If you’ve ever conducted keyword research using Google Keyword research tool you’ll be familiar with the different terms Broad Match, Exact Match & Phrase- but what exactly do they mean?
Broad match lists all your search words in any order and includes words other people have used to conduct your search. As an example if you used the terms ‘Melbourne’, ‘Web’ and ‘Design’ as your keywords for research the total as of May 2013 will total 3,456,677,888. I find broad match useless most of the time unless you are searching for one-word terms. You can easily see if more people search for Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne but otherwise its too broad.
Phrase match contains all the words in the order you’ve requested but can include other words before and after as well.
An example might be: “great Melbourne web design” or “Melbourne web design agencies” when your keyword phase your researching is “Melbourne web design”.
Contains only the selected words in that exact order. Search totals will be a lot smaller as obviously far less people search for “Great melbourne web design agencies” than they do “Melbourne Web Design”. If you have found an exact match phrase that has low competition then you stand a good chance of being discovered if you aim for that phrase. That’s why really drilling down into the exact match keyword research can lead to the best results.
- Broad Match will often give you huge visitor numbers but for most businesses is fairly meaningless. For the most part in my research I always search using exact match initially and then move onto Phrase Match once I have discovered some keywords where my clients can compete.
- When you’re using the Google Keyword research tool make sure you login using your Google Gmail account as the results vary wildly between logging in and not logging in.
- If you’re a small business owner on a limited budget it might be best to ensure you select your country of research so you can concentrate on data that will send you targeted traffic.