I've been following all the threads here, but I can't seem to set up keywords planner without having to pay for a campaign. I've been told this is a free service - is google now charging for this service?
It changed last year, and access to the tool now requires an active, paid account.
For most people, the decision to begin advertising should be independent of estimates. Unless you have a very unusual product or service, there will be enough search traffic to make creating some ads worth the effort.
Knowing what the click costs are is kinda irrelevant. If other people are paying x per click, and your product and ad copy are comparable, then paying x should give you a positive return from ad spend - regardless of what x is. If a $5 or $10 click estimate will scare you off, then you probably aren't ready to give ads a go. If the estimates from Google is like 10 cents per click, that doesn't mean great value - it means those keywords don't convert well.
Yes, This is a free tool, but you need to create an active AdWords account. You can make a dummy campaign and keep it in pause state and start using the keywords planner for research use.
Moreover, you have to enter the billing information, but you will not charge because your dummy campaign will be in the pasue state.
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