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The Positive Effect of Adding Negative Keywords Keywords are an integral part of any online advertising campaign; however what is sometimes overlooked is the equal importance of negative keywords which are word filters that disqualify ads being triggered by users search query. For instance if “iPhone” is one of your keyword, each time somebody runs a search for that keyword your ad will be displayed. If someone were to run a search for the term “iPhone problems” your ad will also be displayed, since the main keyword “iPhone” is present in the search query. To avoid bloating total impressions, with irrelevant searches it’s important to add “Problem” as your negative keyword, so that “ iPhone Problem” query wont trigger your ad. Every search engine advertiser should be using negative keywords in their Pay Per Click (PPC) account. Having a comprehensive and well built negative keyword list will ensure targeted visits which can significantly improve not only your CTR, but your conversion rate too. However, not using negative keywords can mean that your ads show to users who aren’t interested in your business or service. This untargeted traffic can lower your keywords’ ‘Quality Scores’ and hurt your return on investment. With quality score mechanism being executed on all major PPC platforms, click through rate (CTR) is even more important now than it ever was. It’s important to remember that over-using negative keywords can result in a very limited advertising audience. Consider all your potential keywords carefully, including negative keywords, before you add them to your account. How to find negative keywords idea: 1. Adwords Keyword Tool: Place your keywords in the keyword tool box and make sure to click “synonyms” checkbox. Google shows keywords it thinks are related to your product or service. Check the Keyword column for any search queries that are irrelevant to your product or business and that you wouldn’t want triggering your ads. Click the downward-pointing arrow in the Match Type column for each keyword that you want to add as a negative match. Also, paste your URL into the “Website Content” box to see what the Google thinks what your site/pages may be about. Check the “Include other pages on my site…” checkbox to get a rounded view. 2. Search Query Report: Pull a search query report at regular intervals on your PPC account to make sure your ads are not being triggered by terms you don’t want them to appear. The new Google interface has a new feature which is somewhat hidden. It helps you run a search query report at the ad group level without actually running a full-blown report to find additional keywords or negative keywords. Under the keywords tab, click the ‘see search terms’ drop down and click ‘all’ or ’selected’ You will see the actual search queries that displayed your ads, just like running a search query report for a particular ad group. Search queries that are not relevant to your product/services can be added as a negative keywords right from this window. Just click the box next to that particular keyword and click ‘Add as negative keyword’. 3. W eb Analytics: It can be an amazing source of negative keywords. Look at your organic data and not just your PPC data. If you are unsure of any terms, do a simple search for the keyword and see what results pop up. You might be surprised. 4. Use a Thesaurus: Run your main keywords through a thesaurus. There is no way you could possibly know every single synonym of your main keywords. Thesaurus not only helps in expanding your negative keyword list but also your main keyword list. 5. Industry Related: Use product and industry knowledge. Words that are similar or spelled similar to your product or service name? Terms you are certain people will be searching which are not related to your product or service or that are related and you do not offer. Remember that there are products released every day, so set up Google Alert for your keywords.


Once you’re done with adding negative keywords at your campaign or adgroup level, check for account performance, whether it has made any difference in terms of CTR, quality score and conversion rates. This is definitely not an exhaustive list on how to create a negative keyword list but it sure is a good start.

The Positive Effect of Adding Negative Keywords  

Learn how negative keywords can impact your CTR & Conversion Rates in your PPC campaign. Optimize your PPC campaigns by adding negative keyw...

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