What Are Negative Keywords?

December 29, 2022

What Are Negative Keywords? | AIA Book in a free 30 minute strategy session

Navigating through all the options Google Ads are giving you can be intimidating, but as you learn about each feature, metric, and type of report it offers, online marketing becomes a beautiful string of logical decisions, data-based improvements, and actionable results.

When it comes to the metrics that affect your paid ads performance, those related to the keywords you targeted are some of the most important ones to monitor and evaluate.


What Are Negative Keywords?

To succeed in your paid search ads, you already know how important it is to select the most profitable and successful keywords to target in the search results. But it’s just as important to eliminate those keywords you don’t want your ads to rank for, as some of them are just wasting your resources.

Negative keywords are the ones you want to eliminate from the list of keywords you rank for in the Google Display and Google Search networks. For example, if you notice that a lot of your visitors get to your website searching for certain keywords that are remotely related to your actual line of business, but their visits don’t end up bringing revenue, you would want to eliminate these occurrences from your performance.

The most common examples of negative keywords you should define in your Google Ads are the ones that are too general or too vague to help your business or the ones that include words like “free”, locations you are not active in, etc. Such search queries are mostly a waste of your impressions and marketing costs, and using negative keywords prevents your ad to be shown in such cases.

Where Can You Select Your Negative Keywords?

Your negative keyword list can include different types of negative keywords, depending on the match types: broad match, phrase match, or exact match. Negative keyword matching will determine if Google will show your ads for related keyword phrases or not. Excluding keywords for an exact match will not eliminate similar phrases, just the ones that you directly input in the list

Adding negative keywords should be preceded by an evaluation of your search term reports, using the keyword tool of your choice (preferable, Google Ads).

To add negative keywords at a campaign level, search campaigns you want to edit in your Google Ads account, click Keywords from the menu on the left, and then click Negative keywords. You can add them at an ad group level, including those user searches that you don’t want to trigger your ads.

Need Help With Your Google Ads Campaigns?

Google Adwords Sydney

If you want an immediate boost of your Google Ads campaigns and drastically improve your performance and increase your revenue, hire our professional digital marketers at Australian Internet Advertising to do it for you.

We can handle your PPC campaigns from A to Z, or just intervene when you need a boost or advice on the details of your strategy.

Billy P.

About The Author

William Polson founded Australian Internet Advertising in 2013 and has over 12 years of experience immersed in Digital Marketing.

With an in-depth level of digital marketing knowledge, William has been sort after by and worked for, many large national brands including Subaru, Blooms The Chemist, and Nova 96.9.

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