The Importance of Negative Keywords in Your AdWords Campaign | Simplemachine
How is your AdWords campaign doing? Are you making it big? Are you hitting your targets? If you’ve chosen your keywords well, you should at the very least be seeing a steady stream of leads. Of course, converting them is another story. But, with the right keywords and a well-thought bidding strategy, leads shouldn’t be so hard to come by.
Anyway, today we want to introduce you to another facet of AdWords marketing – negative keywords. You’ve probably already heard a lot about negative keywords (it’s been a hot topic lately). Perhaps you’ve even rolled out your negative keyword campaign.
If so, that’s a great step. Hopefully, you’ve seen an improvement in your returns with the negative keywords in place.
Still, we want to delve deep into this new tactic to find out what makes it so important. What are negative keywords? How do they work? And, most importantly, of what benefit are they to an AdWords campaign? As we round up, we’ll also look how to get started with negative keywords in Google AdWords, for those who’ve not done so yet.
What are Negative Keywords?
Negative keywords are words or phrases that you do not want to be found in search engines.
Let’s use an example for better understanding. You sell printable calendars only. Yes, there are many types of calendars out there, but you only sell software copies that clients can purchase and later print for themselves.
A consumer who is looking to buy a calendar goes to Google and types “Buy a hard copy calendar.” Since you didn’t specify the exact type of calendars you sell in your ad copy, Google, out of their generosity, goes ahead to display your ad at the top of the organic results.
If the consumer clicks on your ad and is taken to your website, two things will happen. First, Google will pocket their fee because a click has taken place (thus the name Pay Per Click). Secondly, the consumer will not find the type of calendar they are looking for and will therefore not make a purchase. They might even get pissed and decide never to visit your site again.
So, you’ve not just wasted time getting that click, you’ve also lost money to Google and might have also lost a potential future customer.
A negative keyword list allows you to avoid such situations. If you don’t sell hard copy calendars, you can list “hard copy calendars” as a negative keyword so that your ads are not shown for searches containing that phrase.
The Importance of Negative Keywords in AdWords
There are many benefits of incorporating negative keywords into an AdWords campaign. These include;
- Exclude irrelevant searches
How often have you had to deal with consumers who aren’t interested in your products? Someone comes to your store to buy a sweater for their kid when you only sell sweaters for pets. Or, someone lands on your store looking for freebies when you aren’t offering any at the moment.
It can be irritating because we work so hard to generate leads. Setting up an AdWords campaign takes a lot of effort and sometimes costs money. So, you wouldn’t want people coming off your ads who aren’t even interested in your products.
You can stop the madness using negative keywords. With these keywords, you tell Google not to show your ads for irrelevant searches. That way, only people who have an interest in your offers will be shown your ads.
- Reduce your CPC
Cost Per Click (CPC) is the amount you pay Google every time someone clicks on your ads. It doesn’t matter whether or not that person goes on to make a purchase; the moment they click on that ad, you have to part with the CPC.
You cannot afford to make these payments for consumers who are 100% not going to buy from you. It’s true; in business, you never know where your next customer will come from. But, we know too well that people only buy something they are interested in. If a person set out to buy a dress, they are not going to change their mind and buy a pair of shorts just because they landed in a shop that sells shorts. It rarely happens.
Rolling out a negative keyword campaign is one of the surest ways to keep uninterested consumers out while only accepting those who have a likelihood of going through to checkout.
- Improve your CTR
A negative keyword campaign can also help increase your Click Through Rate (CTR). CTR refers to the proportion of visitors that actually click on your ads to visit the page on the other end of the ad. It could be a landing page, a product page, or your website; when someone lands there off one of your ads, that event is counted as a click-through. CTR is simply the number of click-throughs divided by the total number of impressions (number of times Google shows your ads).
Irrelevant ads appearing in search result pages don’t get many clicks. Granted, a few curious searchers may still click on them to see if they can find what they are looking for, but on most occasions, after reading the ad and finding that it’s irrelevant, searchers will move on to more helpful results.
Incorporating negative keywords into your AdWords campaign ensures that your ads are only shown for relevant searches, thus guaranteeing a higher CTR. A higher CTR, in turn, will increase your sales.
- Increase your Quality Score
Finally, a negative keyword campaign is also instrumental in achieving a favorable Quality Score (QS). Quality Score is Google’s rating of your keywords and your PPC ads in general. It is used for two things; to determine your Cost per Click and to calculate your ad rank. For the second purpose, the QS is first multiplied by your maximum bid.
No one knows exactly what goes into determining the Quality Score of an ad, but user experience and the performance of your campaign are thought to be two of the leading factors. In other words, users should get what they are looking for when they click your ads. When consumers are consistently disappointed because you don’t have what they’re looking for, you’ll have a low-quality score, leading to a higher CPC and lower ad ranking. Together, these two can ruin your campaign.
A negative keywords campaign improves both user experience and ad performance which should help you get a favorable Quality Score.
Incorporating Negative Keywords into AdWords
The good news is that Google has made it very easy to add negative keywords to your campaign.
To create a negative keyword list;
- Sign into your AdWords account
- Click the Campaigns tab
- Select Shared Library
- Click on Campaign Negative Keywords
- Select +List
Remember only to add one negative keyword or phrase per line. Then, click Save. Your negative keyword list is now ready!
Want to Learn More?
Simplemachine is the premier web design and SEO company in Bentonville, Arkansas. Contact us at 877-524-6325 or visit our offices today and let’s help you utilize negative keywords to grow your AdWords campaign.
Looking for a great start on your negative keyword list? Check out the in-depth list of Negative Keywords below that we use when building our campaigns.
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