What Are Negative Keywords on Amazon?


Negative keywords can be a huge asset when utilized in the right way. When used appropriately they can help direct the right kind of traffic to your page and make it easier to sell your products. Below you’ll find a crash course that’ll teach you what you need to know about negative keywords. Read on and learn how to use them to bring in more relevant traffic, make more conversions, and gain a better understanding of your marketing campaign’s success.


What They Are

The proper use of keywords can make a world of difference to your marketing campaign. In addition to identifying the keywords you want to have involved, you need to recognize the keywords that should be left out. Negative keywords are the words and phrases that might erroneously lead to your page.


People who are interested in your products should be able to find them easily. This leads to more conversions, so both sides end up happy. If people keep landing on your page when they’re really searching for something else, then you have to filter out the keywords that don’t quite fit.


If you’ve ever searched for a product only to find that the results show something completely different that still matches your description, you would have benefitted from negative keywords. From the seller’s perspective, including these negative keywords helps guide customers towards the products they’re actually trying to find, which are those that the business is trying to sell.


For example, imagine you own a skateboarding company. If you’re running a sale on skateboarding pads, you might get traffic from people who search for snowboarding pads. Since people who are looking for snowboarding pads are less likely to buy padding for skateboarding instead, you can use “snowboarding pads” as a negative keyword.


Negative Keywords on Amazon


How They Help

Businesses can benefit greatly from the use of negative keywords. Search queries will be more accurate, and paid campaigns will be more efficient. Negative enable you to:

  • Refine Searches — If you keep being shown irrelevant products instead of what you’re really looking for, you could become frustrated or impatient. Frustrated customers are more likely to give up, which means you fail to make the sale. Negative keywords make it easier for customers to find what they’re looking for. This means less frustration, and the traffic that’s sent your way will be more relevant to your products. They make things less confusing for the consumer and more streamlined for the seller, so both sides win.

  • Enhance Paid Campaigns — Paid advertising helps you draw attention to your brand and put your products in front of more people. Its efficiency is dependent on how much money you put into the campaign and how many engagements or sales you make. By using negative keywords to ensure that only relevant search queries send people to your page, you can expect more conversions to be made. More conversions per click mean a more effective campaign and a better return on investment.


Considering Best SEO Practices

Keywords make up one of the biggest cornerstones of search engine optimization. Whether you’re identifying the terms you want to be associated with your products or the terms you want to be excluded, keep SEO best practices in mind. A solid understanding of SEO will also help you choose the best keywords.


Choosing and Using Your Negative Keywords

Recognizing the benefits of negative keywords is one thing, but being able to identify the best ones for your campaign is another. The right negative keywords can give you the boost you were looking for, but the wrong ones can end up taking away from your sales. There are different ways you can apply negative keywords, as well as different reasons to use them.


It takes a little bit of research, as well as some creativity, to decide which negative keywords to use. Any keywords or phrases that don’t adequately describe your product yet still bring customers to your page are a waste. Negative keywords essentially take you off the list so people aren’t erroneously sent your way when they’re looking for something that has nothing to do with your business.


Exact Match vs. Phrase Match vs. Broad Match

If you’re planning on using negative keywords, start by thinking about the type of match. Exact, phrase and broad matches all filter your results differently.


  • Exact — Choose exact match negative keywords if you want the most specific type of filtering. With exact match, a person must search for a specific keyword to find your ad campaign. Searches that are somewhat close to the keyword won’t come up.


  • Phrase — Phrase match is a little less particular than exact match. In this case, consumers must use a certain group of words to be directed to your page. This isn’t quite as specific the exact match function, but it’s not as general as broad match keywords.

  • Broad — The least specific type of negative keyword match is broad match. This includes exact keywords as well as synonyms, and the words don’t necessarily have to be in order. Broad negative keyword matches bring in the most general traffic.


"The right negative keywords can give you the boost  you were looking for, but the wrong ones can end up taking  away from your sales."  -Click to Tweet-

Campaign vs. Ad Group — You can apply your negative keywords on two levels, based on how widespread you want them to work. This lets you further customize your marketing campaign.


  • Campaign — If you want to apply your negative keywords to all of your advertisements, you’ll want to choose campaign. In this case, every advertisement you run will use the same keyword filter.


  • Ad Group — The ad group level allows you to decide which ads make use of the negative keywords you choose. Use this option if you want to optimize for different keywords with different advertisements.


Reviewing Your Analytics

You need to know if your negative keywords are working so you can tell if you picked the right ones. In order to do this, you’ll have to look at your analytics. If you’ve chosen the best negative keywords, you should be seeing results. Test out your negative keywords and make sure it’s as simple as possible to find your page.


Improving Your Ranking

The better your campaigns do, the higher up you’ll rank on Amazon’s bestseller list. A higher ranking means a better reputation, and your business might be more attractive to new customers because of this. Negative keywords help eliminate waste and improve the efficiency of your campaign. This improves your ranking, and the extra exposure you get from being higher up on the list can improve your ranking even further.


When Not to Use Negative Keywords

Negative keywords are helpful, but you don’t necessarily need to use them all the time. If you want as much traffic as possible and you’re not too concerned with where it comes from, then there’s no need to use negative keywords. At the same time, you might not need negative keywords if you sell broad products that aren’t confusing to describe.


Negative keywords are a great tool for optimizing your Amazon traffic and improving your rank. With that being said, the opposite is also true. A poor understanding and implementation of negative keywords can indeed have a negative effect on your listing and ad campaigns. But with the right strategy, they can be used to increase conversions, improve your rank and set you on the path to success within the Amazon marketplace.

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