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Google Ad Words: what you don’t want is just as important as what you do

Just like back in the day when every company had an extensive (and expensive!) yellow page presence, companies now know that to be found you have to have a search engine presence. This comes in the form of ad and pay-per-click advertising via the use of key words.  But did you know, as important as it is to have the right key words in order to be found by the right prospects, you very often need negative key words to weed out the wrong prospects.  Both aspects of key word selection determine the effectiveness of your campaign and your ROI.

Let’s use Google Ad Words as an example. Ad Words’ main keyword match options include an exact match, a broad match, a phrase match, and a negative match. Negative matches, or keywords, are what we are talking about and is a pay-per-click advertising match type option offered by most of the major search engines.  Negative match keywords allow you to filter out the wrong audience by indicating what words are not related to your product or business. For example, a business selling wiper blades runs the risk of attracting customers shopping for razor blades or ice skating blades, as the keyword “blades” could be used to refer to any of the three.  Adding negative keys words such as “razor blades” will prevent spending precious pay-per-click dollars on connecting with unqualified prospects.

Here are some things to get you started on setting up negative keywords:

  • Take a look at your keyword list and brainstorm the negative keywords that would apply to your product search.
  • Be sure to include singular form, plural, alternate phrasing and synonym matches for your words.
  • Negative keywords and broad match are a common combination to ensure the widest possible relevant reach, but be careful not to have any overlap with your regular keywords or your ad will not show. For this reason, you may want to consider sticking to an exact match.
  • Analyze the current list of key words you are using. The words that are not performing should also be added to your negative key word list.

If you need additional help creating negative keywords or adding them to your Google Ad Words account, check out this helpful link for more information: https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2453972?hl=en

Negative ad words are critical for leading the right audience to your website in the most economical way. A little homework will save you a lot of your marketing budget.

Happy advertising!


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