How to Choose a Keyword Match Type on Amazon

When you create an ad campaign on Amazon and entering keywords, you’re prompted to choose the keyword match types without knowing what they are or what they do. Don’t blindly pick a keyword match type on Amazon. We got a guide for you. 

In this video, Brett explains everything you need to know about keywords, Broad, Phrase, and Exact matches. 

What Is A Keyword? 

A keyword is an idea or a topic you want to rank for, or in Amazon’s case, the product you want to rank for.

Example: Say you want to rank your ad for the keyword “climbing shoes.” There are many things a customer can type in to get there, and you have no idea what search terms they’re gonna use to find your product. The search terms could be “red climbing shoe size 10,” “Black Diamond shoes,” or even “kid’s climbing harness.” 

How does this relate to Amazon?

In Seller Central you bid on keywords to try to rank your ads for them. Amazon sellers should perform keyword research, keyword optimization, and keyword match types. 

A screenshot inside Seller Central of what it looks like when you choose a keyword match type

Broad Match

Broad Match is the least specific and generally the cheapest match Amazon keyword match type.

Setting your match type to broad means you’ll show up for all kinds of things related to your keyword you’re bidding on. This can mean synonyms, spellings, and variations of the keyword. Don’t worry, though. Amazon’s algorithm won’t let you appear for searches completely unrelated to your product. If you’re trying to rank for “climbing shoes,” you won’t appear for “dinosaur costumes.” You could however appear for “climbing harness” or “ice climber’s pick,” since Broad Match will use a wide range of possibilities that could stem off the keyword “climbing shoes.”

Phrase Match

Phrase Matches on Amazon are more specific than Broad Match. Setting your keyword to Phrase Match will allow you to rank for search term phrases the keyword you’re bidding on is in.

Example: If you’re bidding for the keyword climbing shoes, you can appear for “red climbing shoes,” or even “big and stylish climbing shoes I can also hike in.”

Exact Match

Exact Match is the most expensive because it’s the most competitive. Exact Match will allow you to rank for the exact keyword you’re bidding on.

Example: Back to the “climbing shoes” example. You will only appear for the words “climbing shoes,” which is a very competitive keyword because everyone wants to rank for it. If you set your match type to exact you will have to bid higher, and have a great ad grade to ensure you rank exactly for that keyword.

Here’s more on ad grade and rank:

Ad Badger's infographic explaining Amazon's ad rank formula

Extra Tip: At Ad Badger, we suggest the Research, Peel, Stick, and Block Method (RPSB) to get started bidding effectively on keywords. 

It works like this:

1. Start an automatic campaign for keyword research. Amazon will suggest search terms related to your product. Let the auto campaign run until you earn some conversions.

2. Peel search terms with conversions from your auto campaign. Even terms with one conversion are valuable. 

3. Stick them into a new manual campaign and set the keyword match type to “Exact.” You know these terms will earn you conversions so you want to bid on them and add them to your “Winners Circle.”

4. Block terms that don’t receive conversions by turning them into Negative Exact Matches. 

More in the video below:

Here is the best way to perform keyword research when you’re starting out with Amazon PPC. 

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