Negative Keywords in Local PPC Advertising

In early February, I noticed something a bit odd with Yahoo Panama and their local targeting feature. If I set up a geo-targeted campaign for the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, the ad coverage seems to appear not only across the Twin Cities, but in many areas across Minnesota.

Yahoo’s Twin Cities Ad Region

If you’re an upper-end personal injury attorney, it’s certainly worth it to have an ad show somewhere like St. Cloud, Brainerd, Owatonna, or Willmar. It might easily be worth the case if you travel to these prospective clients. If you’re like many Twin Cites business who depend on more local traffic, having your ads shown in out-state areas aren’t necessarily bringing qualified traffic, and it’s costing you money.

If you want certain city search queries to not appear, Google makes it simple. With Yahoo, it’s a little tricky. Here are some tips on how to help ensure unwanted city searches don’t appear in your geo-targeted ads.

In Yahoo, just log into your Panama campaign and go to an Ad Groups page. In the upper right corner, click on “Ad Group Settings”.

Ad Group Settings

From there, click on “tactic settings” (right hand side of the page).

Tactic Settings

You then get an “excluded words” tab showing. You might have to click the “show” icon to implement the keywords.

Excluded Words

If you only want your ads showing in the Twin Cities area, you can then add these negative (excluded) keywords such as St. Cloud, Willmar, Brainerd, and any other cities in the respective map you don’t want your ads shown.

Keep in mind, this won’t deter someone in these areas from finding your ad when they type in your keywords. This will just omit ads when users type in the respective cities you added to your negative keywords when they do a search. Nonetheless, it can certainly reduce unwanted clicks from your local PPC ads.

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One Response to Negative Keywords in Local PPC Advertising

  1. […] the deets but you get the picture. I remember a couple years ago posting about Minneapolis area ads being shown close to Bemidji and how to add cities to your negative keywords list. Bemidji’s sorta’ a long way from […]

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