Set up Smart Bidding

Smart Bidding is a subset of automated bid strategies that use Google AI to optimise for conversions or conversion value in each and every auction – a feature known as 'auction-time bidding'.

Target CPA, target ROAS, Maximise conversions and Maximise conversion value are all Smart Bidding strategies.

You can create a standard bid strategy that is applied to a single campaign, or create a portfolio bid strategy that can apply to multiple campaigns (recommended).

This article tells you how to opt a single campaign in to Smart Bidding and create a new portfolio bid strategy when you’re setting up a new campaign, changing existing campaigns or using the Shared library 'Bid strategies' page to manage your portfolio bid strategies.

Note: You may see 'Bidding and budgets' recommendations in the Recommendations page. Recommendations can help you find the right bid strategy to meet your business goals and ensure that your campaigns aren’t limited by budget.

Before you begin

Instructions

Opt a single campaign in to Smart Bidding

You'll begin by creating a new campaign in your account and selecting a goal for your campaign.

Once you’ve created your new Search campaign, you’ll now choose who to target with your ads, how you’d like to spend your budget, and how to enhance your campaign with assets.

While targeting determines who can view your ads, your budget determines how many people see your ad and bidding determines what you want those people to do.

  1. Enter your daily budget. This amount is the average that you want to spend each day.
  2. In the 'Bidding' section, select Conversions or Conversion value from the drop-down menu.
  3. If you’re more experienced with bidding, you can select a bid strategy directly. Read how to Determine a bid strategy based on your goals.
  4. Click Show more settings to select additional options:
    • Conversions: Select the type of conversion that you want to bid for.
    • Ad schedule: Set a specific time and day that you want your ads to run.
    • Ad rotation: Choose whether to show ads that perform better more often, or to show all ads evenly.
  5. Click Save and continue.
Note: When you add a campaign to a shared budget, the campaign’s budget is also added to the shared budget’s amount.
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.

Create a portfolio bid strategy in the Shared library 'Bid strategies' page

  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 Bid strategies.
  4. Click the plus button, and choose the type of bid strategy that you’d like to create.
  5. Enter the name of your new portfolio bid strategy.
  6. Select the campaigns that you want to include (you can also add more campaigns after your portfolio bid strategy is created).
  7. Enter the bid strategy settings.
  8. Click Save

Create or change a portfolio bid strategy with existing campaigns

  1. In your Google Ads account, click the Campaigns icon Campaigns Icon.
  2. Click the Campaigns drop-down in the section menu.
  3. Click Campaigns.
  4. Click the tick box next to the campaigns that you’d like to include.
  5. Click Edit on the blue bar at the top.
  6. Click Change bid strategy from the drop-down menu.
  7. You can choose to Create new portfolio strategy, or Use existing portfolio strategy.
    • If you choose 'Use existing portfolio bid strategy', select a strategy from the list provided.
    • If you choose 'Create new portfolio bid strategy', enter the settings for your new strategy and give it a name.
  8. Click Apply.

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