Manage upgraded sitelinks in the new version of AdWords Editor

Starting today, you can download the latest version of AdWords Editor, which now supports upgraded sitelinks for enhanced campaigns. With version 10.2, you can:
  • View and manage sitelinks and settings, including device preference, using the new "Sitelinks (upgraded)" tab.
  • Add, edit, or remove sitelinks at the campaign or ad group level.
  • Copy and paste upgraded sitelinks between campaigns or ad groups.
  • Include upgraded sitelinks in imports and exports.
To learn more about managing upgraded sitelinks in AdWords Editor, and to read more about the new version, see the version 10.2 release notes.

Note: All AdWords campaigns are now upgraded to enhanced campaigns. As such, AdWords Editor 10.2 only supports enhanced campaigns.

The next time you launch AdWords Editor, you'll see a prompt to upgrade to the new version. To learn more about upgrading, including how to keep unposted changes and comments when you upgrade, please review these instructions. You can also download the new version from the AdWords Editor Help Center.

Support for previous versions of AdWords Editor will continue for four months to allow you time to upgrade. To ensure uninterrupted use of AdWords Editor, you will need to upgrade by December 13, 2013.

Posted by Rob Newton, Inside AdWords Crew

Upgraded extensions to help you reach the constantly connected consumer

People are now constantly connected, searching and browsing the web across several devices throughout the day. As part of AdWords enhanced campaigns, we improved sitelink, call, and app extensions to help you reach people more effectively in this multi-screen world. Advertisers will have access to a lot of benefits after upgrading their extensions, so we encourage you to upgrade early to start using these new features:
  • Show mobile-specific messaging and phone numbers directly in your ad 
  • Use ad group-level extensions to more precisely control which extensions show for each ad
  • Schedule extensions to run on certain days or during specific times so you can align your ads to your business hours
  • Review detailed reports, such as performance for each individual sitelink to help you optimize for ROI
It’s easy to upgrade your extensions. Visit this Help Center article to learn how. We’ll begin automatically upgrading legacy (existing) extensions on September 23, 2013. Below are some details about the upgrade process.

What happens during the auto-upgrade
During the auto-upgrade, we’ll upgrade extensions from campaigns that only have legacy extensions. For campaigns with both legacy and upgraded extensions, we’ll assume you’ve already gone through the upgrade process, and will mark your legacy extensions as deleted. Learn more

You’ll be able to view statistics for all of your extensions, including legacy and deleted ones, in AdWords reports.  Extension performance statistics will be reset they they’re upgraded, but your historical reports will still be available. Upgrading early means you start accruing stats on the new extensions now.  Learn more

To ensure your sitelink extensions continue to show when the auto-upgrade begins on September 23, please make sure that your sitelinks follow these two policies:
  • 25-character limit policy Shorter sitelinks perform better because they provide a clear, succinct message to users searching on Google.  Starting on September 23, sitelinks are required to have no more than 25 characters.  
  • Unique sitelinks policy Customers have a better experience when they land on a unique page that matches the content from the ad they clicked on.  Each new sitelink in a campaign or ad group must link to a unique landing page with original content. 
Many advertisers are already taking advantage of these upgraded features
Miller’s Bakery, for example, uses mobile-optimized call extensions to display a “call button” with its ads.  They also use the scheduling feature to make sure this button only appears between 4 a.m. and 9 p.m., when their staff can respond to customer calls. After hours, the call button is removed and the ad directs searchers to a website contact form. These two features work together to help the bakery show potential customers the right ad at the right time, tailored to the right device.

We hope you find these new features useful and encourage you to upgrade your extensions before September 23, 2013 to ensure that all of your extensions continue to show.

Posted by Karen Yao, Senior Product Manager

Enhancing AdWords for a constantly connected world

Today we’re upgrading AdWords, by rolling out enhanced campaigns. This is a first step to help you more simply and smartly manage your ad campaigns in today’s multi-device world.

Why enhanced campaigns?
People are constantly connected and moving from one device to another to communicate, shop and stay entertained. In fact, a recent study of multi-device consumers found that 90% move sequentially between several screens to accomplish a task. There’s also a proliferation of new devices — PCs, laptops, tablets, smartphones, hybrid devices, mini-tablets, televisions, and more. And there are many more digital screens and devices to come, with the lines between them continuing to blur. For example, as devices converge, consumer behaviors on tablets and desktops are becoming very similar.

This creates great opportunities for businesses, but can also make marketing more complex and time-consuming. For example, a pizza restaurant probably wants to show one ad to someone searching for “pizza” at 1pm on their PC at work (perhaps a link to an online order form or menu), and a different ad to someone searching for “pizza” at 8pm on a smartphone a half-mile from the restaurant (perhaps a click-to-call phone number and restaurant locator). Signals like location, time of day, and the capabilities of the device people are using have become increasingly important in showing them the right ad.

With enhanced campaigns, instead of having to cobble together and compare several separate campaigns, reports and ad extensions to do this, the pizza restaurant can easily manage all of this in one single place. Enhanced campaigns help you reach people with the right ads, based on their context like location, time of day and device type, across all devices without having to set up and manage several separate campaigns.

Key features
Here’s an overview of some key features.
  1. Powerful marketing tools for the multi-device world
    People want search results that are relevant for the context they are in — their device, location and the time of day. Enhanced campaigns help you better manage your campaigns and budgets for this multi-device world. With bid adjustments, you can manage bids for your ads across devices, locations, time of day and more — all from a single campaign.

    Example: A breakfast cafe wants to reach people nearby searching for "coffee" or "breakfast" on a smartphone. Using bid adjustments, with three simple entries, they can bid 25% higher for people searching a half-mile away, 20% lower for searches after 11am, and 50% higher for searches on smartphones. These bid adjustments can apply to all ads and all keywords in one single campaign.

