If you manage Google shopping campaigns and don’t use negative keyword you’re are missing out on one of the most efficient ways of improving your campaign performance.
By learning how to use negative keywords correctly you can significantly save on your marketing budget and time spent optimizing.
To help you get started right away we have compiled the ultimate Google shopping negative keyword list Google doc here (link coming soon!)
Our free list can not only save you time but will also help you reduce your budget drastically depending on your current level of negative keyword optimization.
You wont need to research the more generic general negative keywords separately or rely wasted clicks discovering many of these using your search term report and can focus your valuable time on other optimization activities.
Before getting started with the list lets go over a quick refresher on Google shopping negative keywords:
What are negative keywords and why use them?
Negative keywords stop your ad from being triggered by a particular phrase or word.
This way, your ads are not displayed to anyone searching for that word or phrase.
Let’s consider an example.
Assume that you are a retailer dealing in housewares products. You set up your Google Ads shopping campaign and you would like to show up on searches for water or wine glasses.
Although this seem logical, these are quite broad search queries, and here is what might happen:
- User types ‘glasses’ on Google hoping to find a new pair of eyeglasses.
- Your ad with drinking glasses shows up along with Ray-Ban’s or Tom Ford’s since you have the word glasses in your feed and landing page
- User unintentionally clicks on your ad, without any intention of buying drinking glasses, thus driving up your ad costs
This is an extreme example as Google is better at determining how to match your product to a keyword, however you can see how search terms that represent your product can be ambiguous and why its important to carefully block some words and phases in your campaigns.
As we know with Google Shopping campaigns, you are not bidding on any keywords directly as you do in Google Search campaigns, rather, Google decide which searches to bid on and you influence where your ads are displayed by tweaking your product feed data and website product page.
Therefore using negative keywords can be very helpful in eliminating some of the irrelevant searches and wasteful clicks for your campaigns.
Using negative keywords effectively helps you to:
- Significantly improve your conversion rate and ROI by reducing low quality clicks
- Increase the click-through rate on your ads contributes to an increased Google ads quality score potentially decreasing your cost per click and thus your cost per sale and your profits
- This is one of the fastest ways to improve your overall shopping campaign performance
How to add negative keywords
You can setup negative keywords at the account level (using a list) ad group level or the campaign level. Choosing to create at the campaign level will apply to ads in the particular campaign, while at the ad group level will only prevent certain ad groups from displaying ads for specific queries.
Once you have your terms ready adding them to your campaign is simple.
- In the navigation panel on the left, click “All Campaigns” and then “Keywords” in the menu
- Click “Negative Keywords”
- Select the + sign
- Click “Select a Campaign” to choose the campaign you want to add the Google shopping negative keywords list to.
- Enter one keyword per line in the text field.
Negative keyword match types
Make sure you use the match types correctly for your negative keywords
Phrase match: Will exclude all phrases with these words in the same order as well as close variations. This gives you the most control
Exact match: Exclude only the exact terms you enter in that order, will not block if there are other words in the phrase
Broad match: The broadest setting, this excludes the exact match alongside close variations and misspellings, exclude every phrase that all the words appears in in any order. Be careful with this one but also best used for highly irrelevant keywords like “free”.
How find and determine new negative keywords
The first thing you want to do is use our free list, remove terms that are relevant to your campaign that you may not want to block, and upload the rest of the list to your account for instant benefit.
Then start searching for additional niche specific negative keywords by mining your search terms report and checking keyword tools.
You can do your search terms report analysis manually, which while it takes time and is susceptible to errors, provides you more control and avoids adding bad negative keywords that might block good traffic.
Alternatively, you can use a platform like Karooya.com to automatically evaluate your past report to generate data driven negative keyword recommendations. This is more effective and faster compared to the above manual method.
With Karooya you can analyze your historical search term data for negative keywords and easily see recommendations on which to block with the relevant performance stats to justify the recommendation.
Using a tool like Karooya to analyze months of search term reports reveals negative keywords that are rather difficult to manually identify as well as those that may not sound terrible at first glance but may have a very low conversion rate over time.
Also consider using Wordstreams free tool or any other decent keyword research tool to generate Google shopping ads negative keywords. Just enter a broad phrase or term that is related to your brand, choose the industry, and your country. Once the tool has generated the results, evaluate keywords that are irrelevant to your business.
What type of keywords to block
- Products or variations that you don’t sell
- Competitor keywords you can’t or don’t sell
- Irrelevant phrases or terms that likely won’t lead to a sale
- Non transactional keywords i.e. does this search query have very low commercial intent and or is not converting on your account?
- Appears relevant but has an extremely low click rate, unprofitable, or high cost per lead. You can search your terms data for unprofitable keywords over the previous few months based on your costs per lead or sale.
Negative keyword scripts
Google shopping scripts are useful because they save energy, effort, and time. With these scripts, you can automate tasks that would otherwise take you days to complete.
Scripts can also save you the pains of fixing errors or making small modifications on an ongoing basis.
Keep an eye out for other scripts that can help save you time in the future.
By using our negative keyword list ,your search terms data and a tool like Karooya to scan your shopping campaigns, you can quickly get well on your way to improved campaign performance in no time.