Google Performance Max Campaign Updates Coming in 2023

google pmax campaigns new features

Just last week, Google Ads announced several updates coming to Performance Max campaigns. These updates will give advertisers more control and insights into how Performance Max campaigns perform.

They mentioned that they are slowly rolling out, so some accounts may not see them yet. However, we want to show you these updates and how they work with current campaigns, so you will know how to implement them once they appear in your account.

Account Level Negative Keywords Being Added

The first update is account-level negative keywords. This update was announced before last week’s announcement, but it is still worth covering. To ensure that your Performance Max campaigns include account-level negative keywords, you need to go to a different section.

First, click on “Settings,” and then click on “Account settings.” Scroll down to “Negative keywords,” and you will see that it now applies to Search, Shopping, and Performance Max campaigns.

account level negative keywords

However, depending on the size of your account, there is one thing you should know.

You can only add up to 1,000 negative keywords at the account level using this setting. So, if you have many account-level negative keywords, and you want to make sure they apply to your Performance Max campaigns, remove any Search and Shopping only negative keywords.

1000 negatives to account level

Then, do it manually in the “Tools & settings” with a negative keyword list. To add negative keywords, click on the blue plus button, and either type them in line by line or paste a list of negative keywords. These negative keywords will be applied to all Search, Shopping, and Performance Max campaigns.

If you need to, you can always click on “Download” to review them and see which ones you may want to remove or add. Other than that, this update is pretty straightforward.

So, again, this update should be available in your account, and if not, it will be coming very soon.

Campaign Level Brand Exclusions for Performance Max

The next upcoming update will be campaign-level brand exclusions. The goal of this update is to prevent Performance Max campaigns from appearing for any branded queries that you want to exclude, specifically for only Search and Shopping campaigns.

google pmax campaign brand exclusion list
Source: Google

When you include some brand exclusions, Google will also try to include misspellings of your branded keywords and any potential searches of your brand name in a foreign language.

What is interesting is that Google will provide a list of the brand names to exclude. Additionally, if any brands are missing from the list, you can request additional brand names to be included in the list.

This feature will be at the campaign level, and we personally have not seen it in any of our accounts yet, so it is something to look out for.

Page Feeds Are Coming to Performance Max Campaigns

The next feature that’s coming out soon and is going to be very familiar if you’re running DSA campaigns will be page feeds. To show this, I’ll hop into one of our DSA campaigns. Here I am in the data feeds section under business data. To find this, you’d go up to “Tools and settings” and under “Setup,” there’s “Business data.”

In a typical Dynamic search ad campaign, we can create a feed list that can tell Google which pages to use as well as which pages not to use.

dynamic search ad feed

Then, if we go to one of the campaign settings for a Dynamic search ad campaign, we can expand the “Dynamic search ads setting”.

Since it is a setting at the campaign level, you can either tell Google to use all URLs (which is currently what your Performance and Max campaigns are probably doing) or only use URLs from page feeds. When you do this, you can hand-select which feeds you would like to use.

dynamic search ads settings

For many Dynamic search ad campaigns, we’ll create a page feed of just product URLs or specific product URLs, just a page feed of just the services URLs, or maybe just a page feed of just all of your blogs, whether you’re looking to promote it or want to make sure that those are excluded from your Dynamic search ad campaigns.

google pmax page feed
Source: Google

The ability to control what pages users can and cannot see is going to be very helpful and impactful for your Performance Max campaigns.

Campaign Experiments for Performance Max Campaigns

Another update that is slowly rolling out, but we’re starting to see in a few of our accounts, is campaign experiments for Performance Max campaigns.

google pmax campaign experiments

If we go down and click on “New experiment,” we can see “Performance Max experiment” is now an option. If we click on this, there are a few different experiment types: test any specific uplifts with Performance Max, or if you’re running shopping campaigns, test Performance Max versus standard shopping.

pmax experiment types

The purpose of the uplift test is to try and see if adding Performance Max to your account drives incremental conversions or conversion value.

Running the test against standard shopping is pretty straightforward. You will choose a standard shopping campaign that you already have set up within the account and run it against the Performance Max campaign targeting the exact same products.

Then, you will see which one performs better: Performance Max or your own custom setup.

Performance Insights and Reporting for Asset Groups in PMAX

The next option coming soon will be set at the asset group level. Finally, we’re going to be able to get a little bit better reporting because right now, the low, good, best level type of performance reporting we get may not be the most helpful for your account.

google pmax asset group level report

So, soon Google Ads will be adding conversion, conversion value, cost, and other metrics again at the asset group level. That’ll give you a lot better insights on which assets or asset types within this column right here are actually performing to see which ones you may need to change or possibly completely test a whole new type of asset group.

Budget Pacing Insights

Another update that’s coming will be budget pacing insights, and I assume it’s going to live within this Insight section here. This campaign has everything paused, so it’s really not going to show me anything, but besides the conversions and cost information we get, we’re going to look at budget pacing.

google pmax campaign budget pacing insights

But what you will see within the Insight section for your performance Max campaigns would be how much your current performance Max campaigns have spent, what they are projected to spend all depending on which date ranges you select, as well as the current conversions and CPA information that’s already included. This could be an important feature if you are investing more within performance Max campaigns, whether it’s testing or ongoing.

FAQs

What is the purpose of campaign-level brand exclusions?

Campaign-level brand exclusions prevent Performance Max campaigns from appearing for any branded queries that advertisers want to exclude, specifically for only search and shopping campaigns.

What are page feeds?

Page feeds are a feature that is familiar to advertisers running DSA campaigns. They allow advertisers to hand-select which feeds they would like to use to control what pages users can and cannot see, which is helpful and impactful for Performance Max campaigns.

What are campaign experiments?

Campaign experiments are an update that allows advertisers to test any specific uplifts with Performance Max and to test Performance Max versus standard shopping campaigns. The purpose of the uplift test is to see if adding Performance Max to the account drives incremental conversions or conversion value.

What is the purpose of performance insights and reporting for asset groups in PMAX?

Performance insights and reporting for asset groups in PMAX provide advertisers with better reporting on the low, good, and best level type of performance reporting, which may not be the most helpful for the account.

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