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Highlight upcoming events with countdowns

Let potential customers know about sales or special events by adding a countdown to your ad text.

Countdowns are a function used within ad customizers. (Ad customizers are parameters that insert dynamic text into your ad.) You can add countdowns to any text ad by typing a brace ( { ) within the headline or description lines of your ad text.

Using countdowns in text ad

The dialog box asks for the end date you want to count down to ("Countdown ends"), as well as how many days before that date you want your ad to start showing ("Countdown starts”).

If you want to set up countdowns and customizers for multiple ads or multiple events, check out how to create customizers at scale.

How countdowns look in your ad

When your ad shows with a countdown, it displays the time remaining until your end date with "days," "hours," or "minutes."

2 days before end date:
 
Battersea Kayak Shack
Ad www.example.com
20% off tandem kayaks!
Sale ends in 2 days
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
3 hours before end date:
 
Battersea Kayak Shack
Ad www.example.com
20% off tandem kayaks!
Sale ends in 3 hours

The default language is US English, but you can change the language (and see a preview of what that language displays) by clicking Advanced in the dialog box.

Example

The owner of the Battersea Kayak Shack in south London wants to attract attention to the end of her winter kayak sale, on February 21. She sets up a countdown within her ad text that counts down to February 21 at 6 PM (when her store closes).

Now, when someone searches for kayaks on February 18, they might see:

Battersea Kayak Shack
Ad www.example.com
20% off tandem kayaks!
Sale ends in 2 days

If someone searches for kayaks on February 21, at 10 AM, they might see:

Battersea Kayak Shack
Ad www.example.com
20% off tandem kayaks!
Sale ends in 8 hours

If someone search for kayaks on February 21 at 9 PM, this ad wouldn't show anymore (9 PM is past the countdown's end date).

Set up countdowns

You can set up countdowns in any text ad.

Start editing your ad

  1. Click the Ads tab.
  2. Click a text ad you want to add a countdown to, or click +AD to create a new text ad with a countdown.
  3. Fill in your ad text as usual.

Trigger the countdown widget

  1. In the place you want your countdown to appear, type a brace ( { ) and select Countdown from the drop-down menu.
  2. Beside "Countdown ends," fill in the date and time when you want your countdown to end. Put your time in a 24-hour format (optional).
    • For example, if your end time is 6:30 PM on July 14, 2015, your date would be 2015/07/14, and your time would be 18:30:00.
    • If you don’t add a specific time, it will default to midnight (00:00:00).
  3. Beside "Countdown starts," enter the number of days before your end date you want your ad to start showing. If you leave this blank, it will start showing 5 days before your end date.
    • For example, if your end time is 6:30 PM on July 14, 2015, and you want your ad to start showing 7 days before then (at 6:30 PM on July 7, 2015), you would enter "7" here.

(Optional) Set time zone and language

  1. If you want customizers to show in a non-US English language, or if you want the countdown to follow a time in the ad viewer's own time zone (rather than your own time zone), click Advanced.
  2. Select Account time zone to count down to your end time in your AdWords account's time zone, or select Ad viewer's time zone to count down to your end time in the ad viewer's time zone.
    • If you're counting down to an event that happens in a specific place, like a game, talk, concert, or conference, it's a good idea to use your account time zone.
    • If you're counting down to an event that's not geographically specific (like an online sale), you can use the ad viewer's time zone.
  3. To change the language that the countdown shows, choose a language next to "Language." When you choose a new language, you'll see an example of what's displayed.

Set the countdown and save your ad

  1. Click Set to save your countdown. You'll see the countdown customizer within your ad text.
  2. Make sure your ad text will stay within the character limits when it's displayed.
  3. Click Save ad.

 

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