Google has been teasing us with an AdWords update for months now.
Their UI hasn’t changed in years. The same old, utilitarian interface we’ve all (begrudgingly) used.
But Google AdWords has just finished rolling out the latest AdWords update.
And now, it’s not in beta anymore. Anyone using the AdWords platform has access to it.
If you counted AdWords out due to the lack of specificity in it’s targeting options and reporting data, you’re in luck.
You can now target with incredible data that competes with the likes of Twitter and Facebook’s custom audiences.
Here’s everything you need to know about the new Google AdWords experience.
While this new AdWords Experience may sound great, it also presents a major problem: the platform is going to take some getting used to.
Finding the standard elements that you used to use isn’t as easy. Features aren’t in the same location. And even some of the metrics are different.
You can quickly get lost in the shuffle trying to keep up with this new update.
But there’s also an upside.
Actually, there are multiple, major upsides with newly-added features. These features are game-changing for delivering your ads to the right audience.
Just keep on reading and you’ll see!
How To Navigate Google AdWords Latest Update (Or Change It Back)
The new Google AdWords experience is here, and it’s available for anyone using the platform.
Everyone gets Google AdWords latest update if they want it.
Here’s what the new experience currently looks like when you navigate to your account dashboard:
Pretty snazzy, huh? (Do people still say that?)
Compared to the old account dashboard, this is a big functionality and usability change.
Updates like this are often a mixed bag when it comes to reception from the public.
Some love it and have been dying for a refresh. But that also means many die-hard users are going to have to spend extra time getting used to it. Uncovering the same features will take some getting used to.
If you don’t want a change, you can always revert back to the old AdWords for now.
To do so, click the three-dot drop-down menu in the top right corner of your AdWords dashboard and then select “Return to previous AdWords”:
This will instantly take you back to the old platform, allowing you to reminisce about the glory days.
But if you want to get accustomed to the new platform, which is probably a good idea, I’ll walk you through the basics and show you how to find the most important sections that you use daily.
To get started, if you run multiple accounts, you can see them all on the left-hand side of your dashboard:
This is now called the manager account dashboard:
Meaning you can see all of the data for all of the accounts that you manage. You can even get a detailed analysis of performance right from the dashboard.
To pair with this, Google AdWords instituted the dynamic insights tab into the dashboard section, giving you detailed insights on campaign performance that would normally require a bit of analysis on your own:
Now, instead of the annoying notifications that you used to get about “opportunities,” AdWords has an entire, detailed section dedicated to it:
These suggestions are much more actionable and give you exact steps for implementing them too.
Once you’ve selected a specific account, things start to look pretty similar. They just have a different structure.
For example, you can navigate to all of your most-clicked buttons on the left-hand sidebar now instead of above your data:
Similarly, you can manage and create all of your ad extensions in the same space with a consolidated view:
Another new addition is the three-button drop-down menu:
You can access all of the most-used tools here, like the keyword planner, negative keyword lists, conversion tracking, and more.
It’s similarly structured to Facebook’s platform now where everything is grouped under specific sections like “Shared Library” and “Bulk Actions.”
Now, your reporting data can be accessed from the top menu bar as well:
From here you can click the blue “+” button to create and generate diverse reports.
You can even create custom dashboards to get access to your most important data, just like you can do in Google Analytics:
This will be a big, time-saving feature that allows you to see the data you want to focus on first.
The new platform can seem strange at first, as it’s a pretty large overhaul in design and structure.
Getting used to it will take some time, but in the end, it’s worth it.
Why? For the new features that are going to take AdWords to the next level.
Here they are.
Three New, Game-Changing Features
Google was smart enough to not just give us a new UI experience.
They knew that simply overhauling the system to make it pretty wasn’t going to turn any heads or convert any skeptics.
With the new interface update, we’ve also received some critical updates in the form of game-changing features.
Here are the top new features and how to use them ASAP.
1. The audience management section
Just when you thought that Facebook was the only place to dominate custom audiences, Google stepped in and proved us all wrong.
Now there is an entire section in AdWords dedicated to audience management.
Here you can target different custom audiences and create new bids based on audiences as well.
To navigate to it, click your three-button menu drop-down and click on the audience manager tab:
You can manage all of your audiences in this one place, as well as generate audience insights:
When you click the blue “+” button you can choose between a few different custom remarketing options:
Creating audiences on AdWords has never been this easy, and now it’s all located in one dashboard, making it even easier to manage.
