in the AdWords program, so it’s possible there is a bias there towards certain keywords (although I’ve not heard confirmation or denial of this).

Is Wordtracker obsolete? Very far from it. Our users have access to up to 1000 results on any keyword search, giving good access to long tail keywords that Google’s tool isn’t able to present, and one bit of feedback from a customer stated that he’d managed to find keywords that none of his competitors were using. Wordtracker also presents competition metrics (from Majestic SEO) that no other tool has access to - these metrics can tell you how many pages have each keyword in the title tag of the html code as well as in anchor text in a backlink, giving a clear view of actual intended competition, rather than just presenting the number of pages indexed by a search engine containing each keyword (which is still available too). There’s more information about this in an article by Mike Mindel which can be found in the “finding profitable keywords just got easier” article in the Keyword Research section of the Wordtracker Academy. Sorry, I can’t post a link right now as I haven’t been active enough on this forum(!)

Probably the best way to assess for yourself how Wordtracker is looking these days is to take the risk free 7 day trial which you can get to via the home page.

I hope this info is of some help, but if anyone has any questions, just ask here, or mail us on our support address.

All the best,


Hi Mal,

Thanks for your post, I have a couple of questions.

Where are you getting the search numbers information from?

One of the problems I used to have with Wordtracker was that if there were keyword phrases that had never been used on Dogpile and Metacrawler they wouldn’t show up in your database but that didn’t mean that they weren’t being used on Google, maybe I’ve misunderstood how wordtracker works in that respect?

Also, how do you remove bot searches and spam? One of Wordtracker’s advantages used to be that it took it’s information from sources unlikely to be skewed by these types of searches, has that changed? If so, how is it more reliable than Google’s keyword tool?

Since no source for search numbers can every be regarded as truly accurate, I’ve only ever used the info provided as a guide to how popular a keyword phrase may or not be. so sample sizes are a bit irrelevant to me. Also, Google have a search based keywords tool.

The bit about a possible bias is pure speculation and I can only treat it as such, I’ve heard rumours that you guys make up your search numbers (although I’ve not heard confirmation or denial of this)… not really, but you see my point.

You know what would be great, if you guys put together a comparison chart on features offered by wordtracker vs all the other keyword search tools, would make it a lot easier for us lot to see at a glance why one is better than the other.

You didn’t start this thread did you? :shifty: :wink:

Hi JJ,

>Where are you getting the search numbers information from?

We get our search data from metacrawler and dogpile. You’re right in that if searches aren’t conducted on those sites or their portals, they won’t show in our database, but they may show on Google (or Yahoo or Bing) if they’re used on those other sites. We can’t capture data that isn’t entered in our catchment.

We use a series of filters to capture and eliminate spam - I can’t really discuss the methods here, but it’s a pretty effective system we have to get the data as clean as it is. Changes in keyword trends and Internet Marketing methods mean that no search source is free from robotic search activity, and Wordtracker has adapted with these changes to provide as consistently clean dataset as possible. I’m reluctant to get into a ‘better/ worse’ discussion about Wordtracker and the Google AdWords tool as they’re very different beasts designed for different functions, although there are many similarities - but I would say that Wordtracker’s tools offer a much greater insight into search’s long tail.

I’m glad to read of your awareness of the accuracy of all keyword tools - it’s specifically because of this that we recommend people view the figures as relative values rather than absolutes - particularly when they’re looking inside a niche - it gives a much clearer picture

You’re right about the speculation, and on reflection, it was a mistake to include that sentence. Sorry.

>You know what would be great, if you guys put together a comparison chart on features offered by wordtracker vs all the other keyword search tools, would make it a lot easier for us lot to see at a glance why one is better than the other.

That’s a good point, and I’ll mention it to our Marketing team. The only reservation I have about comparison charts is that they tend to be quantative rather than qualitative, and saying that one tool only has ‘x’ and the other only has ‘y’ can be a bit misleading when ‘x’ and ‘y’ might have different values to different people.

>You didn’t start this thread did you?

Haha! I didn’t mean to come across as ‘salesy’, not at all. All I meant was that the tools are available for assessment by anyone.

I hope this answers your questions, but do let me know if there’s any more.



Hi Mal,

Thanks for your answers. Great to get info from an authoratitive source for a change.

We should start a new thread and invite representitives from all the keyword analysis tools to explain why theirs is the best (from a qualitative perspective…) and then cut and paste it onto every SEO forum out there. What a great insight into compeititve keyword analysis methodology that would be.

I used to use WordTracker, but then decided that Google’s free tool did just as good of a job.

I think Wordtracker is always mentioned in ebooks because they have an affiliate program and many ebooks are only published to reap in some affiliate earnings.

Hi Drew,

As I said to JJ, I’m not really into getting ‘salesy’ on a forum, but I think if you checked out the Wordtracker tools you’d find that there’s information there (specifically on the long tail and the exclusive competition metrics we have) that the Google free tool won’t be able to provide.

It’s true that Wordtracker has an affiliate program, and I wouldn’t deny that there may be some e-authors out there who mention Wordtracker solely to attract affiliate revenue, but the truth is that we have customers returning year on year to find keywords to maximise their SEO return on investment. As I mentioned earlier, to get the best picture on this, why not take the trial?

@JJ - there’s probably not enough time in my day to round up reps from all the other keyword tools, but if I was aware of such a discussion somewhere, I’d be happy to participate!



Hi Mal,

I’ve previously been a paying customer for Wordtracker and just didn’t find that it provided nearly enough bang for the buck.

No, Wordtracker is very useful.
I trust Wordtracker more than I trust Google’s keyword tool.