Google Ads To Automatically Pause Ad Groups With Low Activity

Google will pause Ads groups that have not seen impressions in the past 13 months as it attempts to improve budget efficiency for advertisers.

The rollout, which will push many search marketers to clean up their campaigns, is expected to take place March 11, and to be completed for all Google Ads accounts by April 30.

Advertisers affected by this change can "unpause" ad groups if they still need them, but Google recommends that advertisers review their ad groups and only unpause the ones they expect to get impressions in the coming weeks.

Unpaused ad groups will be automatically paused again if they do not receive any impressions during the next 3 months.

No code changes are necessary, but Google Ads API developers can make changes to improve the transparency to their advertisers as to why the ad group.status is set to PAUSED, Google wrote in a blog post.



Navah Hopkins, Optmyzr brand evangelist and president at Navah Hopkins LLC, wrote: “I am over the moon with this update!” in a LinkedIn post published Friday. “For years I have been begging brands to pause what's not working so budget efficiency can win the day.”

One of the most important points she makes is that ad groups with no impressions drag down the overall quality of a campaign. She says that if a marketer has too many keywords and ad groups doing nothing, "that averages in bad data.”

Hopkins wrote that having zero impressions is not the same as low search volume. Low search-volume keywords will not negatively impact a campaign, but when marketers have an otherwise “worthy” keyword or ad group that is just not earning any impressions, the campaign bleeds bad data.

“Pausing is not the same as removing [it],” she wrote. “You can always get it back. Also, that the timeline is 13 months confirms this is looking at established accounts and factoring in seasonality.”

She believes the change puts a focus on keywords that would have otherwise received impressions but failed due to account structure.

Amalia Fowler, consultant at Good AF Consulting, wrote that 13 months is a long time and if something has not gained traction in that time frame, it should not be active.

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