Exclusive Features Of The New AdWords Experience

Robert Brady

Robert Brady

Google is rolling out a new interface for their AdWords advertising platform. Consider trying out these new features that are available exclusively in the new AdWords experience.

In March of 2016, Google announced the new AdWords experience. After having the “old” interface for 15 years, this was presented as a way to ensure the AdWords experience would be relevant for another 15 years, especially given the rise of video, apps and mobile devices.

The new AdWords experience was invite-only for the rest of 2016 and during 2017 the new interface began rolling out system-wide. Most of the accounts we work with saw it mid- to late-summer of last year as an option. For the last several months advertisers have had the choice to switch back and forth between the two interfaces, which was important because some features still aren’t in the new experience and some features exist in the old interface but won’t be making the move to the new experience.

For this post I’ll focus on some features that are available exclusively in the new AdWords experience. I wrote an in-depth post last month about the Promotion Extension, which I think is a great feature for ecommerce advertisers. We’ll cover 3 additional features today; the Overview Page, the Audience Manager, and call extension bid adjustments.

Overview Page

If you’re trying out the new interface for the first time, this will be the screen you start on. It’s basically a dashboard that shows you account-level performance. There are several different “widgets” that AdWords uses, but here is a screenshot of a simple account:


The top portion is just a graph that allows you to see up to 2 metrics across the date range chosen. Pretty similar to what was available in the old interface. However, the “widgets” below are new and present some very helpful information:

  • Keywords – This shows you your top 5 keywords. You can sort by cost, clicks or CTR to find the top performers. If you’re looking for a quick idea of which keywords warrant some additional time and attention, this is an excellent place to start.
  • Searches – This shows you actual queries that are triggering your ads. Mousing over the search shows you how many clicks & impressions were received and what keywords map to this query. You even have one-click options to add as a new keyword or a negative keyword, depending on the relevance and performance.
  • Most-shown ads – A good way to see which ad copy is getting the most action in your account.
  • Devices – Quickly see how your spend, impressions and clicks are split out by device. Each metric is a drop-down box and I recommend changing at least one of these to conversions. Then you can see potential discrepancies between where clicks or impressions are occurring versus where conversions are happening. This may help you see that while mobile gets a lot of clicks, it’s desktop that gets a higher proportion of the sales.
  • Networks – If you have the search partner network enabled, this is a good way to see if performance there is worth it.
  • Day & hour – I love this little visual because it used to take so much work to do this before. You’d need to download data, use pivot tables and conditional formatting whereas here you can see the same info at a glance. Great for seeing what times of day or days of the week are most active.

There are also widgets for Search auction insights (shows how you stack up against competitors), Campaigns (shows top campaigns, similar to the Keywords widget above), and Biggest changes (shows areas with the largest delta over the past 7 days compared to the previous 7 days; great for identifying issues or areas of opportunity quickly).

Audience Manager

More and more advertising is now being done based on audiences. Social networks utilize them almost exclusively and AdWords is making them more accessible and easier to work with by introducing an Audience Manager area. This is accessed by clicking the small wrench icon in the upper right and selecting “Audience manager”. You’ll then find yourself on a screen like this:

As you can see, there are two main areas; Remarketing and Custom Affinity. Remarketing allow you to show ads to people who have visited your site, but AFTER they’ve left. You can define audiences based on certain URLs or based on actions they took on the site (like making a purchase). Custom Affinity audiences are a newer feature that will require a full post in the future, but they’re very cool.

Call Extension Bid Adjustments

For advertisers whose primary goal is to drive phone calls, this is a helpful feature. If you can find it that is. This little nugget is hidden at the very bottom of the left side navigation under “Advanced bid adj.” I’ve put a red box around it below:

Right now, the only option you’ll see is Calls if you have a call extension enabled in the account. You can adjust your base bid from -90% to +900% depending on your needs. For example, let’s say you are bidding $25 on “flooded basement cleanup”. This is a situation where the first company to get called will likely get the job since it’s an immediate need with a heavy cost for delaying. If you want your ad to show higher when on a mobile device (with the call extension present, meaning a click on your add goes straight to the dialer of the phone) then you could say +25% here. That would mean your bid for a mobile search with call extension present is now $31.25, helping you get more of those phone calls.

And this isn’t all, here is a link that will let you read the full list of features available exclusively in the new AdWords experience as well as which features aren’t migrated yet.

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