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Match types are a way to control ad spend and traffic with PPC. But you’ve got to put some thought into how you do it. First, let’s explain what they are:

  • Broad Match – Broad match means the search engine will return your ad for search queries that match any of the words within your targeted keyword phrase. For instance, your keyword phrase is “yellow sneakers”. Your ad may show a search query for “yellow geranium”, “big sneakers”, or “yellow sneakers”. It matches all variations of your keyword phrase.
  • Phrase Match – Phrase match is a little different. Your ad will be shown only for search queries that match your keyword phrase as you express it, but not limited only to how you express it. For instance, “yellow sneakers” will return your ad for a search query for “yellow sneakers”, “big yellow sneakers” or “red and yellow sneakers” but not for “yellow geranium”.
  • Exact Match – Exact match is the strictest. Your ad will be shown only for search queries that match your key phrase exactly. A search for “yellow sneakers” will return your ad for the targeted keyword “yellow sneakers” but not “big yellow sneakers”.

These are important distinctions and you need to think about your target market. What will they search for? If your market is likely to search for “yellow sneakers size ___” (fill in the blank) then you’ll want to make sure of the phrase match. After all, you don’t want to shut out “yellow sneakers”. But you don’t want to waste clicks on people searching for “yellow geraniums” either.

The bottom line on match types is to use the most limiting one possible without shutting out key members of your target market and use the broadest match possible without wasting money on unnecessary click throughs.

2 Responses to “Should You Use Exact, Phrase, Or Broad Match?”

  1. Thanks for the tips. Very interesting. By the way, what is the best way to choose your keywords ?

    I am using the Search Query Report from Adwords, but is there any other manipulations you can proposed me ?


  2. Thanks for the tips. Very interesting. By the way, what is the best way to choose your keywords ?

    I am using the Search Query Report from Adwords, but is there any other manipulations you can proposed me ?


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