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In this week’s PPCChat session, PPCers discussed about the Google Ads features, what they are experimenting with, what features they wished were added, the most unused features, the features they dislike and more. Hosted by Nils Rooijmans, here is the screencap of the session.

Q1: What (new) features in the Google Ads platform are you experimenting with currently?

1. Discovery Ads in NL 2. Free product listings on Shopping 3. Max Conversion Value bidding – @ThatSearchGuyNL

not sure how we’re defining ‘new’ but I really like my Custom Affinity and Custom Intent audiences. yep. one thing I REALLY like is that it lets you add keywords or a url. you better believe I put my competitor’s landing pages in my audiences ;)– @JuliaVyse

I’m not really experimenting with any new features at the moment. – @NeptuneMoon

not quite currently – but the latest one i tested – Discovery Ads campaigns – @mindswanppc

Dynamic showcase shopping ads – @SarahScarfeMktg

Leads Extensions. Taking Reccomendations to heart. TV bid modifiers. – @ferkungamaboobo

Discovery, Local, and finally started leaning more heavily into the UI’s bid strats rather than 3rd party platforms – @JonKagan

We are delving more into lead form extensions, custom audiences, local ads – @ynotweb

Really excited to try targeting places in Custom Audiences (formerly Custom Intent). h/t @kbergs97 for finding this feature last week – @shepzirnheld

Q2: What do you think are the most underused features in Google Ads?

There are so many – notes, scripts, automated rules, bid modifiers, some ad extensions (structured snippets, price, promotion and leads) – @SarahScarfeMktg

Display campaigns and Ad Variations. – @jord_stark

Youtube Video builder & Conversion Sets with tCPA – @selley2134

My top 3: – broad match – shared placement exclusions – and, of course, scripts – @ThatSearchGuyNL

hmmm, kind of depends on the vertical. I have almost no shopping going on because no ecom clients, as an example. – @JuliaVyse

Local and Waze both work really well for my restaurant clients. a bit limited on the optimization options, just like app campaigns. – @JuliaVyse

Website call tracking – @JonKagan

Really, I’m gonna say those Recommendations. It’s really telling you a lot more than you think, even if you don’t follow them. The other might be audiences in search (which I still haven’t played with much)  – @ferkungamaboobo

Scripts, Responsive search ads, scripts..and oh did i say scripts??? – @mindswanppc

Audiences, video ads, local ads, discovery campaigns – @ynotweb

I still see a lot of accounts using ETAs without 3rd headlines or 2nd descriptions. They haven’t updated their ads for years. – @leo_pinon09

I might get some hate for this, but I don’t care. Display campaigns. When was the last time you personally bought something from a display ad? I’ll wait.. There’s much better ways for brand exposure, even at a cheaper CPM/CPV. – @RyBen3

Q3: What (new) features in Google Ads make you pop that bottle of champagne?

I’m very excited about lead extensions, image extensions and dynamic showcase shopping. – @SarahScarfeMktg

Still waiting to see how new call ads shape up. Video ad extensions look really promising too. – @jord_stark

My top 3: – FREE listings in Shopping – Discovery Ads – Blown up ad headlines …and, of course, the (5th?) time image extensions are in beta. – @ThatSearchGuyNL

Most of the newer features are geared for e-commerce, so I have not done much with them. – @NeptuneMoon

I havent set it up just yet but I’m pretty excited for automatically updating customer match lists. No more uploads! – @selley2134

Image extensions ftw. My travel and resto clients are pretty pleased.  – @JuliaVyse

free product listings, leads extensions, image extensions, custom audiences – @ynotweb

The one that doesn’t give me a headache…still waiting for it – @JonKagan

Q4: What features in Google Ads frustrate you the most?

I mostly get annoyed when features are taken away. let me optimize my app campaigns! and my local campaigns! can we please just add a toggle for exclusions? I don’t want app placements in all my campaigns, and there are times I really want them. let me make that choice easily and simply. – @JuliaVyse

Hands down: Google Recommendations – @ynotweb

Smart shopping and lack of visibility and management (can’t add negative KWs) 2. RSAs lack of visibility to what is actually working (only getting impressions). I’ll also add – they can do something better with the competitor insight report, bring back placement research (which they won’t because they want it to be automatic) – @360vardi

My top 3: – ads getting disapproved for no legit reason – inability to target Search Partners separately – hidden “nudges” to make you switch to smart bidding, ie default switch to eCPC for every new conversion you create – @ThatSearchGuyNL

sooo…..a summary of last week’s chat?? here’s are my faves – navigation (we don’t need two column ones) – GIVE US BACK EXACT! – more control on smart shopping campaigns – support people/recommendations that aren’t just getting you to spend …to name a few 🙂 – @mindswanppc

Smart Shopping. Give me search query data Match types. Remember when this mattered? Account scores. Sorry, i havent automated everything Google … The list goes on… – @selley2134

the lack of transparency in Discovery, Local and Smart campaigns. Also, how we can’t segment the partner network into standalone adgroups like we use to be able to (pre 2012), like Bing does. Also, I dislike change and demand we all call it Adwords still. – @JonKagan

The placement report… Let me exclude these Kids Youtube channels more easily! – @leo_pinon09

The lack of data with RSA is frustrating. I might use RSA ads more if they provided better data. Not being able to just exclude app or YouTube traffic easily. 10,000 placement exclusion limit – it is not sufficient w/ no ability to fully block app or YT traffic. – @NeptuneMoon

