Negative Keywords in Google Adwords Campaigns - Benefits
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You cannot have an AdWords campaign without keywords, and you cannot have a successful, cost-efficient AdWords campaign without negative keywords. A negative keyword, as defined by Google AdWords, …

You cannot have an AdWords campaign without keywords, and you cannot have a successful, cost-efficient AdWords campaign without negative keywords. A negative keyword, as defined by Google AdWords, is “a type of keyword that prevents your ad from being triggered by a certain word or phrase. It tells Google not to show your ad to anyone who is searching for that phrase.” Everyone is familiar with the phrase, “you have to spend money to make money.” Most efforts to improve business require spending money. It is the same with AdWords; in PPC money is spent on adding new keywords or raising bids in order to get your ads shown and get conversions.   However, there is something you can do to increase return and lower cost. Adding negative keywords generates more return, reduces costs and involves no additional spending.

Negative keywords are crucial and have many benefits. They will improve the overall fiscal performance of a campaign. They will keep you from wasting your money on searches unrelated to your business. Related to that, your click-through rate will improve because your “bad traffic” will be reduced due the fact that your ads will not show to people who are looking for things you do not offer. On the flip side of that, your fiscal performance and click-through rate will improve because your ads will be reaching the most interested customers. That will in turn improve your conversion rate, and your return on investment. Utilizing negative keywords will also give you a higher quality score. The raise in score will come from the increase in “good traffic” which results in more conversions. A high quality score will give you better ad positions that increase traffic, impressions, clicks, and conversions. More conversions will give you the ability to reinvest money by adding more keywords and bidding more for existing keywords that perform well. The ability to bid higher will give your keywords higher average positioning causing an increase in profits. All of these benefits are connected, so when your negative keywords create a positive change in one area at least one other area of your campaign will benefit because of that and so on. Making use of negative keywords creates a domino effect of benefits for your AdWords campaign. Negative keywords are an extremely efficient way to lower costs and increase return on investment.

Negative keywords are subject to the same guidelines as regular keywords in the sense that you can set them up as exact match, phrase match, modified broad match, and broad match. They are also similar to regular keywords in that you can be creative with them, and shape the specific traffic you want. Just as you can craft precise keywords to create a certain flow of customers to your page, you can craft precise negative keywords to prevent a certain flow of traffic to your page. This next section will go through the steps of how to add negative keywords, how to edit, remove, and download negative keywords, how to create a negative keywords list, how to use that list for making multiple changes, and how to edit a negative keywords list.

How to Add Negative Keywords:

Negative Keywords - Google Adwords

  1. Go to your AdWords account
  2. Choose the campaign or the ad group you want to add negative keywords to
  3. Click on the “Keywords” tab
  4. You will expand the negative keywords section by clicking the “+”(the section is under the main keywords section. You may need to scroll down)
  5. Two tables will appear. One for the “Ad group level” and one for the “Campaign level.”
  6. Depending on where you want to add your negative keywords you will click the “+Add” button in either the “Ad group level” table or the “Campaign level” table.
  7. You can now enter in your negative keywords (one per line).

-Broad match: you will want to include plural versions of your negatives

-phrase-match: you will need to put the negative keyword in quotations

-exact-match: you will need to put the negative keyword in brackets

Negative Keywords - Google Adwords Ads

How to Edit, Remove or Download Negative Keywords

*you will need to do these first four steps before you edit, remove or download negative keywords.

  1. Decide which negative keyword(s) you want to edit, remove, or download. Then select the campaign or ad group containing them.
  2. Click on the “Keywords” tab
  3. You will find the negative keywords section under the main keywords table- select the “+Negative Keywords” link.
  4. The section will expand and show two table: “Ad group level” and “Campaign level.”

How to Edit Negative Keywords

*First do the four steps listed above, then continue on to these steps

  1. Click the checkbox(es) for the negative keyword(s) you want to edit.
  2. Select “Edit” in either the “Ad group level” or the “Campaign level.”

-you can now make whatever changed you would like to make to each negative keyword

-to change a negative keyword’s match type simply choose one from the drop-down menu.

