Match Types For PPC Keywords

PPC is one of the best ways to consistently increase your firm’s caseload. While it does take a fair amount of cost and work on your end, digital search is rapidly becoming the #1 way consumers find legal help.

If you’re familiar with PPC campaigns, you’ve likely already done keyword research or already bid on various keywords related to your area of law. But have you considered the three major match types for your keywords? A keyword’s match type can make a big difference in when your ad is served and the volume your campaign receives.

Exact Match

Exact match is arguably the most common match type PPC specialists use in their campaigns. An exact match keyword will only be displayed when a user searches your exact keyword. This means that if you’re bidding on the keyword “Social Security” and someone searches “Social Security disability,” your ad will not be served.

Exact match is great because it yields a very specific audience and the traffic from exact match will be more likely to convert well for your website because you can choose exactly what search you want to serve your ads for. The issues with exact match? Keywords are typically much more expensive because they’re higher quality. You’ll also have less search volume for exact-match keywords.

Phrase Match

Phrase match is similar to exact match in the fact that they keyword you’re bidding on must be in a user’s search, but the difference here is that there can be text surrounding your keyword. If your keyword is “Social Security,” the query “Social Security disability” could trigger your ad.

Phrase match increases your potential for traffic when compared to exact match, and phrase match keywords are often cheaper than exact match. The issue with phrase match comes in the fact that not all searches containing your keyword will be relevant for your firm. For example, if you’re bidding on “Social Security” but someone searches “where is my Social Security check?”, your ad may be served but this user clearly doesn’t need legal aid.

Broad Match

Broad match yields the most variety when it comes to search. When you have a broad match keyword, your ads may be served for any query that contains a single word included in your keyword in any order. Your entire keyword does not need to be in the user’s query for your ad to display. Here are some examples of queries that may trigger an ad bidding on the keyword “Social Security”:

  • Apply for social security
  • Security benefits
  • When does my social security end
  • SSDI social security
  • Social benefits disability
  • Job security SSD
  • John Smith social security lawyer phoenix AZ
  • Security deposit SSA

While Google does try to show your ad to relevant searches, a lot of low-quality traffic will come in when you bid on broad keywords. Adding negatives can help prevent a lot of lost ad dollars on your firm’s end.

Exact, Phrase, Or Broad: Which Is Best?

When it comes to the “best” match type for your firm, there is no right or wrong answer. There are pros and cons to all match types, but most businesses focus more on phrase and exact match to weed out irrelevant search terms. You will likely find that using a combination of all three will yield the most profitable results for your firm.

When starting your next campaign, consider bidding on the same keyword three times: one as a broad match keyword, one as phrase, and one as exact. This allows you to trim down your campaign over time as you see what’s generating clients and what’s simply bleeding money.