How To Effectively Use Amazon Negative Keywords To Boost Your Ad Campaigns

September 11, 2023

Understanding negative keywords might be a game changer for your Amazon advertising campaigns, so we at Merch Jar bring you this quick look into the power of Amazon negative keywords. 

We'll explain how these keywords function and why they're essential for fine-tuning your ad approach. Let's ensure your advertising targets the right audience to maximize your results.

What Are Amazon Negative Keywords?


Negative keywords on Amazon act as filters, preventing you from showing your adverts to the wrong people. When you advertise your items, you want them only to appear when people are interested.

Consider the following scenario: 

Let's imagine you run a store that only sells t-shirts. If you use keywords like "clothes" or "fashion," your ad might be shown to people looking specifically for hats. They may click on your ad, but they will immediately understand that you do not provide what they are searching for. That means you’ll be paying for the click even though there was no chance of that customer buying your product.

So, negative keywords are a method for you to tell Amazon, "Hey, don't show my ad if someone is searching for hats." This saves you money and ensures that your advertisements are seen by those who are truly interested in what you're offering, such as those t-shirts!

Why Are Amazon Negative Keywords Important?

Improved CTR

By employing negative keywords, you can ensure that the correct people see your adverts. This increases your click-through rates (CTR), meaning more individuals who read your ad are interested in what you offer.

Save on ad expenditures 

Negative keywords ensure that the correct people see your ads, so you don’t waste money exposing them to the wrong people. As a result, choosing negative keywords allows you to save money on advertising and make the most of your budget. 


Prevents keyword cannibalization

Keyword cannibalization occurs when your advertising, groups, and goods compete for the same keywords. It's like two teams are playing the same game but not cooperating. This is usually bad because both teams lose. 

However, you can correct this by using negative keywords. They assist you in telling your adverts to avoid particular words so they do not clash. In this manner, your advertising can perform better without interfering with one another. 

What Are The Different Types Of Negative Keywords?

Negative Phase Match Keyword


This type of negative keyword prevents your ad from appearing when people search on Amazon with the exact sequence of words you've chosen. It even considers somewhat different terms, such as plural variants or minor spelling errors. This allows you to ensure that your ad displays only when it is relevant.

Negative Exact Match


Negative terms need to have a perfect match with the keywords you wish to avoid for a greater impression. Using negatives for misspelled words or singular/plural versions of a word will block all of your impressions, resulting in a potential loss of visibility and missed opportunities to reach relevant customers. For instance, if your keyword is "carry bag," your ad will not appear for searches such as "carry bags."

Negative keywords can be used in two ways: at the campaign and ad group levels. Negatives at the campaign level affect all ad groups in that campaign, whereas negatives at the ad group level impact only ads in that group. This means that general terms can be used as campaign negatives, and specialized terms can be used as ad group negatives.

Broad Search Terms and Keywords

There are numerous ways for users to look for items on Amazon. One of these methods is to use wide phrases, which might include words related to your product, even if they are not identical.

But don't get too worked up when organizing your product listings and adverts using these broad search terms. While it's crucial to uncover many terms that aren't a better fit for your product so you don't waste money on ineffective advertising, focus on the ones many people search for.


Remember, you want your ad to be seen by the correct individuals. To ensure that your advertising generates the maximum sales for your money, avoid having them seen by those who aren't interested in what you're selling.

People who purchase on Amazon usually know what they want. So, if your product or ad appears in a search where the customer is unlikely to buy, you're wasting your advertising spend.

How To Choose Amazon Negative Keywords

Find the right negative keywords

Choosing the right negative keywords is a smart step for maximizing the effectiveness of your PPC plan. There are two main approaches to this.

To begin, consider words that do not suit. For example, if you sell trendy leather shoes and are bidding on the phrase "shoe," you might want to include "running shoes" as a negative keyword. Even though it’s not exact, it is an excellent starting point. 

Set up test campaigns with broad match positive keywords for a more systematic approach. Then, examine which search terms your adverts appear for. This provides you with accurate information about keywords that could be more helpful. Plus, you can dive into the data to determine which keywords could perform better and cost less.

Remember that certain tools, such as Amazon's Brand Analytics reports, can assist you in doing this even better. They may help you refine your keyword search and determine how important these terms are for your campaign.

Add negative keywords in Amazon Seller Central

Once you've established a list of negative keywords, employ them to increase your advertising. The best part? The procedure is simple, and it all takes place within Seller Central.

This is how you do it:

Step 1: Register or sign in

To begin, sign in to your Amazon account and navigate to the Seller Central dashboard.

Step 2: Navigate to negative keywords


There is a tab in your campaign settings called 'Negative keywords.'

Step 3: Select a match type


Choose whether to use a negative phrase or a negative exact match. You have options!

Step 4: Insert your keywords

Enter all of the negative keywords that you've prepared. You can have up to 1000 of them.

Step 5: Verify

Click the 'Add keywords' button to confirm and submit your keywords.

Step 6: Save your work

Remember to save your revised campaign settings so that those negative keywords may start performing their magic.

Check search term report

If you want to improve your Amazon approach, a strong tool is available that goes beyond simply lowering bids or budgets. It all comes down to understanding what your clients are looking for, which is where the Search Term Report comes in.

Consider this report to be a window into your customers' minds. It shows what they're putting into Amazon's search bar. You are not only optimizing your advertising by using this report, but you are also obtaining insight into the minds of your customers. This information can assist you in developing more successful methods.

Get help from a marketing agency

Feeling trapped or concerned about making the wrong decisions? An Amazon advertising agency can help. They are experts who are up to date on the latest tools and techniques for increasing Amazon sales. You save time and get peace of mind by allowing professionals to handle your negative keywords while you focus on your business.


Merch Jar recognizes that managing campaigns can be difficult, which is why we created our software to simplify the process of creating negative keywords from search terms. Let the experts handle the details so you can focus more on growing your business.

Negative keyword exact match

The terms people search for must be the same as your chosen keyword when using negative exact. It's similar to a puzzle piece—they need to fit exactly. Even if there are minor discrepancies, such as plurals or minor spelling errors, your ad may still appear if more terms surround your negative keyword.

However, if the search simply contains your negative term or a misspelling, your ad will not display. It's a strategy to ensure that your ad reaches the proper individuals rather than those looking for something else.


Merch Jar is focused on assisting businesses to succeed on Amazon. Managing advertising campaigns on the platform may take time and effort. That is why we are on a quest to simplify Amazon Advertising. With our software’s Amazon PPC Automation and Recipes, you can gain access to all keywords in your manual campaigns and all of their associated metrics. Easily set state, change bids, and adjust accordingly to optimize your entire advertising catalog. 

Our software is designed to manage and automate marketing campaigns, allowing our clients to concentrate on what they do best: expanding their business.

Use Negative Amazon Keywords to Refine Your Strategy

Utilizing the power of Amazon negative keywords can dramatically improve your advertising efforts. You can fine-tune your efforts using this strategy to ensure they reach the most relevant demographic while avoiding unnecessary investment. Remember, getting your products in front of the appropriate buyers is crucial, and Merch Jar is here to help.

As you embark on your Amazon advertising adventure, remember that negative keywords will serve as your trusted guides, allowing you to traverse the sea of search phrases with precision. With Merch Jar's expertise and tools, you can optimize your campaigns for success. 

Explore Merch Jar today and take your first step toward more efficient Amazon advertising.