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Navigating Google Ads Keyword Match Type Updates

google match type updates

Navigating Google Ads Keyword Match Type Updates: Adapting Strategies for Success

Google Ads has long been a cornerstone of digital advertising, offering businesses a powerful platform to reach their target audience. One of the key elements of a successful Google Ads campaign is keyword targeting, which helps advertisers connect with users actively searching for relevant products or services. Over the years, Google has introduced several updates to its keyword match types, aiming to provide advertisers with more control and flexibility. In this blog post, we’ll explore the latest Google Ads keyword match type updates and discuss how advertisers can adapt their strategies to leverage these changes effectively.

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Understanding Keyword Match Types:

Before diving into the recent updates, let’s briefly review the different keyword match types available in Google Ads:

  1. Broad Match: Ads may show for searches that include misspellings, synonyms, related searches, and other relevant variations.

  2. Broad Match Modifier (BMM): Allows advertisers to specify certain keywords that must be present in the user’s search query, while still allowing for variations.

  3. Phrase Match: Ads may show for searches that include the exact keyword phrase or close variations of it, with additional words before or after the phrase.

  4. Exact Match: Ads only show for searches that exactly match the keyword or close variations of it, without additional words before or after.

  5. Negative Match: Prevents ads from showing for searches that include specific keywords or phrases.

Recent Updates to Keyword Match Types:

In recent years, Google has made several significant updates to its keyword match types, aiming to improve ad relevance, targeting precision, and overall campaign performance. Some of the notable updates include:

  1. Broad Match Modifier Phase-Out: In February 2021, Google announced plans to phase out the Broad Match Modifier (BMM) match type and transition existing BMM keywords to Phrase Match. This change aimed to simplify keyword management and provide advertisers with more control over their campaigns.

  2. Phrase Match Expansion: As part of the BMM phase-out, Google expanded the functionality of Phrase Match to include additional matching capabilities. Phrase Match now allows ads to show for searches that include the exact keyword phrase or close variations, along with additional words before or after the phrase.

  3. Improved Close Variants Matching: Google has enhanced its close variants matching algorithm to include more relevant variations of exact match keywords. This update aims to capture relevant user intent while maintaining the precision and control of exact match targeting.

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Adapting Strategies for Success:

With these updates in mind, advertisers need to adapt their Google Ads strategies to leverage the changes effectively. Here are some key strategies to consider:

  1. Review and Refine Keyword Lists: Take the time to review your existing keyword lists and identify any Broad Match Modifier keywords that need to be transitioned to Phrase Match. Refine your keyword lists to ensure they align with your campaign goals and target audience.

  2. Monitor Performance Closely: Keep a close eye on the performance of your campaigns, especially after implementing any changes to keyword match types. Monitor key metrics such as click-through rate (CTR), conversion rate, and return on ad spend (ROAS) to gauge the effectiveness of your ads.

  3. Leverage Negative Keywords: Use negative keywords strategically to filter out irrelevant search queries and improve ad targeting. Regularly update your negative keyword lists based on search term reports and performance data to minimize wasted ad spend.

  4. Test and Iterate: Don’t be afraid to experiment with different keyword match types and bidding strategies to find what works best for your campaigns. A/B test different variations, ad copy, and landing pages to identify the most effective combinations for driving results.

  5. Stay Informed: Stay up-to-date on the latest Google Ads updates and industry trends to ensure your campaigns remain competitive. Follow Google’s official announcements, participate in online forums and communities, and seek advice from industry experts to stay informed and ahead of the curve.


Google Ads keyword match type updates present both challenges and opportunities for advertisers. By understanding the latest changes, adapting strategies accordingly, and staying agile in your approach, you can continue to drive successful results and maximize the effectiveness of your Google Ads campaigns. Embrace the evolving landscape of digital advertising, experiment with new tactics, and leverage the power of Google Ads to connect with your target audience and achieve your business objectives.