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PPC AdWords – Phrase Match Types

PPC AdWords – Phrase Match Types

by Adrian RandallMay 17, 2016

Last week we delve into Broad Match Modifier types in Google AdWord PPC campaigns. This week, we’re looking at a different type of match type – Phrase Match Types. Phrase Match Types can be seen with the use of quotation marks around your keyword or keyphrase – something like:

phrase match type example

Using these quotation marks basically tells Google to only serve the ad to users who enter a search query using the words within the quotation marks when the words are entered in the same order as they are in the quotation marks. Now that is a mouthful! What does it mean? Let’s look at an example.



Phrase Match Type Example

Let’s say you have set a keyphrase as “black dog collars” in your AdWords campaign. This tells Google that you only want to target users searching for “black dog collars” when ALL the words appear the search query and they are in that order.

So…. this would include users who enter search terms including:

  • black dog collars for bull mastiff
  • cheap black dog collars

But… wouldn’t include users who enter search terms which don’t include ALL the words, or those who include all the words but in a different order. So these search queries wouldn’t be served your ad:

  • dog collars black
  • red dog collars

Phrase Match Types can be really powerful when managing the effectiveness of your campaigns. If you have phrases or words that you specifically want users to search for (and these words need to be typed in a specific order to make sense to your campaign/product/service), this is a great tool to use. Phrase Match Types still allow for some user search query flexibility as while they must use all the words and the order specified within the quotation marks, they can use additional words surrounding this key phrase and will still be picked up by Google.


In Summary:

  • Phrase Match means that all words within the quotation marks must be within the user’s search query in the same order as within the quotation marks
  • Offers the flexibility for user’s to add additional words on either side of the quotation key phrase


About The Author
Adrian Randall
I'm a digital marketing specialist, love working on digital business and coding on just about anything. I'm the founder of Arcadian Digital and this site shares some of our knowledge and practices.

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