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Are You Adding Negative Keywords to Your Google Ads Campaigns?

by Geek Insider Staff
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Paid adverts are a brilliant solution to generating leads, increasing brand awareness, and creating more revenue for your company. Now that paid advertising goes beyond Google, broadening your reach to a wide range of audience types is a strategic campaign that could deliver a significant return on investment (ROI). One of the key aspects of delivering a successful paid campaign is incorporating keywords to generate a higher Click Through Rate (CTR) and more conversations. 

However, all keywords are not equal as there’re keywords for which you don’t want to appear. For instance, a cake shop would not want to appear for a user looking for a new dress design in the search results, right? This conveniently leads us to negative keywords. What are they? Why should you use them? Read on for answers. 

Negative Keywords

Negative keywords are words and phrases that you use to prevent your ads from appearing to people searching for unrelated products or services. This way, you allow your business to reach the target audience and ensure that most clicks on the advert will convert. 

Paid campaign success is determined by knowing your target customer base, maximum CTR, and conversions. Your main objective should be to incorporate the relevant keywords and refine those you’re bidding to remain relevant and increase ROI. 

Think of the negative keywords as gatekeepers who ensure that bad stuff doesn’t get to your website. For the gatekeepers to be effective, you need to tell them what they should allow and block. So, if you don’t want your ads to display in search results when a search engine user’s query contains the word “red,” you should add “red” as a negative keyword to your campaign.

Benefits of Negative Keywords

Below are the four main reasons you should add negative keywords to your Google ads campaign.

  1. Reduce Costs

Adding negative keywords to your campaign reduces the advertising costs by excluding broad keyword phrases that do not meet your return-on-investment goals. This way, the ads won’t be served to unqualified audiences. 

For example, it might help if you bid on the “widgets” keyword. However, you might discover later those other variations are profitable, but search queries such as “Red Widgets” and “Blue Widgets” result in high costs and clicks but no returns as your business has no blue or red widgets. 

In this case, “red” and “blue” would be perfect choices to include as negative keywords in your campaign. In this case, your ads will not appear for these searches, and you won’t incur extra charges for the unprofitable click, eventually increasing your ROI. 

  1. Increase the CTR

The click-through rate (CTR) is the rate of the clicks you get every time your ad displays. When you reduce irrelevant impressions on your ads, your CTR increases. This is evident when specific queries produce massive impressions but few clicks. It could clearly indicate that your ad is performing on qualifying clicks for your site. 

Nonetheless, it is worse for a keyword not to convert than not getting clicks. You can avoid either fate by adding negative keywords and saving yourself some grief. 

  1. Direct Traffic Accordingly

Adding negative keywords guides the direction of some traffic to one end while blocking others. This tactic plays a significant role in dramatically increasing your keyword relevance on your landing page. It’s worth noting that multiple keywords across your site can compete when a user enters a related search query. Besides, Google may display the ad+ keyword combo if your account has the highest ad rank. All these can lead to an unintentional ad trigger at the wrong time. 

  1. Run an Honest Campaign 

Since multiple keywords across your ad group and campaigns can match the user’s search query, you can use the negative keywords to keep the campaign honest. The AdWords keywords list will help you organize your phrases so that the ad is eligible to show for the set user queries. 

The list may not match the actual words that people are searching for, but you can still ensure the correct ad displays for the right queries if you incorporate the appropriate negative keywords. The practice will also help you understand which chosen keywords are driving your results, saving you substantial time and guiding you in future decisions. 

You can also avoid a lot of these keyword-ad mismatches by relying less on the broad match keywords. However, layers of specificity and keyword overlap are still common in any industry. Developing a negative keyword strategy can help your account structure into a “what you see is what you get” by aligning your ads, keywords, and intentions with the search queries. Generally, a searcher will see messages depending on your account control and deliberations. 

Adding negative keywords will help you create the right message for the right customer segment while saving you from worthless impressions and extra costs. The examples discussed above are simple, but the process of executing your negative keyword strategy may be a bit complex.

As always, make decisions and monitor your ROI based on what the account is giving you. If a specific keyword variation poorly performs while others are soaring, you might need to consider making the poor performer a negative keyword. Whatever the strategy you wish to implement, we hope you gain from your addition of negative keywords.

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