Keyword Targeting


Keyword targeting is a filter you can apply to a flight or ad so that the flight's ads serve only to placements where those keywords are passed in the ad code or Decision API request.

For example, you could set up keyword targeting to target:

  • Anyone browsing the 'Rugs' category
  • Anyone on any specific product page
  • Someone who just searched for 'rugs'
  • Literally anything, as long as you can send that info in the ad request

Think of Keyword Targeting as a matching puzzle: You can set up campaigns to target any string, and if you pass that in the request, only then will the ad show! It's commonly used for Category Targeting and Search Term Targeting.

Keyword Formatting

  • Keywords can contain spaces
  • Keywords are also case-insensitive. That is, "Dodge", "dodge", and "doDgE" are treated the same
  • Keywords must not contain certain special characters. See the "Keywords and Special Characters" table below
  • Trailing spaces after keywords saved in the UI or API will be ignored. For example, "dodge", "dodge ", and "dodge " are identical
  • The maximum amount of keywords that can be added to a request is capped at 512 characters. This includes the commas used to separate the keywords in the request. We will truncate any keywords past the 512 character limit. We will truncate a single keyword at the 256th character if it is longer than that

A quick outline of these rules are:

Trailing Spaces in UI and APIIgnored
Max Characters Total per Request512
Max Characters per Keyword per Request256

Keywords and Special Characters

The following table lists special characters and where in the keyword they are/are not allowed.

comma ,anywhereN, is reserved to separate keywords in the request
colon :anywhereN
exclamation point !anywhereN! is reserved in keyword targeting
tilde ~anywhereN~ is reserved in keyword targeting
newline \nanywhereN
carriage return \ranywhereN
whitespacein the middle of the keywordYKeywords can include spaces
whitespaceat the start or end of the keywordNTrailing spaces at the end of the keyword are ignored


Keep in mind that keyword targeting by itself is not exclusive: other ads eligible to serve to that placement (because of the size, zone, etc.) will still serve. By modifying your channel's priorities, you can set up Kevel to serve the ads in an exclusive way.

Reporting on Keywords

You can view keywords in custom reports by either running a report for that keyword, or by Grouping By a keyword to break out that keyword from other criteria.

To run a report for a keyword, enter the keyword via its text box. Type in the desired keyword and click the blue [+] button. To enter multiple keywords at once, separate the keywords by commas.

If there are multiple keyword filters, custom reports treats their relationship as OR instead of AND. For example, if you apply two keyword filters, one for "cats" and one for "dogs", the report will return results for all flights with cats, all flights with dogs, and all flights with both keywords.


You can only Group By keywords when reporting on inventory objects, such as a site or a zone. You cannot Group By keywords for other types of objects, such as a campaign, flight, creative, etc.

Also, if you run a report for a keyword and Group By campaign, flight, creative etc. we will only return data for objects associated with flights that were targeted to those keywords.