7th February 2020 Digital Marketing Agency

PPC Keyword Match Types

You’ll have heard of keywords on Google Ads. These are the main words or phrases that you want to be going after so that your ad will appear. For example, if you sell kitchen furniture, you’ll want to be found when a user searches ‘Fridge’ or ‘Dishwashers’, so you would add these terms as keywords to your campaigns.

There are four different types of keyword. The Keyword Match Types are: broad match, broad match modified, phrase match and exact match. When you understand and use each type of keyword, you have more control over which search terms display your ad, helping you show your ad to the right people.

Broad Match Modified Keywords

Broad match modified keywords are identified with the ‘+’ symbol. This type of keyword is more specific than the broad match, but still allows your ad to get a large reach of users.

If you add +Oven+Hob as a keyword, your ad would be shown when a user searches Oven Hob, or a misspelt, plural, or abbreviated equivalent of this. All of the words in the keyword have to be used, and crucially, this variety of keyword doesn’t show your ads when the user searches a synonym. So, if someone searched for Oven Cookers, your ad wouldn’t be shown.
With your keyword +Oven+Hob, both of the words Oven and Hob must be included in the search term when the user is searching for your products/service, but the keywords can be any other or other words can be used in the search term such as Grey Electronic Over Hob, your ad will still be shown in the search results.

There are positives and negatives to using each type of keyword. Because broad match modified doesn’t include synonyms, your ad for Oven Cookers wouldn’t show to users searching Oven Hobs, but you might want to appear for this search term, so you could be potentially losing out on sales due to using the wrong keyword match type. Using a combination of keywords is usually the best way to manage the balance between generating the right traffic without becoming too specific on the keywords.

Broad Match Keywords

Broad match keywords allow your ad to be shown to a wider audience than other keywords.
You’re running an online store that sells kitchen furniture, so you add Fridge as a broad match keyword. Your ad would be shown if a user searched this term, as well as any close variations, such as synonyms, misspellings, plurals, singulars or abbreviations of that broad keyword. So, your ad would show when a user searched Fridges, but it could also show for singular versions, such as Fridge, or synonyms such as Food Freezer or Freezers.

This type of keyword can attract large volumes of traffic, which can push up costs due the large amounts of traffic going onto the website. Someone searching Fridges could be looking for a American Fridge Freezers, which you might not sell. In this situation, the user might click on your ad (which will cost you money) but it’s very unlikely that they’ll go on to buy one of your products due to them looking at products that you do not have.

Clearly, attracting traffic that’s too broad can cost a-lot of money. To narrow down the search terms that show your ad and that will help you decrease the costs of running a search campaign, you’ll need to understand how to use other types of keywords.

Phrase Match Keywords

Phrase match keywords are identified by quotation marks (“Example”) surrounding the term. Unlike broad match modifier, a phrase match keyword has to be searched as it’ appears on the keyword list. There can be words before or after the keyword phrase you have added, but not between the words in the keyword phrase.

For example, you choose “Garden Benches’’ as a phrase match keyword. The ad will appear to users who include additional words in their search term, such as ‘Grey Garden Benches’.  Your ad won’t show if a word is added between the phrase, with a search term such as ‘Grey Benches For the Garden’. Just like broad match and broad modified, phrase match automatically includes misspellings, plurals and abbreviations.

Exact Match

A Exact match keyword, has square brackets [Example] added around the term. Exact match keywords will show your ad when the meaning of the search term matches the keyword. This includes phrases, synonyms, misspellings, plurals and abbreviations.
Words can’t be included alongside the keyword, so your ad will only appear when the search uses the exact keyword, or a term that Google deems to have the same meaning.

If you add [Garden Bench] as a keyword, then your ad would NOT appear when a user searches Folding Storage Garden Bench. Exact match keywords don’t allow for extra information on the exact keyword, such as the type of Garden Bench in this case. If a user searched Benches your ad would of shown due to the similarity in the meaning.

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