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Improve performance with AdWords negative keywords - UBonline

Improve performance with AdWords negative keywords

Improve you AdWords campaign with Negative Keywords

One of the most common ways to increase the performance of your AdWords campaigns is to add negative keywords. In short; the reason for this is, you exclude irrelevant traffic. Negative keywords can save you a lot of money in you AdWords activities. You don’t want to show you ads to people who aren’t going to buy anyway, do you?

What is AdWords negative keywords?

There is regular keywords, and there is negative keywords. Regular keywords are the search queries where you want to show your ad. If you are selling diapers in your ecommerce store, you want to show your ad when people search for “buy diapers online”.

However, imagine there is a diaper brand called “very clean” – which you do not market in your store. This could be a very good example of a negative keyword. For instance, if people are searching for “very clean diapers”, they are looking for diapers of this exact brand.

It is highly unlikely that they will buy, or even come to your site, if you show an ad presenting diapers of different brands. You will most likely have competitors, showing ads that are presenting Very Clean diapers. These are the ones, the potential customers will click and visit.

By adding “very clean” as a phrase match negative keyword, you will not only save yourself money from irrelevant clicks, but also improve your overall click through rate. You only want to show you ads to people who are looking for products you have.reduce costs adwords negative keywords

How will it improve my click through rates?

Very simple in fact. By keeping your ads relevant to the search queries of which they appear in. If you are consistent throughout your account with negative keywords, you will shave off a lot of ad impressions to people that are not interested in your products or services.

Finding negative keywords

There are multiple tools available online to find negative keywords. There are also many lists of “general” negative keywords to add – but don’t go crazy in adding them. You might end up adding a keyword as a negative, which might have been profitable for you.

There are also a lot of generic keywords, which can be a good idea to add. For example “free”, “review”, “test” and words in similar categories. There are always people looking for free stuff, which obviously will not make you any money.

When optimizing your account, it is important to check the search terms of the individual keywords. There are 2 main ways to do this:

Search terms on keyword level in AdWords.

  • Log into your AdWords account. Click on the campaign you want to optimize, and then on the Adgroup you want to optimize in. When you click on the Adgroup, the keywords within will appear. You can then mark the keyword(s) in the left hand side. When you marked your keywords, simply click on “Search Terms”. Box will only be clickable if you have marked one or more keywords.



Find Negative keywords with search term report.

  • Log into you AdWords account, and in the top, click on Reports. (Next to “Campaigns” and “Tools”). Then, look to your left hand side. Here you see all the different statistics you can make a report of. Since we are making a search term report, look for search term under the category Targeting. (Pro tip: Ctrl + F lets you search and find it fast.) To get valuable data, include “Search keyword” and “clicks” as well. This will tell you how many clicks your ad got, and which search terms was used. Great way to find negative keywords.


Summarized – it is essential for to add negative keywords, if you want a successful and profitable AdWords campaign. You need to scrape off as many irrelevant clicks (=costs) as possible.


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