Why am I getting clicks for keywords with cities I am not targeting?

Last updated on September 16th, 2021

Your campaigns might receive clicks from cities outside your target region due to the following reasons:

  • location targeting also includes people who are regularly in your target region, e.g. commuters
  • users outside of your target might use search terms that include your target region.

Example: if users you target in Cologne search for the term gas station berlin, your ad can still show for your keyword gas station, even though you excluded Berlin as a target region. 


This may happen most frequently with the automobile vertical as your target audience is more likely to be on the move, regular commuters, or planning a trip.

How can I prevent this from happening?

You can prevent these type of search query matches by using more specific keywords and negative keywords. 

  • If you want to benefit from a broader reach, set locations outside your target region as negative keywords and keep the generic keyword gas station.
  • If you prefer a stricter approach, use gas station Cologne instead of the generic keyword. However, please be aware that this approach will limit your ad impressions.

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