Use data exclusions for conversion data outages

Smart Bidding uses conversions and conversion value data in Google Ads to help meet your goals. If you have any issues with conversion tracking, you can use data exclusions to help reduce the impact that these issues may have on Smart Bidding Performance.

Note: Data exclusions is not supported in Hotel campaigns.
Data exclusions created for past dates are typically taken into effect by Smart Bidding within a week. As Smart Bidding may be using the incorrect conversion data during the week following a data exclusion event, it’s recommended to adjust targets and budgets or the combination of both as needed. For more details, read the best practices below.

Learn more About data exclusions.


Instructions to add data exclusions

Note: The instructions below are part of the new design for the Google Ads user experience. To use the previous design, click the "Appearance" icon, and select Use previous design. If you're using the previous version of Google Ads, review the Quick reference map or use the Search bar in the top navigation panel of Google Ads to find the page you’re searching for.
  1. In your Google Ads account, click the Tools icon Tools Icon.
  2. Click the Budgets and bidding drop down in the section menu.
  3. Click Adjustments.
  4. Select the Exclusions tab at the top.
  5. Click the plus button to add a new data exclusion.
  6. Next to “Settings”, enter a name and description.
  7. Enter the start date and time and end date and time for the data you’d like to exclude. Since conversions can be attributed to clicks in the past, select a date range that accounts for the typical conversion delay.
  8. Next to "Scope", select campaigns and devices for this adjustment. You can select individual campaigns to exclude or the entire account.
  9. Select devices to exclude. For example, the conversion issue may only have affected mobile tracking.
  10. Click Save.
  11. Data exclusions may change how your bid strategies perform. Before you create an exclusion, confirm that the information is correct. Click Create data exclusion.
  12. Data exclusions can be applied at the MCC or sub account level. The start and end times are based on the account's time zone.
Tip: When you apply data exclusions, you can set your campaign budget closer to its historical spend for a few conversion cycles to avoid spending more than what you're comfortable with.

Best practices for using data exclusions

For best results, please review the guidance below when applying data exclusions. While data exclusions can help reduce performance fluctuations associated with a bad conversion data, some performance fluctuations should still be expected.

  • Apply data exclusions as quickly as possible at the time you’ve identified a conversion data issue.
  • Data exclusions are typically taken into effect by Smart Bidding within a week. After applying a Data exclusion, we suggest adjusting CPA/ROAS targets to achieve desired performance, while ensuring budgets are set to acceptable levels.
  • Exclusion dates selected will apply to clicks, so make sure to consider your conversion delay and exclude any days of clicks that may have been impacted. It’s a best practice to exclude 90% of clicks associated with impacted conversion data.
Example: If there was a data upload issue from October 15 to October 18, and the conversion delay is 5 days, apply the exclusion as quickly as possible, including any days with impacted clicks. In this case you would exclude October 10 to October 18.
  • Data exclusions aren’t intended to be used frequently or for extended periods of time. Doing so could negatively impact Smart Bidding performance.
  • Data exclusions are only intended for issues with conversion tracking, and are not recommended for excluding irregular performance periods, such as promotional period. If you anticipate major changes in conversion rate, consider using a seasonality adjustment.
  • Data exclusions applied to future dates, such as for scheduled site maintenance, will typically take effect immediately.
  • Don't remove a data exclusion after it has been applied. Advertisers may wish to backfill the accurate conversion data for their reporting purposes, but we recommend not removing data exclusions as it may cause undesired performance fluctuations. Advertisers should wait 1 week before backfilling,

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