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February 15, 2021

Google Ads Broad Match Modifier (BMM) Is On Its Way Out & How Phrase Match Will Change

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Google has always been one step ahead when it comes to making self-serve online advertising easy, effective, and efficient. Right from the launch of Google Ads (Adwords back then) on October 23, 2000, internet marketers have seen the advertising platform undergo many changes to fit the user’s latest needs.


So it comes as no surprise that Google has announced a number of feature changes and addons since the new year, of which the most talked about one pertains to phrase match and broad match modifiers in the keyword planner.


On February 4th, 2021, Google announced that they are bringing the behaviors of broad match modifier (BMM) into phrase match and phase out support for BMM. This change is meant to simplify the keyword portfolio and help advertisers reach more relevant user searches, thereby improving the efficiency of the search ads. This gradual rollout will change the back end processing for keyword match types to show ads that are most relevant for a particular search.


Before we dive into more details on what to expect from this change, here is a recap on keyword modifiers-


Understanding keyword modifiers 


Keywords are pivotal to Google Ads. These are words or phrases that are used to match the ads with terms users search for on the search engine. To ensure that relevant ads are shown for every user search, keyword match types are used. The keyword match type determines how closely your chosen keyword needs to match with a user’s search query for your ad to be considered for the auction. 


Currently, there are 3 types of keyword match types-


Broad match

Using this will make your ad show up for searches that relate to your keyword. Generally, no notations are used to represent this. Eg: Keyword


Phrase match

Using phrase match will allow your ad to show up for queries that include the meaning of your chosen keyword. The notation used for inputting keywords is the double quotation marks. Eg: “Keyword”


Exact match

Exact match allows ads to appear only for those searches using the meaning as your keyword. The notation used for inputting keywords is the square brackets. Eg: [keyword]


So, what exactly are keyword modifiers?


Keyword modifiers are extra words that users use in their search query to get the most relevant results. So by using the keyword modifiers, you can control your ad visibility for specific or broad search terms.


Broad match modifiers


Digital marketers use broad match modifiers so that ads may show for all searches that are related to your keyword. This is usually preferred when you want to reach a wider audience and attract more visitors to your website without taking too much time on building keyword lists.


For instance, imagine that you are running an ad for your easy vegan recipes website with a broad match modifier. In that case, your ad may appear for queries like “easy cooking recipes”, “lockdown cooking recipes” or “healthy cooking recipes”.


This match type works well with Smart Bidding where the system sets a bid for each auction of each query by bidding up or down based on how well the query is likely to perform.


Phase match modifiers


Including phase match modifiers in your keyword list will make your ads show up on searches that include the meaning of your keyword. A phrase match is more targeted than a broad match but still less flexible than an exact match. Going by our previous example, the ad for your easy vegan recipes will now appear for searches like “French vegan recipes”, “cooking vegan recipes” or “easy vegan recipes to make at home”.


Exact match modifiers


As the name suggests, ads appear only for queries that have the exact meaning or intent of your chosen keyword. So if you optimize your ad’s keyword list with an exact match modifier for the above example, your website’s ad will appear for searches like “easy vegan recipes ”, “vegan recipes” or “easy recipes for vegans”.


What happens now?


With the new change in keyword modifiers, Google expects the updated phrase match to have the best of both match types- the expanded reach offered by broad match modifier and the increased control offered by phrase match. Starting February 18th, Google is expected to roll out the updated phrase match for all of its first wave languages (English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, and Russian).


The change is likely to affect all other Google Ads languages by July 2021, after which BMM will be completely phased out. From then on, advertisers will be prevented from creating new BMM keywords as the updated phrase match will include its features. This update, however, does not impact negative keyword match types.


Google explained the change with the help of the following example-


Currently, if an advertiser is using the broad match modifier for the keywords +moving +services +NYC +to +Boston, it may show up for the search query “moving services NYC to Boston” as well as “moving services Boston to NYC”. If the advertiser is based in NYC, the second query is irrelevant for them as the searcher is moving in the opposite direction. With the updated phrase match, the order of the words is important, which means that the ads will not be shown for user queries in the opposite direction.


Google Ads Agency | Talir Group

Source: Google Ads Help


With this change, there is a possibility that advertisers may see an increase in the traffic volume for phrase match keywords, while a decrease may be noted for BMM keywords, especially those using modifiers on some words. To avoid losing your traffic, Google recommends the following steps-


  • Add additional phrase match keywords relevant to your business
  • Pair smart bidding strategy with broad match keywords
  • Check out the “Add Keywords” recommendations and explore potential keywords to help recover traffic volume
  • Regularly monitor your keywords’ performance over time and see which search queries have decreased traffic volume. Add new phrase match keywords to bridge the gap where ever necessary.


What to expect?


Over the years, Google has offered or taken away the control offered by different match types to make the whole process better automated. Such changes have always helped digital marketing advertisers and marketers to save time managing keywords. However, expect some calibration in your ad campaigns to suit the change as traffic may fluctuate as these changes roll out. By closely monitoring performance metrics, necessary changes can be made to take ongoing campaigns forward by creating new keywords in the updated phrase match.


If you have queries regarding this change or other concerns regarding your ad’s performance, reach out to our digital marketing agency in Dubai. Our Google Ads managers can analyze your ongoing campaigns and optimize them to adapt to the latest changes or set up new campaigns to ensure the continuity of your marketing efforts. Call our digital agency today to learn more.

More Insights

January 27, 2021

Why You Should Hire A Google Ads Agency in 2021

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2021 is a year full of hope. With nations standing strong against the Covid-19 pandemic and rolling out vaccines, things have started to look up. Market places are already open and picking pace, with more and more brands taking their business online. 


