Negative Keyword Match Types Explained (with a handy reference chart)

Last week we covered keyword match types, so naturally this week we decided to focus on negative match types. Negative keywords are words or phrases you don’t want your ads to show for.  Negatives are crucial for any paid search campaign, as they help you refine your traffic and prevent you from wasting money!  Check out our handy dandy chart below with negative examples and they kinds of traffic they block.

A few notes before you dive into the chart: 

  • Syntax is simply the way the keywords (in this case negatives) are entered into Google (for example, if you want to enter the negative exact match keyword running shoes, you would add brackets to denote the negative should be exact match, as in [running shoes]).
  • Unlike regular keywords, negatives do not have “close variants.”  If you add shoes as a negative, it’s going to block out any searches with the word “shoes,” but it won’t block “shoe” for example. You’d have to add both as negatives if you’re trying to block that traffic.
  • The broader the match type, the more traffic you will wind up blocking.  This may or may not be what you want.  Phrase and exact match negatives are for blocking more specific queries, and therefore won’t block as much traffic.

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  • July 20, 2018