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Google's multilingual taxonomy - new G keyword tool feature



11:06 pm on May 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

We've talked before about Google's categories. I'd like to call your attention to a new feature I am seeing in Google's new Keyword Tool:


You'll note the category navigation on the left. You'll also see a number of languages in the top of the list under Advanced options.

At present I can see English, Japanese, German and Portuguese. If you select a corresponding country of one of those 4 languages and then click on the categories list you'll see keywords returned in the language of your choice.

IMO this indicates that Google is developing a multilingual taxonomy, and that the category list that I've seen in English is a global categorization system.

Not so surprising I guess (everyone likes pizza, wherever you live).

But amazing to see in action.


[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 1:31 am (utc) on May 18, 2010]
[edit reason] delinked secure url [/edit]


2:46 am on May 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Google's blogs have been making much lately of expanding various features into new languages. Certainly it's part of Google's overall vision, but what exactly it means for their keyword tool numbers has never been clear to me.

English, Japanese, German and Portuguese?
I wish I saw what you are seeing ;(


11:16 pm on May 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I wish I saw what you are seeing ;(

Worry not Dear tedster. I am sure if you work hard and keep on replying to WebmasterWorld posts your day will soon come :)

This development is especially interesting to me with reference to Eric Schmidt's comments about Big Brands.

Using this new keyword tool we can look for the Big Brands for a particular category in a variety of countries (currently ~5 countries). These Brands may be particular to an individual country, yet Google is able to categorize the search terms across languages and say "Well here are the branded search terms you'll see in Japan for widget sauce and then here are the branded search terms you'll see in Germany for widget sauce."

The statistical grunt work required must be phenomenal.

<edit> spelling


9:54 am on May 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Sounds great, but I can't get it to automatically translate between an english phrase and the others (as I understand it, this is a feature - if so it would be quite impressive on many multi-word items/services/concepts).

I tried a popular food type that I know is represented by different words in English and German and could not get the tool to suggest the alternative either way. It looks to me that you must know one of the words you are searching for at least, which makes this feature much less useful (especially when you consider the differences in terms used in countries that use the same language, it would impress me if anyone could do that automatically)


10:08 pm on May 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I need to clarify that I am accessing this tool from the old Keyword Tool interface


and then clicking on

New Check out the New Keyword Tool (beta)

This SBKT is different to the one accessible from


I drill down the category tree, then select a country and a language (one of the top 5 of each list) and then click the "Search" button. Then I see German, Japanese, etc search terms.

I'm not entering any search terms at all - just drilling down and then translating.


<edit> added drill down description


2:06 am on May 22, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I am not finding this feature .. the cat tree I see is all about subjects ... no locations.


3:33 am on May 22, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

From what I can see, the new language tool is only available when you are signed into an Adwords account.


12:20 am on May 24, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Erm - I'm not logged in and I am using it now.

Here are the steps again.

1. [adwords.google.com...]
2. Click "New Check out the New Keyword Tool (beta)."
3. Drill down into the category tree. I use the top one, then the next top one and then the last child - as an example
4. After you click on the final child category the "Keyword ideas" list should be populated - you'll notice brand names in there.
5. Above the category tree, in the "Find Keywords" section of the page, is the "Advanced options" link. Click that and select (for example) Country: Japan and Language: Japanese
6. Now click the "Search" button at the bottom left of the "Find Keywords" box.
7. The "Keyword Ideas" list is repopulaed with Japanese characters - and my early tests indicate there are brand names familiar to Japanese users in that list!

I hope you can see it so we can discuss.



3:16 am on May 24, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Yes, thank you. I first had to use a different browser. For some reason (not uncommon with Google) I couldn't access it with Operaa while logged out.

The category tree is some limitations (really no B2B, for example) but for many common B2C markets it does very nicely. Also, it's clearly designed for Adwords campaigns - naturally - and not so much for organic keyword development. But it still gives a raft of data. The advanced filters are particularly interesting.

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