Google has four different keyword match types:
Broad Match – Ads will show up whenever the user searches the keyword or anything Google deems to be related to the keyword. ex. shoes -> red shoes, blue shoes, yellow shoes
Phrase Match – Ads will show up whenever the user searches the keyword or keyword phrase. The keyword or keyword phrase must be in the user’s search query for the ad to show up. Put phrase match keywords in quotes. ex. “red shoes” -> red shoes in chicago but not red shoe
Exact Match – Ads will show up whenever the user searches for the exact keyword. If the user does not type in the keyword exactly as the keyword is written, the ad will not show up. Put exact match keywords in quotes. ex. [red shoes] -> red shoes but not red shoes in chicago
Broad Match Modified – While the keyword or keyword phrase must be in the user’s search query for the ad to show up, the search query can be conjugated or spelled differently than the keyword. Put a + before a broad match modified keyword. ex. red +shoes -> red shoe
MSN/Bing has the broad, phrase, and exact match types, but does not have the broad match modified match type. Facebook does not utilize match types.
Knowing and utilizing match types is one of the biggest keys to search marketing success, so keep this crib sheet handy.