Anything Google has dubbed ‘smart’ Everyone gets excited about it, until they realise that basically means less control or visibility. Not being able to exclude locations or placements easily. – @SarahScarfeMktg

I hate it when they take control away. i.e. avg. position, close variant. And maybe text ads? – @jord_stark

Q5: When thinking about new features in Google Ads, what benefits are most important to you (please rank with percentages, try to get to 100%)

A) reduce manual labor

B)increase ROI on ad spend

C) expand reach

D) other, namely …

B (40%), A (40%), C (20%) – @ThatSearchGuyNL

increase ROI, decrease manual labor (whereas Recommendations adds manual labor), AND easier ways to LIMIT audience. – @ynotweb

50% – Other: Transparency 25% – Expand reach 15% – ROI 10% – Reduce manual labor (I’ve discovered that “reducing manual labor”, doesn’t save much in the way of headaches and time) – @JonKagan

A) 20% B) 50% C) 10% D) Reporting 10% . I have a hard time ever wanting to reduce manual labor because that will eventually put you out of a job. Or do people not jump to that conclusion like me?- @RyBen3

I think I would have to say 50% reduce manual labour (reporting, set up and exclusions), 35% increase ROI on ad spend (exclusions, incl. negative KW) and 15% expand reach as I don’t typically do much brand building. – @SarahScarfeMktg

A (20%), B (40%), C (10%), D Transparency (30%) – @leo_pinon09

A> reduce manual labor (10%) B> increase ROI on ad spend (20%) C> expand reach (20%) D> other, namely … INCREASE VISIBILITY (50%) – @360vardi

now this is a thinker… reduce manual labour for sure, but without sacrificing reporting. increase ROI (does anyone not want this?) I’d say audience exclusivity. Can I get people jsut on smart tvs? who I can’t get on yt/fb/snap/wherever? – @JuliaVyse

don’t want to be redundant – so yes, i would say same as your answer @ThatSearchGuyNL. love scripts which is all about reducing manual labour – but i am also all about features that improves efficiency and conversion metrics! – @mindswanppc

A – 5% B – 75% C – 10% D – 10% – Improve reporting/data – @selley2134

A – 40% B – 30% C – 10% D – 20% – @NeptuneMoon

Q6: What (new) features do you expect to be added to/removed from Google Ads in the near future?

Keyword match types soon or later. – @leo_pinon09

Manual bidding. I did think they might get rid of call extensions too and make you use the ones attached to your location extensions, but then they launched their call recording. – @SarahScarfeMktg

i can’t think specifics right now – but i reckon its going to be more towards automation isn’t it.. but no – i do not think it will make professionals redundant, we are just going to have to be more intelligent when talking strategy. – @mindswanppc

I am afraid to say and jinx it. #ppcchat Let’s just say I don’t trust that Google won’t remove the most useful features. – @ynotweb

My prediction is Google will remove: -Manual bidding -Match types -Search term reporting My hope for new features: – opt out from support rep calls – transparent data disclosure in smart shopping and smart display – improved page load times in the interface – @ThatSearchGuyNL

reporting in general will continue to decline imo.– @JuliaVyse

Keywords. My gut says they will be gone within 3 years. I also have no substantial “proof” to back that up.  – @JonKagan

More automation/less transparency & I’m guessing when they finally get some traction on their own marketplace they will add a “buy now” extension for ads – @selley2134

folks have been saying match types are going away for a decade now More depth into analyzing the “why” is something that I’d expect to see – we’re seeing that with the “explanations” which I find very valuable when I’m doing a quick check – @ferkungamaboobo

Keywords won’t fully go away, but they only match type will be essentially modified broad. I would not be shocked if manual bidding went away either within a few years (we already accept it form other platforms…) – @NeptuneMoon

Really hoping lead form extensions will be available for desktop ads – @shepzirnheld

Q7: How do you stay updated on the latest features?

I’m lucky enough to have beta decks sent regularly. Along with that, search engine land, and this community  – @JuliaVyse

PPC Chat !! Searchengineland Google Announcements Reddit /r/ppc – @ThatSearchGuyNL

too many newsletters and of course #ppcchat – @leo_pinon09

I follow the best people on Twitter, attend town halls and sometimes I even read the messages in the Google Ads interface. I love the Reddit PPC community!  – @SarahScarfeMktg

Search Engine Roundtable and Search Engine Journal are good at “someone saw this” and “this is the official PR,” respectively. Notifications in the interface are valuable for me as well.  – @ferkungamaboobo

This community generally has the scoop. And Search Engineland and Search Engine Journal have the latest news too.  I do try to have chat topics about big new features too so we can all discuss and share information! – @NeptuneMoon

I’m interested in these answers because aside from Google Newletters, Twitter, & some blogs i usually dont have time to read. I think i can improve on staying up to date – @selley2134

following key ppc-related bloggers and groups on Twitter. Always the most cutting edge news. – @ynotweb

#PPCChat discussions, @sejournal, @searchengineland, LinkedIn, @ppchero, general twitter, – @mindswanppc

Part of my job! I cover paid updates weekly on our digital marketing news podcast @MarketingOClock Some of our favorite sources for Google Ads news are @sejournal, @mattgsouthern, & @SusanEDub@shepzirnheld

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