Koozai > Blog > What Is A Single keywords Ad Group or SKAG?

What Is A Single keywords Ad Group or SKAG?

| 7 minutes to read

What is a single keywords ad group or SKAG?

Probably every Google Ads specialist knows this story – we get access to the customer’s account and we can see that the structure and distribution of keywords are completely random, it’s a complete mess. We then wonder how to quickly achieve satisfactory results. A similar dilemma appears when we start working with a new account. One of the answers to this need is the SKAG method, about which you will find more in the text.

 What is the SKAG method?

 SKAG is an acronym derived from the English words for Single Keyword Ad Groups. As you can guess, after expanding the acronym, this strategy is based on one keyword. The separate keywords here have their own ad groups. Is this method worth using? If you want a better click-through rate and lower conversion costs that’s for sure.

In other words, with the SKAG method, you build your campaigns so that there is only one keyword in one ad group.

How to create SKAG (Single Keyword Ad Groups) campaigns?

Keywords are single words or whole phrases that are entered into the search engine by Internet users. It is thanks to these slogans that a potential customer has a chance to visit our website and use the services or make a purchase. This is why it is so important to choose the right keywords in the campaign.

When constructing a SKAG campaign, it is important that there is only one keyword in one ad.

This strategy ensures that we will dominate the entire movement. What’s more – we can easily control the effectiveness of our campaign and observe which match is the most effective. The most important thing, however, is that the keywords match what potential recipients are typing in the search engine.

 What to remember when creating an ad?

Keywords are the strength of SKAG advertising campaigns, but the structure and content of the advertisement are also extremely important. The keyword should appear in both the headline and the description. Experience has shown that it is also worth making sure that the keyword is included in the URL. Internet users like it when the phrases they search are visible in the website address.

Thanks to appropriate optimization, a campaign based on the SKAG method can be even more effective – and this is what advertisers want.

Analysis of the search terms report

 By analyzing the search terms report, we can see that users come to our website by entering other keywords than those on which the campaign is based. What to do then? It’s a good idea to create separate SKAGs. Let’s look at it with an example. Our starting ad group was based on the keyword “hairdresser Southampton”. Suppose our clients enter “Southampton wedding hairdresser” according to the report. The new word that needs to be excluded from your original ad group will be the basis for your new ad group.

In this way, we adapt our campaign to the needs and preferences of users, and this is a big step towards increasing conversion.

 How to make your work easier?

For those new to SKAGs, creating more ad groups and controlling the campaign can be a problem. However, it is enough to properly group campaigns, e.g. taking into account keywords, to have everything under control. Thanks to this, we also make it easier to work on the content of the ads and when adjusting the headlines. If necessary, we can create a new campaign from individual elements, with a separate budget.

Advantages of the SKAG strategy

For some, the SKAG strategy is too time-consuming. However, it is worth focusing on the advantages of this method, which will reward you with 100% of your time.

By using SKAG campaigns, we can tailor the ad to specific keywords and adapt it to the needs and preferences of specific groups of recipients.

SKAGs allows you to create ads based on precisely selected sets of keywords that potential customers enter into the search engines. This is very important because practice shows that such ads are more likely to be clicked.

1. Better CTR

Thanks to SKAG, we will better match your ads to keywords. By using a keyword, for example in the headline and funnel, we show the user in the ad exactly what they are looking for. We avoid some kind of discrepancy between the entered keyword and description in the ad.

2. Landing pages matched to the keyword

Thanks to the use of SKAG, we can better match the keywords to the landing pages we use in ads. Better selected landing pages make the user find the part of the page that interests them the most.

Landing page texts often contain keywords that we use in the ad group.

3. Better Quality Score

Once we’ve managed to improve your CTR and recurring keywords in your ad and landing page, you’ll improve your keyword’s Quality Score.

4. Lower cost per click

Better Quality Score directly contributes to a lower cost per click. Google sees that your Quality Score is higher than your competitors, so your ad is better than others.

5. Lower cost of conversion

Lowering your CPC cost directly reduces conversion costs.

6. Greater control over results

By using the SKAG method, you can easily respond to changes in your campaign, as well as manage poorer-performing keywords by turning them off at the ad group level.

7. Easier reporting of search terms

By doing an overview of the search terms, we know exactly what new word was generated by a given ad group. We can easily decide whether to exclude them or add them to the campaign as a new ad group.

Disadvantages of the SKAG method

1.Creating SKAGs takes a long time

The most obvious reason. Rebuilding an existing account or building a new one with more than 50 keywords can be time-consuming and tedious.

2. Optimizing takes longer

This complex structure may mean that we need to track your search term report more closely to avoid duplicate keywords in other ad groups. Of course, this affects the time that we will devote to the campaign

3. Clutter on your account

Having a high number of ad groups may give the impression that your account is in a cluttered position and may be difficult to manage.

4. Search keywords – close variants

With the way that Google is now treating close variants, there is a great deal of overlap between the three primary match types of Broad (or Modified Broad), Phrase (or Modified Phrase), and Exact (now, “Exact-ish” or Intent Match).

5. Voice Technology

The rise of voice technology has transformed the way people engage with search engines. It no longer implies going to a computer, opening a web browser, typing keywords into a search bar, and scrolling through results. Now, people can simply speak the “name” of their virtual assistant and ask a question or make a voice command. Search “queries” are consequently becoming more conversational and long-tail searches more prevalent.

6. On-Page Response Opportunities

As Google and other search platforms begin to test and adopt new media for consumer response, focus will inevitably shift from a focus on keyword searches to a focus on individual needs and objectives. New algorithms will pair the consumer need to the appropriate advertiser offer. They’ll still need info provided by search queries but may not require keywords with audience targeting.

7. Evolution Of Language

Even within the same language, searchers from different regions or age demographics may use different terms to refer to the same item.

How to optimize the SKAG method?

Once we have created a group with one keyword, we proceed to analyze the search terms report. If we notice that new keywords appear in the report, we add them to the new ad group. This allows us to better adjust the ad to keywords. We exclude the new word from the existing SKAG from the “mother” group. In a new group, we add a word with different types of matches.

A method that will facilitate working with SKAGs maybe grouping them into campaigns so that the campaign contains SKAGs related to one category in the store or “family” of keywords. This strategy also makes it easier to customize your ad text and headlines.

In addition to grouping, the best-performing campaign elements (groups) can be separated into a separate campaign. This procedure will ensure that such part of the campaign will receive its own budget, thanks to which we will be able, for example, to fight for the more frequent display of ads.

The SKAG method will help us quickly improve the results of the campaign by improving CTR and keyword quality score. Although, especially for novices, it can be very time-consuming.


In this article, you learned about a few advantages and disadvantages of Single Keyword Ad Groups – SKAGs. You also learned about several methods of optimizing such campaigns. It is of course up to you to decide whether or not you will use this method. Using skags creates order in your account, it creates super relevancy and accuracy. For me using skags it’s all about control of my campaigns in each aspect. And from the other side, As Search overall continues to expand beyond just targeting keywords, I think advertisers will see an advantage to adopting a more flexible account structure. However, it is definitely worth considering and considering, especially if you have accounts where you can test it.


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Joaquin Lopez

Paid Media Manager

Quags is our talented Paid Media Manager with a wealth of experience across display, search and social. With a particular talent for Facebook advertising, paid social ads and creatives, he’s worked with a variety of B2B and B2C brands including Trulawn, Snazaroo and Worx. On a personal note, Quags is a sci-fi movie buff, gamer, lover of dystopian fiction and self-taught bassist with a penchant for ramen noodles.

Joaquin Lopez Read more about Joaquin Lopez

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