Google has built an incredibly powerful advertising machine. Powerful in two ways. The most important is that it helps advertisers place their ads in front of people actively searching for content matching their ads. The second is it is a very powerful way for Google to reach further into your company wallet and optimize their way into bigger revenues. Fortunately, it's a winning combination for you, the advertiser. How much you are able to win will depend on how well you are able to optimize Google Ads for your benefit. One of the most important ways to do this is by using Keyword Match Types.
What Are Keyword Match Types?When you build your Google Ads campaigns, you will include a list of keywords to associate with your ads. (We won't get into how to structure your Campaigns and Ad Groups in this post.) Keywords can be in one of 4 keyword match types.
- Broad Match
- Broad Match Modifier
- Phrase Match
- Exact Match
How Keyword Match Types WorkFor our examples below, we will be an online store selling fly fishing gear, including fly fishing rods, fly fishing reels, fly fishing line, fly fishing nets, and fly fishing vests. Broad Match
- enter the keyword without any special symbols
- example: fly fishing rod
- Search queries can match based on any word in your key phrase, in any order plus misspellings and synonyms. So this keyword could conceivably be triggered by "fishing rod", "fly in fishing", "fly swatter", "fishing boat", "ice fishing tent", "fishing lodge", "best places to fish". Some of this traffic is desired, some is not.
- place the plus sign in front of words that must be matched
- +fly +fishing rod
- Search queries can match based on having the + marked word included in the query, in any order, and may also include other words, or synonyms. "fly fishing lodge", "fly in fishing", "fly angling guide", "fly fishing gear", "fishing flies". Traffic will be more specific than broad match.
- place quotes around the word combination that must appear
- "fly fishing" rod
- Search queries can match if they contain the phrase, in the correct order, or closely related phrases, but also may included additional words or synonyms. "fly fishing trip", "guide to fly fishing", "fly fishing handbook", "fly fishing for trout" could all be matched.
- place square brackets around the term that must match exactly
- [fly fishing rod]
- Search queries must be very specific and must include the entire phrase, all words, in order, or very close variants. This match type was updated by Google in 2017 to be a little less restrictive so now will also match on close misspellings. "fly fishing rod", "fly fishing rods", "fly fish rod" would all be search terms that could trigger this match.