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Distinguishing Between Keyword Match Types in SEO and AdWords

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Distinguishing Between Keyword Match Types in SEO and AdWords

Blog / Distinguishing Between Keyword Match Types in SEO and AdWords

Distinguishing Between Keyword Match Types in SEO and AdWords

While both organic and paid results may appear on the same search engine results page (SERP), the strategies for finding SEO and PPC keywords differ. In the case of a PPC campaign, we emphasise the significance of comprehending keyword match types, along with closely monitoring keyword cost per click (CPC) and search volume.

On the other hand, for SEO purposes, our focus shifts to analysing keyword search volume and keyword difficulty, as these metrics play a crucial role in driving organic traffic to your website.

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At Traffic Radius, we are well-versed in crafting effective keyword strategies that align with your business objectives. Our expert team is equipped to conduct thorough keyword research, ensuring that we optimise your online presence for relevant SEO keywords, PPC keywords, organic keywords, and paid keywords.

With our tailored approach and attention to detail, we’ll help you navigate the ever-evolving digital landscape and drive targeted traffic to your website.

Keywords Match Types in Google Ads (AdWords)

Keyword match types play a crucial role in determining the outcome of your online marketing efforts. When it comes to Google Ads (formerly AdWords) keywords, there are five primary match types that you should familiarise yourself with. Each match type has its own characteristics, allowing you to make informed decisions about which ones to include in your campaign.

The five main types of keyword match are:

  • Broad Match Keywords:
    • Offers maximum reach but may have lower relevance
    • Broadens the scope of your ads to include related variations and synonyms
  • Modified Broad Match Keywords:
    • Provides slightly lower reach but greater relevance
    • Allows for better control by specifying certain keywords that must be present in the user’s search query
  • Phrase Match Keywords:
    • Offers a moderate reach and relevance balance
    • Targets searches that include the keyword phrase in the specified order, with additional words before or after it
  • Exact Match Keywords:
    • Provides minimum reach but maximum relevance
    • Targets searches that exactly match the specified keyword, ensuring precise targeting
  • Negative Match Keywords:
    • Used to increase the relevance of website visitors
    • Specifies keywords that should not trigger your ads, helping you exclude irrelevant searches

It’s important to note that Google often modifies the definitions of these match types. In recent years, exact and phrase match keywords have started including more variations, rendering the inclusion of misspellings and typos as separate keywords less relevant.

These variations are now recognised and included as close variations of the original keyword.

By understanding the nuances of broad match keywords, modified broad match keywords, exact match keywords, and other match types, you can optimise your campaign for maximum effectiveness and relevance.

Broad Match

Broad match keywords are designed to attract a wide audience, generating a higher volume of traffic to your website. They are the default match type used in Google Ads, meaning that if you add keywords without special symbols, your ads will be displayed for a broader range of search queries.

However, it’s important to consider the drawbacks of broad match keywords. The traffic generated may lack refinement, as your ads may be shown to random individuals who come across them. Additionally, some of the displayed keywords might be irrelevant to the theme or topic of your website or blog.

For example, if your broad match keyword is “women’s hats,” your ads may be shown for searches like “buy ladies hats,” “women’s clothing,” “women’s scarves,” and “winter headwear for women.” While this can generate a larger audience, it may not be as targeted or relevant as more specific match types.

To ensure your campaigns are as precise and relevant as possible, it’s important to carefully consider the use of broad match keywords and strategically balance them with other match types.

Learn More: What Is Focus Keyword?

Modified Broad Match

Modified broad match keywords offer increased control over your search appearance and help enhance the relevancy of the traffic driven by your PPC ads. These keywords are formatted with a “+” symbol before each term.

For example, a modified broad match keyword could be “+women’s +hats.” This means that both “women’s” and “hats” must be present in the user’s search query, allowing you to target more specific queries.

Matching searches for this modified broad match keyword may include phrases such as “women’s scarves and hats,” “winter hats for women,” and “hats for stylish ladies.”

By utilising modified broad match keywords, you can refine your targeting and ensure that the traffic you attract aligns closely with your intended audience and campaign goals.

Phrase Match

Phrase match keywords strike a balance between broad match and exact match keywords. They offer a higher level of focus compared to broad match, while still providing flexibility in attracting visitors to your website.

With phrase match keywords, additional words can be included before or after the key phrase, but not in the middle.

For instance, if your phrase match keyword is “women’s hats,” your ads may appear for searches like “blue women’s hats,” “buy hats for women,” and “ladies hats on sale.”

This match type allows you to capture a more targeted audience while accommodating variations in search queries. It provides a level of control and relevance that falls between the broader reach of broad match keywords and the precise targeting of exact match keywords.

