About Discovery campaigns

Starting in October, Demand Gen campaigns will be available to all advertisers in Google Ads and your Discovery campaigns will be eligible for upgrades. Contact your Google account team to upgrade your Discovery campaigns on your behalf. And if you don’t currently have a Google account team, your Discovery campaigns will be automatically upgraded by November.

Once upgraded, all of your historical data and learnings from your Discovery campaigns will be seamlessly carried over to your new Demand Gen campaigns, so you can take full advantage of the newly redesigned UI and start optimising your campaigns with new performance-enhancing features. 

Learn more about upgrading from Discovery ads to Demand Gen

About discovery campaigns hero image

You can use Discovery campaigns to help reach up to 3 billion customers across Google's feeds to achieve your performance goals in Google Ads. Thanks to Google's audience and customer intent signals, this campaign type helps you deliver highly visual, inspiring personalised ad experiences to people who are ready to discover and engage with your brand – all through a single Google Ads campaign.

This article gives you an overview of Discovery campaigns. To get started, go to Create a Discovery campaign.


Reach your ideal customer at scale with a single campaign. You enter the building blocks for your ads – like headlines, high quality inspirational images, and logos – and we'll show your ads to highly interested customers using the bid goal and budget that you set.

Discovery campaigns include the following features:

  • Reach more of Google with a single ad campaign.With the ability to reach up to 3 billion people monthly on the YouTube Home and Watch Next feeds, Discover and the Gmail Promotions and Social tabs, you can now reach more potential customers as they browse everything from the latest fashion trends to new cooking recipe videos on popular Google properties.
  • Drive engagement with richer, more relevant ads. Thanks to Google's unique understanding of customer intent, you'll be able to show more relevant, meaningful ads to people when they're most interested to learn more about your products and services.

Animated GIF representing various ad formats across a Discovery Campaign.

  • Visually rich ads rendered natively across Google properties at scale. Designed for discovery as consumers browse their favourite content and feed-based experiences, our ad layouts rely on Google's AI to build and showcase your assets seamlessly across devices – helping you spark customer interest and action with less effort and time.
  • Automated bidding options to meet your media performance goals. You can use Maximise conversions bidding, target CPA or target ROAS to optimise your campaign bids to meet your media marketing objectives. You can also benefit Google’s AI when it comes to audience performance by opting into optimised targeting.

When to use

Discovery campaigns may be a good choice for you if:

  • You want to drive conversions with your media at scale (through a supported marketing objective): For example, you can use Discovery ads to drive sales, newsletter signups or more website visits.
  • You want to reach new customers with your media: By sharing visually rich, inspiring brand creatives across feeds on Google properties, Discovery campaigns can help you drive interest from potential customers when they're open to trying new brands. For example, you can extend a successful audience strategy for social or video campaigns to new audiences on Google's feeds.
  • You want to reconnect with your most valuable customers: As consumers return over time to find content they enjoy on Google's feeds, Discovery campaigns give you more opportunities to drive action from people who know your brand best and are most likely to engage with it again – whether they've previously made a purchase, engaged with your YouTube channel or visited your website.

To be eligible to set up a Discovery campaign, you'll need to meet the following requirements:

Are you a digital agency? Visit Think with Google to learn more about how Discovery ads can help you drive engagement through rich, visual experiences on Google's feeds.

Campaign settings

Several campaign settings, like bidding and targeting, are automated for Discovery campaigns to save you time and help your campaign deliver optimal performance based on the marketing objective, bid and budget that you choose. In addition, there are some features that aren't supported by this campaign type. When using Discovery campaigns, you won't be able to adjust the following settings:

  • Manual bid strategies
  • Delivery method
  • Device targeting
  • Placement targeting (including exclusions)
  • Frequency capping
  • Ad rotation
  • Contextual targeting
Third-party audiences, for example, audiences using Display cookies by way of a Data Management Platform (DMP) or Google Analytics reseller audiences, are not available for Discovery campaigns.

Content exclusion

Google takes brand safety very seriously. The placement of Discovery ads is determined by the topics that a user is actively interested in, based on signals such as videos that the user watches on YouTube or content that the user follows on Discover.

Discovery campaigns automatically apply exclusions to help ensure that your ads appear next to advertiser-friendly content. For example, Discovery ads won’t show next to content with repeated strong profanity, strong sexual content or graphic violence.

Related links

Was this helpful?
How can we improve it?
Drive Revenue with Optiscore

Want to improve account health and drive business goals? Learn from industry & Google experts on how to drive revenue with the help of Optimization Score & Auto Apply Recommendations.

Register Now

Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu
Search Help Centre