Capturing the right audience at the right time is key for success in any PPC campaign, but budgets are often limited. So how can you ensure you’re running an efficient campaign with positive results? With negative keywords, of course!
No matter the bid types you employ, keeping a healthy negative keyword list is one of the best ways to ensure your campaign’s dollars are being allocated to the most relevant of searches. When you start your PPC campaign, you’re asked to define which keywords you want to show up for. With negative keywords, your specifying which keywords you don’t want to show up for.
There have been many instances of when we take over a client’s campaign where the search terms they’re showing up for have nothing to do with their property! So how do you find out which keywords to add to your negative keyword list? It’s simple.
Start with a base set of negative keywords, such as brands (Marriott, Hilton, etc.). If you’re an independent property in New York, you don’t want to show up when someone searches “Marriott New York.” You can also include review sites (TripAdvisor, etc.) and OTAs (Expedia, Airbnb, etc.). Don’t forget about keywords that are related to your property, but that you don’t want to show up for (jobs, employment opportunities, etc.).
Every so often, you’ll want to log into your PPC account and look at your Search Term Report. This report tells you the actual search phrases people are using that trigger your ads. If you see something that’s not valid or off, then add it to your list in an Excel spreadsheet or notepad.
When you have your list, upload it to your negative keyword list for each campaign in your PPC account. Once this is complete, you’ve essentially now told Google or Bing that you don’t want your ads showing up for these keywords.
Doing this ever so often will help ensure your campaign is running as efficiently as possible. And that’s a good thing.
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