Goodbye ‘Google Suggest’ API. You Will Be Missed!

Google has always had this wonderful little application programming interface that you could tap into for Google Suggest. “Suggest” are all those keywords that come up when you type a word/search phrase in Google. They also just happen to be the top searches for the keyword/phrase that you’re typing in and looking for (convenient!). I had been using this cool little script that let me pull all those results to a php page. That in itself may not be super cool, but when you break up the results into an array, which lets me work with each word as a unique value, and then surround it with some mysql code to store in a database, it starts getting pretty neat. Here’s what I did…

This little script would go out and grab all the results from Google Suggest and throw it into an array (not anymore though! Google said bye):

Next step.. I wrapped the mysql code around it to save the results to a database:

This would allow me to run the first script and make sure I liked the results.. and then run the second script to insert into my database. But wait.. it gets way cooler! Now, I decided to scrape a search engine or two, for the results of those stored keywords. I used yahoo and a search engine called duck-duck go (one of my favorites for search).

Next, I created a new website to then display the keywords down the page and re-direct the search engine queries through my page, substituting a simple variable ($keyword) in the url of the search, for the keyword in my list. In this way, if you click any one of the keywords, it presents a new page with all the search results on it. Cool eh? The real value in this is that with just a few Google Suggest scrapes, I could have a new website with thousands of pages on it!

Finally, add pagination to sort the results for your visitors and publish to the web. Here’s an example site I created: Tablet Reviews — At the time of this writing, I have right at 2000 pages indexed on that website.

Anyone searching the web for tablet reviews arrives on the site due to the many long tail keywords and the occasional visitor clicks my monetization method (Amazon ads for a new tablet in this case) and I get paid.

So now, the Google Suggest API is gone but all is not lost. I can easily just login to my database, update it with a few new keywords and get several new pages of results. This isn’t nearly so effective though, as it just adds a few new pages to my site at a time, versus hundreds at a time. It’s a nice strategy for existing sites such as the one I just showed you, but it would take a long time to create a new site with thousands of new pages of content, which is the most effective way I’ve found to make money online without all the social networking crap.

So.. I’m now writing a new script which will go out and do a bit of what Google Suggest did for me. I’m very close and just have to work out a few more bugs but the new script is going to be even better than the Google Suggest API, it turns out! I’ll explain more on that when I get it finished so stay tuned for my next article.


  1. Thanks for the update, SuggestRank. Link1 doesn’t help much because it forces a ‘save’ not instead of running the results in the browser but the xml is superb! It will require a bit of scraping to churn out the proper results.. but when nicely formatted in xml, that couldn’t be easier.

    I’m back in business on these. Thanks again!


  2. Have you considered releasing your updated code?

    I’ve managed to get my own version hacked together, but it has a nasty habit of exploding if there are no results for a keyword + modifier letter (tools + a). I’d really like to overcome this so I can get the keyword counts.


  3. So whatever happened with your new tool? And did you get the old one to work again?

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