Google Ads Ad Suggestions: A Great or Not So Great Opportunity for Marketers

In late 2017, Google announced a new feature of its Google Ads platform. Well, it’s been active for more than a year and now it’s available for many accounts. Google Ads Ad Suggestions – is it a good idea to use them or not?

For many Google Ads specialists this may seem as a nightmare and they will rush to turn it off. However, there’s quite an opportunity here. Your ads may start performing better, you will be able to test more ad variations and save time from copy writing, and, of course, get a chance to increase CTR. Or at least Google says so. Now, let’s see what all the fuzz is about.

What are Ad Suggestions?

Simply said it’s your ad just slightly altered. Google will suggest different variations of your own ads by using only the information you provide, i.e. headlines, descriptions, extensions and landing pages, including keywords and phrase matches. This will be done via Google’s machine learning technology.

What are Ad Suggestions NOT?

It is not like having a copywriter at hand 🙂 In other words, the feature will not provide your ads with new and original content. It will just alter what you have (using words and phrases from your ads and landing pages) and show it to users.

How do You Know if Ad Suggestions are Applied to Your Account?

As of now you will get a notification in your Google Ads account and an email informing you that an ad suggestion is available for a certain ad group that is set to optimize for clicks or conversions. If you do nothing the ad will go live after 14 days. Don’t worry, it will be labeled as “auto-applied ad suggestion” so you can easily find and edit or stop it if necessary. You can also check the suggestions in the Opportunities tab and will have the choice to approve or dismiss them. You can edit an ad suggestion before applying it but then it won’t be a suggestion by Google Ads (and won’t be labeled as such) anymore. It will appear as a normal ad.

Immediate Opt-Out or Give it a Try First?

This entirely depends on you, your clients and the industry you’re involved in. You can easily stop Ad suggestions from the settings page. Some industries such as healthcare and rehab won’t allow Google’s creativity to get in the way as there are some serious rules and laws that shouldn’t be broken. Some big brands wouldn’t allow Google to have any control over their ads either so if you have such clients you may need to discuss this with them first. After all, this is a coin with two sides and the results may differ from complete disasters to genius ideas.

On the other side of things, as a marketer you can’t just throw this opportunity away. Yes, we call it an opportunity. The feature provides you with more diversion in copies and more versions to test and evaluate, saving you hours even days in crafting the perfect ad copy. And there are some pretty strong claims that it might increase CTR by 20% which makes it worthy to at least try. Additionally, Google says that the ad suggestions will be optimized so they can reach to more users and eventually increase impressions and clicks.

Some Things to Have in Mind

As every other Google Ads feature, you will need to keep in mind a few things.

Currently Google Ads Ad Suggestions have some limitations. For instance, the feature can be applied to ads which are set to “optimize” for clicks and conversions. Additionally, it’s available in the following languages:

  • English
  • Spanish
  • Italian
  • Portuguese
  • French
  • German

You will be notified for new ad suggestions once on every 7 days at most.

Google Ads won’t show more than 50 suggested ads per week.

You may continue receiving new ad suggestions even when you opt out but they will no longer be auto applied after 14 days. In this case, you will have to apply them manually or turn on the feature.

Google Ads’s Ad Suggestions might also be a real deal for those who don’t spend much time in their accounts, i.e. their ads run on autopilot. In such cases, Google will not only add new ads and diversify ad groups but also may boost click through rates and eventually increase conversions. However, we’ll need to insert something really important here:

The technology of machine learning is not so advanced yet. It’s, after all, a machine which uses calculations to determine certain outputs. We highly recommend to always check and proofread the ad suggestions you get before they’re auto applied because in some cases you may get into some real trouble. Imagine you’re selling a product that got its name from a brand like band aids. Yep, the term “Band-Aid” is trademarked by Johnson & Johnson. The right way to say it is “adhesive bandage”. Now, let’s dig into it a little bit – people know this as band aid and will use the term to search for it. Along with the information you provide Ad Suggestions will use specific search terms it thinks people use when searching for your product. This means that the term “band aid” can easily pop into your ad headlines and descriptions and cause you a law suit by the trademark owner. Got the point?

Despite the small catches here and there Google Ads Ad Suggestions can be a real gem in the crown of every campaign. If you’re careful enough it may provide you with some really well optimized ads that can increase clicks and conversions.

Have you already tried the Ad Suggestions? What do you think?