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Keyword Matching Options

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 1
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

Hi All,


I'm looking for some thoughts and imput on the relatively new Include plurals, misspellings, and other close variants

(enabled by default) Keyword Matching Options.

Prior to this option being implemented, I'm sure that many people had alot of plurals & close variants in their keywords.

I received impressions on both types (and still do). Your results may vary.

At what point (if ever) should consideration be given to pausing or deleting plurals?

I'm not really getting conversions on either so I can't consider that as a determining factor. (If one was getting conversions, it would be an obvious decision).

Should users just leave it as is or consider pausing/deleting plurals? Across ALL Adgroups??

Thanks for your input,



Marked as Best Answer.
Accepted by Zee (Community Manager)
September 2015

Re: Keyword Matching Options

Top Contributor Alumni
# 2
Top Contributor Alumni

I think it depends on how much you want to control the keywords.


AdWords likes to go with the most precise keyword and match type available in the account so I will still be using both singular and plurars as keywords.


I have a few accounts that are using the new setting and some that I have opted out with and I'm still gathering data through the SQ report (shows "near exact" etc) to see how this change works out.


I think a good ideas is to leave it to include the additional queries (for a month or so) and then run the search query report to decide wether you want to leave it on.

Re: Keyword Matching Options

Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
# 3
Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆

Maybe not directly to make a smooth transition, but in the long run, Google will most likely adopt the same behaviour like it has when I add these both keywords:



"cat com"


To the adwords system both are identical, cause the get preprocessed for matching and QS calculation.


So if you add these keywords new and they perform good, only one will get the traffic. Maybe the other will get a litte traffic, cause google uses optimization techniques but in the end one will run and one will receive no impressions any more.


The good part however is, that if you have these two keywords left in your account:





and both have good CTR, they will both add to your campaign CTR ratio. However, one of the will not get any impressions any more in the long run, because if you do not opt-out of the new plural-feature, both are the exact same to google

Re: Keyword Matching Options

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

Thanks purefuzz and ArneTR for the replies/input.

I think that I'll leave them for now but if Google stops giving impressions on one (cat vs cats) for a few weeks or so, I'll assume that Google sees them as the same as ArneTR suggests will happen.


Thanks Again!


Re: Keyword Matching Options

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I've done some deep digging into this and I must say, I'm not happy. I've already turned off all of the close variant options in all of my campaigns -- it was either that or Pause ALL broad campaigns.


My account is set up in match type campaigns with massive amounts of negative KWs to discourage cross traffic. We took into account about 80% of the variants in spelling and plurals, etc. in the account itself.  It took almost 3 months to clean up an account I inherited that was a mess. So we now have close variant options in Adwords. And initially I thought it would be great because I assumed it would pick up the few things we left out in the account AND there would be a downstream change in the "Opportunities" tab in terms of KW ad recomendations. Not so! Here is an example of what is happening:


1) Campaign X-Exact Match>Adgroup X-Exact Match>KW-X Exact Match

2) KW-X Exact Match is also a negative in the Campaign X-Phrase Match>Adgroup X-Phrase Match

3) KW-X Exact Match in 7 days had 155 Impressions at a CPC of $1.22

4) Search Query report shows KW-X Exact Match Close Variant (an EXACT duplicate of the KW in #3 above) is triggering ads from the SAME Campaign and getting 497 Impressoins at a CPC of $1.64... MORE MONEY!!!!! And it's the same Keyword!!! In the same Adgroup, in the same Campaign!!!! How is that possible? I didn't think duplicate KWs within the same Campaign/Adgroup were allowed....


So, my CTR has gone down on the KW I had listed in the campaign. I can't add this "close variant" KW because IT'S THE SAME KW and a duplicate!!!  And my Ad Rank has also gone down so my overal costs have gone up.


AND, these close variants (both Phrase and Exact) are triggering Ads from my Broad Match campaigns as well. 


This totally threw my campaign into a tizzy. So -- I had two choices - Turn off ALL my Broad Match Campaigns or Turn Off ALL close variants. I chose to turn off the Close Variant options for now.


If you have Campaign/Adgroups with mixed match type KWs or you're just beginning to build a campaign then I could see how this would be very helpful/useful especially in terms of dealing with all of the plurals and misspellings -- but it nearly tanked in terms of cost my very successful campaign. 


It will be interesting to see what happens in the long term.