Highlight upcoming events with countdowns

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

Countdown customizers come in both COUNTDOWN and GLOBAL_COUNTDOWN formats. Use GLOBAL_COUNTDOWN if you're counting down to a time that's consistent globally, like the time of a sports match.

Function What it does
COUNTDOWN Counts down to a set time, adjusted to the timezone of the person searching.
GLOBAL_COUNTDOWN Counts down to a "global" time consistent with your account's timezone. If the ad says "ends in 4 hours" in California, it will also say "ends in 4 hours" in New York.

Both countdown functions count down by day, then by hour, then by minute. So a line of ad text with a countdown customizer might say "Hurry, sale ends in 3 hours," and then 2 hours and 28 minutes later say, "Hurry, sale ends in 32 minutes."

You can set up countdowns in any responsive search ad, text ad, or Dynamic Search Ad.


Start editing your ad

  1. Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  2. From the page menu on the left, click Ads assets.
  3. Click Ads.
  4. Click an ad that you want to add a countdown to, or click the plus button and select Responsive search ad, or Dynamic Search Ad.
  5. Fill in your ad text.

Trigger the countdown widget

  1. In the place where 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. You can select:
    • Start of day
    • End of day
    • Custom time
      • Put your time in a 24-hour format (optional). For example, if your end time is 6:30 PM on July 14, 2017, your date would be 2017/07/14, and your time would be 18:30:00.
  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.
    • Note: Days are defined as the number of midnights. For example, if your end time is 6:30 PM on July 14, 2022 by entering 7 days before then, your ad will start showing at midnight on July 7, 2022.
Note: Ads with countdown customizers automatically stop showing after their specified end date. Remember to unpin or change the headline when the countdown is over to ensure your ad continues to serve.

Set time zone and language

  1. Select Account time zone to count down to your end time in your Google Ads 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.
  2. 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.
Note: You won’t be able to change the language that the countdown shows for your responsive search ads.

Set the countdown and save your ad

  1. Click Apply 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. The countdown customizer code could generate a string that's 8 characters long. Make sure your ad copy allows for the additional characters.
  3. Click Save ad.
Note: The preview always shows a static countdown that does not reflect real-time.

Responsive search ads countdown customizers

RSA countdown customizers are a simplified version of the original ETA countdown customizers. Make sure to add at least 3 headlines without a countdown customizer, or you can use default text.

Syntax differences ETA countdown customizers RSA countdown customizers
  • Remove equals sign
  • Remove quotes
  • Simplify date format
  • Remove language selection, since it will automatically detect based on creative language.
  • {=COUNTDOWN(“yyyy/MM/dd HH:mm:ss”,”language”,daysBefore)}
  • {=GLOBAL_COUNTDOWN(“yyyy/MM/dd HH:mm:ss”,”language”,daysBefore)}
  • {COUNTDOWN(yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss,daysBefore)}
  • {GLOBAL_COUNTDOWN(yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss,daysBefore)}

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