What is query mapping?

Google Ads provides a few key options to control where, when, and on which keywords your ads will show. This allows users to have a lot of control (if they choose) over where their money is spent.

Query mapping is the practice of analyzing the search queries where your ads show up. Analyzing whether you are bidding on the right keywords and if the match type also makes sense for your long term business goals.

We consider query mapping a “production task” because it is an exercise that is expected to be done on a weekly and monthly basis. This ensures that as the market continues to match the proper queries with your keyword selection, over time your efficiency and effectiveness will improve.

If done properly and often an account could see significant cost per acquisition improvements.

Where to start query mapping

  1. Begin by identifying which keywords drive the most traffic and receive the most impressions. These tend to be broad match and broad match modified keywords.
  2. Select the keywords in bulk using the checkbox in the google ads interface.
  3. Once these are selected, the option bar will show options to analyze key information such as search terms, auction insights, etc
  4. In order to analyze the search queries, select the “search terms” report
query mapping report in google ads
Search Terms Report Google Ads

Once this is selected you can begin to analyze the queries that show for the following keyword selection.

What to look for in the search terms

The key task during the query mapping exercise is to select terms that are irrelevant to the business objectives. These are keywords that are likely not going to convert because the user experience is not optimal.

The simple way to test this is ask yourself a simple question.

“If I searched this query and landed on this experience would I take the desired action?”

If the answer is no, you will most likely have to add this keyword as a negative. It is also important to identify if the landing experience needs more additional content to make the user experience consistent with the upper funnel intent.

adding negative keywords in google ads
Adding negative keywords in google ads

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