Trellian Keyword Database Change

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The popular keyword research tool from Trellian, called Keyword Discovery, changes their database to rely on their tool bar users only (like Alexa) instead of the tool bar usage in combination with search-logs of 200 and more search engines and other sources.

Keyword Discovery, the premium keyword-research service by Trellian (similar to WordTracker) recently changed their default keyword database. The database that is the basis for their reports and statistics was switched to what used to be their optional premium database.

I learned about the change via email newsletter from the keyword research service NicheBot V2.0, which uses the Keyword Discovery API and WordTracker API to offer the same data for a lower price to their customers. They announced this already much earlier in April this year, but needed the time to perform the actual change.

Trellian uses the data collected from over 4,000,000 people who have software installed that reports the users searches on search engines back to Trellian.

Trellian also used to include data logs acquired from ISP’s and Search Engines themselves in their keyword database. Those are now being excluded and only the data from the 4,000,000 users remain.

Rammifications of the Change
This means that keyword counts will be much lower now than they were for the same keywords last week. I am not a Keyword Discovery user, but I am sure that Trellian made their customers aware of that.

Trellian says that this change (reduced database) will result in more accurate search results. They say that the Search Engine logs tend to account for “weird search data” due to what is called “search engine noise”. Search engine noise is queries performed by SEO’s and scrapers to determine rankings of their or competitors sites for specific keywords and are not searches by actual users.

Look into the Future
Trellian also states, that their user base of 4,000,000 will increase to 12,000,000 (triple) by the end of 2007. I would like to know how they plan to do that. Buy and

The Database that is now the default database for everybody, used to be the Premium database in the past. People reported in the past already that it seems that the premium database results are much more accurate than the results of the much larger “global database”. The premium database is much more like the WordTracker keyword database, which is “only” using the 30+ million searches of the last 90 days at their meta-search engine Dogpile.

The old Trellian keyword database consisted of 12 months worth of data from over 30 billion search queries.

Alexa V2.0 – Paid Version?
Now the problem with the Trellian software that captures the searches is that we do not know what type of users has it running. May be it is or will become as hopelessly skewed as the Alexa data, which is also using software installed on users computers to track a website’s popularity. Alexa is used by tech savvy geeks and tempered with by people who try to game the system from a higher Alexa ranking for their website that does not reflect actual popularity.

Okay, Trellian does not do the ranking scoring, which reduces the risk of malicious tempering with their data, but I still would think that the way the data are collected is already limited to a very specific type of user and cannot reflect an accurate cross section of actual search users.

We will find out with the time, if this move was a smart one (especially, if they really grow their user base three fold by the end of the year) or if it only becomes a very expensive version of Alexa instead.

Foreign Language Databases
I wonder if this change also affects their country specific databases with keywords collected from search engines in languages such as Dutch, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, and Swedish and from UK search engines. WordTracker did just February this year launch the UK Version of their Service as well.

I also wonder, if their slightly higher price than the one for WordTracker is still warranted or if they should match WordTracker pricing instead, because they reduced their system to something that is much more like WordTracker than it used to be before.

To learn more about the various keyword research services and keyword research in general, visit my site at

Carsten Cumbrowski

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Carsten Cumbrowski
Carsten Cumbrowski has years of experience in Affiliate Marketing and knows both sides of the business as the Affiliate and Affiliate Manager. Carsten has over... Read Full Bio
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  • Marios Alexandrou

    I’m finding that some of the numbers from KeywordDiscovery with the new database change are way off. In some cases they report lower numbers for keywords than sites I work on get without even ranking number 1. Still, it’s a good tool for estimating interest and volume especially relative to other terms.

  • David Warmuz

    Just a clarification on the above if I may.

    The service has not really changed. Both the Premium and Global databases are still available. We simply only changed the default database to the far more accurate database as per our users requests.

    The premium database has over 4 billion searches of the past 12 months, when comparing that to wordtracker which only has 300 million.

    Users can still use and access the larger 33 billion dataset, which is still updated and maintained.

    At the same time we release many new regional databases including:
    Dutch, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, UK, with Canadian and Australian not far behind.


  • CarstenCumbrowski

    Thank you for the clarification David,

    So the big Database remains updated as usual?

    Is it also accessible through the API via modified requests that indicate that you want the big database vs the default?

  • CarstenCumbrowski

    Oh, and could you something to the statement that your user base will increase from 4 million to 12 million by the end of the year, if you can? Thanks.

  • David Warmuz

    Yes all Enterprise API users can specify what database they wish to access. So yes they both, plus a few of the regional ones as well.

    As for usership, yes that is the plan, we have been heavily advertising on various PPC engines, content sites and networks in order to increase our usership numbers. Since we have many custom toolbars, the reach is diverse and is not limited to SEO users, which Alexa is commonly used.


  • CarstenCumbrowski

    Great, thanks for the quick response and the useful information.