Thursday, February 26, 2009

Negative Keywords: Not a Bad Thing!

Ah, yes. One of my favorite, and most often misinterpreted, tools in Google AdWords. Now . . . this entry does assume you have at least a basic background in Google AdWords, so keep that in mind. If you do know Google AdWords, or have wrestled with them before, this will prove to be a valuable tool.

Negative keywords are words you can add to your campaigns to make Google show your ad less. And, believe it or not, this is a good thing.

Why? Well, you will choose words that will prevent your Ad from showing. For example, by putting in the word "free" as a negative keyword, people who searched for your website keywords, but used the word "free" (for example, "free camping gear"), wouldn't see your website Ad. It just wouldn't come up.

That's the first important step. You wouldn't pay for this person to come upon your site -- they're clearly not a "buyer." They're looking for a free gift, or perhaps free information or a something similar. It's not that it's horrible if they ran across your site. You just don't want them doing it on your dime.

Beyond that, these people are less likely to click on a "sales-pitch" type Ad anyway, so by not showing your Ad to them, you are increasing your CTR (or "Click Through Rate"). A better Click Through Rate will actually lower your cost per click with Google.

Here's how you add negative keywords to your campaign:
  • Go to the Keywords section of any given AdGroup.
  • Use the "quick add" option for your keywords.
  • Type in the minus sign (-), followed by any keywords you want as negative keywords.
  • Here are a few negative keywords that are a good idea to use: free, info, information, image, images, pic, picture, wiki.
So, there's a basic overview. If you want to learn more about how a quality coaching company can help your business soar, simply visit

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