Using custom ad scheduling

You may want your ad to show whenever a customer searches online. Or perhaps you only want to show your ad on certain days, or during business hours when you’re there to handle customer inquiries. For campaigns with “All features” enabled, you can use custom ad scheduling to:

  • Specify certain hours and/or days of the week when you want your ads to show
  • Set bid adjustments to increase or decrease your bids for specific days and times
  • View reports to see how your scheduled ads performed

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Based on your account information, it seems you’re not using ad scheduling yet. Ad scheduling lets you specify exactly when you would like your ad to show. Read more to learn how to set it up!    

By default, your AdWords campaigns are set to "Show ads all days and hours." This means your ads are eligible to appear in all relevant auctions throughout each calendar day. When you use custom ad scheduling, your ads are eligible to appear only in auctions that take place during the dates and times you specify.

Not seeing ad scheduling?

Custom ad scheduling is available for campaigns with “All features” enabled. If your campaign sub-type is set to “Standard,” you won’t see ad scheduling as an option in your campaign’s Settings tab. You may need to change your campaign sub-type to “All features.” To see which features are available by campaign type, read choosing the campaign type that's right for you.

Example

Suppose you run a dog-sled touring business in Alaska. By viewing your "Hour and day of the week" performance on the Ad schedule subtab, you've noticed that your ads get the best results between 8 and 11 a.m. on Tuesdays, when Extremely Cold Places is playing on television. You decide to adjust your ad schedule so that on Tuesdays, your ads only appear during that time.

Create an ad schedule

Here's how to schedule your ad to run at specific times and days:

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at https://adwords.google.com.
  2. Click the Campaigns tab at the top.
  3. Under All online campaigns, click the name of the campaign to be scheduled. (Remember, ad scheduling is available only for campaigns with “All features” enabled.)
  4. Click the Settings tab, then click the Ad schedule subtab.
  5. Click the + Ad schedule button.
  6. Make your selections for specific days and times.
  7. Click Save. You'll see your changes reflected in the Ad schedule statistics table.
Try it out

Keep in mind

When you create an ad schedule, your ad will only show during the times you specify. Your ad won’t show during the dates and times that aren't listed on your ad schedule. Review your ad schedule to make sure it includes all the days and times you want your ad to be eligible to show.

To see exactly when your ad is scheduled to appear:

  1. Click your campaign's Settings tab, then click the Ad schedule tab.
  2. Click the Schedule details drop-down menu.
  3. Choose if you want to view your ad schedule by "Day of the week" or "Hour and day of the week."
  4. If you want to add more dates and times to your ad schedule, follow the steps above.

 

Adjusting for time zone differences

The ad schedules you set are based on the time zone you selected when you initially created your AdWords account. Therefore, it’s important that you adjust your ad schedule to account for any difference in your target customers' time zone. To verify your account's time zone setting, follow these steps:

  1. Click the gear icon .
  2. Select Account settings from the gear menu.
  3. Select Preferences from the navigation bar.
Set bid adjustments

You can set bid adjustments for specific days and times in the Ad schedule subtab in your campaign settings. If you also opt to set bid adjustments for mobile devices and locations, all of your adjustments will be multiplied together to determine the resulting bid adjustment. By setting bid adjustments, your spending on individual clicks may vary, but your overall daily budget won't change.

Keep in mind

Bid adjustment for ad scheduling is not available with campaigns that have automatic bidding enabled. Learn more about setting bid adjustments.

Example

Let's continue our earlier example. You run a dog-sled touring business in Alaska, and you have an existing ad group max CPC bid of $1.00. You've scheduled your ad to show on Tuesdays between 8 and 11 a.m. You decide to set a bid adjustment of +10% on Tuesdays between 8 and 10 a.m. So, your bid for that time period would be $1.00 x (+10%) = $1.10.

Because many of the customers that love your dog-sled tours live in Anchorage, you decide to set an additional +20% adjustment for Anchorage. Your resulting bid for a search that occurs on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m. for a customer in Anchorage will be $1.32. Here's how it works:

Starting bid: $1.00
Tuesdays, 8 to 10 a.m. adjustment: $1.00 x (+10%) = $1.10
Anchorage adjustment: $1.10 x (+20%) = $1.32
Final bid for Tuesdays, 8 to 10 a.m., in Anchorage: $1.32

How to set a bid adjustment

Here’s how to adjust your bid:

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at https://adwords.google.com.
  2. Click the Campaigns tab at the top.
  3. Under All online campaigns, click the name of the campaign to be scheduled.
  4. Click the Settings tab, then click the Ad schedule subtab.
  5. Locate the row for the scheduled time that you want to adjust and click the cell in the "Bid adj." column.
  6. Choose "Increase by" or "Decrease by" from the drop-down, and enter a number.
  7. Click Save.

Keep in mind

The bid adjustment affects all bids in the campaign. When the time period of your bid adjustment is over, your normal campaign bids will be restored unless you've set other adjustments (for devices or locations, for example).

Using the example above, at 10:01 a.m. on Tuesday, your bid will become $1.00 x (+20%), or $1.20 for a search that occurs in Anchorage, until your ads stop showing at 11 a.m.