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How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 1
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

I am seeing impressions/clicks etc. for a keyword (first one in column below) but based on my keyword diagnosis it is not serving beacuse of a negative keyword which is set as exact match but I am receiving metrics for that keyword currently.


It leaves me a little confused on how negative keywords really work.  I also want to add that keywords are currently in ad groups by match types, so a braod match ad group would have the phrase match and exact match of that keyword negative. This is an inherited account I want to know your opinion on this type of grouping.  Thank you in advance.




adwords keyword.png


2 Expert replyverified_user

Re: How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Participant ✭ ✭ ☆
# 2
Participant ✭ ✭ ☆

Hello PPCSophie, 


 Negativekeywords are as important as positive keywords for the success of any pay per click advertising campaign.

For more information regarding Negative Keywords, you should read this article, written by Neha,


Hope it helps you. 

Re: How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Participant ✭ ✭ ✭



A negative keyword overrides a regular keyword. Your keyword small business loans cannot trigger an ad when search query is small business loans because your negative keyword [small business loans]. However it should be able to trigger an ad when search query is small business loan (no S at end) cause that´s not exactly the same as your negative phrase.

And I think it is, isn´t that what you mean when saying that you "receive metrics" for it?
I´d use the keyword diagnosis tool to get a more precise answer of which keyword will trigger which ad at which search query.


Regarding your way of organising ad groups (by match type, thus adding negative keyword by match type as well), that is perfectly fine, although not my first choice. It´s certainly to a large extent a matter of taste. But I think you´re running great risk of getting a too complex account-structure that way.

Is it really necessary with all those negatives?

Marked as Best Answer.
Accepted by topic author PPCSophie
September 2015

Re: How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Hi PPCSophie,


I would run a search terms report on those keywords to see where the impressions are coming from. In the diagnosis, it's all based on exact match, regardless of the keyword match type. That's the status message you are seeing. But the broad match can be triggered by other queries, as David has suggested. So, even though the UI is telling you it is being blocked, in fact, it is not.


Hope that made sense to you!


Best of Luck




petebardo -- Deadhead doing AdWords

Re: How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 5
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

Right @David I do receive impressions and clicks but I dont get why Adwords would say its has issues with the approval status or saying its not running which is my major confusion.  I am still not fully clear on why this is happening but I guess it makes sense.


Re: How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Participant ✭ ✭ ✭



use this tool (instead of the speech bubble)

Re: How to truly understand Negative Keywords?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

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understanding Negative Keywords?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 8
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hello Guys,


Can u say me what are the possible and important negative keywords are often used to perform campaign in great level


for eg) my keyword is online books suggest the possible negative keywords




Re: understanding Negative Keywords?

Top Contributor
# 9
Top Contributor
Hi James,

Thanks for posting your Query on the Forum.

But instead of posting your query on this thread, you should create new threads.

BTW, there is no fixed keywords list for every business. every businesses have its own negative keywords. However, i would suggests some keywords as negative:-

game(if you don't have game related books)
download(if you are not allowing to download e books)

in this way you can find and develop your negative keyword list.

In addition to this you can use the Search Query report to find out the negative keywords:-

for more information please follow the below link search query report
--Rakesh Kumar, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile
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