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How to select keywords in PPC Campaign?

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PPC Keywords

Keywords are the main element in PPC.  If you are not strong enough to select keywords, then don’t go for PPC. Even then, you have started a campaign without a solid understanding of keywords, you’ll never the reach right kind of audience and you’ll never be a successful campaigner.

Define Keyword

In layman terms, a keyword is a word or a combination of words which a user type in search bars. Each and every keyword will show you different results.

In this article we will cover:

  • Types of keywords
  • Keyword Match Types
  • Keywords v/s Search Queries
  • How keyword works in PPC
  • Importance of Negative keywords
  • Keyword Research Tools

# Types of keywords

There are many types of keywords are available like:

  • Branded keywords – These types of keywords include company names like Amazon, IBM, Intel, Google
  • Generic keywords – Also called short keywords. This is an incomplete keyword where a person is not sure what he is looking for. Example, towing, mba, shoes and many more like these.
  • Transactional keywords – In this type, user intent is to buy something or looking for some services like: “plumbing services.” “buy iphone x”, and many more.
  • Locational keywords – Here user is specifically what he is looking for and where he wants. Like best colleges in Delhi, best restaurants near me”)
  • Long-tail keywords – Keywords consist of more than 3-4 words and user is specific what he wants like: “running shoes for trekking”, “iphone dealers in delhi”. These types keywords are transaction and give you good returns.
  • Informational keywords – In this type of searches, where a user is looking for only information like: “how to design a website”, “how to do SEO” cover keywords where people are simply looking for information. This can be anything from “Sears store directions” to “how to get rid of a wart.” You would rarely use info-keywords for Google Ads.

# Keyword Match Types

There are 4 types of match types. For a ppc guy, you should know all match types and their pros and cons. All the match types work differently, and it will behave differently.

Broad Match: it’s a default match type where google will match your keyword and accordingly display your ads on the user keywords. Like if you have used “oil massage” in broad match. Your ads appear on these searches, might relevant or not relevant to your business.

 Queries where your ads shown:

  • Body massage
  • Massage
  • Oil for food
  • Oil massage for mens

With broad match type keywords, Google will try to show your ad when searchers looks relevant.


  • Track all keywords like: misspellings, synonyms, related searched, and other variations
  • Will receive maximum impressions & clicks on the campaigns


  • High cost because of irrelevant clicks, impressions.
  • High risk of losing money to irrelevant searches.
  • Very difficult to control on clicks

Broad Match Modified: It will also give you a wider reach of audiences. Broad Match Modified keywords work by adding a ‘+’ sign in front of your word.


+running + shoes

+oil +massage

By adding + sign means that we are telling Google that display my ads only when that word appears in the search query.  Example: you are using +oil massage, Google can show your ads on these queries also: buy oil, oil for food, food oil.


  • Much better control of which searches you want your ads to appear on.
  • Good to find relevant keywords for your service or business.
  • Catches misspellings.


  • Having low search volume than with Broad Match.
  • You will get irrelevant data like: clicks, impressions.
  • Risk of losing money, if not controlled

Phrase Match: In this match type, your ads will show only when a user has included that exact phrase or keywords in their search query. For example: If you are using “running shoes” in phrase match and your ad will show if someone searches for “running shoes” “buy running shoes” and “running shoes for men.”


  • Control on what queries you’ll be shown.
  • Better ROI oriented phrase match
  • Effective for avoiding greater expansions.
  • Less risk of irrelevant clicks.

Exact Match: In Exact Match, google will only display those ads when they find the exact match or close variants. Close variants may include: Singular forms, Misspellings, plural forms, Stemming (for example, floor and flooring), Abbreviations, Accents.

Example: Add brackets in your keywords like: [running shoes].


  • Target direct customers with Exact Match Type.
  • Perfect for controlling high-converting keywords.
  • Better conversion rate
  • Not getting irrelevant clicks


  • Exact Match will miss long-tail keywords.


Match type Special symbol Example keyword Ads may show on searches that contain: Example searches
Broad match none women’s shoes Synonyms, Misspellings, related searches, and other relevant variations.
  • buy ladies shoes
  • women’s clothing
Broad match modifier +keyword +women’s +shoes All the terms designated with a + sign (or close variations of those terms) in any order. Additional words may appear before, after, or between the terms.
  • women’s scarves and shoes
  • jogging shoes for women
Phrase match “keyword” “women’s shoes” Matches of the phrase (or close variations of the phrase) with additional words before or after.
  • blue women’s shoes
  • buy women’s shoes
  • women’s shares on sale
Exact match [keyword] [women’s shoes] Exact matches of the term or close variations of that exact term with the same meaning.
  • women’s shoes
  • ladies shoes
  • shoes for women
  • shoes women


Now the question which match type should we use?

If you are unaware of your business or you don’t which match type should you use in your campaign, then I recommend, use Broad Match Modifier. But if you know about your audience, service then you must go to phrase match and exact match.

As you can see in my review of the four match types, each one is different from another and will target a different set of audiences. You can use them all in an effective Google Ads campaign.

Whatever match type you are using in your campaigns, AdWords will start gathering statistics. Once you will start getting data, you can optimize your campaigns accordingly.


# Difference Keywords v/s Search Queries

Keywords: Keywords are the phrases that you are using to promote in PPC.  Keywords are based on your business, service, and products. Keywords are what SEOs, webmasters and digital marketers come up with.

Search Queries: In simple term, Queries are what the user types in the search engine. These are the actual keywords that people use to find relevant information.  For example:

Search Queries

# How keywords work in PPC?

If you want to run a successful PPC campaign, then your test ads should be relevant to the keywords which you have selected. This will increase your Quality score and decrease your cost per click (CPC).

When you are creating ads copy make sure you should cover important keywords on your ads copy. When a user is searching for a particular keyword on a search engine, your ads will appear on search engine with bold font in your ads. This will show the relevancy to the users query and you will get a relevant click. Example:

PPC Keywords

# Importance of Negative Keywords

A negative keyword is a word or a combination of words that will prevent your ad from being prompted if a user searched in search engine. In Negative keywords, there are also match types which I’ll cover in next topics: Why Negative Keywords are Important and Types of Match Types?

Without Negative keywords, you can’t run a successful campaign. It’s an essential piece of any campaign to help get the right type of lead & traffic. By using negative keywords, you will stop the specific type of traffic, which you don’t want for your website.

Let’s say you’re running a web design company in India and you must exclude terms like: jobs, how to design a website, courses, institutes and many others. This practice will help to increase the performance of your Google Ads campaigns.

This is one of the most powerful options because you can manage your spending, traffic, leads and many things. This is where beginners are lacking. They missed this option.

May be you have selected the right keywords, written good ads, and are sending good traffic to a website. But is your client getting relevant traffic, leads. If the answer is Yes then Good otherwise you have to think about this.

You have to spend an hour on search engines to find irrelevant keywords and add as negative keywords in your campaign. You can add negative keywords on campaign level or ad group level. Create a list of negative keywords as much as you can.

Use this practice continuously, and keep adding negative keywords on an ongoing basis.

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