Exact match: Definition

A keyword setting that allows your ad to show only when someone searches for your keyword or close variants of your keyword. Close variants may include:

  • Misspellings
  • Singular or plural forms
  • Stemmings (for example, floor and flooring)
  • Abbreviations
  • Accents
  • Reordered words with the same meaning (for example, [shoes mens] and [mens shoes])
  • Addition or removal of function words. Function words are prepositions (like in or to), conjunctions (like for or but), articles (like a or the), and other words that don’t impact the intent of a search. For example, [shoes for men] is a close variant of [men shoes] with the function word “for” removed.
  • Implied words (for example, if your exact match keyword is [daydream vr headset], your ads may show on searches for “daydream headset” since “vr” is implied)
  • Synonyms and paraphrases (for example, if your exact match keyword is [bathing suits], ads may also show on searches for “swimming suits”)
  • Same search intent (for example, if your exact match keyword is [images royalty free], ads may also show on searches for “free copyright images”)

Whether someone is searching for “running shoes” or “shoes for running,” what they want remains the same; they’re looking for running shoes. Close variants of exact match keywords help you connect with people who are looking for your business—despite slight variations in the way they search—and reduces the need to build out exhaustive keyword lists to reach these customers.

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