Google Search Query Report

If you are using broad-matched keywords in Google, I hope that you have taken advantage of the Search Query Reporting that is available through Google, also.  This report is also useful when using phrase-matching.  When you use broad-matching, you are allowing Google to show your ads whenever a similar keyword is searched or something that they deem relevant to your keyword.  Especially with their expanded broad-matching, many times your ad may be showing for keywords that you do not find to be relevant at all.  This can be a costly mistake but may be combated through negative keyword matching with the help of the Search Query Report.

The Search Query Report shows you what people typed in Google to make your ad appear.  This includes these expanded broad searches.  This is helpful to review and pull out keywords that would bring you unqualified traffic.  You can then add these keywords as negative keywords to prevent it from happening again.  This is an ongoing process that will help refine your account.

Let’s say, for example, you are bidding on the keyword “tennis shoes.”  In your Search Query Report, you may find that people are searching for “kids tennis shoes” and you only sell adult sizes.  You should add “kids” as a negative keyword to prevent spending money on customers that won’t find what they are looking for.   You may also end up with keywords in the report like “tennis rackets” which may not pertain to your business.  In this case, you should add “rackets” as a negative keyword.

Along with picking out the possible negative keywords, you should also review for new keywords on which to bid.  There may be some keywords that you hadn’t thought of that you should capitalize on, perhaps long tail phrases or common misspellings.  This is where broad-matching comes in handy.

For example, if there are people that are clicking on your ads and converting off of the key phrase “buy new tennis shoes,” you should consider adding this key phrase to the account.  This will allow you to appear more often when people search this rather than just hoping that the broad-matched key phrase “tennis shoes” will catch it.  It also may end up being a cheaper cost per click as it is a longer phrase.

For anyone who has run the Search Query Report lately, you might have noticed some recent changes.  They are now showing more query results rather than lumping many together under “Other Unique Queries.”  They also started noting “Session-Based” by some broad-matched queries.  This lets you know that that query was evaluated alongside previous queries from that person to decide to show your ad.

Photo courtesy of dullhunk.

Most recent posts by Kate Falconer


  1. Has anyone ever had the problem of the search query report showing up blank when you know you’ve had clicks on broad match keywords?

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