Back in August of 2017, we wrote about the beta version of AdWords’ Ad Suggestions. At that time it was a beta that you could easily opt out of via a simple form. However, Google must feel the program went well because they’ve pushed it out into all accounts on the sly with the help of the new interface.
Basically, AdWords will take your existing ads and when it sees fewer than 3 active ads, it will create a variation (or two). That shows up in the Recommendations tab in the new interface where users can apply, edit or dismiss them. However, ads marked as auto-apply (new AdWords accounts automatically apply ad suggestions by default) will automatically be activated in the account after 14 days.
The official AdWord explanation goes to great pains to explain how limited the program is and how it will only help an account perform better. This is their leading jab:
Research has shown that ad groups with 3 or more high-quality ads can get up to 5% to 15% more clicks or conversions than ad groups with only 1 ad, provided ad rotation has been optimized.
Then the follow that with the real hook – “Free optimization of ad copy” (bolding theirs).
Here is the step-by-step process for opting out, using the new AdWords experience:
- From the home screen, click on “Settings” in the left navigation. This will take you to campaign settings.
- From the campaign settings screen, click on “Account Settings” at the top.
- Click on “Ad suggestions”.
- Select “Don’t automatically apply ad suggestions” radio button even though it isn’t recommended and then click “save”.
You will still be able to see the ads that AdWords suggests and you can apply them or edit them as you want. However, this will prevent AdWords from adding these changes without your explicit agreement. For industries where compliance is an issue (legal, healthcare, government, etc.) this is a lifesaver. For some small advertisers, this keeps you in control but still allows you to leverage the free ad optimization when & where you want.
Have you tried out AdWords’ Ad Suggestions in your account(s)? How has performance been? We’d love to hear your experience in the comments!