Today, Google announced updates to URL management within AdWords, including the limiting of steps needed for URL tracking parameters.

Upgraded AdWords URLs

Google’s AdWords URL update allows advertisers to better manage URLs within AdWords, with specific functionality for custom URL modifications for both attribution and user landing page experience.

Advanced advertisers generally include both attribution and specific land page direction within AdWords URLs:

  • URL tracking or attribution- or how ad performance relates back to the initial ad click (where a click is coming from)
  • Where users are directed on your website after clicking an ad (Inclusive of URL redirects)

 
The process of refining those URL elements is generally done prior to uploading URLs to AdWords. Upgraded AdWords URLs allows advertisers to specify URL tracking and landing pages directly within AdWords.

“With the current solution, keyword-specific tracking parameters are required to be input at the keyword-level. AdWords URL updates allow advertisers to use a template, so they can set URLs at the campaign-level.”- David Weichel, CPC Strategy’s Director of Paid Search

Advertisers can customize AdWords URLs within AdWords to set up:

Final URL

The AdWords Final URL element determines the landing page where shoppers go when they click your ad, keyword or sitelink. The URL leads shoppers to the landing page which best represents the intent for the ad, and the shopper query.

AdWords final URL

Tracking Templates

The AdWords tracking template allows advertisers to specify tracking parameters or redirects. The tracking template is the base AdWords will use to generate the destination URL to associate with ad impressions.

Custom Parameters

Custom parameters enable advertisers to create unique ValueTrack parameters that can be assigned to specific  IDs.

For Product Listing Ads (PLAs), product targets have destination URLs that act as tracking templates. Upgraded URLs simply this process so that advertisers don’t need to supply a final URL (this will  come from your Google Merchant Center feed). 

AdWords custom tracking URL

Final Thoughts on Upgraded AdWords URLs

David Weichel weighs in with a high-level analysis of the update:

“Currently, advertisers need to set or change keyword tracking URLs at the keyword-level. That means scaling excel formulas against bulk exports of keyword data and uploading everything through the Editor.

With this old process, it was very possible that an advertiser’s Excel formulas may not have carried over nicely, potentially causing an erroneous “shift” that can throw off all keyword tracking.

With AdWords URL updates, we now have the ability to set or change tracking URLs at the campaign-level using a “template”. So this means no Excel or Editor required, avoiding the risk of causing an error with keyword tracking.

 

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About the AuthorMary Weinstein is the Director of Content at CPC Strategy, and an expert in Retail Search, Google Shopping and Digital Marketing. A NY native, Mary spends her time educating online merchants, hiking and drinking copious amounts of coffee. You can also find her work on SEW, SEMRush, MOZ and Practical Ecommerce. See all posts by this author here.