Import a CSV file in AdWords Editor
Prepare a CSV file
Importing a CSV file enables you to add or change many items in your AdWords account at once. To help ensure a successful import, review the formatting guidelines below.
1. List each item on its own row.
Each row in your CSV file must describe a single entity, such as a campaign, a targeted location, or an ad. In the following example, the first row is the header, the next two lines are keywords, and the last two lines are ad text.
Campaign, Ad Group, Keyword, Headline, ...
My campaign, My ad group, keyword 1
My campaign, My ad group, keyword 2
My campaign, My ad group, [blank], headline 1, ...
My campaign, My ad group, [blank], headline 2, ...
For a simple example, refer to this sample CSV file.
- If under your settings or preferences you chose to include the original columns in CSV/ZIP exports, you may see two columns for some fields -- one named #Original that holds the original values, and a second column that can be used to make any edits in CSV. Learn more about making edits with CSV columns
- Ad extensions can be added at the account level, as well as at the campaign and ad group levels. You can create an account-level extension association in your CSV import by entering
<Account-level>instead of the campaign name in the “Campaign” column. It’s important to distinguish account-level extensions from shared extensions, which have all the same fields but leave “Campaign” and “Ad Group” columns blank.
2. Include a column header row.
AdWords Editor treats the first row in an imported CSV file as a column header row. Choose one of the following options for your CSV column header row:
- Option 1 (recommended): Include standard AdWords Editor column headers. In the next article in this guide, you'll see a list of CSV columns.
- Option 2: Use your own column headers, or leave the first row blank. You'll have an opportunity to select or modify the column headers when you import the CSV file.
3. Check formatting within columns.
Some columns require certain formatting. For example, specific language codes indicate language targeting. In the next article in this guide, you'll see a list of CSV columns, including special instructions for column formatting.
If a single cell in a column has multiple values, separate the values with semicolons, such as
en;de for English and German language targeting, or
gender;age for flexible reach.
If you import a new campaign via CSV import, and the settings aren't readable, AdWords Editor uses the default campaign settings.
4. Check the file format and encoding
Be sure to save your file in CSV format.
AdWords Editor doesn't import XLS files. If you create or edit your file in Excel, we recommend saving the file with Unicode Text encoding.
- Windows: Select Save As > Save as type > Unicode Text.
- Mac: Select Save As > Format > UTF-16 Unicode Text. (You might see the file extension change from .csv to .txt, but AdWords Editor can still import the file.)