Broad Phrase or Match - The 3 Choices of the Google Keyword Tool
Before you use the Google Keyword Tool, make sure you understand the 3 match type options. The differences in traffic estimates are huge and if you don't choose properly, you could be setting yourself up to fail.
The Match Types allow you to see the traffic estimates for various keywords from different perspectives. If you are looking for very broad traffic estimates, or ideas, then you might want to use the broad match. If you are looking for very specific traffic estimates, then you should consider using the exact match. Let’s take a look at the different types of matches in more detail.
With the broad match selected, you will get very high traffic estimates. Broad match returns results for the phrase you are looking for, as well as related phrases. If you are looking at the search results, you can identify the broad results because they do not have any quotation or parentheses surrounding the keyword phrase.
Let’s take a look at an example. We’ll use the keyword phrase “mountain bike” as our example. When you type mountain bike into the Keyword Tool, you will see the results for broad search first. The broad search result is the one with no punctuation.
In our example, mountain bike shows under the broad match that approximately 550,000 people search for that phrase locally, and 1,830,000 people search for that phrase globally.
However, in broad match, that includes relevant phrases, such as “mountain bike shop,” “mountain bike parts,” and “downhill mountain biking.” With broad match you are getting search results for that phrase and many similar phrases. This type of search may be good for getting ideas and brainstorming but not the best for getting an accurate picture of how many visitors you could potentially get with that keyword.
When you select Phrase Match on the keyword tool, you will be given the search estimates for that exact phrase, but not exclusively. Phrase match always contains quotation marks around the keyword phrase. If you want to search for the phrase match you can type the keyword phrase with quotation marks or simply check the phrase match type in the left column of the Google Keyword Tool.
Using the same example as above, our results are a little bit different. The phrase “mountain bike” shows approximately 550,000 local search results and 1,220,000 for global search results. The local estimate stayed the same but the global result decreased by over 600,000. The reason for the decrease is that the results include variations, but only where the exact phrase is present. Variations of the phrase, such as “mountain biking,” or “mountain bikes” are not included.
Exact match can be identified by the brackets surrounding the keyword phrase. It returns search estimate results for that phrase exclusively. In other words, no variations, no relevant phrases, just the exact phrase. With “mountain bike” as the keyword phrase under exact match type, we get a much lower result. The results now indicate that 9,900 people search using that exact phrase locally and 60,500 people search using that exact phrase globally.
If you perform your keyword research using the broad match type, you will get very high numbers. But, don’t expect to get visitors close to those numbers. If you do, you will be very disappointed. The exact match will give you a better idea of what kind of traffic you could expect if you were in the top 3 search results for your keyword phrase.
Of course, people use the Google Keyword Tool for many different things. As long as you understand the different match types, you can use it for anything you want. If you want to brainstorm, use broad match. If you wan to get traffic estimates, use exact match. Either way, it’s a powerful tool that can help you make money online.
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