We don't just display the data that Google Planner does. Every time you do a search, a complex process happens in the background to take data from a variety of sources, including Google, then blends these together to provide the best results. That's how we can provide stats such as CPC (cost per click) against keywords, as well giving you the search volumes separately for keywords that Google groups together.
You may have noticed that some searches are not being returned as quickly as they used to, or are now not returning data at all. This is down to how that process works to blend together the data from Google with our own. Google has in recent weeks made it significanty harder for thrid parties to access planner data, which means that when we are trying to combine data in the background we're not getting the data back from some sources.
This is summed up pretty well by looking at the service status for our API:
You can see that the blend call (the line at the top) is experiencing a lot of red, so although it's still operational it's only working at 80%, meaning 20% of calls our failing. Or in other words, one in five searches is timing out. This isn't good.
We're working really hard to fix this issue, but we wanted to be upfront for anyone looking at the tool (hence the banner you may have seen across the tool about this issue) so that existing users, or anyone looking to sign up, are aware of what's going on.
We do have multiple options for a fix and are working through them, but as this issue stems from the way Google is now handling third party requests, we can't just turn to another supplier to drop in their data, as they are likely hitting the same issue.
If you have any issues to report do leave a comment here (we will read and respond!) or get in contact via firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are finding weird or quirky behaviour in the tool it is likely down to this issue. But please be assured, the results you are getting back are valid with good data. It's just that results are not always being returned.
Thanks for bearing with us, we really do appreciate it. In our 20+ year history we've worked through various supplier and data issues and we are confident we have the team and ability to solve this one!