Negative Keywords

You might consider adding some negative keywords to your account. With the bot you can use either negative or positive keywords. Positive keywords are items that you want the bot to buy. Negative keywords are the sorts of products that you want the bot to avoid. Everyone has products that they want to avoid!

Make sure your negative keywords don’t have an asterisk after them. For example, add bead as a negative keyword not glass beads*. The keywords without asterisks are used more by the bot.

I took a look at the keywords selected by long-term subscribers who have been receiving packages for over a year. What jumped out was how a lot of them have added negative keywords in order to get the best packages. Here are some of the negative keywords you should take a look at…

MTG and Yugioh
These are two separate keywords, but the packages are nearly identical if you don’t play the respective card game. Of course some subscribers want to get their hands on these cards. However the bot buys from US based sources wherever it can and they are on for under 20 cents with free shipping. Quite a few are tagged with ‘dinosaur’, ‘penguin’, ‘dragon’ and other such keywords. You might get more magic cards then you care for if you don’t add MTG and/or Yugioh as negative keywords.

Are you only looking for three dimensional products that don’t feel like you could have printed them out yourself? About 5% of the bot’s orders are black and white postcards. The bot only re-orders designs that people like, so by definition someone is liking the bot’s postcards… but if getting any postcard will make you upset, add it as a negative keyword.

Not everyone is a gardener and it is impossible to get good instructions for seeds ordered by the bot. Seeds are some of the lowest priced items your can find online. You also might not want to get yourself on any watch lists. Seeds are a negative keyword for all Australian and New Zealand addresses because of customs restrictions.

There is a lot of fairly inexpensive jewelry out there. Some folks are signed up for the jewelry. But if costume jewelry isn’t your thing you might add it as a negative keywords. This is especially true if you also have ‘steampunk’, ‘silver’, ‘gold’, ‘dragon’ or ‘dinosaur’ as positive keywords as lots of packages with those tags are jewelry.

Bead is perhaps the most polarizing keywords. Lots of subscribers want beads and lots are enraged by even the suggestion that they might want beads. If you don’t want to pay for lots of glass beads on the mail, put ‘bead’ as a negative keywords.

Mayhem Caused By The Keyword ‘Mystery’

A subscriber to the bot wrote in today…

I have changed a keyword from being positive to negative yet am still getting packages with that keyword. When I set [my account] up originally I selected mystery as one of the key words, then since a lot of the packages had this keyword I removed it. I was still getting packages with the mystery keyword so I then added it as a negative keyword. How quickly do keyword changes take effect? As there have been new packages with the mystery keyword since I made that change.

The keyword ‘mystery’ and ‘random’ are unique. These words essentially refer to anything that you haven’t specifically asked for, which includes everything bought by the bot. So these keywords will match every product the bot has.

New orders that are “pending” where the bot hasn’t yet confirmed the order are also marked as ‘mystery’. So everyone will always see a few ‘mystery’ packages at the top of their account. Eventually those ‘mystery’ packages reveal the keywords they are tagged with and get a better estimated arrival date. Over time the packages become less mysterious.

It is impossible for the bot to buy packages not tagged as ‘random’ or ‘mystery’ so adding them as negative keywords won’t change anything. The ‘mystery’ packages that you see on your account are placeholders and once confirmed will change their keywords. If you really don’t want any mystery, you could have only one, clearly defined, positive keywords on your account. Then you will be guaranteed no mystery. But that is kind of besides the point here. We want some mystery and surprise.

Keyword changes take effect once a week with a few exceptions where they get updated more quickly. The bot runs a program to determine which products match which users’ keywords. These are the stats from that program last week…

Products matching keywords: average is 4,346 products per address
Required positive keywords: average is 26 keywords per address