A Guide To Using Broad Match Keywords In Google Ads

Broad matches can expand your ad reach and uncover new opportunities, but it’s important to use them wisely.

 In this guide, I’ll cover the advantages, disadvantages, best practices, successful examples, and common mistakes associated with broad keyword match types. Whether you’re an experienced marketer or just starting out, this guide will give you the insights to optimize your broad match ppc campaigns and achieve better results.

What Are Broad Match Keywords?

Broad match keywords in Google Ads allow advertisers to reach a wider audience by displaying search ads for search queries that contain variations, synonyms, misspellings, related searches, and other relevant variations of the chosen keywords. This match type offers flexibility in targeting and can be a valuable tool for advertisers looking to increase their ad reach.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Broad Match


  1. Increased Reach: Broad match enables ads to show for a wide range of search queries, expanding the potential audience and increasing exposure.
  2. Saves time: Compared to phrase match keywords, broad matches require less manual effort for keyword selection, allowing advertisers to save time on extensive keyword research.
  3. Cost-effective: Broad matches can help discover new search terms and identify potential long-tail keywords that might be valuable for future campaigns. This can lead to cost savings by uncovering profitable keywords.


  1. Low Relevance: Broad match may display ads for queries that are loosely related to the advertiser’s offerings. This can result in lower relevance between the search query and the ad, potentially impacting campaign performance.
  2. Higher risk of irrelevant clicks: Due to the broad nature of this match type, there is an increased risk of receiving clicks from users who are not genuinely interested in the product or service being advertised, leading to wasted ad spend.
  3. Lower CTR: Broad matches often have lower click-through rates (CTR) compared to more targeted match types. This is because the ads may be shown to users with broader interests and intentions.

Best Practices for Using Broad Match in Google Ads

Keyword Selection

  1. Use keyword planner tool: Utilize Google Ads’ keyword planner tool to discover relevant keywords and gauge their search volume. This helps in identifying potential broad keywords with significant search demand.
  2. Include negative keywords: Incorporate negative keywords to prevent your ads from being triggered by irrelevant search queries. Review the search query report regularly and add negative keywords to refine targeting and improve campaign performance.
  3. Keep an eye on search term report: Regularly monitor the search term report to identify new search queries triggering your ads. This will help identify valuable keywords to add to your campaign and optimize keyword performance.


  1. Avoid using broad match for branded and high intent keywords: Brand-related and high-intent keywords should generally be targeted using more specific match types like exact or phrase match. This ensures better control over ad relevance and reduces the risk of irrelevant clicks.
  2. Use broad match for generic keywords: Broad match is well-suited for generic keywords where there is a larger scope of interpretation. It allows for a wider reach and can help discover new, relevant searches.

Bidding Strategy

  1. Set a low initial bid: Start with a conservative bid to test the performance of your keywords. Gradually increase as you gain insights and gather data about their effectiveness.
  2. Use automated smart bidding strategies: Consider using automated bidding strategies, such as target CPA or target ROAS, to optimize your bids based on predefined goals. These strategies leverage machine learning to adjust bids in real time for better campaign performance.
  3. Analyze and adjust bidding regularly: Continuously monitor the performance of your keywords and adjust bids accordingly. Analyze metrics like impressions, clicks, conversions, and cost per acquisition (CPA) to make data-driven decisions.

Examples of Successful Broad Match Search Ad Campaigns

Case study 1

  1. Campaign goal and objective: Increase website traffic and generate leads for a local home cleaning service.
  2. Campaign setup: Utilized broad matches related to home cleaning services, set a low initial bid, targeted specific geographic areas, and incorporated negative keywords to exclude irrelevant search queries.
  3. Results: The campaign successfully generated a 30% increase in website traffic and a 15% boost in leads compared to previous campaigns.

Case study 2

  1. Campaign goal and objective: Raise brand awareness and drive online sales for a clothing retailer.
  2. Campaign setup: Utilized broad match keywords related to fashion and clothing, implemented an automated bidding strategy based on target ROAS, and targeted a broad audience to maximize reach.
  3. Results: The campaign achieved a 50% increase in brand impressions, a 20% growth in online sales, and a positive return on ad spend (ROAS) of 3.5.

Common Mistakes to Avoid Wasting Money

A. Not using negative keywords: Failing to include negative keywords can result in irrelevant clicks, wasted ad spend, and reduced campaign performance. Regularly review the search term report and add negative keywords to refine targeting.

B. Not monitoring the search term report: Neglecting to analyze the search query report can prevent you from identifying new keywords, refining your targeting, and optimizing campaign performance. Regularly review the report to uncover valuable insights.

C. Overbidding: Setting excessively high bids for broad match keywords can lead to inefficient spending. Start with conservative bids, monitor performance, and adjust based on actual data and insights.

D. Not analyzing performance data regularly: Failing to analyze campaign performance data regularly can hinder your ability to optimize your ads effectively. Monitor key metrics, identify trends, and make data-driven adjustments to maximize your campaign’s effectiveness.

Final thoughts

Broad match keywords can be a valuable tool in expanding your ad reach and discovering new search terms. However, it is crucial to employ best practices, continuously monitor performance, and make data-driven adjustments to ensure optimal campaign performance.

By following these guidelines and avoiding common pitfalls, advertisers can effectively leverage the power of broad match to enhance their Google Ads campaigns.

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