How to Maintain Your GDN Campaigns for Optimal Results

Setting up new Google Display Network campaigns is just half the battle. To achieve the best results out of any AdWords campaign, advertisers must optimize their accounts to ensure a steady flow of traffic and sales each month.

Below are some of SCI’s tried and tested tips on basic GDN campaign maintenance for getting the most out of your online ads.


1. Check Your Micro & Macro Conversions

As we’ve discussed in one of our earlier articles, micro and macro conversions act as the KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for your online advertising success. These should be the first thing that you set up before launching any new campaign.



For those of you who already have pre-existing GDN campaigns running, head on over to your conversion overview page to check if all your lead-generation points are being tracked. Here are a few conversion tracking suggestions that you can implement within your own campaigns:

  • Sales Leads
  • Inquiries
  • Trial Signups
  • Newsletter Signups
  • White Paper Downloads
  • Ebook Downloads
  • Add to Cart Clicks


2. Review Your Campaign Details

A. Hour of Day

While it is tempting to keep your ads running 24/7, keep in mind that ad performance and costs fluctuate throughout the day. Ads running at certain times may earn you clicks or conversions that are higher than you are willing to pay for, which is why it would be better to limit the hours your ads become active. Try setting up ad scheduling for each of your campaigns so they only display during your peak hours.

To locate this data, go to your Dimensions Tab, and from the drop-down menu on the left, select Time and then Hour of Day.

Your screen should present you with data similar to the above image. For distributors who market their products worldwide, keep in mind that due to the timezone differences, this section may not be as important to you versus say if you were a roofing company that provides services in Atlanta. Always customize your campaigns according to your target audience!


B. Day of the Week

Like “Hour of Day”, the day of the week also matters when it comes to ad exposure. Generally, B2B companies experience lower rates of customer activity during the weekends, so running your campaigns during the weekdays would be best. Again, take into account any timezone differences if you provide your products internationally.



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C. Geographic Targeting

The better targeted your campaigns, the better results you’ll likely get. Add geolocation targeting to each of your campaigns to optimize your advertising budget. After all, you wouldn’t want to waste money on clicks coming from cities or countries you don’t serve, right?

As long as you’ve already specified your geolocation targets, Google won’t show your ads in any other place. Alternatively, AdWords also allows you to set up location exclusions if you prefer.


D. Final URL

URLs that are out of date or broken are often disruptive to your potential customer’s browsing experience and will discourage them from staying on your site. Review all the destination URLs within your account every month or so to make sure that none of the links lead to 404 pages or are redirects that result in slow page load times.


3. Add Category Exclusions

Category placement exclusions ensure that your ads don’t appear on the more questionable websites around the internet. Make sure the follow exclusions are set up:

Sensitive Content

  • Crime, Police, and Emergency
  • Death and Tragedy
  • Military and International Conflict
  • Juvenile, Gross, and Bizarre
  • Profanity and Rough Language
  • Sexually Suggestive

Type of Placement

  • In-Game
  • Gambling


  • GMob Mobile App Non-Interstitial


4. Review Your Dynamic Placements

The success of GDN campaign strategies relies heavily on site placements. Improve your ad targeting by identifying specific websites, pages, mobile ads, and videos where you don’t want your ads to show. Having your ads displayed on websites that are relevant to your products and services improves your chances of getting good conversions and building better brand awareness.

To review your ad placements, go to Display Network and then Placements.



To exclude a placement, scroll down the placements page and click on +Exclusions. From there, select the Campaign or AdGroup you want to update, choose placements from their corresponding dropdown menu and then either enter the placements you want to exclude here or create a placement exclusion list.



To create a placement exclusion list, select Shared Library, then Campaign Placement Exclusions and then hit the button labeled +List.


5. Review Your Ad Rotation Settings

Ad rotation determines the way ads are delivered to the Google Network. When you have multiple ads running within an ad group, specify how each one should be displayed and served in relation to one another. Take note, the ad rotation setting is only available for campaigns with “All Features” enabled.


6. Frequency Capping

Frequency capping regulates the times your ads appear to the same unique viewer on the Google Display Network. An ad is counted as viewable when 50% or more of it shows for more than a second for display ads and more than two seconds for video ads.

By enabling frequency capping, you can specify the limit for the number of ad impressions allowed per day, week, or month for each user. We recommend setting your frequency cap to 2 impressions per day for image ads, and five to ten impressions per day for text ads.


7. Set Up Ad Extensions

Ad extensions show extra information about your business and makes your ads more prominent on search results pages.

Below are the vailable ad extensions for GDN ads. To create an ad extension, select a campaign or ad group, select ad extensions and then either call or location extensions.


Call Extensions


Location Extensions

8. Check Your Bid Adjustments

Device bid adjustments control how frequently your ads appear on specific devices such as mobile phones, tablets, or desktops. As a general rule, if your website is not compatible with mobile, change the adjustment to a negative value like -500%. If your website is mobile responsive, leave your adjustments at 0. However, if you prefer to target mobile users specifically, set the bid adjustment to 100%.

To set your bid adjusments, select a campaign or ad group. Select Settings, Devices, and click on “Bid Adj.”.



9. Review Ad Performance

Ad performance testing helps ensure that you achieve maximum click-through rates for your campaigns and attain maximum ROI. Because the online marketing industry is constantly changing, you should always test your ads for effectiveness. Try experimenting with different ad copy, calls-to-action, graphics, offers and promotions through A/B split testing to see which ads appeal more to your target audience.


Need More Help?

Don't have the time to manage your own campaigns? Let us do the dirty work for you! SCI Global Services Inc. has a dedicated team of Digital Marketing Specialists ready to help with all your Google AdWords Display Network setup and maintenance needs.


Talk To An Expert

We're here to help you manage your AdWords Display Network campaigns.