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Difference between a paused [exact match] and a negative?

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# 1
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For a phrase match keyword I will look at the details of actual search terms to create negatives and exact match keywords.


Obviously if I want a negative I create a negative but I think knowing the answer to this would help me understand the match types better. 


If I have a phrase match "this" from which I find that people are searching for This And That, I create an exact match for [this and that].  If I then pause that exact match, will google resume showing This And That for my phrase match "this"?


2 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Difference between a paused [exact match] and a negative?

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

As I understand things Google will only show ads for active (non-paused) keywords. So to answer part of the question... if you pause the exact match [this and that] then Google will match the active phrase match keyword "this" for the search term - this and that.

however, just because you have an exact match [this and that] does not mean that this is the keyword that triggers your ad when a visitor searches for -this and tha - since the phrase match "this" could still trigger the ad (although it is less likely that this would happen).

This is important to realize since your CTR and your CPC may be better for the exact match - and your landing page may (should!) be designed to take best advantage of a person searching for the more restrictive term - more precision usually equals more success.

The way to truly control this is to split the terms into two groups... put [this and that] in an exact match group and then put [-this and that] in the phrase match group. In this way you prevent the search term - this and that - triggering an ad in the phrase match group and leaving Google only the one option - the exact match. Of course, these need to be in separate ad groups otherwise the negative will blck the exact as well!

This is a more complex process and may only be worth the effort if your landing pages are especially granular and targeted, but if you have high volumes of good search phrases it is a worthwhile approach.

Re: Difference between a paused [exact match] and a negative?

Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor


As Steve mentioned,  the decision "which keyword will trigger the ad, if more than one keyword matches the search term" is a rather complex decision made by the system;

If you have 30 minutes; make yourself a cup of coffee, find a quiet place and read:


How similar keywords match to search terms

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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