Understanding alerts and notifications

When AdWords has information we want you to see right away, we'll display a notification right in your account, in one easy-to-find place. You can also change your preferences to receive these notifications by email.

AdWords notifications generally serve one of three purposes:

  • Alert you to a potential problem with your ad delivery or campaign set up
  • Announce a new AdWords feature or update
  • Suggest an opportunity to help improve your campaigns’ performance

Examples of notifications

Important alerts about your account are designated with a red triangle . These messages alert you to critical issues with your account, like if your ads aren’t running, or if your billing information is outdated.

Notifications about new AdWords features or system updates are indicated with a blue “info” icon Info_icon. These notifications can inform you about new reports available to help you track your performance in a different way, for example, or a new tool that can help you choose better keywords.

Opportunities for improving your account performance are indicated with a yellow light bulb Opportunities_yellow_bulb. These suggestions are tailored specifically to your account and generally advise an action you can take, such as adding keywords or targeting options that could help you reach more customers.

Viewing your notifications in your AdWords account

The most critical alerts, such as those informing you that none of your ads are running, show in a red bar at the top of your account screen.

Important but less critical notifications are displayed in a preview bar near the top of your screen. Click “View all” in this preview bar to see a full list of your notifications.

You can click options like “View” and “Fix it” to be taken to pages to address the problem, or click “Learn more” to read about the issue in the AdWords Help Center. Click "Dismiss" to remove the notification from the list.

If you have only lower-priority notifications waiting for your attention, there won’t be a preview bar, but you will see an exclamation point next to the bell icon near the top of your screen. Click the exclamation point to see your messages.

Receiving notifications via email

By default, you'll receive critical alert notifications by email, such as billing issues, but you can set your email preferences to receive other types of notifications by email as well, or opt out. At least one user on each account must be opted in to receive critical notifications. Email notifications are sent to the email address on the AdWords account.

Here are the different types of email notifications:

  • Billing alerts
  • Campaign maintenance alerts
  • Newsletters
  • Google market research
  • Customized help and performance suggestions
  • Disapproved ads and policy alerts
  • Reports
  • Special offers

Tip

Want to send email notifications to a different email address, or to someone else without giving them access to your AdWords account? Add them to your account as an email-only user. Learn how to share and manage levels of account access.

To change your email notification preferences:

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at https://adwords.google.com.
  2. Click the gear icon and choose Account settings.
  3. Select Notification settings from the side navigation.
  4. You’ll see a table of the different types of email notifications you can receive. Your notification preferences are in the “Email" column. To change your setting for a particular type of email notification, click in the “Email” column to display a drop-down menu with your settings options. Notification settings

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