Heads Up: Google Ads is Making a Change to Keywords


Published: February 5, 2021 Author: Jason Holicky - Hometown Design Studio Inc.
Modified Broad Match

 Photo credit: prima91 - stock.adobe.com

Google has recently announced that they are phasing out broad match modified keywords for Google Ads users. This change will potentially affect how some of you approach your ad campaigns, so let’s take a look at what this means and how it might change your approach to Google Ads.

What is “Broad Match Modified Keywords?”

When matching keywords with searches, Google Ads has used three main types of keyword matches: exact, phrase, and broad. Exact match is just as it sounds: only an exact match for the keyword would be considered a match. Phrase match is more flexible and will show ads for searches that include the phrase in the correct word order.

Broad match will show the ad when the keyword is present anywhere in the search, along with close variants and synonyms of the keyword. Broad match modifiers were used when you want the keywords in a search to be exact or close variants. These words were designated by putting a plus sign in front of any required keywords.

Why is Google Making this Change?

Google has been making small changes to its main algorithm and Google Ads algorithms to help searchers get the results they want without having to be incredibly precise with their search terms. This change essentially reflects the move in that direction, and phrase matching will be modified to cover what broad match modified was used for. Google also says that word order will continue to be respected when it’s important to the meaning of the phrase.

In other words, Google has been refining the way keyword matches are made to be more closely aligned with what searchers are trying to find. As a result of these changes, they don’t need as many match types as the differences between them have become less meaningful over time.

What Does This Mean for You?

Essentially, Google is working to simplify their Ads platform while also steering advertisers away from worrying about specific keywords. Instead, they want to present a streamlined platform for advertisers to focus on persona-driven targeting and search themes rather than focusing on exact words.

If this change is still confusing, or you’re not sure how it will apply to your ad campaigns, we can help! We can look at your current ad campaigns and assess what is likely to change. We can also make recommendations to ensure you’re getting the most from your Google Ads to improve the return on your investment.

About the Author

Creative Director Jason co-founded Hometown Design Studio of New Lenox, IL in 2013. He spends his days guiding and consulting industrial clients and small businesses owners on their marketing strategy and projects. Jason enables everyone to be successful and grow their business by sharing his knowledge and experience.
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