How to Navigate the New AdWords UI

The new AdWords (excuse me, Google Ads) Interface rolls out tomorrow, July 24, 2018. Say goodbye to the option of switching back to the UI you know and love. This is happening.

Now, first and foremost:

DON’T PANIC.

To be fair, Google gave us a lot of time to get used to the new user interface. The beta version started to roll out in Spring 2017 for advertisers, giving us over a year to vet the new experience. During the last year, Google has worked on moving all of the features over in waves, even working with advertisers like Seer to understand what we needed to see (one of the perks of being a #premierpartner).

Where the Key Components Have Moved To

  • All major tabs – Instead of being featured at the top in a left-to-right fashion, Google has moved them to a left-hand navigation bar next to the evergreen campaign navigation.
  • Dimensions – While the dimensions tab is no longer part of the main navigation, you can find the same info in “Predefined Reports” in the top right-hand corner under “Reports.”
  • Shared Negative Lists – If you’re the smart cookie who is using account-level negative lists, they’re still there, just nowhere near the Keyword tab. In the top right corner next to “Reports,” there’s a little wrench icon called “Tools.” That’s where the Shared Library can be found, along with the previous features like Keyword Planner, Conversions Actions and the new Bulk Actions.

Bottom line: If you’re having trouble looking for something, it has probably moved to one of the dropdowns in the top right-hand corner or over to the left.

Best Features of the New Interface

The PPC team at Seer has always been a hands-on kind of place, keeping a close eye on keyword bids, ad scheduling, and more. In the last year or so, we’ve put a much larger emphasis on the 3 A’s: Audience, Automation and Attribution. This is largely due to the fact that automated bidding strategies have become much more reliable than they were previously, which allows us to spend more time focused on understanding our audience data and customer journeys to provide the best experience for our client’s consumers.

Experiments

One of the best components of Google Ads is being able to run experiment campaigns, which is a feature that’s been around for a while. However, pulling data from the experiment campaigns in the old Ads interface was kind of a pain. In the new Ads experience, you can pull experiment data right alongside the original campaigns without having to navigate to a different screen like before. This was originally why I personally started using the new interface: to save me time as I pulled data on automation strategies.

For those of you who don’t know about experiments, you first have to create what’s called a “draft campaign” with different settings than the original campaign (Seer generally uses experiments to test out new automated bidding strategies alongside Manual CPC campaigns to control any initial violatitly). Once the draft campaign is created, you can run an experiment that takes a percentage of the original campaign’s budget to run with, say a 50/50 split test. (For more info on experiments and how to set them up, visit the Google Ads Help Center article).

Insights Galore

The new interface is also filled with tons of insights that will help advertisers keep a better pulse on major performance changes. Two of the most obvious changes are the new Overview and Recommendations (previously Opportunities) tabs. Both of these tabs show quick snapshots of opportunities related to budgets, keywords, bidding and more. If you only have a few minutes each day to check into your accounts/campaigns, make sure to work these two tabs into your daily routine.

Tip: One of Seer’s favorite features is the biggest changes visual, found on the Overview tab.

If you’re familiar with Seer, you know we’re all about ASIC, where the “A” stands for Audience. Other areas that will allow advertisers to dig into strategic opportunities are the new Landing Page tab and updated features in the Audience Manager (found under “Tools” in the Shared Library), which now includes Audience Insights and Audience Sources. All of these new features are designed to make optimizing your campaigns easier, whether it’s looking at landing page performance easily (compared to the previous method of downloading ad data and manually pivoting) or identifying non-utilized audiences that have a higher chance of converting based on their searching behavior.

More User-Friendly Than Ever

And if you’re still not sold on the new interface, you now have the ability to change the widths of your data columns, and updating the date range has become a lot more user-friendly. These additions are just there as nice design features.

Change is Good, People!

Sure, it’s never easy to move to a new tool, especially when you’ve been doing something one way for over 10 years. Definitely don’t like you have to fall in love with the new Ads UI right away, even with all of the great features I just mentioned. Even though most of the Seer team has already made the transition, it was not a completely smooth road to get there for any of us. We’re all making this permanent move together, so don’t worry! We’ll all be pros just in time for Q4!

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