Fix low traffic issues with your Dynamic Search Ads

If your Dynamic Search Ads aren't getting traffic, it might be because your settings are missing key information. Within an ad group, you'll need to create your Dynamic Search Ad text and choose Dynamic ad targets for your ad to run.

This article goes over some of the most common reasons why Dynamic Search Ads don’t receive traffic after initial setup.

The new Google Ads experience is now the exclusive way for most users to manage their accounts. If you’re still using the previous AdWords experience, choose Previous below. Learn more

Check that you've correctly entered your website domain and language

Dynamic Search Ads require a website domain (for example, example.com) and language corresponding to the pages you want your ads to target to be set in the campaign. When you first create your campaign, or change your settings later, you'll need to provide your website information and website language to set up the campaign properly.

Here’s how to check your domain settings:

  1. Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  2. From the page menu on the left, click Campaigns.
  3. Use a table filter to find your campaign, then click its name.
  4. To see your campaign settings, click Settings from the page menu on the left.
  5. Click Dynamic Search Ads. You should see the website domain and language listed if you previously gave this information.
  6. If the domain or language is missing, enter the domain or select a language from the drop-down. Double-check to be sure that your domain name is spelled correctly.
  7. Click Save.

The following domains cannot be used for Dynamic Search Ad campaigns:

  • Redirected domains
  • Subdomains like shop.example.com. In this case, you'd need to enter the root domain, example.com.
  • Domains without enough content to target:
    • Sites that mostly contain flash content or images
    • Sites that require a user to login to access the majority of the site's content
    • Sites that don't have a lot of pages indexed by Google (check your website's index status on Google)
Verify your ad format

Dynamic Search Ads are different from text ads, so you'll want to make sure that you chose the "Dynamic search ad" format instead of the "Text ad" format.

Here's how to check that you've selected the correct ad format:

  1. Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  2. From the page menu on the left, click Campaigns.
  3. Find the campaign that contains your Dynamic Search Ad, then click its name.
  4. Click Ads & extensions on the page menu.
  5. For the ad whose format you want to verify, check that the details listed in the Ad column include “[Dynamically generated headline].” 
  6. If the Ad column lists a different headline, complete the following steps to create a new ad.
    1. Click the plus button , then select + Dynamic Search Ad.
    2. Click Select an ad group, then select an ad group from the list. 
    3. Enter a description for the ad.
    4. If you use third-party tracking software, you'll need to include the relevant tracking URL in your tracking template. In the “Ad URL options” section, enter your tracking template URL and custom parameters.
    5. Click Save.
Review your dynamic ad targets

Dynamic Search Ads use dynamic ad targets to determine which sections or pages of your website to use for showing your ads to customers. When you create a Dynamic Search Ad campaign, we suggest you start by implementing all recommended category targets. Learn more about creating targets for Dynamic Search Ads.

If you want to set up your own dynamic ad targets, you'll need to format them in a way that our system understands. Also, make sure that they aren't too narrowly defined. For example, if you create a dynamic ad target for one webpage on your site, such as "URL contains business/benefits.html," then our system can use only that one page to show your ad.

Check your negative keywords and negative dynamic ad targets

Negative keywords

Negative keywords in your Dynamic Search Ad ad groups block your ads from appearing when a customer uses those words as a search phrase. You can compare your negative keywords with pages on your website that you want to include for your Dynamic Search Ads. If there are matches, consider removing the negative keyword.

Negative dynamic ad targets

Negative dynamic ad targets prevent us from using certain pages on your website to target your Dynamic Search Ads. If a customer uses a search phrase that could've been matched with a page from your website that's in a negative target, that customer won't see your ad.

Here's how to check your negative targets and to remove those you don’t want:

  1. From the page menu of the left, click Dynamic ad targets.
  2. Click Negative dynamic ad targets above the chart.
  3. Review your list of negative targets. Check if any of them are blocking pages on your website that you don't want blocked.
  4. Select the negative target that's blocking those pages and click Remove.

Tip

You can review the ”Website coverage” column to see the percentage of pages that belong to a negative dynamic ad target. It will tell you the percentage of landing pages—out of all the pages in your website's domain that Google has indexed—that belong to the same category, contain certain words in the page title, use the same URL snippet, or have common phrases in the content of the website itself. If you can’t see the “Website coverage” column, add it to the table. Please note that it can take up to 72 hours to expose the website coverage of each auto target if you start a new Dynamic Search Ad campaign. Note that seeing “--,” rather than a number, as the coverage means that there are no pages targeted at all, so this dynamic ad target will get no traffic.

Other reasons your Dynamic Search Ads might not appear as expected
  • Your Dynamic Search Ads can show instead of your keyword-based campaigns when the keywords in your keyword-based campaigns are active, paused, or removed.
  • Your Dynamic Search Ads won't show when a customer's search term exactly matches one of your eligible exact-match keywords in the same account.
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