An introduction to Google Phrase match – the expanded horizon of keywords

An introduction to Google Phrase match – the expanded horizon of keywords

An introduction to Google Phrase match – the expanded horizon of keywords

Keywords are not merely words anymore that users use when searching for some information. The scope of keywords has extended beyond the word itself as Google tries to find the intent behind searches. It means that the meaning of keywords acquires a lot of importance nowadays, explain the experts at the New York SEO company.  Keywords are important in all spheres of digital marketing, from SEO to PPC right from the beginning, but as SEO evolved, keywords too have gone through many changes.  

Phrase match has been an important aspect in PPC campaigns, but like keywords, the perception and approach have completely changed over the years.  Although the meaning of phrase match remains unchanged in spirit, its application had acquired a new dimension since February 2021 when some of the functionality of broad match modified keywords merged with phrase match. 

This article will provide insights into the new phrase match.

Keyword match types

Exact match, phrase match, and broad march were the categories of keyword match in the early days of PPC and SEO, with the first being the strictest and the last being the most relaxed norm. The match types are helpful for advertisers to specify their willingness to show ads for searches of wide-ranging similarities to their keywords. Advertisers need not focus on every kind of search term that users might choose for searching some product or service but can depend on broader match types that loosely relate to the keyword to display ads for those queries.

Close variants

 With the changing PPC landscape, Google introduced close variants that have done away with the easy-to-understand match types. Close variants overrule the match types that you use and change what your keywords are given wider options to the ad platform in matching keywords to search queries. 

Close variants equate with some defined ways that Google uses to change your keyword.  You might be looking at a single keyword, but Google can consider its hundred variants that remain invisible and act behind the scene to serve your ad.

The new phrase match

Ads displayed against searches can now consider some implied meaning of the keyword, while users' search terms can relate to a specific form of the meaning. The focus is now on the meaning of keywords and not on the keywords itself.  For phrase match, the meaning of the keyword is part of the query, although the query might contain additional text.

Google's perception of the same meaning

Phrase match uses machine learning to determine when the words or order of words impact the meaning, which might or might not change. Google can now understand the similarity or difference between the search queries 'buy chocolate' and 'buy milk chocolate.' 

To understand how well the phrase match works for you, Google provides reports identifying queries with a simple phrase match and a phrase match based on close variants. 

Advanced automation will help you analyze the semantic difference between the search term and keyword and identify the negative keywords when Google tries to stretch the meaning too far.