Negative Keyword List - Search Scientists

The Most Comprehensive Negative Keyword List: 800 Words!

What is more annoying: having to pay for extra guacamole or losing money because your ads appear for irrelevant searches?

All things tasty aside, there are just some search queries you never want your ads to appear for.

In a previous post on AdWords Editor vs Negative Keyword Lists we touched on Negative Keyword Lists, however, this article’s topic is another type of negative keyword called Universal Negative Keyword List.

Why Create a Negative Keyword List?

Regardless of the platform you’re using, a negative keyword list is an excellent thing to have. Think about when you’re searching for a product or service you need. You might notice that there are times when an ad comes up that doesn’t really match the context of your query. That’s frustrating to the user and leads to clicks that are unlikely to result in a conversion.

A keyword block list will allow you to improve your conversion rate and reduce wasted spend. Your ads will appear for only the searches that make sense, and you’ll spend your budget more wisely. It’s a win for everyone!


Ultimately, Universal Negative Keyword Lists are a permanent block list for your campaigns. By and large, there are just some search queries that will have a higher chance of not being relevant to most people’s campaigns.

While a regular negative keyword list lives in a single account, this fabulous list lives in your MCC account, where you can use it in as many accounts as you like. If you’re tired of adding negative keywords like “free” and “job” in every new account, then you’ll love this method of blocking wasteful keywords.

Some other great examples of keywords you’d probably like to block are: “2nd hand”, “career”, or “gambling”.

Here at Search Scientists, we want you to have the best campaigns possible. So in that spirit, we want to share a gift! Here is an extensive list of Universal Negative Keywords that you will find useful. It contains 800 negative keywords that will very likely be irrelevant for your business.

Negative keyword list template

Make sure to look through the list and see if there are any keywords you may actually need. Once that’s done, go ahead and add it to your own Negative Keyword List. 

Meanwhile, check out this video going more in depth on Universal Negative Keywords.

How to Create a Google Ads Negative Keyword List

Not sure where to get started? It’s okay, we’ll coach you through the easy process of creating your first list! 

You can quickly create your list in the Google Ads UI. Unfortunately, you cannot currently add it via the Ads Editor. You’ll want to start with your list – having an Excel or Google Sheets document is really helpful for this part of the process. This will allow you to quickly copy and paste.

Generating an AdWords Negative Keywords List in the interface

Ready to make that list? It only takes a few minutes and saves tons of time in the long run. Start by going up to Tools and find the Shared Library column and click Negative Keyword Lists. Now click the blue plus button to make a new list. 

Name your list and then copy your keywords from the spreadsheet. Doing it this way entails having the symbols for each match type around the keyword rather than having a match type column in the sheet.

When you’re finished adding your keywords, press save. Your keyword list is all set, but you’ll still have to add it to your campaigns.

Manager Level Negative Keyword List

You may be tempted to start your list under the Negative Keywords tab like you normally do, but that won’t allow you to share it. Instead, you’ll sign into your Manager Account and follow the same steps as the ones above.

Building Industry Specific Universal Negative Keyword Lists

Having a keyword block list for all accounts is a fantastic way to make sure nothing slips through the cracks. If you have a lot of industry-specific accounts, you may want to consider taking this one step further – universal negative lists by industry. Having a list for dentists or plumbers makes account building much easier. 

It’s likely that searches come up that you’ll want to block in one industry but not another. Why not compile a list to combat searches that aren’t relevant to the type of business before they become a waste of spend?

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Michael Erickson

Emailing my clients and telling them I helped increase their return on ad spend by 300% never gets old. I love rising above the technical jargon and providing your business with online marketing momentum to reach new heights. Enthusiast for all things science, surfing, and Search Scientists.

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