Understanding how different keywords matches work is one of the most important elements of a successful search marketing campaign, according to one expert.

Josh Dreller of Search Engine Land said the "default option" in pay per click marketing services like AdWords is broad match. This will trigger an ad when any of the words in key phrase appear in a user’s query.

Ads could also show for variations, such as singular and plural forms or synonyms.

With phrase matches, an ad will display if all of the keywords are entered in the same order, or if the term is part of a longer query.

However, exact matches will only trigger an ad if the keyword is precisely the same as the user’s search and there are no other terms entered.

Finally, a negative match will hold back ads if a particular term, set by the marketer, is included in a search.

"Get too broad and you bring in the wrong kind of users. Get too narrowly focused and you fail to reach users who are searching for you but not using the terms in your account," Mr Dreller said.

He previously advised using modifiers, such as towns and cities, to expand the scope of keywords by creating less competitive, niche terms.

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