Set up an audience source

To provide a comprehensive and consolidated view of your Audiences and make audience management and optimisation simpler, you’ll see the following improvements in Google Ads:

  • New audience reporting
    Detailed reporting about audience demographics, segments and exclusions is now consolidated in one place, the 'Audiences' tab within the left page navigation menu. You can also easily manage your audiences from this report page. Learn more about audience reporting
  • New terms
    We’re using new terms on your Audience report and throughout Google Ads. For example, 'audience types' (these include similar, custom, in-market and affinity) are now referred to as audience segments and 'remarketing' is now referred to as 'your data'. Learn more about the updates to audience terms and phrases

An audience source is a first-party data source that you can use to create your data segments in Google Ads. For example, you can set up an audience source to reach people who've visited your website, used your app, watched your video or shared their information with you.

This article explains how to set up an audience source.

Benefits

  • Set up or link audience sources to expand your reach.
  • Manage, monitor and troubleshoot your audience sources.
  • View tag hits, active parameters and your data lists created from each audience source.

Choose an audience source

Most audience sources require you to link your Google Ads account with the source’s account. Follow the instructions below to set up a new audience source in your Google Ads account.

Google Ads tag

Collect data for your data segments and conversion tracking by adding the Google Ads tag to your website.

Instructions

  1. Click the tools icon Google Ads | tools [Icon] in the top right-hand corner of your screen.
  2. Under 'Shared library', click Audience manager.
  3. From the page menu on the left click Audience sources.
  4. In the Google Ads tag card, click Set up tag.
    1. If you already set up a Google Ads tag, you can edit the tag by clicking the 3-dot menu and then Edit.
  5. Decide what data your tag should collect:
    1. 'Collect standard data available from this data source' collects general website visit data.
    2. 'Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads' tailors your ads based on user activity.
      • This option is also known as 'Dynamic remarketing' and allows you to show ads to people based on their activity on your site or app.
  6. Select the general parameters that you'd like to track.
  7. If you selected 'Collect standard data available from this data source', move on to step 9.
  8. If you selected 'Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads':
    1. Select a business type.
      • Business type is used to tell your tags to collect information about activity on your website that's specific to your business type. If your business type isn’t listed, select “Other (custom option)".
    2. Select the business type parameters that you'd like to track.
  9. Click Create and continue.
  10. Install the global site tag and Google Ads event snippet in the <head> section of your HTML pages. Learn more about the changes to the Google Ads tag.
  11. Click Done.

Google Analytics (Universal Analytics)

View website statistics, track conversions and bring over your Universal Analytics data segments.

Before you begin

Instructions

  1. Click the tools icon Google Ads | tools [Icon] in the top right-hand corner of your screen.
  2. Under 'Shared library', click Audience manager.
  3. In the page menu on the left, click Audience sources.
  4. In the 'Google Analytics (UA)' card, click Set up.
  5. Select the type of data that the Analytics audience source will collect:
    • Collect standard data available from this data source: Choose this option if you want to collect general website visit data.
    • Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads: Choose this option if you're using a data feed to tailor your ads based on user activity (also known as dynamic remarketing).
  6. If you selected Collect standard data available from this data source:
    • Continue to step 8.
  7. If you selected Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads:
    1. Choose a business type.
      • Business types tell your tags to collect information about activity on your website that's specific to your business type. If your business type isn’t listed, select Custom.
    2. Select the Analytics view in which the Dynamic Attribute data is available
    3. Select the attributes and their associated dimensions that you want to track. These attributes tell Analytics to send Google Ads information about activity on your website that's specific to the content that your customers view.
      1. Tick the box next to the attribute that you’ve selected.
      2. Click the drop-down arrow next to “Select dimension”.
      3. Choose a predefined dimension or create your own.
  8. Click Save and continue.

Google Analytics 4 property/Firebase project

For Google Analytics 4 properties and Firebase projects, you can import web and app conversions, transactions and audience segments built in Google Analytics to your Google Ads account.

