Keyword match types can make or break your AdWords campaigns but don’t worry, we’ll de-mystify match types for you so you can advertise with confidence, knowing you’re avoiding waste and bidding well.
If you thought having keywords and ad groups dialed in was enough well sit tight because there is a lot more to understand AdWords even better. Another very important piece you may have noticed along the way is keyword match types. This is making sure the ads show up when certain type of settings are placed on your keywords. Like almost anything with matching taking place it is about building a relationship. Matchmaking <3
While it would be nice to experience this as a lovey-dovey part of AdWords, it is actually quite basic as far as concepts go (unlike love): if A then B or if one thing is true, then another will be. By choosing certain match types, your keywords should appear for certain search queries. In turn these matches (or relationships) will help grow your businesses. Which is where the real lovey dovey feelings exist and why Teacup is here to help.
How To Use Keyword Match Types in AdWords
These are the match settings for your keywords to appear when they are set off by particular searches. Some are very specific and some have more flexibility as well as different pros and cons. The 4 different keyword match types in AdWords are: Broad Match, Modified Broad Match, Phrase Match, and Exact Match.
We’ll explain the match types in more detail below but let’s start with a brief explanation. Let’s say we’re a plumber and so our core keyword is, of course, plumber. Let’s also say that someone searches something like: emergency plumber.
We may want to bid lightly on vague keywords like plumber because it could be someone who needs a plumber, but it could also be the search of someone who wants to become a plumber. However, we know that when someone searches “emergency plumber,” they’re likely to call you right now if you’re the top result on their search. So, using match types, we’ll bid heavily on the more specific queries, and lightly on the vaguer match types.
In a nutshell, match types help you bid more or less according to the buyer journey.
They all have their own symbols applied to the keywords. These symbols then tell Google the most relevant searches for the keywords and the bid you’re willing to pay for that search. So back-pedaling to our philosophical example, if a then b. If [exact match] is applied to your keyword and the exact match to that keyword is searched then your ad will appear. Of course also if your bid and quality score is high etc. AdWords is a bit more complex so we are going to break down each match type to clear some confusion.
Broad Match Type
The type that gets the most matches of them all is Broad Match. It’s also the most wasteful. You’ll get more impressions and clicks but you have very little control. You keywords are placed into this match type by default, so this is worth checking if you are not jiving well with Broad Match. While you may be able to reach the widest audience with this type your ad may appear for keywords that just don’t align with any of your goals. This is due to broad matches ability to have your keyword appear for any word in your keyword phrase in any order as well as synonyms, related ideas and a lot of other search variations.
Example: Broad Match – yoga classes
Search result possibilities: toga clases, hot yoga, pilates classes, 24 hour fitness, crossfit, yoga pants, dance studios, eco yoga mats, detox yoga.
While you may be getting many clicks they may be irrelevant ones, which can burn up your budget quickly. Pay a lot more attention to your reports and activity for relevant clicks or maybe consider another potential match type.
At Teacup, we never use Broad Match by default. Rather, we only add broad match when the more targeted matches are getting no search impressions. Broad match plays a role in discovering new search terms to advertise on.
Modified Broad Match Type
To be get a wider reach with some parameters, then Broad Match with Modification may be your pick. You can match with more searches but with more control. What differentiates here is the symbol (+). Yes a plus sign. When a (+) is placed before your keywords you are letting Google know that the search query must include that keyword in any order. Close variants, misspellings, singular/plural forms, abbreviations and acronyms may also count.
Example: +yoga +classes
Search result possibilities: yoga weight loss classes, yoga class for elderly, classes for detox yoga, hot yoga class.
You could also have only one of the keywords have the “+” symbol. So +yoga classes.
The reach is still pretty wide but the keywords that you place the symbol at the start of it need to appear in the search query somewhere for your ad to potentially appear.
Phrase Match Type
The middle ground of both reach and control is Phrase Match. Here the search queries need to have the keywords in order for the ad to appear. You won’t control which words appear before or after your phrase matched keywords. The symbol needed to engage phrase match is quotation marks “keywords.”
Example: “yoga classes”
Search result possibilites: easy yoga classes, yoga classes hot, yoga classes within 10 miles, meditation yoga classes, yoga classes near me.
Not a lot of wiggle room for broad expression or possibly for more clicks but it will get you closer to people searching more specifically. The more specific the more relevant your business may become which may lead to more action. Generally, you’ll bid more on the phrase keyword match type than you would on broad or modified broad match.
Exact Match Type
The strictest match type of them all is Exact Match, with the most specificity and control. How searches work here is that the terms searched must match the keywords exactly. Meaning the keywords will stand on their own. No variations, words before or after or misspellings.
Example: [yoga classes]
Search result possibilities: yoga classes
With this much restriction and structure you may feel inclined to rebel but this match type may meet your goals a lot better. Because it is so specific, those searching may have more interest in your ad, which can increase conversion rates. This also leads to lower cost due to less clicks, although this also means lower traffic or impressions. Generally, you’ll bid highest for this keyword since the search is guaranteed to be exactly what you expect it to be.
“Decisions are the frequent fabric of our daily design.” -Don Yaeger
Finding Your Perfect Keyword Match Type
Making decisions in AdWords seems almost endless. But finding the right match type or keyword matching is another tool to get you closer to searchers who are looking for you on the web. This is a web of relationships, from your AdWord account to the customer you meet. You can really feel the love of matchmaking. While that is all well and good putting all this time to AdWords may keep you from relationships in your real life. So a establishing a relationship with Teacup is a match that can save you time from all the endless decision making of AdWords.