April 13, 2022
• 4 min read
Paid Search

Google Performance Max is an entirely new goal-orientated Google Ads campaign type allowing advertisers to leverage all of Google Ads inventory from a single campaign. The premise of the campaign is to complement keyword-based search campaigns helping advertisers to find more customers across all of Google’s channels like YouTube, Display, Search, Discover, Gmail, and Maps.

Performance Max helps advertisers increase performance based on their accounts conversion goals. In an effort to increase conversions and provide more value by optimising advertising performance in real-time across multiple channels using Google’s Smart Bidding. 

Performance Max uses Google’s automation technologies across bidding strategy, budget optimisation, audiences, creative assets, and attribution. All automation is powered towards increasing the frequency and amount of specific advertising goals set by the advertiser. For example, if you have a target CPA, the creative assets served, audience signaling, and budgeting will all be focused on achieving that target CPA.

Benefits of Performance Max Campaigns

Find more customers who are ready to convert

  • Customise the goals that matter the most to your business objectives.
  • Engage with customers across the entirety of Google’s channels from a singular campaign.
  • Unlock new customer segments that you may have not expected.

Increased value

  • Google’s data-driven attribution is used across all channels, optimising for even the most incremental touchpoints that result in users becoming customers.
  • Machine learning is used to make more accurate predictions about which ads, audiences, and creative asset combinations will perform better to your chosen conversion goal. This can also be found in the rollout of Google's responsive search ads, as the industry begins to migrate away from more 'traditional' advertising methods.

Enhanced data and insights

  • Performance Max reporting helps businesses understand what performs the best, and how much impact it is having on campaign performance to drive ROI.
  • New insights such as search trends can help businesses understand changes in performance and influence broader business decisions.

5 Key Benefits of Google Performance Max Campaigns

  1. Unlock new audiences across Google’s channels and networks.
  2. Drive better performance against goals. 
  3. Gain more transparent insights.
  4. Drive automation with your campaign inputs.
  5. Simplify your campaign management & easily optimize ads.

5 Key Benefits of Google Performance Max Campaigns
5 Key Benefits of Google Performance Max Campaigns

When Should You Use Performance Max Campaigns?

Performance max campaigns are the chosen option to use when these statements are true

  • There is a specific conversion goal associated with advertising (e.g. increasing sales or lead generation).
  • You want to maximise performance of the campaign and you are not limited by which channel your ads should serve on.
  • You want to access all of Google’s advertising channels using a single campaign.
  • You want to expand reach and conversions beyond keyword-based search campaigns.

Should You Run Performance Max Campaigns Instead of Other Campaign Types?

Google's data suggests that Performance Max campaigns can increase conversions by up to 13% at the same or lower cost per conversion when activated in parallel to currently campaign types.

Performance Max should therefore be thought of as a marginal play and should be activated in addition to the advertisers current set of campaigns. There should be no reason to turn off any of your campaigns to begin with, until your Performance Max campaign has collected enough data to justify switching off other campaigns. 

Performance Max Conversion Best Practices

Choose campaign level conversion goals.

Not all campaigns will be aimed at producing the same outcome, so advertisers must match conversion goals to their respective campaigns. For example if lead forms, phone calls, and store visits all contribute to business sales, then make sure Performance Max campaigns are targeting and optimised towards these specific goals.

Set conversion values. Using value-based bidding strategies enable Performance Max to determine the worth of conversions wherever, and wherever, they occur. This provides much more value than other bidding strategies, as Performance Max campaigns will optimise its bidding based on the true value of each conversion, rather than the average value of all conversions.

Therefore, Performance Max users will aim to identify users who share the attributes of a high-value customer, and bid more aggressively. On the other hand users who do not share the attributes of a high-value customer will have lower bids placed on them. 

The diagram below illustrates that if your bidding strategy treats all users the same, businesses run the risk of over investing in lower value customers, while under investing in high value customers. When advertisers prioritse bidding based on value, businesses can maximise their return on ad spend.

Cost-base Bidding (CPA) Vs Value-based Bidding (ROAS)
Cost-base Bidding (CPA) Vs Value-based Bidding (ROAS)

Import Offline Conversions

Offline Google Ads conversion tracking allows advertisers to flow CRM data back to the Google Ads platform for up to 90 days after a user's first click. This data can be used to track actions that happen after an online conversion, such as the user being qualified for a deal, or a subscriber renewing their subscription with your business. Depending on the desired action, advertisers can track these as new conversions, or update the value of the initial conversion as new milestones are reached in the customer journey.

For example, direct sales like a subscription renewal, businesses can simply flow the true value of each customer every time a subscription is renewed within the 90-day period. By doing this, Performance Max campaigns will have a better understanding of which customers have a higher lifetime value, and which customers are single time purchasers. 

On the contrary, if marketing objectives revolve around generating leads and have long sales cycles, it is recommended that advertisers set a new conversion action and define a value for each stage of the sales journey to help Performance Max campaigns optimise for each of the specific events and actions that drive sales.

Have some further questions or queries about running or setting up Performance Max campaigns? Chat with one of our experts and book a call here.

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