Five Questions About Keywords – ysm Team

In which we answer queries from our recent webinars

Every month, we get great questions in our ongoing series of advertiser webinars. Even if you’ve never had a chance to attend one of these sessions, this info is too good to keep to ourselves. With this post about keywords we continue to share those questions and their answers with you.

Q: Is there a limit to the number of keywords you can have?

A: Advertisers can have as many as 1,000 ad groups per campaign, and 1,000 keywords and 20 ads per ad group. Our user interface allows you to add up to 500 keywords at a time. Keep in mind that while these are the maximum number of components you can have, you may want to consider the effort required to manage and track a large amount of keywords in each of your ad groups. As a general best practice, you may want to consider having only 20 keywords per ad group.

Q: Is there a tool I can use to find relevant keywords?

A: Your account offers several robust keyword generation tools. Just follow these steps:

  1. Click the “Campaigns” tab.
  2. Select a campaign.
  3. Select an ad group.
  4. Click the blue “+ Add Keywords” drop-down menu (next to the “Ads” tab).
  5. Choose one of the three options and follow the instructions to generate or add new keywords to this ad group.

Your three methods to add keywords include:

  1. “Quick Add,” which lets you simply type in keywords when you already know exactly which ones you want to add.
  2. “Choose from List,” where our system makes keyword selections that are related to current ads and keywords in the ad group—you just check the boxes next to the ones you want to add.
  3. “Research Keywords,” where you enter words or phrases that describe the products or services on your website and our system offers keyword selections. You can also enter your site’s URL and our system will “crawl” the page and offer keyword suggestions.

Q: How should I organize my keywords in ad groups?

A: There are many different ways to organize keywords, but these three best practices can get you started:

  • Make sure all keywords in an ad group are very closely related to one another. The “tighter” the ad group is, the more likely you are to write ads that relate to all of your keywords.
  • Don’t put the same keywords in multiple ad groups, because they will compete against themselves. Two exceptions to this practice are using the same keywords in both geo-targeted and non-geo-targeted campaigns, or using the same keyword for different seasonal campaigns. For example, you can use the keyword “gift baskets” for both a Valentine’s Day campaign and a Mother’s Day campaign.
  • Keep what’s working! Remove, or just move, low performers so they don’t negatively impact your ad quality and you don’t waste too much time monitoring them.

Q: Does the order of keywords matter? What about abbreviations, plurals and misspellings?

A: The order in which your keywords are added to you account does not matter. We look at plural, singular, and common misspellings as if they are the same term.

Q: How can I track the performance of my keywords?

A: The keyword performance report is available at the ad group level. Remember that historical information will not transfer to a new location when moving one keyword over to a new ad group or campaign.

— The Team

Organizing Ad Groups for Success – ysm Staff

Arrange your keywords and ads properly to help you achieve better results

This is advice taken from Yahoo!’s Smart Start guide, which is packed with helpful content to assist you in making your campaigns as effective as possible. Whether you’re an expert search marketer or just starting out, the tips from Yahoo!’s “Sharon Goodsense” offer practical search marketing insights. Download Smart Start.

You probably know by now that your account is made up of campaigns, which are made up of ad groups, which contain your keywords and ads. It’s kinda like those Russian nesting dolls. You can also think of ad groups as containers for your ads and keywords. The ads in a particular ad group can be displayed to prospective customers searching for or viewing content related to the keywords and/or ads in that same ad group.

While you can have up to 1,000 keywords and 20 ads in a single ad group, we suggest you start out with no more than 20 keywords—paired with two or more ads—and adjust from there.

The way you group your keywords and ads is critical
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes as they search the web. You know what it’s like if you type in a search term and see ads that don’t really match your search. It’s frustrating!

Mismatching ads and keywords can be as bad as leaving the house in plaid shorts and a Hawaiian shirt. It’s just not good for your image, or in this case, your ad’s appeal. If you want your ad to get clicked, you’ve got to pair similar keywords together with relevant ads.

If your ad doesn’t get many clicks, your quality index can be affected. High-quality ads are generally more relevant to searchers and therefore get clicked on more often. And the low-quality ads? Well, they are usually not as appealing or relevant to searchers, making them less likely to receive clicks.

Improve your ad quality by grouping related keywords
If you group your keywords the right way (by themes, such as product or service type, or special offers) and achieve high quality, you could receive a better rank in search results and/or a lower bid.

Putting only related ad groups makes it easier to:

  • Write ads that are more specific to your keywords, which can increase the number of clicks you receive.
  • Test different landing pages, to see which of your web pages leads to the most conversions or sales.
  • Eventually improve your ads’ quality, which could improve their rankings in search results.

Before you create any new campaigns, you should look over your existing campaign and make sure that the ad groups are structured in a way that will benefit your ads’ quality. You might need to move some keywords around, or create smaller ad groups with specific ads.

Good luck matching. You can save the plaid shorts and Hawaiian shirt for your next vacation—or costume party.

— The Smart Start Team