Hi! Want to make your search engine marketing efforts even more successful? Of course you do!
In this video, we’ll be exploring a feature called keyword match types. And learning about how using different match types can increase your control over which searches trigger your ads.
Did you know that search engines might also show your ads when people search for other terms—terms you didn’t specifically choose?
That’s because search engines can show your ads when people search for variations of your keywords. This is called broad matching.
Most of the time, broad match is useful. It means that you don’t have to add every variation of the keyword you’d like to target, like singulars, plurals and misspellings.
But this flexibility also means that sometimes, search engines show your ads for keywords that aren’t relevant to your business. Using keyword match types can help.
Let’s say you’re a portrait photographer. As you brainstorm keywords for your ad campaign, you might consider London photographer.
If you include this keyword, a search for “London photographer” could trigger one of your ads even though the person making the search might not be looking for exactly what you’re offering.
What if they’re actually looking to buy prints of photographs of the city of London? Or someone to photograph an event in London? Or do a commercial magazine shoot? Any of these searches could potentially trigger your ad, but the searchers are not likely customers.
One way to prevent ads from appearing on these searches is to choose more specific keywords, since your target customer is probably searching for things like “London portrait photographer” or “London family portraits.”
On top of that, you can add match type to further refine the results. How do you do that? Let’s take a look.
Keywords are broad match by default. Aside from broad match, the other primary match types are phrase match and exact match. To change broad match to phrase, simply place quotations around the keyword. So, the keyword London portrait photographer becomes “London portrait photographer.”
Phrase match tells Google Ads or Bing Ads that adverts can’t be displayed unless the search includes the entire phrase. So if someone searches for “London portrait photographer” that’s great—your ads can show up! Minor variations, like plurals, are included. This means that a search for “London portrait photographers” can also trigger your ad.
But, if someone searches for the more generic London photographer, your ad won’t show up, because the word portrait is missing.
With phrase match, the searcher can include words before and after the phrase, so “East London portrait photographer” could also trigger an ad.
To get even more specific, exact match keywords are distinguished by enclosing the word or phrase in square brackets. So, the keyword London portrait photographer becomes [London portrait photographer].
Now, if someone searches for portrait photographer, your ad can’t appear—because it doesn’t match the keyword exactly. Along the same lines, a search for London photographer also won’t trigger your ad.
Unlike phrase match, the ad can’t display if the searcher includes additional words. But minor variations, like plurals, can still trigger the ad.
As you change keywords from broad match, to phrase, to exact, it restricts the opportunities for ads to display. Your best bet is to try to find a match type balance, allowing ads to show to likely prospects, but blocking ads when you think success is unlikely.
As you add restrictive match types for keywords, you’ll probably notice that your traffic quantity goes down... but traffic quality should improve. And that’s what matters here.
- what match types are and why they’re useful
- the different kinds of match types
- how to control which searches may trigger ads.