  2. Smarter ads optimized for varying user contexts
    People on the go or near your store may be looking for different things than someone sitting at their desk. With enhanced campaigns, you’ll show ads across devices with the right ad text, sitelink, app or extension, without having to edit each campaign for every possible combination of devices, location and time of day.

    Example: A national retailer with both physical locations and a website can show ads with click-to-call and location extensions for people searching on their smartphones, while showing an ad for their e-commerce website to people searching on a PC — all within a single campaign.

  3. Advanced reports to measure new conversion types
    Technology is enabling people to take action on your ads in new ways. Potential customers may see your ad and download your app, or they may call you. It’s been hard for marketers to easily measure and compare these interactions. To help you measure the full value of your campaigns, enhanced campaigns enables you to easily count calls and app downloads as conversions in your AdWords reports.

    Example: You can count phone calls of 60 seconds or longer that result from a click-to-call ad as a conversion in your AdWords reports, and compare them to other conversions like leads, sales and downloads.
Upgrading to enhanced campaigns
Enhanced campaigns will roll out to advertisers as an option over the next few weeks, and we plan to upgrade all campaigns in mid-2013.

Enhanced campaigns are designed to help you succeed in a multi-screen world, but we know that transitioning may involve some initial changes. Here are some resources to help you:
Over the coming weeks we’ll dive into the new features with tips and best practices on the Inside AdWords blog and on our Google+ page. We’d love your feedback.

Unique sitelinks policy will be more proactively enforced

Sitelinks give users a choice of destinations on your website that they can visit directly from your text ads. Hopefully you’ve already been using sitelinks to improve your campaign performance. Maybe you’re now preparing your campaigns to be eligible for enhanced sitelinks, which offer an even bigger boost.

Our existing policy has required each sitelink in a campaign to link to a different landing page. That means a user would have a meaningfully different experience on the landing page from each sitelink. Recently, though, we've noticed an increase in the number of sitelinks created with the same landing page URLs or identical content. So starting today, we are beginning more proactive enforcement of our policy.

How it will work
We’ll initially focus on new sitelinks and any sitelinks that you change. As your ads are being served, our systems will verify that your sitelinks meet the policy standards. Sitelinks that don’t meet the standards will be restricted from appearing.

Impact on format and performance
To increase the chances of having more sitelinks shown with your ads, we recommend loading 6-10 unique sitelinks into your campaigns. Having fewer eligible sitelinks could keep your ad from showing in larger 2-line and 3-line formats, where more eligible sitelinks are required. Remember, larger formats are more visible and have higher average clickthrough rates (CTR). And if you don’t have enough eligible sitelinks in your campaign, then your ads may not display sitelinks at all.

Future enforcement with existing sitelinks
We realize that manually checking and fixing duplicates among your existing sitelinks and landing pages might take some time. So we’re delaying proactive enforcement with existing sitelinks for a few months. But don’t wait until the last minute. And remember, any sitelink that you add or change will be subject to proactive enforcement right away.

Getting started
We suggest doing a basic sweep, starting with campaigns that show sitelinks most often. These are probably your campaigns with branded keywords, like the name of your business and its best-known products and services. Here’s how you can work through this using the AdWords interface.
  1. Log into the AdWords interface and click on the “Ad Extensions” tab.
  2. Select “Sitelinks Extensions” from the View drop-down menu.
  3. Sort your sitelink extensions by impressions or clicks by clicking on the column header.
  4. Click on each sitelink in the top campaign and follow it through to its landing page (there’s no charge for these clicks).
  5. Fix any duplicates you find by hovering over the extension area and clicking the pencil icon (see image below).

You can then work your way down through each campaign in your account. If you want to be completely thorough, you’ll need cross-check the landing pages on your Ads and Keywords tab with those of your sitelinks for each campaign.

For more details or help with sitelinks, please visit the AdWords Help Center or contact AdWords customer support.

Enhanced sitelinks rolling out globally

In February, we announced enhanced sitelinks on desktop search ads. We display enhanced sitelinks by combining multiple sitelinks and closely related search ads into a larger nested format.

Early testing showed that enhanced sitelinks could make ads that appear above the organic search results even more useful. And they could lead to significantly higher clickthrough rates for an advertiser than regular 2-line and 3-line sitelinks.

Over the last several months, we’ve continued to improve the ad systems for creating enhanced sitelinks and determining when they’re most useful. Now, we’ve begun to roll them out in all countries where AdWords is available.

Preparing your campaigns
You can follow these tips to prepare your campaign to show enhanced sitelinks.
  1. Enhanced sitelinks can only show when your ad is above the organic search results. If a "top vs. other" report shows that your ads have few impressions in a top ad position, you can try increasing your Quality Score, increasing your max CPC bid, or a combination of the two.
  2. Add 6-10 sitelinks, each with a unique landing page.
  3. Have multiple active ads in your account with the same landing page URLs as your sitelinks. One ad to match each unique sitelink is the bare minimum.
Like other forms of sitelinks, enhanced sitelinks are generated automatically so they might vary in appearance. And you might not see them show 100% of the time even when you’re eligible.

Reporting and optimizing
Click costs and reporting work the same with enhanced sitelinks as with other forms of sitelinks. If you decide to optimize your account around enhanced sitelinks, we suggest that you always evaluate your changes against multiple performance metrics (e.g., volume and cost effectiveness), not just whether CTR is increasing.

Learn more and share
For more details about sitelinks, please visit the AdWords Help Center. If you’re feeling social, you can ask questions and share tips at the AdWords Community.