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New-Look Google Ads: What Reviewers Are Saying

New-Look Google Ads: What Reviewers Are Saying

Google AdWords has changed.

Since last month, Google have been transitioning those with AdWords accounts to a new interface to be known as Google Ads. But it isn’t just the name which has changed, the updated platform has a number of new tools, features and layouts.

The update has been rolled out in a bid to provide advertisers with valuable insight, which combined with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning can help them to boost performance. However, any advertisers that want to continue using Google Ads with success will need to learn about and adapt to the new way of doing things if they wish to see sustainable success throughout their ad campaigns.

In this article we take a look at what the all new Google Ads has to offer and get some insight from the top businesses and organisations involved with the platform.

The Overview Tab

The first and most obvious change you will see when logging into the new platform are the changes to the overview tab. Where previously this tab was somewhat helpful in providing an overview of your data, it now truly provides insight into your campaigns and allows actions to be taken easily based on the data provided. sing the praises of the new dashboard, describing the fact that it is “ a great helper for reporting, showing account-wide trends for devices and time of day, biggest changes (compared to previous period), and other factors” and “now it’s actually enjoyable to look at”.

The new overview tab allows you to only draw on the data that you know matters the most to the success of your campaigns, giving you a quick and easy insight into performance and allowing you to act quickly to trends and issues.

“[You can] customise this page to show the metrics that matter to you, at first glance.”-  Digital 22

For example, say a new trend sees a large volume of searches using a keyword that lands them on your page. But that traffic does not bring any value to your business, the new overview page allows you to identify this and quickly add the keyword as a negative to your campaigns.

Tab Navigation

One update which is widely accepted as a negative is the eradication of customer relevant columns:

“The customer relevant columns chosen are not carried through, making the daily account deep dive more time-consuming.” –

This is an issue, especially for those running multiple campaigns for multiple clients, as it is likely to lead to a need for considerable additional resources in monitoring.

Although quite rightly point out that “you can set views with the information needed at every level of an account”, this is likely to be both time consuming to set up and to check on a daily basis when compared to the old method.

Smart Recommendations

Probably the coolest update on the new Google Ads platform is the introduction of AI and machine learning as a way to help advertisers quickly improve their campaigns and get more from their ads.

At a top level this works by providing actionable guidance rather than simply data or information.

“The benefit of this recommendations engine is it gives PPC marketers optimization guidance which helps answer the question, “What do I do with this data?” – Search Engine Land

Going deeper still, Google will now also generate ad suggestions based on the data held from your previous campaigns.

“these ad suggestions may save hours of having to create and test multiple ads per ad group” – Wordstream

In order to increase results and actionable data, many advertisers opt to run multiple ads for each campaign. According to Wordstream, this is for good reasons. They highlight the fact “Advertisers who have multiple ads average a 21% higher CTR than those that only have one!”

Although some advertisers are worried that automated ads will lack quality and depth, the most recent reviews of the new feature do not align with this fact.

“we manually reviewed the ones in our accounts – all the ads proved to be well composed and relevant to ad group”

“The automatically created ads have a 10% higher CTR than those manually written.” – Wordsteam

We are excited to see whether this new features proves effective in the long term. If so it is likely to free up marketers time to focus on wider marketing goals and strategic direction of their marketing campaigns rather than in the smaller nuances of each ad content.

Tool Updates

The tools available for use on the new Google Ads platform are widely the same as before. However, the ‘Display Planner’ tool has been discontinued. This has proved a negative for reviewers.

“When using managed placements for display, we’d ideally like to have an idea of the sizes of creatives those placements support, to efficiently use resources.”

On the flip side, Google Ads now makes ‘Search Attribution’ easily available. This allows advertisers to gather behavioural insights into users ‘Device Path’, ‘Path’ and conversion related data so they can make informed actions on their campaigns.

“This is much more useful tool than planning for display”

Promotion Extensions

With the new update comes new extension options for your ads. These are particularly useful if advertisers main goal is to make direct sales.

These extensions allow you highlight special offers alongside your ads, which can be either a set figure or as a percentage off. The new platform also allows you to customise these extensions by updating language, currency and promotional requirements (‘only valid on offers over’, discount codes etc).

Promotional extensions also provide a great level of flexibility depending on what exactly it is you are trying to promote.

“They can be added at account, campaign or ad group level, so you’re free to promote your entire stock, specific lines or even individual items.” Conversion Works

 Showcase Shopping

One other exciting update now available on the new Google Ads platform is an entirely new ad format: Showcase Shopping.

This format is much as it sounds, allowing you to highlight a number of your businesses products or services in one ad. Again, this is particularly helpful for ecommerce businesses and those whose main advertising goal is direct sales.

“[Showcase shopping is] essentially Shopping ads that don’t necessarily promote a single product, but a range of them.” Digital 22

This is welcome news to many advertisers. Google Ads often offer the first and most important touch point with a business’s potential customers. By allowing those businesses to extend the content of those ads and promote a wider offering they are more likely to gain attention from the right people.

“This ad format lets you group together related products from your inventory to introduce your brand to potential customers searching for broad terms, such as wedding dresses or garden furniture.” Conversion Works

Call Prioritisation

Many lead focused businesses use call extensions on their ads as a way to drive viewers to call the business and generate leads. This has always been popular as it gives ad viewers and easy option for finding out more and speaking to a knowledgeable individual.

For those advertisers, the new Google Ads allows you to adjust the priority of your selected extensions.

“If you find yourself being a lead focused advertiser, you may wish to now implement bid adjustment on your call extensions to ensure they are the most prioritised extension within your account and auction.” Digital 22

Targeting Household Income

Previously only available within the Display Network toolkit, Google have now rolled out household income targeting across Search Network campaigns. This is likely to be welcome news to advertisers, as the tool arguably has much greater applicability to search ads than display ads.

“This feature is within the “Demographics” tab and then “Household Income”, where you can then apply bid adjustments on those groups best likely to resonate with your ads.” Digital 22

This is particularly useful for those selling common products or services but to a niche segment of a market. For example, watch brands tend to stretch from budget to super luxury. Targeting the ‘new watch’ keyword for a luxury brand is likely to bring in substantial traffic which is of no value. The new household income targeting tool will allow advertiser to better segment their audiences and gain greater results.

It is clear that through their transition from Google AdWords to Google Ads, Google have made some significant changes to the platform. The majority of these changes are welcome and likely to make advertisers jobs significantly easier. There is an obvious focus on allowing businesses to gain greater customisation over their ads and demonstrate additional value through new ad extensions and updates.

The introduction of smart technology such as AI and machine learning indicates a promising evolution of the platform. These technologies are likely to make marketers jobs easier and allow them to focus on the wider marketing landscape rather than the smaller tactical processes that currently consume their time.

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Peter Johnson
Peter is a Google AdWords specialist, with associated skills in Bing Ads, Twitter Ads and Facebook Advertising.