Negative keywords are extremely useful when you’re working with broad match. You can add them to a list at adgroup or campaign level where you can specify keywords you don’t want your ads to appear for.

For example if you have the keyword Jewellery as a broad match in your campaigns but are not selling diamond jewellery, you can add diamond as a negative. Start building your list of negatives when you start a new campaign then regularly update it using the search term feature.

Match types can also be applied to negatives. So just like regular keywords you will be able to have negative broad, negative phrase and negative exact. These match types can help you make sure only your chosen ads appear. Let’s say you have created 2 adgroups for the keyword jewellery: one where the match type is broad, the other one exact. To guarantee that your ‘exact’ ad will show simply add Jewellery as an exact negative to your broad adgroup. It will look like this: [jewellery]. Exact match keywords usually have a better quality score so this little trick will help you spend less money in this adgroup.

A word of caution

Your list needs to be reviewed every time you introduce new products. As an example you may have started your Adwords campaigns in May when you did not sell diamond jewelleries. Understandably you’ve added diamond as a negative to your campaigns.

By September you now have introduced diamond jewelleries to your store and Adwords campaigns. But you don’t seem to be getting any sales or leads for this keyword. This is simply because the word diamond is still in your list of negative keywords at campaign level.

As long as it stays there your ads won’t show for’ diamond jewelleries’ even if you’ve added this expression to your Adwords campaigns. This is just an example to show you how important it is to regularly check your list of negative keywords.

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