Target websites about specific topics

Just like your business caters to certain customers, your customers may be interested in certain topics. Topic targeting lets you place your AdWords ads on website pages about those topics, whether it's agriculture, music, or something else entirely.

Topic targeting allows your ads to be eligible to appear on any pages on the Display Network that have content related to your selected topics. As content across the web changes over time, the pages on which your ads appear can change with it. To display your ads on those pages, simply select one or more topics that you find relevant for your ads.

Example

By targeting the "Autos & Vehicles" topic, for instance, you enable your ad to appear on any Display Network website or other placement that includes content about cars or other automotive themes. You can also select more precise subtopics, such as Trucks & SUVs, Commercial Vehicles, or Motorcycles.

You can use topic targeting in combination with individual placements -- which are pages or sites you've chosen where you'd like your ad to show -- and keyword targeting -- which lets you choose the keywords that should trigger your ad to show.

Example

You decide to target the placement newyorktimes.com and the topic Sports in the same ad group. In this situation, your ad will appear only on pages within newyorktimes.com that belong to the Sports topic.

Why target topics

  • You'd like to generate additional traffic or want to reach a broad audience quickly.
    For example, if you sell bicycles and know that your customers also like hiking and camping, you can try reaching a broader audience by selecting the Hiking and Camping subtopic to show your ads on webpages about this topic.
  • You have a flexible or unrestricted campaign budget.
  • You'd like to quickly ramp up your ad delivery, or your CPA goal is moderately flexible.
  • You'd like to prevent your ads from appearing on pages about specific topics that aren't performing well or are unrelated to your business.

Tips

If you'd like to control where your ads appear on the Google Display Network, or you're a brand-oriented advertiser, or you have strict CPA goals and want to actively manage your budget, we recommend using our other targeting options, such as keyword contextual targeting or placements targeting.

How much topic targeting costs

Pricing for targeting by topics works the same way as pricing for other placement-targeted ads. You select the maximum price you're willing to pay each time your ad appears, and the AdWords system will show your ad on pages on the Google Network with content about that topic where your bid can win a position. A popular topic may have thousands or even tens of thousands of pages where your ad could appear.

How to target topics

To target topics, you’ll need to use one of the following campaign types: "Search & Display Networks – All features," "Display Network only – All features," or "Display Network only – Remarketing."

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at https://adwords.google.com.
  2. Click the Campaigns tab at the top. Campaigns tab
  3. Go to your Display Network tab and click + Targeting, which is located above the graph.
  4. Select an ad group.
  5. Click the "Add targeting" drop-down menu and select "Topics."
  6. Select as many topics and subtopics as you'd like by clicking the double arrows » next to each one. Any topics and subtopics you've added will appear in the "Selected topics" column.
  7. Click Close and then Save.

Tip

  • When you target a top-level topic, you also target all the related subtopics. However, we recommend adding the subtopics for bidding and reporting control.
  • Adding all the subtopics isn't the same as adding the top-level topic. There are pages that won't be targeted if you add only the subtopics to your ad group. We recommend adding the top-level topic as well.