How To Run a Search Query Report Today in Google AdWords

By Janet Driscoll Miller | Nov 2, 2010
More Articles by Janet

Many of you probably received an email from Google this week explaining that AdWords is essentially retiring the report center and replacing the reporting capabilities throughout other areas of the AdWords interface.

One popular report that is difficult to find in the new structure is the old Search Query Report. It’s still there, but it can be tricky to find it. Here’s where to look…

First, decide if you want to run your Search Query Report for your whole account, one campaign, one ad group, etc., then navigate to that area. In this case, I’ll use one campaign as an example. So first, I navigate to that one campaign in AdWords.

Next, select the Keywords tab. In the case of our example, this will list all of the keywords in the campaign.

Before you run the report, be sure that you have set your date range to the timeframe you want to report on.

Now click on the “See Search Terms” button. You can either select keywords (using the checkboxes by each keyword) or run the report based on all keywords. In this case, I would select the “See Search Terms” button and run the report for “All Keywords”.

This selection essentially runs a Search Query Report. However, the results might seem a bit confusing, because the layout is slightly different than the old report.

Once the results show, you’ll see a new list of keywords. Some keywords will have a green “ADDED” button adjacent to the keyword.

The keywords with this green “Added” label are words that are already in your campaign. The column “match type” indicates which match type generated the ad impression. Keywords without the green “Added” label are other queries that generated your ad. Review these keywords, and you can add them to your campaign as any match type or as negatives by simply selecting the keywords, then choosing the “Add as Keyword” or “Add as Negative Keyword” buttons respectively.

So in essence, while this new version of the Search Query Report is more difficult to locate than when it was contained under the “Reports” tab, it can make adding new keywords to your campaign much easier as well.

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  • It took me ages to find this a few weeks ago but I find it is much easier to use this way and really easy to see what variations of an individual keyword people are using to drive conversions.

  • Great tutorial, I just wish the adwords interface screenshots were clearer.

    • My apologies that they showed up odd in the blog post. After relaunching the blog design, I found that some images didn’t resize well. However, if it helps, if you can click on each image and see a larger version, which is proportional and clear. However, I did purposefully blur out a good deal of information that is proprietary to the client.

  • This is good information and frankly does a better job of explaining how to conduct search term reporting in a way that is easier to understand than AdWords help.

    Unfortunately, it seems like AdWords has ditched the most important thing about the search query report. WHERE are the search terms that create all my impressions, but no clicks? I would love to know what those terms are so that I can add them as negatives. It looks like Adwords has taken this feature away from the reporting. Any ideas?

  • Hi Janet,

    Very clear and concise article.

    I agree with Nate that info on the search terms which DIDN’T trigger our ads would be extremely useful. But I guess holding back on this information is in Google’s interests so they can be more free to experiment with more obscure broad matching without advertisers knowing.

    That said, I think there is plenty of data currently available to PPC advertisers via a downloadable search query report. If the report is mined intelligently, it can provide all sorts of useful insight. I recently wrote an article about this on my blog, which may be of interest:

    Would love to hear the thoughts of yourself and your readers.