Undoubtedly 2020 was a year of reinvention for every business out there. Even when bigger brands maintained a favourable online presence, SMEs used to hold back on their digital marketing needs, worried about cost and manpower requirements. However, as more and more people are getting online to shop and avail various services, it’s high time that every brand should think of strengthening their online presence.


In reality, online digital marketing is the cheapest per impression compared to all other mediums of advertising. It is also more efficient. As digital information can be accessed using the internet from any part of the world at any time, advertising online can reach a larger audience with less effort. So by relying on Google Ads, rest assured that information about your brand’s product or service can reach millions without burning a hole in your pocket.


Why do you need Google Ads?


You might be wondering what’s all the deal about Google Ads. Is it a necessity for your business to grow online? Let’s find out-


Google Ads is a pay per click (PPC) advertising service from Google, to advertise on its search engine. As the name suggests, the advertiser pays a fee when and only when their ad is clicked on by a user. If done right, Google Ads not only gets more people to visit your website but also targets the right audience.


Statistics show that Google receives nearly five billion searches every day. It is the one place where people go to get all their queries answered. An average user doesn’t differentiate between an advertisement and a regular search result as long as the result answers their question or provides a solution for their issue. Imagine if a person looking for a product or service you provide finds your website when they are specifically searching for it. Talk about red hot leads!


Sponsored ads also appear on websites that are part of the Google display network. Even while users mindlessly scroll browse through websites, your ads can appear and catch the eye of a potential customer.


In short, Google Ads is one of the strongest marketing tools for advertising on the internet. By including Google Ads to your digital marketing strategy, you could well be on your way to running a very busy business this year.


When to hire a Google Ads Agency?


We have seen that most small business owners do multiple roles every day. Visualizing new products/services, checking daily operations, going through expense sheets, setting up new marketing activities and a hundred other things may be on your daily to-do list. Trying to manage a Google Ads campaign in between all these will not only tiring but will not be as effective as you want it to be.


While Google Ads are accessible to everyone with a Google account, running an ad campaign takes a lot of effort. An ad campaign must be carefully planned and executed if you want to get desirable results while staying within your budget. A Google Ads manager is an expert who can assist you in this respect. An ads manager will not only set up your advertising campaign according to the specifics but will also regularly review the results and optimize it accordingly. This includes managing your cost per click (CPC), adding new keywords/negative keywords, analysing the performance of the ads, testing and updating ad copies and many other tasks that will ensure the best result from your campaign.


If you are looking for reasons to hire a Google Ads agency, we can give you six of them. Here is why you should consider hiring an ad agency-


1. Google Ads agencies know their tools

Ad agencies have experts who know Google Ads like the back of their hand. When it comes to effective ad management, it is necessary to know the many policies in place between multiple ad platforms. Ad managers have access to the latest rules and updates in Google Ads, which allows them to fine-tune campaigns to get the desired result. Agencies also utilize internal management and tracking software that can continuously monitor and provide reports, making google campaign management an ongoing process.


Google ads agency


2. Ad agencies manage your account better

Google Ads management is not a one-man-show. Having a team working on your account ensures faster setup and gets your campaign running in no time. A dedicated account manager will regularly update you about the campaign results and provide a comprehensive report. With an expert team at your disposal, rest assured that your ads run better and give your desirable results.


3. Ad agencies provide better content and designs

The success of an ad campaign is not only dependent on the strategy and ads management but also on how well the ad creative or landing page is designed. People are naturally drawn to eye-catchy advertisements. Simple and readable content that talks exactly about what you offer, complemented with smart designs can incite some interest and invite users to take action. Ad agencies have design and content specialists who can bring a ‘wow’ factor to your ads with impactful content and aesthetics, making it highly effective.


4. Ad agencies have invaluable experience

Ad agencies like ours have worked with many clients, running numerous campaigns at a time. This helps the ad management team to gain invaluable experience and expertise in what they do. Having worked on thousands of campaigns, every team member will be able to provide insights that are extremely helpful in running a successful campaign. The team will be well equipped to push for risks and reach out to untapped markets. This ensures quality leads from a wider audience that can be easily converted to loyal customers.


5. Ad agencies target all sections of the sales funnel

The sales funnel describes a customer’s journey from finding a brand to being its loyal customer. Running ads online requires a good understanding of the sales funnel. Here is how it works-


Each section of the sales funnel requires different digital marketing strategies. For instance, the top of the funnel is wider- representing a wider audience who are not yet aware of your brand. When advertising to this audience, the focus is on providing information about the products and services you offer. In the middle, you are targeting people who are already interested in your brand but have not converted. These are potential customers who are ready to buy from you with the right encouragement. So the ads must be tuned to inform about price drops and special discounts which pushes them to make a purchase. At the bottom of the funnel, you have your loyal customers. Here the ads should be more specific, providing details of new products and loyalty programs customers can avail.


digital marketing agency


As each section requires different kinds of advertising, with varied designs and content curated to target the right people, it requires a lot of expertise. Working with an ad management agency will help you navigate the nuances in advertising, making your campaigns highly effective.


6. Ad agencies let you focus on your business

What many people don’t know is that advertising is a business in itself. Add management agencies have account managers, creative directors, designers, developers and sales teams collaborating and working together at every point to run a successful ad campaign. By hiring a Google Ads agency to manage your ad campaigns, you can leave the specifics of digital marketing to them and focus on running your business.


Benefit from PPC Management


Hiring a PPC management agency to run your digital marketing campaigns is a great way to power up your business in 2021. Google Ads, Facebook and Instagram marketing all require expert insights and full-time commitment to run successful campaigns. Your ad campaigns are completely customizable depending upon your budget. So, take a break from your DIY marketing tactics and reach out to our specialists today for PPC management and other digital marketing services.