Google Ads Performance Max: 10 Dos, Don’ts, Watchouts & Workarounds

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Now that we’ve all been living with Performance Max for a while and starting to test the format, we’re learning the intricacies and nuances of the newest Google Ads campaign type.

Some aspects of Performance Max feel completely novel, like auto-generated video assets and URL expansion. Other aspects feel vaguely familiar, like responsive ads and conversion-only bidding.

google ads performance max icons

After working with Performance Max campaigns across dozens of accounts over the last six months, here are my top 10 dos, don’ts, watchouts, and workarounds for success with PMax.

Who should use Google Ads Performance Max?

There is a mix of opinions around Google Ads Performance Max, but all in all, I recommend that ecommerce businesses test Performance Max now. I do not recommend that lead gen businesses test it unless you have sophisticated conversion tracking set up (see the first “do” below).

And regardless of business objectives, don’t even think about testing Performance Max unless you’re prepared to spend at least $50-100 per day for at least a month; without it, it’s unlikely you’ll generate enough data and learning for the format to work properly.

10 tips for success with Google Ads Performance Max

Here are my top 10 dos, don’ts, watchouts and workarounds for PMax.

1. DO 👍 implement accurate, full-funnel conversion tracking

Performance Max relies heavily on both bidding and targeting automation, similar to predecessors like App campaigns, Smart Display, and Local campaigns. Conversion tracking is always important in a Google Ads account, but it’s even more important in Performance Max. While this is pretty easy on the ecommerce side, I’ve seen many lead gen businesses struggle with lead quality.

In my opinion, this is not a failing of the format, but rather a stark reminder of the importance of tools like enhanced conversions, offline conversion tracking, CRM integration, etc.

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