What Google’s Newest Performance Max Updates Mean for Advertisers

  • Google made several key announcements about its advertising services this week
  • One of the most important announcements was that it was adding a wealth of new features to its Performance Max campaign types in Google Ads
  • These 6 new Performance Max features should improve how advertisers deploy, test, and analyze these campaigns

It’s been an exciting week in digital marketing news thanks to an array of new announcements from Google—some of which will impact advertisers immediately, while others may be setting the stage for substantial change in the future. In this blog, we’ll focus on news specific to the advertising giant’s Performance Max campaign type.

Performance Max has been a major success for Google Ads since its introduction, and at ADM we pride ourselves in taking full advantage of its versatility. Google even references our work with these campaigns as evidence of their effectiveness. That’s why we are excited to see Google announce not one, not two, but six additional updates to this important campaign type. 

Many of these updates chip away at the central criticism of AI-powered campaigns like Performance Max, which is that they can end up being a bit of a black box. They produce great results, but it can be difficult at times to glean insights and then apply those principles to other marketing channels. 

With updates that cover everything from landing page tests to demographic data to customer acquisition approaches, these campaigns are becoming more transparent and customizable. Let’s dive in and look at each new feature with a quick summary of what it may mean for advertisers. 

New Budget Pacing Insights

Advertisers can now get a deeper glimpse at how performance is tracking with real-time spending updates and conversion projections based on recent performance. This should allow brands to make Performance Max budget allocation decisions more quickly, with less guesswork.

New Customer Acquisition Goal

Because Performance Max campaigns are algorithm-driven, the campaign goal you associate with them plays a big role in how they serve and perform. Perhaps the biggest announcement Google made about Performance Max was the introduction of the new customer acquisition goal. For brands who want to prioritize growing their customer base, this update could quickly become an essential feature. This new feature is currently in beta. 

Customer Retention Goal

In tandem with the new customer acquisition goal, Google Ads is also rolling out a customer retention goal for Performance Max. This feature is designed to help brands reconnect with prior customers who have gone a long time without interacting/purchasing. For both this goal and the customer acquisition one, Google encourages advertisers to incorporate their own first-party data for better learning times and results. 

Detailed Demographics in Audience Insights

Google is bolstering Performance Max audience insights by including detailed user demographics, like age group and gender. This could not only help inform your Google Ads targeting strategy in other campaign types, but also your other digital marketing efforts if you find strong performance among unexpected demographics.

Final URL Expansion Testing 

Performance marketers do a lot of A/B testing, and Google Ads is now making that simpler—at least for landing page tests. Advertisers will now be able to test alternate landing pages in their Performance Max campaigns: The campaign will split a portion of your budget towards these alternate landing page URLs, so you can track which performs better. Like the new customer acquisition goal feature, this is also currently in beta.

IP Address Exclusions

While this might be the mildest of the new Performance Max updates, it’s certainly a welcome addition: Advertisers can now exclude select IP addresses, like their own, from Performance Max campaigns. That should help protect against any errant charges or reporting inaccuracy from employees clicking their brands’ own links. 

Google’s full release about these feature updates can be found here.

Keeping Up With Performance Max and Other Google Ads Updates

In digital marketing, it can be difficult to stay ahead of each new update that the major platforms introduce. As a Google Premier Partner agency, ADM has a proven track record of Google Ads excellence and access to Google Ads betas—so we’re able to test and incorporate these updates early to keep our clients ahead of the curve. If you’re interested in partnering with a performance marketing agency that prioritizes quick adoption and custom-built account strategies, don’t hesitate to reach out to the ADM team today.