Deciding which search terms to add as negative keywords is very challenging.  If you negate too many keywords you will reduce your visibility, hurting your sales.  If you negate too few keywords, you risk hurting your conversion rate and overspending. 

Tips for Choosing Search Terms to Add as Negative Keywords:

It is important to carefully review all suggestions. We do not recommend taking all actions on this page, or you will run the risk of significantly reducing your visibility on Amazon.  

When deciding whether or not to negate a keyword, consider setting parameters for taking action based on spend, clicks, and time running.  Ask yourself, while considering your category: How much spend is too much spend? How many clicks are too many clicks? Has the search term had enough time to gain traction?

For example: If I’m selling woven baskets in home goods category, with an average CPC of $0.66, I may say if the search term has hit at least 2 of the following parameters, I'd strongly consider negating this term:

  • over $15 in spend
  • over 20 clicks
  • has been running for at least 3 weeks 

Additional information on parameters: 

  • Relevancy: If a search term seems relevant to your product and is still not converting into sales, then you need to evaluate your product listing page. If your product listing page is optimized (all description text, bullet points, etc. are relevant to the product), you can also take a look at your competitors' offers, ratings and reviews.
  • Clicks: Using your organic conversion as a benchmark, you can determine whether or not a particular search term has an excessive number of clicks. If it normally takes 25 page views for you to generate one sale, then you might consider negating a term that has generated 50 or more with no associated sales. Keep in mind, too many clicks will reduce your conversion rate and Amazon will be less likely to show your ad.  
  • Spend: Set "spend with no sales" thresholds based on your product category. If you are in a saturated market with a large number of sellers and search traffic, it is not going to take you long to rack up spend due to a higher cost-per-click.
  • Days running: Has the search term had enough time to generate traffic? While 2-3 weeks should usually present you with enough data, that time period may still not be sufficient if your ad has been ineligible or your product has been out of stock.
  • Keyword Match Type: Be mindful of the keyword match type when making decisions, you will want to less prone to negate exact match keywords than you would broad match keywords. 

Additional Resources:
Keywords to Negate: What are negative keywords?

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