Preschool Advertising Quick Win: Use Negative Keywords To Save Money

Preschool Advertising Quick Win: Use Negative Keywords To Save Money

If your school or day care is running AdWords, and you do not have an extensive negative keywords list in your account, then you are likely wasting some of your advertising budget by spending money on clicks you never wanted in the first place! This article will show you how this common problem happens, and how you can fix it with the use of Negative Keywords.

So what Are Negative Keywords?

Unlike the terms you enter that you want to show up for, Negative Keywords are terms you can add to your account which will prevent your ad from being shown when that word or phrase is present in the search term or phrase a family enters.

Here Is What Happens Without Negative Keywords In Place

Let’s use this example school that may look something like your school, they:

  • Are a full day Montessori preschool
  • Are located in Miami Florida
  • Are open Monday through Friday
  • Are not or do not offer a free program
  • Are advertising on AdWords for the term “preschool” (broad match/default) in the local area (Miami)
  • Have no negative keywords in place on their AdWords account

This school’s ads will show up when a family in the local area types in (or says) any of these terms/phases:

  • preschool
  • montessori preschool
  • preschool miami
  • preschool near me
  • preschool in miami open on weekends
  • waldorf preschool near me
  • free preschool in miami
  • worst preschool in miami

Those first four look pretty good, those last four, not so good. That represents half of this schools budget being wasted on families that are not going to find what they want after clicking the ad, and thus are not likely at all to enroll in this school.

This happens because Google will not make any assumptions about the school or it’s program, it will simply do as it’s asked, and show the school’s ads on all searches related to “preschool” in the local area.

Negative Keywords at Work

Let’s take the same example school above, but this time let’s say the school spends some time and effort adding a large list of negative keywords to their account. That list of negative keywords they create and add includes some important terms like:

  • worst
  • free
  • waldorf
  • weekends

Now, since they have explicitly told Google not to show their ads when a family types in (or says) any terms/phases with those words in them, their ads will no longer show up on searches they would have before like:

  • preschool open on weekends
  • waldorf preschool
  • free preschool
  • worst rated preschool in miami
  • free programs for preschool age children

This school is now less likely to waste budget by paying for clicks on searches that it never wanted to be (or even thought it ever was) showing up for in the first place.


If you are running AdWords ads for your school, be sure you are utilizing, and keeping up to date, a list of negative keywords so you can prevent wasting your advertising budget on clicks you don’t want.

To learn how to add negative keywords to your AdWords account, see Google’s help article located here:

If you don’t have the time (or patience) to stay on top of your negative keyword list, consider having us professionally manage your AdWords account for you. We love this stuff!



Brian Foy
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