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Paid Media 7 min read

Your Must-Have Google Ads B2B Negative Keyword List

Sarah Harris photo

Written by Sarah Harris

Content Writer @ Galactic Fed

Carolyn Noel photo

Expert reviewed by Carolyn Noel

Communications Coordinator @ Galactic Fed

Published 03 Aug 2022

Google Ads is, without a doubt, the largest paid marketing platform in the world. In 2021 alone, Google generated over $209 billion in ad revenue. This figure represents 20 consecutive years of ad revenue increases. 

Source: Statista

There is no denying that Google Ads is one of the most effective ways to engage in paid advertising, especially in the business-to-business (B2B) sphere. If you want to connect with the largest possible audience, then you need to market on the world’s most popular search engine. 

When setting up your B2B Google Ads campaign, the majority of your focus should be on the keywords that you want to target and bid for. However, like many business owners, you might be underutilizing the negative keywords feature on Google Ads. 

If the mere mention of “negative keywords” caused a puzzled look to come across your face, then you are in the right place. Below, Galactic Fed has compiled an extensive Google Ads B2B negative keyword list. 

We briefly covered the topic of negative keywords in our article Six Google Search Ad Tips for Improving Your Conversion Rates. If you checked out that awesome piece of content, then you have been introduced to negative keywords before, albeit at a more cursory level. 

However, this article takes a much deeper dive into the topic of negative keywords. While it would be virtually impossible to create an exhaustive list of negative keywords that suits the needs of every industry and potential scenario, we did include dozens of prime examples in the list below. With that being said, let’s jump in. 

What Are Negative Keywords?

Before we reveal the phrases that made our Google Ads B2B negative keyword list, let’s recap what “negative keywords” are to ensure that we are all on the same page.

Negative keywords are words that you want to be disassociated with your ads. For instance, let’s say that you set up a Google Ads campaign targeting the phrase “enterprise resource planning software.” Next, you list phrases like “career,” “jobs,” and “resume” in your negative keywords box. 

When the campaign goes live, any queries containing the prohibited negative keywords will not result in Google displaying your ad, even if it was the highest bid. The negative keywords feature allows you to be more selective about who sees your content. 

If you created the above campaign to target companies seeking ERP software, you only want members of that audience clicking on your ads. By banning the aforementioned phrases from being associated with your ad, job seekers will not view your content and waste your advertising budget. 

Although the premise of using negative keywords seems very straightforward, many businesses fail to leverage this feature. As a result, their campaigns often suffer from a significant amount of waste because individuals with no need for their products or services continuously click on their paid ads. 

This oversight is particularly detrimental when bidding for expensive keywords or phrases. 

What to Include on Google Ads B2B Negative Keyword Lists

There are literally thousands of potential phrases that could make our Google Ads B2B negative keyword list. However, we condensed our list to only several dozen words for the sake of time. To simplify things even further, we subdivided our list by category. 

The specific phrases that you should include in the negative keyword section will vary based on the audience segment that you are attempting to exclude from viewing your ad. Our categories include the following: 

Job Seekers

If you decide to target a high-dollar keyword or phrase, the last thing you want is for dozens of job seekers to aimlessly click on your Google ads. Therefore, you should include phrases such as the following on your Google Ads B2B negative keyword list:

  • Salary
  • Resume
  • Recruiter
  • Recruiting
  • Jobs
  • Job
  • Salaries
  • Internship
  • Employment
  • Freelance
  • Contractors
  • CV
  • Careers
  • Hiring

If you fail to include these words on your negative keyword list, your ads could show up on the search engine results pages (SERPs) of job seekers. Should you have vacancies that you want to fill and you plan to use paid ads, create a separate campaign to target these individuals.

Researchers

Frequently, researchers will click on ads at the top of SERPs, especially if they are on a quest for specific pieces of data. That is why you need to add words such as the following to your negative keyword list:

  • Association
  • Book
  • E-book
  • Case study
  • Guide
  • Magazine
  • Journal
  • News
  • Research
  • Statistics
  • Reviews
  • White papers

Including at least a few of these negative keywords will make your ads far less visible to researchers. In turn, this will reduce the amount of ad waste and help you get more bang for your advertising buck.

Hagglers and Deal Seekers 

Price is a topic that always comes up in both the B2C and B2B spaces. While you will eventually have to provide prospective clients with this information, you do not want them clicking on your expensive paid ads to obtain it. That is why we suggest adding a few negative keywords used by deal seekers and hagglers to your list, such as:

  • Cost
  • Plans
  • Pricing
  • Quotes
  • Free
  • Inexpensive
  • Discount
  • Trial
  • Coupon code

All of the above phrases will help you make your ads more visible to clients concerned about results and less visible to those fixated on sacrificing service quality to save a few bucks. 

Last Words on Ad Words

If you learn to optimize the efficacy of your Google Ads campaigns, you can increase brand awareness, generate more traffic, and drive conversions. 

B2B businesses experience some of the most notable brand awareness benefits from displaying their ads in Google searches. According to Google, B2B companies that display their ads on search engine results pages can increase “top-of-mind awareness” by 9%. 

Source: Google

Using Google’s negative keywords functionality is an integral piece of the puzzle. If you carefully target relevant keywords and list irrelevant phrases in the negative keywords section, you can improve your chances of getting your ads in front of the right audience. 

In turn, this will lead to improved return on investment, reduced customer acquisition costs, and better revenue. If you want to learn more about negative keywords and other tactics to improve your sales margins, check out this guide

For personalized support and campaign management services, contact Galactic Fed directly. We offer a comprehensive suite of digital marketing solutions, including pay-per-click campaign management, SEO, and much more.

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Sarah Harris photo

Sarah Harris

Content Writer @ Galactic Fed

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