Amazon Negative keywords in PPC ads: A Beginner Guide

Amazon Negative keywords in PPC ads: A Beginner Guide

One of the key strategies you need to master is using negative keywords on Amazon. In this guide, we'll explore what negative keywords are on Amazon, how to find them, and the tools that can help you streamline your Amazon advertising efforts.

What Are Negative Keywords on Amazon?

Negative keyword is one of essential types of Amazon keywords for preparing your PPC campaigns.

They are search terms or phrases for which you don't want your ads to appear. When you add negative keywords to your Amazon PPC campaigns, actually you're telling Amazon not to display your ads when someone searches for those specific terms. This allows you to refine your ad targeting and ensure your products are only shown to the most relevant audiences.

How do Negative Keywords Work?

Improve Amazon Ad Relevancy

By excluding certain keywords that are not relevant to your product or audience, you can ensure that your ads are only shown to people who are most likely to be interested in what you have to offer.

For example, let's say you sell high-end sunglasses. Without using negative keywords, your ads might show up for searches related to cheap or discount sunglasses.

By adding negative keywords like "cheap" and "discount," you can prevent your ads from being displayed to users who are looking for budget options. This allows you to focus your advertising efforts on a more targeted audience who is willing to pay a premium for quality products.

Reduce Wasted Ad Spend

When your ads show up for irrelevant or low-conversion search terms, it leads to low click-through rates but also drains your budget but without generate sales.

Let’s take the “high-end sunglasses” example again. Some Amazon users search for cheap sunglasses and click on your ads. After they quickly realize that this is not the product they are looking for, so they close your product page. It actually raises your CPC since users who aren't interested in purchasing your product click on you ads.

Enhance Overall PPC Performance

As we mentioned above, by removing irrelevant traffic and focusing on a highly targeted audience, your ads are more likely to receive higher click-through rates (CTR) and conversion rates.

Additionally, by reducing wasted ad spend on irrelevant clicks, you can allocate those resources to other better performance keywords that can further boost your campaign's success.

How to Find Negative Keywords on Amazon?

Discovering effective negative keywords is essential to improving your ad performance. Here are some methods to find negative keywords on Amazon:

Expand Negative Keyword Lists by Amazon Search Term Reports

Analyzing search term reports allow you to understand the specific search terms that triggered your users to click. Also you can spot irrelevant or underperforming search terms and turn them into negative keywords.

To access your search term reports in Amazon Seller Central or Advertising Console, navigate to the "Advertising" or "Campaign Manager" section. Look for the specific ad campaign you want to analyze and select the corresponding report option. Don’t forget to track your negative keywords by search trends and customers behavior.

access amazon campaign manager
navigate to the "Advertising" or "Campaign Manager" section in Amazon search term report

Also, Here we covered you a step-by-step guide to know How to use search term report to scale your Amazon PPC campaigns.

Conduct Thorough Competitor Analysis

Visit your competitors’ product pages, pay attention to their sponsored ads, and explore customer reviews related to their products. You may fine some keywords that are frequently mentioned but are irrelevant to your offering products.

For example, if you sell high-end sunglasses, and you notice competitors repeatedly using terms like "cheap sunglasses" or "low-quality sunglasses," it's a good indication that adding such terms as negative keywords can help prevent your ads from appearing in irrelevant searches. By capitalizing on your competitors' insights, you can fine-tune your negative keyword strategy.

A/B testing Analysis

Start by brainstorming a list of potential negative keywords based on your product, target audience, and market research. Then, divide keywords into different groups.

For example, one group could focus on price-related terms (e.g., "cheap," "discounted"), while another might center around low-quality descriptors (e.g., "fake," "counterfeit"). By segmenting your negative keyword lists, you can analyze their impact more effectively.

Implement these variations gradually and monitor their effects on your ad performance metrics such as CTR, conversion rates, and CPC. Through careful keywords A/B testing on Amazon, you'll be able to refine your approach over time. Remember that no two campaigns are alike, so what works for others might not work for you.

Utilize Amazon Negative Keyword Tool

Is there an automated tool available that can streamline the time-consuming task of identifying irrelevant keywords and adding them to a negative keyword list? m19 as a automated PPC software helps Amazon marketers with negative keywords. it can pinpoint underperforming keywords and eliminated the need for manual search term report analysis easily. For example, m19 automatically detects and highlights negative keywords for you.

blacklist keywords on m19
m19 board blacklist negative keywords

And you can blacklist the keywords you want either in group level or campaign level. For example, you can blacklist or add a seed keyword in specific ASIN. And the negative keyword only works for this ASIN.

Add seed keywords on m19
m19 board blacklist negative seed keywords

A Pro tip:

m19 takes a different approach than the conventional approach where marketers usually place poorly performing keywords in the negative keyword list due to their low conversion or click rates.

In m19, we advocate for bidding specifically on these underperforming keywords, whether they are search terms or product pages. We don't want to completely eliminate traffic from these keywords. Because a bad performance, or a low probability of conversion provides valuable information just like strong performance does.. It means low performance conveys as much information as good performance.

Different Negative keywords match types on Amazon

In Amazon Advertising, you have two main options for negative keyword matching: negative phrase vs negative exact match on amazon.

Negative Phrase Match

Ads won't display if the search query contains the entire negative keyword phrase, even if there are additional words before or after it. For example, if you add "fast delivery" as a negative phrase match, your ad won't display for searches like "fast delivery options" or "quick delivery.”

Negative Exact Match

Ads won't show for the exact search term specified as a negative keyword, with no variations allowed. For instance, if you add "overnight shipping" as a negative exact match, your ad won't appear for "overnight shipping," but it may still show for "fast overnight shipping.” Choose the match type that aligns best with your campaign goals and keyword strategy.

To know about these match types in detail, follow our article: Amazon Keyword Search Guide 2023: Optimize for your PPC Campaigns.

How to Remove Negative Keywords on Amazon

If you find that certain negative keywords are no longer relevant or if you want to adjust your targeting, it's easy to remove them from your campaigns. Simply access your Amazon Advertising account and navigate to the negative keyword settings for your specific campaign. Here you can add or remove negative keywords for you listing:

  1. Log in to Amazon Seller Central: Log in to your account and go to the "Advertising" tab.
  2. Navigate to Campaign Manager: Once in the "Advertising" section, click on "Campaign Manager."
  3. Select the Campaign: Locate and select the campaign where you have added the negative keywords you wish to remove.
  4. Negative Keywords Tab: Inside the campaign dashboard, locate and click on the "Negative Keywords" tab.
  5. Select and Remove: Find the negative keywords you wish to remove. There should be checkboxes next to each negative keyword. Check these boxes for the keywords you want to remove and then click on the "Archive" button.

manage negative keywords on Amazon
Add negative keywords on Amazon

Remove negative keywords on amazon
Remove negative keywords on Amazon


In the game of Amazon PPC campaigns, the inclusion and removal of negative keywords hold significant importance. This pivotal action can yield several benefits such as cost savings, heightened visibility, expanded reach, and the assurance that your ads are reaching the intended audience.

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Xuan Xie
April 11, 2024
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