1. Identify the Right Keywords to Target
For most advertisers, their AdWords accounts are powered by keywords. There are a host of
different sources available to you to find the right ones. Regardless of the sources that you
use to generate your keywords, you should think holistically about all the different ways that
potential customers could reach you.
Here are the biggest sources you should consider when determining how to find
Stay on top of your site’s offerings. Find any gaps between your site’s content and your
Be sure that you’re bidding on core product keywords. When your audience is at the end
of the buying cycle they’ll be searching for a specific product or service. If you’re a retailer,
things like product names and models can make for high-performing keywords.
Remember the value of your branded terms as well. If you deal with multiple products, add
keywords that are combinations of your brand name and high-volume products that people
often search for in the same query.
The Research Process of Your Customers
What are all of the different ways that they could potentially search for what you’re offering?
Map out their research process and be sure that you’re present at every step.
Pay particular attention to keywords that are rich with commercial intent (a common
example is terms with “buy” in them). Think of words in your industry that can reveal
a similar act-now mindset.
2. Manage Keywords to their Distinct Goals
Organizing your keywords into well defined groupings often makes it easier for you to
manage and maintain your account. This may correspond to the customer’s journey,
for example grouping upper funnel vs lower funnel keywords. You may group keywords
by performance targets, such as cost-per-acquisition, margin or profitability. Alternatively
you may want to group keywords by business structure, such as product line, brand
Keywords are often grouped at the campaign level for greater budgetary control. For the
budget constrained, your account structure should allow you to maximize the number of
clicks and conversions for your most important keyword groups.
3. Remove Low Volume Keywords
Watch out for low search volume keywords. These terms often haven’t driven a single
impression in months or even years because people aren’t performing searches on them
(not because your bid isn’t winning any auctions). Delete them if you have other keywords
that could potentially cover that traffic should search volume ever pick up. It’ll make your
account more streamlined and easier to manage.
Your keywords target users’ queries, and your match types are intended to control the
targeting logic of those keywords. Understanding match types and their role in your account
is essential to crafting your keyword strategy.
1. Semantic vs. Syntactic
The main difference across the keyword match types is the meaning of a user’s search
(semantic) vs. the order of the words in a user’s search or close variations of the specific
words in that search (syntactic).
Type of Matching Keyword Matched Queries
Semantic flower arrangement flower arrangement floral arrangement
arranging flowers (+others)
Syntactic [flower arrangement] flower arrangement
Broad match uses Google’s long history of deciphering the meaning of queries to answer a
question (semantic), while the other match types describe the words that users type and the
order in which they type them, independent of the intention of those words (syntactic). As
15% of queries each day on Google haven’t been searched before, broad match gives you the
best chance to capture anything that’s semantically relevant.
In your account, think about deploying keywords to match this behavior. Broad match exists
to uncover and capture a wide range of queries based on user intent, while the other match
types should be used (with varying levels of control) to capture actual queries that you know
are occurring in high volumes.
2. Refine Match Types for High-Value Queries
You can have more control over bids and creatives if you target queries with more specific
match types, but targeting via phrase and exact shouldn’t be the dominant strategy across
your entire account. Don’t overcomplicate your account and its management while missing
out on valuable traffic from broad match terms. Focus syntactic match types on high-value
and high-volume queries where you will experience the benefits of more control over bids
Syntactic Match Type Use Care
Exact You know that a specific query is being used with enough frequency that you’ll benefit from managing those queries using a specific keyword. Phrase There’s a set of words repeated across a number of different queries, and you want to manage all of the traffic that’s appearing in those queries. The order of the set of words matters. For example, you see performance differences between “flower bouquet” and “bouquet of flowers.”
Modified Broad There’s a set of words repeated across a number of
different queries, and you want to manage all of the traffic that’s appearing in those queries. The order of the set of words does not matter. For example, there are no performance differences between “flower bouquet” and “bouquet of flowers.”
Look for the places in your account where there’s enough query volume to justify creating a
separate syntactic match type keyword. To do this, sort your search terms report based on
click or conversion volume. Remember, getting specific with creatives will require you to put
these keywords into a new ad group so you can tailor messaging.
Don’t spend a lot of time building out minute or obscure variations of your exact and phrase
match keywords. Phrase and exact match types expand to cover close keyword variations.
Misspellings, singulars/plurals, acronyms, abbreviations, accents and stemmings are all included in the matching behavior of your keyword. (Synonyms are not included.)
3. Expand Match Types for High Value Keywords
Going from broad to exact allows you to better manage traffic for valuable terms.
Conversely, going from phrase/exact match to broad match can increase your volume.
Sort your phrase/exact keywords based on click, conversion or assist conversion volume.
For high-performing terms that are only running on phrase or exact, consider adding a
broad match or broad match modified version (these cases will also be surfaced on the
Opportunities Tab for you).
As you expand your reach, you’ll want to maintain an acceptable level of performance.
To do this, consider adding negative keywords or enabling bid automation for your broad
Taken from Google Best Practices