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How to Use Dynamic Keyword Insertion Efficiently

Claudio Dominguez

12 years ago



Before we dive into the different uses for Dynamic Keyword Insertion (also known as DKI), we first need to understand what Dynamic Keyword Insertion is exactly, and how it can make the best possible impact on our ad performance.

DKI is a feature that we can use in our ads, which allows us to replace text pieces with keywords that we have in the corresponding ad group.

Dynamic Keyword Insertion works by using the keyword that is triggered when a search is done on Google. So, if your ad headline is Buy Red Flowers you can, via DKI, automatically insert the actual keyword used to trigger your ad.

This will make the headline contain the exact keyword that the search triggered without having to create multiple ads for the keywords with small variations that basically could be grouped into the same ad group.

Using Dynamic Keyword Insertion will help give your ads more relevance and improve your key metrics such as the ever-important Click-Through-Rate (CTR).

How Do I Implement Dynamic Keyword Insertion?

In order to implement Dynamic Keyword Insertion, you need to insert a small piece of code in your ad text. This code will determine what part of the ad will be replaced with the keyword triggered in the ad and will make sure you have backup default text for the dynamic headline.

The code is as follows:

{KeyWord:Default Ad Text}

If we go back to the previous example, we will need to write a headline like this:

“Buy {KeyWord:Red Flowers}.

Please note that the code characters are not counted for character limit restrictions for the ads but the keyword that is going to replace what we have in the ad does need to comply with these limitations.

Remember the Character Limit in AdWords Headlines

When we think about the keywords we want dynamically inserted into the ads, we need to make sure that the final headline will not be longer than the allowed character limit of 25.

If we exceed the 25 characters, then the keyword will simply not replace what we have in our ad and the user will be shown the default ad text we originally proposed. In our example, the exact text shown if the keyword combined with the rest of the headline exceeded 25 characters, would be Buy Red Flowers.

To clarify, if we use a headline that reads Buy {KeyWord:Red Flowers} and the keyword triggered was magenta flowers for sale, then the headline will read Buy Red Flowers, as the original keyword triggered will simply not fit.


My Recommendations for using Dynamic Keyword Insertion

Now for the real deal. You now know how to make DKI work, but how do you use it efficiently? Even though some may call Dynamic Keyword Insertion a lazy man’s tool,  I just love to test it in my ads. I have tested it in different parts of the ads and I have seen good results with it. Here are my tips on how to use DKI:

Use Dynamic Keyword Insertion in the Headline

As I did in my example, the first place you often want to test, is in the headline. A good practice for ad writing is to have the same keyword in the headline as the one a user searches for. So when you have an ad group with highly-themed, similar keywords (e.g. red flowers online, discounted red flowers, buy red flowers, etc.), you can have them all show in your ads without splitting the keywords in different ad groups and thereby save a lot of time.

Use DKI in Any of the Description Lines

If you are going to be using DKI in the description lines of your ad, please be careful. Review all the keywords in the ad group to make sure each of them will make sense if they are inserted in the description lines.

If you’re planning on using Dynamic Keyword Insertion to build your ads, then you should consider putting keywords that don’t work with DKI into other ad groups.

Use DKI in the Display URL

This is one of the uses that have proven to give me the best results when used properly.

If your keywords fit in the display URL (this will depend a lot on the length of the URL of the website you are using), I highly recommend you to try it out as I have seen great CTR boosts as a result of using this small trick.

Factors to Consider when Using Dynamic Keyword Insertion

Keep Focusing on Building Tightly-Themed Ad Groups

Even though this tool allows you to jumble different keywords in the same ad group, you should still keep the keywords in your ad groups as tightly-themed as possible.

Don’t just create generic ads and expect them to work with any keyword. You will have a good theme for your keywords so you should have very concise ads that display a clear message.

Double-Check to Avoid Mistakes with Dynamic Keyword Insertion

This is a no-brainer, but always double-check if the code is entered correctly. If you use a different type of bracket, punctuation or wording, you may get some disapproved ads.

What’s even worse is if the ad gets approved and you end up showing an ad with a headline like this:

Buy {KeyWord Red Flowers}

These are mistakes made you don’t really want associated with your brand.

Misspellings, Competitors and Plural vs. Singular

Watch out for misspellings, singular and plural variations of your keywords. It’s usually good to have misspellings and plural/singular versions of your keywords to attract more traffic, but you need to make sure these keywords will make sense in the ad, as well.

A common mistake is to have competitor brand names as keywords, which you want to avoid having shown in your ads.

Decide Which Words to Capitalize

You can show the dynamic headline differently by modifying the way you write {keyword:}. These are the different ways to input your code and display the keyword:

  1. keyword – No capitalization, all word(s) are in lower case
  2. Keyword – The first letter of the first word is capitalized
  3. KeyWord – Every first letter of every word is capitalized
  4. KEYword – Every letter in the first word is capitalized
  5. KEYWord – Every letter in the first word, and the first letter of every subsequent word, is capitalized
  6. KEYWORD – Every letter is capitalized

Now you can try this out yourself. You can start slow and implement this technique in some of your ads. You can even go for two identical ads in an ad group, add DKI to one and leave the other as is to see which one gives better results and judge then whether you should keep using the tool or not