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Exact Search Volume Option in Keyword Planner

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I'm a relatively new user of Google Adwords and would welcome some clarity as I'm still confused by responses to older threads on 'Exact Search Volume Option in Keyword Planner'.


Older versions of Google keyword tool provided an option to select EXACT or BROAD match search volumes based on keywords and/or a web name (or landing page). The results were expressed in volumes of 'Global Monthly Searches' (GMS) with BROAD search figures for a given keyword often displayed in millions of GMS while the results of an EXACT search for the same keyword amounted to thousands of GMS.


Currently, search results provide only the 'Avg monthly searches' for keywords and/or landing page and 'its close variants'. I can find nothing that gives an indication of how a keyword or landing page might perform as an EXACT match even when setting the date range to show results for a specific month.

In fact, the definition of 'Avg monthly searches' includes not only the average number of searches for a keyword but also "its close variants based on the targeting settings...". If that is the case, how can we make effective campaign investment decisions based on such broad Avg results.

The impact of not having an EXACT match feature are far reaching particularly as investment decisions risk being based on potentially erroneous data. For example, one of my investment criteria might be to initiate campaigns only where monthly searches exceed 5,000 per month (based on previous EXACT search results). Using current search results one might wrongfully assume that 'Avg monthly searches' of between 1K – 10K might satisfy that criteria - a costly assumption if in fact the EXACT searches was somewhere between 2K - 3K.

Furthermore, I saw a comment in one thread stating that "match types in the planner only impact forecasts of potential account performance...". Does that mean the 'Avg monthly searches' figures are only forecasts? If so, how do you arrive at these figures without the use of actual historical search volumes? Also, what assumptions are these forecasts based on?

The Exact search volume option, in my mind, helped to inject an element of realism or sensibility to investment decisions. While the BROAD results might be deemed wildly overoptimistic the EXACT output allowed for a more sensible estimation of potential traffic volumes one might expect for a given campaign. I may be off the reservation with this but would welcome some clarity and guidance on the matter.

Thanks in advance,


Exact Search Volume Option in Keyword Planner

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi @Keith S


In the keyword planner the keyword research part of it shows broad match.


However, as you click the "add to plan" button and the keyword gets added to on the right side of the screen, a pencil icon shows above them. Click it and you can change the match type. The main section of the keyword planner still won't show impressions based on exact match.


When you click "review plan" on the right side, it will take you to the search volume estimation tool. If you didn't change the match type on the previous page with the pencil icon, you can change it on this page. Then, it will show you estimates based on match type.


I see it as a less efficient method than what was previously offered, but that's what we have at this point.


As far as the forecasts, yes, forecasts are based on historical data.


With regard to close variants, there is no longer a true exact match. It hasn't been that way since 2014, if I remember correctly. It includes misspellings, plurals, singular, acronyms, and stemmings. However, the biggie is Google recently made it possible that it will match reordering of the words in your keyword, as well as adding words that do not impact meaning of the word (think articles, prepositions, conjunctions, etc).


Hope that helps.