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Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

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# 1
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So at one point i bid on the word "financial advisers" and cheap clicks were being uncovered.

 

Then i said you know what let me segment everything to really see whats happening:

 

So i added new adgroups like this:

 

[financial adviser] exact match

[financial advisers] exact match

"financial advisers" phrase match

 

 

financial adviser is doing bad. low CTR and the costs keep going up. (.42% ctr)

financial advisers is doing well, maybe rising but very very little, needs to be split tested with ads more

"financial advisers" is doing the best ironically as a phrase match. Highest CTR @ (.77%)

 

 

Did i do this completely wrong? Ive heard of people saying plurals just show up but for a big keyword like this there is a clear distinction that the plural does better than the singular so why would i keep them in the same group, hence hurting the plural version of the word.

 

Anyway, im wondering if i just did had one campaign as phrase match "financial advisers" .... if it would make me perform better overall with a cheaper click? Costs are rising for some because they are not doing good individually but maybe its better to average them all out in the same phrase match campaign....?

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thank you.

 

 

3 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hi Curiouss.  The first thing to check is whether your Campaign(s) has "close variant" matching turned on (which it is by default).  This setting is in Campaign Settings under "Advanced Settings... Keyword Matching Options".  When "close variants" is turned on, [financial adviser] is effectively the same as [financial advisers] so you may not be getting as clear a split as you'd like.

 

The second thing I'd say is that the singular is likely to be attracting quite a different search from the plural.  Someone searching on an exact match for the singular is perhaps more likely to be a financial adviser looking for work while someone searching on the plural may be more likely to be looking for financial advice.  It's a fine distinction but one I think exists.

 

Are you advertising on the Search and Display networks in the same Campaign or just Display?  If you're advertising on Search only any CTR figure below 1% is really quite low so I'd be looking closely at your Ads for relevance and content.  If you're on the Display network either alone or combined with Search the figures are more reasonable.

 

If it were me, I'd probably focus on the Phrase match.  Exact matches are great in most cases but here I think the term is just too vague.  The two words could describe an so many different intents that they won't be focused enough - are they looking for advice, looking for training, reviews, a job?  With phrase match you're more likely to see meaningful searches (good financial advisers, cheap financial advisers in London, etc.) but you'll need to use a good list of negative Keywords to improve the relevance.

 

Does this help?

 

Jon

AdWords Top Contributor Google+ Profile | Partner Profile | AdWords Audits

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

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# 3
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Just to add to Jon's advice.... if you want to use exact and phrase, then I would put them in different ad groups and then add the exact phrase as an exact negative in the phrase group - if that makes sense!

Here's why. If someone searches for financial advisers, for example - you want your exact match keyword to trigger, and although Google would normally trigger that keyword, you can make sure by exclusing the exact term in your phrase match campaign.

The advantages? Firstly, you can write a much tighter ad - you're writing for a single search term - so your headline and your display url can contain these exact words. If you want to go a step further you can write a specific landing page with the title, the meta description and the main h1 heading using the term... you give yourself the very best chance of improving your CTR and your conversion rates.

Then, you are also likely to improve your Quality Score - both in the short term since exact matches tend to get better QS in any case, and in the medium to longer term as the QS is impacted by the better CTR's - but as Jon points out this is only going to work if the terms are precise enough - the more general they get the less effective any approach is going to be.

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

[ Edited ]
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# 4
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"then I would put them in different ad groups and then add the exact phrase as an exact negative in the phrase group - if that makes sense!"

Yes, it absolutely does, i just did it, pretty confusing:

 

1) I went into adgroup "financial advisers" and added negative keywords financial advisers and financial advisor

 

2) i went into my adgroup [financial adviser] and added (as a negative kw) financial advisers

 

3) i went into my adgroup [financial advisers] and added (as a negative kw) financial adviser

 

Is that correct?



I just started running all 3 of these variations, and i set a low max click of like .75c and was ranking high, along with getting decent clicks, now my costs keep rising and rising, its saying below first page bid, etc

All 3 variations of adgroups are 6/10 quality score with all 3 variables within each ad group coming up as :average

Do i need to start bidding way higher to get up top again, split test ads to get a higher quality score to give myself another shot at cheap clicks? I feel like if i dont try to get a higher CTR by bidding way more (to get top 3) its just going to get more and more expensive.

So basically they gave me a shot, my CTR was bad, they are losing money because of that, so they push me down and charge me more. I get that. So again, is there a strategy of paying whatever you need to to get up top, and show them your capable of high CTR so they will lower my costs again?

Thanks i really appreciate the expert advice guys.

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

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# 5
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Understood but i have a competitor who is ranking high for years here, both singular and plural. I know their business model, i know their goals, they do 0 advertising for branding, its strictly a direct ROI goal based campaign they have. It was working well for me up until the CTR just started slipping and now it looks like it fell apart.

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

Top Contributor
# 6
Top Contributor
Hi Curiouss,

With a low CTR, your QS will keep going down. 6/10 is not good. I would concentrate on get the CTR up by testing multiple ad copies in each of your ad groups. When CTR improves, set your bid a little higher to get a better position on the page while maintaining your CTR.

When adding negative KW, always use the more restrictive match type as negative. For your exact match groups, negative KW in less restrictive match types are not necessary. In your phrase match group "financial advisers", add a negative [financial advisers].

Also, run a search terms report on the exact match keywords to see what kind of queries are triggering your ad. You may be surprised!

Best of Luck!

Pete
petebardo -- Deadhead doing AdWords

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

[ Edited ]
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# 7
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petebardo wrote:

Also, run a search terms report on the exact match keywords to see what kind of queries are triggering your ad. You may be surprised!

You mean do this for phrase match? Exact match, is only triggering on the exact phrase.....correct? Well if so, yes i have checked the phrase match and i am adding negative keywords constantly to remove bad impressions. Can you ever rebound from weeks with a bad quality score? Im obviously going to have to keep adding negative keywords to the phrase match, but in the meantime its killing my quality score... any suggestions? Its not like i can just think off the top of my head which negative keywords to add...

 

In all honesty though... its bringing up some really great long tails, ive barely even added negative keywords.

 

Also my competitor is running the SAME AD, for both the singular and plural of financial advisers and has been forever. Does this most likely mean they are in the same adgroup?

Re: Is segmenting my keywords worse for them overall?

Top Contributor
# 8
Top Contributor
Hi Curiouss,

If you have close variants enabled (and you do unless you have turned them off), I mean a search terms report on the exact matches to see what Google considers a close variant. You may find good long tail keywords, and you may find candidates for negative keywords.

It is likely your competitor is running both keywords int he same group, but it is impossible to tell without looking at their account.

Pete
petebardo -- Deadhead doing AdWords