Image containing a representation of Googles performance max campaign update

PPC Update: Google’s Performance Max

Steven BlassbergAdWords, Google, Pay Per Click

Image containing a representation of Googles performance max campaign update


Performance Max, Google Ads new campaign type, was rolled out to all advertisers in late 2021. In case you missed their announcement, here’s what you need to know.

The new campaign type now gives advertisers the opportunity to target all corners of Google’s advertising network via one campaign. Just load up a selection of headlines, descriptions, images and videos, and Google will do the rest…well almost…

Google still needs you to program in an ‘audience signal’ to inform their targeting efforts. This can be made up of remarketing audiences and custom audiences created out of lists of websites and search terms that a potential customer may have visited or typed into Google, respectively.

To give yourself the best chance of success, try testing multiple audience signals and asset groups at the same time.

Performance Max campaigns will show your ads over the Google Display Network, YouTube, Gmail, Discovery, and even Search. Up until this point, all campaigns that harness the Search Network have used keywords to target users; however this new campaign type does not use keywords.

What’s more, bidding is more or less taken care of by Google too. All other campaign types give you the option of manually adjusting your bids. With Performance Max, you can select only the ‘Maximise conversions’ or ‘Maximise conversion value’ auto-bidding strategies.

On top of that, you have the option to set a target cost per acquisition (CPA) or a target return on ad spend (ROAS) if required.

One advantage of this campaign type is that it has access to Google’s full inventory, where bids and placements will be automatically controlled to help the campaign reach its conversion targets. For example:

Under one target CPA, you may find your ads are constricted to showing 90% on the time on Search and 10% on Display.

If you then increase the target CPA, this will give Google more flexibility, increasing the percentage of Display impressions or even bringing other channels into the mix like YouTube or Gmail.

It’s still early days for Performance Max, and we’re yet to see how well it performs over a sustained period of time. Campaigns with this level of automation can be very hit and miss, and it’s often difficult to tell which elements are failing.

In any case, we’re excited to see how Performance Max could work alongside some of our customer campaigns and enhance our service.

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