How to Remove Negative Keywords

*First do the four steps listed above, then continue on to these steps

  1. Click the checkboxes for the negative keywords you want to remove.
  2. Select “Remove” in either the “Ad group level” or the “Campaign level” table.

How to Download Negative Keywords

*First do the four steps listed above, then continue on to these steps

  1. Click the checkboxes for the negative keywords you want to download.
  2. Select “Download” for either the “Ad group level” or the “Campaign level” table.
  3. A “Download and Schedule Report” section will appear. In the “Report Name” box type a name for the report (you will also want to choose a format for the file from the “Format” drop-down menu).
  4. Create

How to Create a Negative Keyword List

Sometimes you will get bad traffic from the same set of several keywords for multiple campaigns. When that occurs you can make a list of those words and add them as negative keywords to all of your campaigns that they affect. This is a simple way to regulate negative keywords. You can add a negative keyword to that list and the change will automatically be applied to all of your campaigns that share the list. This is a great way to manage a large number of keywords across your entire campaign.

  1. Click the “Campaigns” tab.
  2. Select the “Shared library” link (located on the left navigation bar).
  3. Click “Campaign Negative Keywords.”
  4. Click “+List”
  5. You will now create a name for your list and type in the negative keywords into the keywords box.

*you have to add your negative keyword list to each campaign you want it to be applied to.

*you can have up to 5,000 negative keywords per list.

*you can have up to 20 negative keyword lists.

How to Add Negative Keyword Lists to Multiple Changes

There are two ways to do this. The first is by way of the “Shared Library” link, and the second is by way of the “Keywords” or “Display Network” tab.

Using the Shared Library Link to Add Negative Keyword Lists to Multiple Changes

  1. Select the “Campaigns” tab
  2. Select the “Shared Library” link (located in the left navigation bar)
  3. Select “Campaign Negative Keywords”
  4. Click on the negative keywords list you want to apply to multiple campaigns
  5. Select “Add to More Campaigns”
  6. Choose the campaign(s) you want to add the negative keyword list to. Then click the “Add” link
  7. Save

How to create Negative keyword list

Using the Keywords Tab or Display Network Tab to Add Negative Keyword Lists to Multiple Changes

  1. Choose the campaign you want to add your list to
  2. -If the campaign targets the “Search and Display Networks” then click the “Keywords” tab. Then the “Negative Keywords” link (located at the bottom of the page)

-If the campaign targets only the “Display Network” then select the “Display Network” tab. Then click the “Exclusions” link (located at the bottom of the page) then click the “Display Keywords” tab

  1. A “Campaign level” tab will appear.

-Keywords Tab: the “Add” drop-down menu will appear

-Display Network Tab: the “view” drop-down menu will appear

*whether you are on the Keywords tab or the Display Network tab there will be two options:

Keywords: displays individual negative keywords related to the campaign

Keyword Lists: displays negative keyword lists related to the campaign

  1. Click the drop-down menu (either “Add” or “View” depending on the tab you are on) select “Keyword lists”
  2. Select the list you want to add and click the “Add” link
  3. Save

How to Edit Negative Keyword Lists

  1. Go to the “Campaigns” tab
  2. Select the “Shared library” link (found on the navigation bar to the left)
  3. Select “Campaign negative keywords” then choose the list you want to work on
  4. Your negative keyword list will appear. Depending on what you would like to do click either “+Add,” “Edit,” or “Remove”

Campaign Negative Keywords - Google Ads Campaign

*changes made to your negative keyword list will appear in each campaign using that list.

There are countless tips and tricks for dealing with negative keywords and as you get more familiar working with negative you will learn them. Here are a few important ones to get you started:

  • Google AdWords suggests, “When you select negative keywords, you will want to choose search terms that are similar to your keywords, but signal that people are looking for a different product.”
  • Building negative keywords is a continuous process. It is not a “one-and-done” kind of thing. In order for you to benefit from them you have to keep up with them; adding them, editing them etc.
  • Review your existing negatives a few times a year in case some of them have become relevant to your account over time.
  • Adding negative keywords on the ad group level is better than adding them at the campaign level. You will be able to be more exact and shape a specific traffic flow.
  • Sometimes it is good to add negatives at the campaign level. Use the campaign level for more general negatives that apply to your entire account.

 

 

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