Negative keywords are an essential part of any AdWords campaign to help you get the right type of traffic based on your campaign goals. A negative keyword is a word or phrase that will prevent your ad from showing if it is used in a search query. Negative keywords follow the same rules as regular keywords because they can be used in exact match, phrase match, modified broad match, and broad match. This allows you to get creative and eliminate certain types of traffic that you don’t want to come from to your site.
The best way to think about negative keywords is when you have a tree that is getting out of hand. While it’s great that a tree is thriving, it needs to be pruned so that it grows in a healthy and sensible way, especially with regard to everything else around it. The same goes for AdWords campaigns. If you are getting a lot of clicks and impressions that are eating away at your budget, but you have a low conversion rate, it might be a good idea to eliminate bad traffic with negative keywords.
How and when you use negative keywords will vary depending on your situation, depending on the type of website you have. For e-commerce sites, some common invalid traffic issues come from education traffic, discount traffic, and competitors’ brand traffic. Educational traffic is easy to identify as it comes to your site based on keywords related to the how and why of the products. As an e-commerce site, you only want to pay for buyers who are ready to buy, not for information-seeking traffic due to their low conversion rate. Adding questions and information words to your negative keyword list will help increase traffic efficiency.