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Use Ad Customizers to Improve Non-Brand Conversion Rate Based on a User’s Location

Published: September 1, 2017

Author: Kristin Nye

Ad customizers can be used to tailor your ad in many ways: by device, time of day, day of week, keywords a user is searching, etc. The idea behind using ad customizers is to make your ad more relevant to the user and easier for you to manage – essentially having hundreds or thousands of ads in one.
In this post, we’ll be looking specifically at customizing your ad based on a user’s location. This can be particularly helpful when you have brick-and-mortar locations that need an extra push, or when you want users to know you have multiple locations that would be convenient to them.

How this works

Location ad customizers can pull different attributes into your ad based on the user’s location. They work in different parts of text ads including the headlines, paths, and the description. Essentially, they can be implemented anywhere in the ad except for the final URL. There are a few main steps to creating a location ad customizer ad: creating the ad customizer sheet, uploading the sheet to the Shared Library, and building the text ad.

Creating the ad customizer sheet

When creating the spreadsheet that you will upload to the Shared Library, I recommend first downloading the template from Google. If you use your own sheet, make sure you have the following columns:

  1. Physical Location

This will be the actual location of the user. Note that if the physical location is outside of the targeted locations for the campaign in which you are using these ad customizers, the ad customizers will not show in that location. In the example above, the various physical locations are at the zip code, neighborhood, and country levels.

  1. Text

This is the text that you want to change in the ad depending on the location. In the example above, we have two text columns, Location1 and Location2. Note that your text will need to fit within the allotted characters, or else that variation will not show.

  1. Target Campaign

This will be the campaign where you want the ad customizers to appear. Let’s say that you want your ads to differ on the ad group level instead of the campaign level. In that case, you will also include a column for target ad group. In the example above, I am only using campaign-level targeting.

Uploading the ad customizer data

First, navigate to the Shared Library à Business data. Next, click +Data, then choose Ad customizer data. Note that your file needs to be a .csv, .tsv, .xls or .xlsx file.

Building the text ad

For the example, we’ll be using ad customizers for Headline 2 and the description line. The screenshot of the interface is how your ad will appear after uploading:

When the ad appears in the search results, it will pull in the ad customizer data from your spreadsheet. If we use the examples above and we’re searching from 60607, our ad would appear like below:

Results of our test

When tested in non-brand campaigns, the CTR for location ad customizers was lower and average CPC was higher. This could be because the client has very few locations in this geo. However, the CVR was higher with 95% significance, and the CPA was 240% lower than our control ad.
It is important to note that when rolled out to our Brand campaigns and RLSA campaigns, the location ad customizer underperformed in CVR and CPA. As with any feature, we’d recommend testing how it performs before rolling it out more broadly.

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