2. Promotion ad extensions
AdWords just recently rolled out a new addition in their latest update to the ad extensions list.
Unless you’ve got select beta access to this feature in the old version of Google AdWords, you’ll need to perform the update to use it.
Meaning these features are exclusive.
Promotion extensions are new, ad-based extensions that allow you to show, advertise, and link to specific promotional-based offers in your search network ads.
For example, you could use them to highlight a specific sale during the holidays.
Or maybe you’ve got an eBook for sale for a limited time.
The options are limitless.
Now you don’t have to waste all of your tiny ad copy section talking about it. You have another chance to promote more products with a single ad.
You can even use it to do the opposite and double down on the promotion.
Some users are seeing average CTRs near 10% using these new extensions and, in general, they are driving the highest click-through rate out of any extension available.
Getting started with these new promotion extensions is easy, too.
Head to your campaign dashboard, click on the ads and extensions tab, and select the promotion extension:
Next, you can customize everything about your promotion extension, including the occasion, discount type, and date ranges:
For the occasion section, you can choose between tons of different holidays to target. If it’s not for any specific occasion, you can always leave it blank, and it will show up as a non-holiday promotion.
When you select one from the list, you’ll see that in bold on your new ads to help users know exactly what they are getting when they click:
Customize your final URL landing page, and you’ll be driving promotional sales traffic in no time.
All you’ve gotta do is add some new extensions to your ads, and you can start to promote tons of new deals for any occasion.
3. Incredible demographic targeting options
Facebook and Twitter were and (somewhat) still are the kings of audience targeting.
Each platform has incredible features that allow you to create super remarketing lists where you can target income, job seniority, and more.
Even LinkedIn jumped aboard. They’re starting to add these in-depth features.
Thankfully, Google has finally added some new, diverse targeting options in the form of demographic data.
The first set of demographics that they’ve added is household income targeting in the search network.
This was a feature on the old interface, but it only applied to highly specific, local-based ads.
But now, it’s for all ads within the search network.
To access the data, simply select the demographics tab and click the household income option:
Now, you can get a clear picture of the household income data from your search network ads.
This has big implications for the way that PPC marketers use the search network to advertise.
For example, you can target ads to different audiences with different price points.
Meaning you no longer have to worry about attracting traffic that won’t be able to purchase or downselling to traffic that wants a high-end product.
On top of this addition, now the parental status targeting options are available for the search network rather than just the display network.
To access these, select the new parental status tab on your dashboard:
Parental status targeting for the search network is a big deal.
This can have a huge impact on success for brands that sell products catered to parents, like toys and games.
This new search network feature could play an important role in campaigns dedicated to the holidays and major shopping events.
Although we don’t have data on most of them yet, these new search network features are going to be a big hit with advertisers looking for more customization.
Google AdWords Has More Updates On The Way
Those are three of the most game-changing features that AdWords has installed on the new platform.
They have vastly improved the search network with new targeting options, extensions, and audience management.
But that’s not all. Google still has a few critical updates in the works according to Search Engine Land.
We can expect the following features soon:
- Landing page performance grading: This new feature will give advertisers insight into how their landing page performs in relation to their ad.
Instead of just the quality score to go off of, advertisers will be able to get insight on optimization and improvements to lower costs and drive more conversions.
- Customizable in-market audiences: These new audiences are coming to the search network soon. They will allow a given advertiser to tailor audiences based on performance, website, and business goals.
- Attribution: Google’s new attribution will no longer just be for search funnels. This attribution tool will help PPC advertisers see upper and mid-funnel conversion credit rather than just last-touch.
On top of that, it’s designed to give informed decisions for bidding optimization.
- Store sales management: Lastly, this new stores measurement and management feature will allow retailers to import important store transactions into AdWords via third-party services.
AdWords is already making some big changes in the coming months.
The new AdWords experience is vastly superior.
The UI experience and features have both received massive upgrades.
We can now target users with the same specificity and detail that we can on Facebook.
Custom audiences aren’t the only form of detailed targeting that works anymore.
The new experience is open and ready for any advertiser to take advantage of on Google.
If you don’t like it, or if you’re a scrooge and love the ‘good old days,’ you can always switch back.
The new experience might take some time to get used to, but the new features are here to stay and will only increase and improve with time.
Try taking advantage of these demographics and extensions to start bringing in new visitors and closing more sales.
These features are currently exclusive to the new experience, so if you want to get started with them, you need to update.
Thankfully, it’s free and easy to do for anyone using the platform today.