By using phrase match keywords strategically, you can effectively drive traffic to your website from users who are specifically interested in your products or services.

Exact Match

Exact match keywords are the opposite of broad keywords. These keywords require the search query to match exactly, making them more challenging to conquer but highly valuable for conversion.

With an exact match keyword like [women’s hats], your ad will only be triggered when the search query precisely matches the keyword. This ensures that the traffic generated through exact match keywords is curated and more likely to convert.

For example, searches like “women’s hats,” “ladies hats,” “hats for women,” and “hats women” would match the exact match keyword [women’s hats].

While the volume of traffic from exact match keywords may be lower compared to broad or phrase match keywords, the chances of conversion are higher. To increase traffic volume, additional keywords can be added to your campaign. Even with lower traffic, the targeted nature of exact match keywords can significantly impact your sales.

By leveraging the power of exact match keywords, you can attract highly relevant traffic and increase the likelihood of conversions.

Navigate Match

If you sell interior paints and want to target customers specifically looking for paints, finishes, enamels, water-based and oil-based paints, while excluding art paints like gouache, watercolor, and tempera, negative match keywords are the solution.

Negative match keywords allow you to prevent your ads from appearing for specific search terms that you don’t want to target. By using negative match keywords effectively, you can refine your targeting and ensure that your ads are shown to the most relevant audience.

To establish the level of strictness in these restrictions, you can utilise various match types, such as broad match, modified broad match, phrase match, or exact match. This flexibility enables you to precisely control the exclusion of certain search terms and optimise your campaign accordingly.

By employing negative match keywords, you can streamline your ad targeting and ensure that your ads are displayed to the right audience, maximising the effectiveness of your advertising efforts.

Effective Keyword Research Strategies for SEO

In organic search engine result pages (SERPs), the approach to keyword research differs from PPC campaigns. Unlike PPC keywords, where you have control over keyword targeting, organic results treat every search query as a broad match type keyword unless advanced search operators are used.

This means less control over the specific keywords for which your content will be shown. However, there’s no need to worry as you don’t pay for each click in organic results.

Search engine algorithms have evolved, and exact keyword usage is no longer necessary to achieve high rankings. The focus in organic SEO is more on creating relevant and high-quality content that aligns with user intent, rather than exact keyword matching.

So, when it comes to organic SERPs, the emphasis shifts towards optimising your content to provide value and relevance to users, rather than solely relying on specific target keywords.

By focusing on SEO keywords and creating valuable content, you can improve your organic rankings and attract organic traffic without the need for keyword exactness.

Utilising Question Keywords to Enhance Click Through Rate (CTR)

Question keywords have gained significant importance since the introduction of Google’s Featured Snippets. These snippets often occupy the prime space on SERPs, overshadowing other websites and capturing user attention.

Securing a position in the Featured Snippet can lead to a remarkable increase in click-through rates (CTR), as seen with HubSpot’s experience. The potential traffic boost is enticing, making it crucial to approach question keywords strategically.

Question keywords are relevant across various topics, and using a specialised tool can help identify and optimise for them efficiently.

Considering Keyword Difficulty for Optimal Optimization

In PPC, the primary metric to consider is cost per click (CPC). However, in SEO, there’s another crucial metric called keyword difficulty. While CPC indicates competition in paid search, keyword difficulty gauges the level of difficulty in ranking organically.

Keyword difficulty is often more reliable than CPC as it provides insights into the challenges of achieving organic rankings. Unlike CPC, which can fluctuate frequently, keyword difficulty offers a more consistent measure of competitiveness.

By considering both CPC and keyword difficulty, marketers can gain a comprehensive understanding of the competitive landscape and make informed decisions in both PPC and SEO strategies.

Selecting the Appropriate Tools for Keyword Research

Having a clear understanding of each keyword match type and its benefits empowers you to optimise your campaigns effectively. It’s essential to recognise the distinctions between these types and leverage them to drive more traffic to your website.

Whether you’re focusing on SEO keywords or AdWords keywords, the goal is to increase website traffic, and each match type plays a role in achieving that objective.

To make informed decisions, consider all relevant factors when selecting the appropriate match type. Utilising a keyword research tool can greatly simplify the process of identifying the best keywords for your campaign across different match types, saving you valuable time and effort.

At Traffic Radius, we understand the importance of selecting the right match type for your keyword strategy. Let our expert team guide you through the process, ensuring you maximise your website’s visibility and attract the right audience.

Contact us today to supercharge your keyword campaigns and drive targeted traffic to your website.

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