Posted by & filed under Google Ads Tips, Negative Keywords.

Negative keyword match types are important in determining how closely a keyword must match the user’s search intent in order for your ad to be seen or blocked.

Finding the most profitable keywords and applying these keywords while generating relevant ad groups and ad copies is critical to succeeding in the paid search business. This will aid in the identification of potential clients. However, it’s also critical to identify keywords and searchers who aren’t interested in your products or services.

What Is the Negative Keyword

Negative keywords are terms or phrases that prohibit your ads from being seen by people who aren’t interested in them. In this way, negative keywords allow you to reach out to the best potential audience.

To have an effective paid search approach, you must constantly extend your bidded keywords while also refining the keywords you are presently bidding on to improve relevancy and conversions. You may do this by understanding the best practices for using negative keywords to their full potential.

Negative keywords can be applied at the account, campaign, and ad group level and divided into three-match types:

  • Broad
  • Exact
  • Phrase

What Are Negative Keywords Example

Let’s imagine, you are a business that sells leather jackets only for men. It will be quite reasonable to assume that your potential customers will be using search terms like men’s leather jacket, leather jackets for men, etc. but there are plenty of other search queries which can trigger your ad, like:

Search queries for leather jackets for men in google ads

So, for the above search queries, the following negative keyword will work to block the ad for irrelevant audiences

Negative words from the search query

Consider a user searching for “Men’s Parka Coat” is not necessarily searching for Leather Jackets so you would certainly want to block the searches containing “Parka Coat”. Similarly, you will not be interested in users who are looking for only “Cheap”, “Cotton” or “Quilted Bomber” jackets for men. So mentioning them as negative keywords will help to save your budget.

Negative keywords are best explained with the appropriate match type. Before we could move on to the negative keywords match type, we would like to mention here the close variant and its effect on the negative keyword match types:

Close Variants and Negative Keyword Match Types

 Close variants include any misspelling, singular or plural form, acronym, stemming, or abbreviations of the keyword. For example, if your keyword is jewellery then the possible close variants would be gems, jewelry, jewelleries etc.

Because close variants apply to each match type, you don’t need to include them as bidded keywords separately. however, If you don’t want to show your ad for any of the close variants, you’ll need to include them as separate negative keywords.

Google announced changes to close variants of exact match keywords in 2018, allowing similar terms to be matched. Close variations have had both a positive and bad impact on campaign performance since the transition. Positive in the sense that the search query area has grown, but negative in the sense that advertisers must use negative keywords to avoid any bad matches.

What Match Type Should Negative Keywords Be

The way negative keywords are an important part of any PPC strategy & allow you to manage the amount of traffic that comes to your website. Similarly, whether a keyword will block your ad or show, will depend on the match type assigned to it. You can not apply a close variant here so If you don’t want to appear for any of the close variants, you’ll have to include them as separate negative keywords.

Understanding negative keywords and their match types might help you figure out how and when to employ each match type. Allow us to walk you through the negative keyword match types options available:

1. Negative Exact Match Type

Only when a negative exact match keyword matches the search query exactly, it will prevent your ads. The following example will help you understand this match type better.

Example: [Track Pants]

Because this match type doesn’t block a lot of traffic, you’ll need to include a lot more negative keywords to filter out irrelevant terms.

2. Negative Phrase Match Type

When the search query contains the terms in the same order, using the negative phrase match type will help to stop showing the ad to an irrelevant audience. You must add each variant or similar term as a negative keyword separately to block them.

Example: “bedding sets”

bedding sets search query in google ads

Though negative phrase match will automatically block any combinations of words before and after the phrase, do Keep an eye out for any words that might be a keyword for which you’d like to get traffic.

3. Negative Broad Match Type

Just like broad match keywords, negative broad match keywords must be present in the search query, regardless of order. As this match type does not consider close variants, do remember to add any related terms as a negative keyword too.

Example: sponge cake

Wedding sponge cake search query google ads

A negative broad match is difficult to use because it prevents triggering your ad for a large number of search queries. This match type can be used if you are positive that you do not wish to receive traffic for a certain group of keywords. Try revisiting these terms, as they may be preventing some important traffic as well.

Karooya’s Negative Keywords Tool is now Free for accounts with ad spend less than $10,000 per month. Save 10-20% of your search ad spend for free. Sign up and start saving your ad budget now.

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