“Close variant” keyword matching to become default by end September can increase clicks by 7% on average
Importance: [rating=4] (If you’re not already using this feature)
Recommended link: AdWords official announcement
Context for the change to match types
The Match types advertisers use in AdWords are important since they control whether relevant ads are displayed to searchers based on the keywords they type. This in turn affects the clickthrough rates, Quality Score and the ROI you get on your campaigns.
Here’s a reminder of the main match types from iProspect:
What is the change?
In their announcement, Google explain that starting in late September, they’re applying close variant keyword matching to all exact and phrase match keywords. Previously it was possible to opt-out of these.
Close keyword variations include Close variations include misspellings, singular and plural forms, acronyms, stemmings (such as floor and flooring), abbreviations, and accents.
Google gives this example:
"Whether it’s “kid scooters”, “kid’s scooter”, or “kids scooters”, people interested in buying a scooter for their child want to see the most relevant ads despite slight variations in their search query”.
Implications for Marketers
Whether this is relevant to you as an AdWords advertiser and whether you need to discuss with your agency or search specialists depends on whether you have opted out of using close keyword variations previously.
Google estimates that this technique drives an average of 7% more exact and phrase match clicks with comparable clickthrough and conversion rates, so if you’re not using it already it’s a technique we thought worth alerting readers about.
Google also mention a new keyword matching whitepaper which could be worth downloading if you’re not fully up-to-speed on keyword matching.