Keep a Careful Eye on Negative Keywords and Avoid Wasted Spend

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Alex Cox

PPC Manager

If you believe the adage there is no such thing as bad traffic, you could well be wasting a good proportion of your Google AdWords spend by neglecting to add negative keywords.

Negative keywords can be defined as those terms which are not relevant or associated with the products or service being offered. Negative keywords can pose problems, as often a term which is relevant to your industry can also be used widely within another.

An example of the importance of a Google AdWords consultant identifying negative keywords can be seen in the following instance:

If, as a dedicated Google AdWords consultant, you are looking to attract new customers to your Pay Per Click service, you might choose to run an ad campaign with the search term ‘increasing traffic’ featuring heavily. However, traffic is a term more widely associated with the congestion of our roads, and as such your ad will likely be clicked on not just by individuals looking for a Google AdWords consultant or methods or increasing traffic via a PPC campaign, but also individuals trying to work out how long it’s going to take to get to work in the morning.

If your ads are attracting clicks from people looking for an entirely different service, then not only will you receive poor conversion scores, your cost per acquisition will also be far higher than it should be.

So how do you identify negative keywords?

  • Keyword research
    As Google AdWords consultants will doubtless be all too aware, you should never dive into a campaign without having completed thorough keyword research. You will be surprised by how many of the terms you assume will be most popular actually receive a low search volume, with other industry specific keywords mopping up most of the traffic. There are a number of keyword tools that can you help you to identify negative keywords and they are all simple to use so there really is no excuse.
  • Take a look at the search results
    The most popular search engines now have a feature which offers keyword term recommendations as you type your keywords into the search bar. This can help to identify other terms you have neglected to consider.
  • Look at industry literature and use your intuition
    If you are a Google AdWords consultant operating in-house then you are likely to know your industry inside-out, including all of the most industry specific terms. However, sometimes when you are so involved in a project it becomes difficult to see the wood from the trees. Taking a step back and approaching the industry assuming zero knowledge can help you indentify terms you may have overlooked.

There are plenty of other strategies you can use to identify negative keywords, but obviously our team of Google AdWords consultants have to keep some of their resourceful methods to themselves. For further insight or a no obligation quote, please call our Google AdWords consultants on 029 2076 6467.

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Alex Cox

PPC Manager

Alex has had extensive knowledge of both agency and client side as a senior paid marketing manager, starting his journey off at the paid media team at British Airways. His experience primarily focuses on retail, financial services, tech, automotive, beauty and travel. While he specialises in PPC advertising across all digital channels, he also has…

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