Today, our focus is going to be on keyword matching settings. To get the most efficient performance out of your ads, you can choose various keyword matching options to get the ideal balance between the Quality and Quantity of Traffic. Adjustments to the keyword matching settings can help improve Conversion & Click through Rates which in turn can help improve the Return on Investment you are getting out of your AdWords account.
The order of keyword match types by highest to lowest volume is as follows:
Broad, Modified Broad, Phrase, Exact
However, there is also an inverse relationship between the highest volume of traffic by match type and the highest quality of traffic. The order from highest to lowest quality is as follows:
Exact, Phrase, Modified Broad, Broad
For example, let’s say you sell acoustic guitars and that you are running a Google AdWords account to help drive business. The default setting for any keyword options is Broad Match. While this has the highest volume, it also has looser matching which means that this is vulnerable to matching you up to lower quality searches. A broad match can jump from singular to plural, stems of the words, order of words, and synonyms. We have even seen it jump languages! For example, the broad keyword of Acoustic Guitar would match up with all of the below searches.
By changing the keyword matching type to modified broad (+acoustic +guitar) it starts to refine which searches you are matched to. The + sign next to the words is a required to convert this to modified broad. For words with the + qualifier in front of it, that word must be in the search. However, the order in which they show up for is not yet relevant.
The next step for tightening your keyword matching settings would be to convert your keywords to a phrase match “acoustic guitar” as noted by the quotation marks. This requires that the word Acoustic Guitar is shown in this order however you can still have words before or after this within the search for your ads to show up.
The most qualified keyword matching version is exact match which is denoted with square brackets. However, this match type is also going to get you the lowest volume of traffic. In this case, the only time the Search Query will show is for a search for your keyword only.
While this is a change that can be made very quickly, this has the poten
tial to have a very positive impact on the quality of traffic and overall performance of your AdWords account.