When regularly creating new, or making bulk changes to, AdWords campaigns it can be a lot quicker and simpler to use Google AdWords Editor, “a free, downloadable Google application for managing large AdWords accounts efficiently”. Here are my top hacks for using this nifty, although sometimes slightly frustrating, tool:

1. Replace and append

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to replace text with other text or append to the end or at the beginning of existing text.

Benefits
If you are creating several ad groups that are similar with just parts of keywords and ad text slightly differing from one another, then you can copy the control ad group multiple times and replace the part(s) of the text that needs to be different in the new ad group.

Limitations / tips
Remember that by default ‘all applicable fields’ will be amended in an ad copy replace, so if there are parts of the ad, like in the URL for example, you don’t want to change, then make sure you choose the correct field:

replace and append google editor

Also if capitalisation is important, remember to select the ‘Match case’ or ‘Preserve capitalisation’ options. And if you are appending keyword text by adding an additional word on either side of the terms you already have, don’t forget the space before/after to complete the phrase.

2. Make multiple changes

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to create multiple campaigns, ad groups, keywords or ads quickly.

Benefits
This is best for adding multiple ads to different ad groups. You can create the ads in an Excel spreadsheet labelled up with campaigns and ad groups in which they need to be included, then simply copy and paste them in:

make multiple changes google editor

Limitations
If you make a small change to one field, like amending a Display URL’s ending, and want to add those new ads in order to test them against the old Display URLs, AdWords Editor tends to replace the old ones with the new ones, and so removes your previous ads This means you can only run the new version, which is very annoying!

3. Find duplicate keywords

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to find duplicate keywords (Go to: Tools >> Find duplicate keywords…) across the same ad groups, the same campaigns, or across selected campaigns:

find duplicate keywords google editor

Benefits
You can see if any of your keywords across different ad groups or campaigns are duplicated – Google will show the ads for the keywords it deems to have the best quality score so the ‘right’ ad might not appear for that term(s).

Limitations
You can’t filter by match type. There is a ‘Select duplicates by…’ drop down but it doesn’t include match types. It would be useful to be able to easily pick out one match type if you have selected the ‘Duplicates can have different match types (even negatives)’ option so they could be deleted/paused. Google gives a warning about having the same keyword with different match types (although I think it is fine to have keywords with various match types).

4. Copy and paste

This isn’t strictly a feature of AdWords Editor, but I always find copying and pasting ad groups, text ads etc very useful. It’s not just copying and pasting within Editor but also copying from Editor and pasting into a spreadsheet. If you are good with spreadsheets you can make edits within the spreadsheet (sometimes easier than Editor’s replace or append tools) and then paste the new elements back into Editor to be added or updated.

5. View statistics

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to see click data, conversion data, and more within Editor.

Benefits
Sometimes it helps to see which ads or keywords are getting clicks and conversions so you can make edits to ad copy or campaigns within Editor.

6. Change capitalisation

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to change the capitalisation in ad text, campaign names and ad group names.

Benefits
If you want to test Title Case or Sentence Case in ad copy you can do so with the click of a button.

Limitations
The tool doesn’t recognise proper nouns and is not available for changing keyword text.

7. Change URLs

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to set URLs, append URLs, or remove URL parameters.

Benefits
URL parameters with a given name can be quickly removed.

Limitations
It doesn’t do a lot more than what can be achieved just as easily as using ‘append’ or just entering text into the correct box.

8. Change bids

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to change bids for keywords or ad groups.

change bids google editor

Benefits
Much like the Edit >> Change max CPCs feature works within Google AdWords online, this feature increases/decreases bids by a given percentage or value added on top. You can also raise bids to the first page or top of page bids, or remove bids and use ad group defaults.

9. Import and export

What does it do?
Allows advertisers to export and import campaigns from and into AdWords Editor.

Benefits
Agencies can share campaigns they’ve drafted with the client for approval by exporting them as a csv file, rather than uploading to AdWords online. Campaigns can also be exported for backup and to track quality scores, as this historic data isn’t kept in the online version – it’s only real time.

10. Add a new…

What does it do?
Allows users to quickly add pretty much anything. If you were struggling to find how to add a new label or callout extension for example, you’ll find the answer here:

Add new... google editor

 

If you need more guidance for AdWords Editor, there is a comprehensive help centre here. And if you need any help managing your AdWords campaigns, give us a shout.