Using these negative keywords will increase your conversions (some claim 20-30%) — not your traffic — but rather your traffic-quality.

The why and how of PPC keyword negatives

There are different types of users (that we usually do not want!): ones that are looking for bargains, non-impulsive buyers; looking to research, study, learn, etc.; and free-seekers.

The list

Alright, I’ve added a huge list of keywords to negate in your PPC campaigns:

about
act
act of
association
associations
book
books
career
careers
case studies
case study
class
classes
clearance
close out
close outs
closeout
closeouts
college
colleges
complaint
complaints
compliance
course
courses
definition
diagram
dumb
education
employment
example
examples
exposed
forum
free
guide
guides
hate
help
hiring
history
illegal
indictment
intern
interns
internship
internships
job
jobs
journal
journals
law
laws
legal
legislation
liquidation
loser
magazine
magazines
map
maps
metrics
news
odd lots
overstock
parts
price
prices
pricing
problem
problems
protest
recruiter
recruiting
regulation
regulations
remainder
remainders
research
resume
resumes
returns
review
reviews
salaries
salary
sample
samples
scam
school
schools
secret
statistics
stats
stupid
success stories
success story
suck
sucks
support
training
tutorial
tutorials
universities
university
warranty
what are
what is
white paper
white papers

Here are a couple of sites that helped me compile this list:

http://socialmediasystems.com/06/06/ppc-negative-keyword-list-what-about-googles-negative-keyword-tool/

http://www.komarketingassociates.com/blog/200-plus-negative-keywords-to-consider-for-b2b-ppc/

http://www.redflymarketing.com/blog/how-to-build-a-negative-keyword-list/

http://www.ppchero.com/2007/03/30/positives-of-the-negative-using-negative-keywords-to-enhance-your-campaign%E2%80%99s-performance/

PS: If you think of any others, I’ll add ‘em.  Additionally, if you want a landing page to go along with your PPC keywords, I just added a page for free landing pages.

Edit: As commented by Marc Kantoori (below), sometimes people looking for freebie offers can be helpful — so you may want to take out the word “free” in certain circumstances.

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6 thoughts on “The Monstrous List of PPC Negative Keywords

  1. You left out some important ones: support, help, forum
    And of course it also depends on which offer you are promoting. With some, the word ‘free’ can be very rewarding.

  2. We are currently running 100’s of negative keywords for our timesheet software advertising. Its worked great at reducing costs for the timesheet advertising. But I have heard of firms having 1000’s…

  3. @Martin: I know Yahoo Search Marketing only allows for a few hundred negative keywords; I wonder if they extend that for bigger clients.

  4. We currently run over 1000 in Google Adwords for each client we look after, often bespoke for each Adgroup – I wouldn’t call this a huge list but thanks for your work. Think you’re missing hundreds of sexual and swear words?!

  5. @dexcess: You are absolutely correct.

    I wouldn’t write the sexual and swear words on this blog because of the effect it would have on my SERPs (and perhaps even some ethical reasons too ;) ).

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