Broad Match Modifier To Phase Out

February 22, 2021

In his latest episode of the Pest Control Internet Marketing podcast, Andy responds to his listener who asked what the Google Ads budget should be.

Google Ads is essentially a bidding war. So if you’re in a low population area, you have very little competition, then you can pretty much get away with a fairly low budget, e.g. $500 or $1,000 or $1,500.

However, if you’re in a large metropolitan area, you have a lot of competition and your competition is spending a lot on ads. And even more importantly, your competition is spending a lot on their max cost per click. Then you have to pay to play.

Google is going to give them a higher rank than yours because they’re paying more. So there could be spending even $15,000 or $20,000 a month.

It all depends on the strategy that you’re implementing. If you’re going after targeted keywords and being very specific, very few people search that way.

For example, if somebody typed in “bedbugs”, are they looking for bedbugs services or they’re looking for pictures of bedbugs for a project. We don’t really know. Are you going to spend a lot of money on that? Are you willing to lose money on those potential bad clicks for the good clicks?

Depending on what strategy you implement, that really affects your budget as well. Budget is one of those things that you just want to go in with something that you’re comfortable with, look at the data, and then make changes accordingly.

Google is phasing out its broad match modifier as a keyword match type in Google Ads.

If you are running Google ads, you probably received a message about broad match modifiers. Google is officially phasing into this new keyword strategy on February 18th, 2021.

Let’s first make sure we understand what broad match modifier is currently.

Andy did an episode about broad match modifiers and keyword match types in general. If you want to refresh, you may listen to it here.

Broad match modifiers are broad keywords where you’re able to add a modifier. A modifier, the Syntex is essentially a plus sign in front of that word. For example, if you had +pest +control, and then near me, the word “pest” and the word “control” has to be in the search term. But near me could be sort of a variant of that. It could be something like “around me” or “nearby” but the word “pest” and the word “control” had to be in there.

With broad match modifiers, any keywords before or after, or even in between, is fair game. Using the same example, +pest +control near me, somebody could type in “I’m looking for pest control services around this zip code” or “I’m looking for someone to control my pest problem”. You can still show up in both cases. It’s good because you were able to have a tight leash on Google, but not too tight.

Now, Google is saying that broad match modifier is going to be transitioning to phrase match. And then making some changes with phrase match as well. So, let’s first understand what phrase match was before this change. Phrase match, the syntax of everything’s in quotations.

If it’s “pest control near me”, it basically had to be pest control near me in that order. Nothing in between, with some close variants but anything before or after is fair game.

Google is now saying that there’ll be no more broad match modifier. The plus sign is not going to be relevant anymore. Phrase match is going to be updated to act like broad match modifier. Before, “pest control near me” phrase match means anything before and after is fair game. Now, anything in between is also fair game. It seems like Google’s been giving a lot of lacks in terms of which keywords are the modifier and which ones not.

What should you do now?

You should NOT go back and change all your keywords. Google is going to respect the broad match modifier keywords that you already have. They’re going to act as phrase match. You don’t need to change anything there because if you change it, you’re going to lose all your data before.

Anything moving forward, any keywords you add now, campaigns that you start, and ad groups that you start, be sure to keep them as phrase match and not broad match modifier.

If you’d like to listen to the full PCIM podcast episode, you can find it here.

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