Before you begin

  • Make sure that you have the necessary permissions to see the view levels in your Google Analytics 4 property or Firebase project.
  • Link your Google Analytics 4 property or Firebase project with your Google Ads account.
  • You can find your data lists and tag hits for Google Analytics 4 properties and Firebase projects in the 'Google Analytics (GA4) and Firebase' card in 'Audience sources'.
  • Dynamic remarketing for web isn’t supported by Google Analytics 4 properties.

Instructions

  1. Click the tools icon Google Ads | tools [Icon] in the top right-hand corner of your screen.
  2. Under 'Shared library', click Audience manager.
  3. In the page menu on the left, click Audience sources.
  4. In the 'Google Analytics (GA4) and Firebase' card, click Link to Google Analytics (GA4) and Firebase.
  5. Click Link next to each property or project that you want to add to your Google Ads account.
  6. To add more properties or projects, click Enable audiences in the 'Google Analytics (GA4) and Firebase' card.

YouTube

Show your ads to people who engage with your YouTube channel, track what people do after watching video ads and drive clicks with call-to-action overlays.

Learn how to Link YouTube channels with Google Ads.

Play

Create data segments based on your current app users and track in-app purchases as conversions to see which ads drive action.

Learn how to Link Google Play and Google Ads.

App analytics

Link a third-party app analytics provider or your own software development kit (SDK) to your Google Ads account.
Note: If you want to use Firebase as an audience source, see the "Google Analytics App + Web and Firebase" section.

Instructions

  1. Click the tools icon Google Ads | tools [Icon] in the top right-hand corner of your screen.
  2. Under 'Shared library', click Audience manager.
  3. From the page menu on the left click Audience sources.
  4. In the App analytics card, click Set up.
  5. Decide what data your source should collect:
    • 'Collect standard data available from this data source' collects general website visit data.
    • 'Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads' tailors your ads based on a feed and user activity.
      • This option is also known as 'Dynamic remarketing' and allows you to show ads to people in your data segments based on their activity.
  6. Decide if you want to 'Include the user ID parameter in the tag'. If so, tick the box. If not, leave it unticked.
    • If your website has a user login, this parameter will collect the user IDs of people in your data segment so that you can show more personalised ads.
  7. If you selected 'Collect standard data available from this data source', move on to step 9.
  8. If you selected 'Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads':
    1. Choose a business type.
      • Business type is used to tell your tag to collect information about activity on your website or app that's specific to your business type. If your business type isn’t listed, select “Other (custom option)".
    2. Select the parameters that you want to track.
  9. Click Create and continue.
  10. Install an SDK.
  11. Create a feed for ad personalisation (if you selected 'Collect specific attributes or parameters to personalise ads').

Customer data

Use marketing data to reach your customers as they browse across Google's properties like Google Search, YouTube or Gmail. Learn more about how to Upload data files and manage your Customer Match segments.

Instructions

  1. Click the tools icon Google Ads | tools [Icon] in the top right-hand corner of your screen.
  2. Under 'Shared library', click Audience manager.
  3. From the Page Menu on the left click Segments.
  4. Click the plus button to create a new audience segment.
  5. Choose 'Customer segment'.
  6. Choose whether to upload customer data in a plain text data file or a hashed data file.
    1. If you choose plain text, the private customer data in your file will be hashed on your computer using the SHA256 algorithm before it’s sent securely to Google's servers.
    2. If you choose to hash your data, make sure that it meets the requirements described in the Formatting guidelines for Customer list data files section of this article.
  7. Choose your file.
  8. If you agree, tick the box ‘This data was collected and is being shared with Google in compliance with Google's policies
  9. Set a membership duration. The default is unlimited, but you can set a custom time limit.
  10. Click Save
  11. You can view the progress of uploading your data file under 'Segments'. This process may take up to 48 hours to complete.
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