View the search terms report

Use the search terms report to see how your ads performed when triggered by actual searches within the Search Network. Identify new search terms with high potential, or see how closely actual searches are related to your selected keywords. This article describes how to view the search terms report. For more information about the report, jump to About the search terms report.

View your search terms report

  1. Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  2. Click All Campaigns in the navigation pane on the left, then click Keywords in the page menu.
  3. Click Search terms at the top of the page.
  4. You'll see data on which search terms a significant number of people have used and triggered impressions and clicks.
  5. You can alter your search terms report and modify which columns show by clicking the column icon Columns. This will allow you to add, remove or reorder the columns in your report.
  6. To download the data in a report, click the three-dot icon Three-dot icon.pngand select Download.

Starting September 2020, the search terms report only includes terms that a significant number of users searched for, even if a term received a click. You may now see fewer terms in your report.


Understanding your search terms data

Understanding the "Keyword" column

The "Keyword" column tells you which one of your keywords matched someone’s search term and triggered your ad. This information can help you see your keywords “in action” by showing you how they are matching to actual searches. 

You can use the data in the "Keyword" column to improve your keyword list. For example, let’s say that you sell tulips. When you look at your search terms report, you see that your broad match keyword flowers triggers your ad to show when people search for red roses and purple orchids – flowers that you don’t sell. So, you decide to refine your keyword list to focus on terms and phrases that are more specific to the products that you do offer: tulips.

The 'Keyword' column doesn't show by default. In the previous AdWords experience, turn on the 'Keyword' column by clicking the Columns drop-down menu and choosing 'Modify columns'. In the 'Select metrics' section, click on Attributes. Then click the Add link next to 'Keyword' and click Apply. In the new Google Ads experience, turn on the “Keyword” column by clicking the column icon Columns, then clicking Attributes. Tick the box beside 'Keyword', then click Apply.

Understanding the 'Match type' column

The "Match type" column in your search terms report tells you how closely the search terms that triggered your ads on Google are related to the actual keywords in your account. By seeing which match types are working well for which keywords and searches, you can refine match types for all your keywords, and therefore hone in better on the right customers.


The performance metrics on the search terms report may differ from the data in your product groups, since it reports traffic for queries that meet Google’s privacy thresholds.

Tip: Modify your report

You can modify your report to see the list of search terms that triggered your ad for your entire account, or specific campaigns or ad groups. In the previous AdWords experience, this feature is accessed by clicking the Dimensions tab, then clicking View and selecting 'Search terms' from the drop-down menu. In the new Google Ads experience, this feature is accessed by clicking the reporting icon ic_assessment_grey600_1x_web_24dp.png, then selecting Predefined reports from the drop-down menu. Note that while the same information for individual keywords is available when viewing the search terms report this way, you can’t add keywords or negative keywords directly from the report.

Tip: Search terms on search partners

In addition to search results pages, your ads on our search partners may also appear on site directory pages, or other pages related to a person's search. The search terms in these instances may appear longer than normal or may be formatted differently, depending on the structure of a particular site or page.

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