How To Create a Draft or Experiment in AdWords

How To Create Drafts And Experiment In AdWords

AdWords Drafts and Experiments allow you to explore new ideas safely, without impacting your campaigns until you’re ready. Here’s how they work.

Has the love fizzled out? Things feeling stale? By now you will probably want to try out something new or make a few improvements. As you maintain a well labored over relationship with your campaigns you will probably want to spice things up a bit at some point. It could be that you are not meeting your intended metrics, quality score is low or maybe you just have some new ideas.

One of the best ways to introduce new ideas to this entanglement is to try out some potential changes with AdWords Drafts and Experiments. It can definitely be nerve racking to make any type of adjustment without having full confidence of what the response may be. With these tools you can test and compare without affecting your current campaign. So there is little to lose and lots to try.

“Don’t be afraid to get creative and experiment with your marketing.” – Mike Volpe, HubSpot. @mvolpe

Change is Easy with AdWords Drafts

Just so we are upfront the only type of campaigns you use these tools on are Search and Display Network. No shopping, video, or app campaigns. The first thing you would want to try out is Drafts. Here you really want to think of small bite sized ways you want to make changes to your current campaign. Implementing too many changes at once makes it challenging to see what is positively or negatively effecting your campaign.

An Adwords draft makes an exact reflection of your chosen campaign, settings and all, to try out potential changes without affecting your current performance. You can update and review as needed like you would a normal campaign. If you feel like the draft has the right stuff then you apply the draft or begin an experiment to challenge your hypothesis to your live campaign.

Also make sure to have an existing and working campaign already up and running. Can’t run a draft without a campaign already in action!

How to Set Up a Draft In AdWords

If you are using the older or newer version of AdWords we got you covered.

Original AdWords

  1. Open AdWords
  2. Click Campaigns tab
  3. Select a campaign
  4. Click Draft drop-down on the upper-right corner (next to date range), then select Create new.
  5. Name your draft, click Create.
  6. Start making the changes you would like to see. Any changes are automatically saved.
  7. When you are happy with the draft apply or start an experiment.

New AdWords

  1. Open AdWords
  2. On the left of Page Menu, click Drafts & experiments, then click Campaign Drafts
  3. Click the plus (+) button
  4. Coming from the the “All campaigns” page?  Click Select a campaign drop-down to select the campaign you want to make a draft for.
  5. Coming from a specific campaign page? The draft has been automatically created for the specific campaign you’re viewing
  6. Name your draft  Save
  7. Start making the changes you would like to see. Any changes are automatically saved.
  8. When you are happy with the draft apply or start an experiment.

When you are giving your draft a name it may be a good idea to put the date in it so you know when the draft or changes were implemented. This is so you can go back a remember what you had tested easily.

Example: Oct182017_Teacup_Campaign2_DisplayNetwork

Be specific about what you are trying to test because testing to many things at once will be difficult to pinpoint and compare later.

Test Your Ideas in AdWords With an Experiment

Not feeling quite ready to commit to a draft? Thankfully you can apply your ideas to an experiment to see how they might play out. However, before you turn into a mad scientist on us with lots of experiments you can only choose one draft to test. You are allowed to make as many drafts as you want but you can only run one experiment at a time.

Decide how long you want to run the experiment and (here’s the tough one) how much of your current traffic and budget you want to use. A 50/50 split between your experiment and current active campaign is usually the right number to be able to get enough traffic to see results from your test. Also, you are not allowed to extend the run time of the campaign so make sure to choose something far into the future. 3-6 months should be good. However, ending your experiment early is totally fine.

During the testing time frame when someone Googles you, your current active ad or your experiment will be displayed. This will be random. This is why a 50/50 split is a good idea. So you know the traffic and budget are equal for both. You will also want to keep a close look at comparing the two as well, because if you like the response you can end early and implement the experiment to your active campaign.

  1. All experiments on the left, click the name of the experiment you want to apply.
  2. Click Apply
  3. Update your original campaign.
  4. Click Apply. You’ll still be able to view but not make changes to your experiment

OR you can implement the the experiment into a new campaign:

  1. All experiments on the left, click the name of the experiment you want to apply
  2. Click the Apply
  3. Convert to a new campaign
  4. Click Apply.

OR you stop the campaign by change the date early.

For you advanced AdWords users you may also want to try out these test as well.

How To Set Up An Experiment In AdWords

We got the experimental setup for the original and new AdWords. Campaigns will be listed next to your ative campaign and in campaign experiments.

Original AdWords

  1. Open AdWords
  2. Click All drafts on the left
  3. Select the draft you want to run experiment with
  4. Click  Apply on the top right corner
  5. Select Run an experiment
  6. Name your experiment
  7. Choose a start date
  8. You can manually end your experiment by selecting “No end date.”
    • Or choose an end date
  9. Enter the percentage traffic you’d like to allocate to your experiment
    • This is also the percentage of the budget
  10. Click Create

New AdWords

There are two ways to start and experiment in the new AdWords, from campaign drafts or campaign experiment pages.  

Campaign Draft Page

  1. Click Drafts & experiments on the left
    1. Then click Campaign Drafts at the top
  2. Select draft you want to experiment
  3. Click Apply
  4. Select Run an experiment
  5. Name your experiment
  6. Choose a start date
  7. You can manually end your experiment by selecting “No end date.”
    • Or choose an end date
  8. Enter the percentage traffic you’d like to allocate to your experiment
    • This is also the percentage of the budget
  9. Click Save

Campaign Experiments Page

  1. Click Drafts & experiments
    1. Then click Campaign Experiments at the top
  2. Click plus (+) button
  3. Select Draft you want to experiment
  4. Name your draft
  5. Choose a start date
  6. You can manually end your experiment by selecting “No end date.”
    • Or choose an end date
  7. Enter the percentage traffic you’d like to allocate to your experiment
    • This is also the percentage of the budget
  8. Click Apply

“Marketing’s job is never done. It’s about perpetual motion. We must continue to innovate every day.” -Beth Comstock, GE. @bethcomstock

Try Out Your Campaign Ideas With An AdWords Draft or Experiment

They say variety is the spice of life. When spicing up your campaigns you will certainly get a lot of variety of what to test and what metrics to compare. While it may be a lot to account for it is worth testing out tools to improve your AdWords performance. Another tool right in front of you is a one that will do most of the work for you. That will show you reports, implement improvements and know what the best changes are to make without needing your constant attention. That is us! (Not saying we are a bunch of tools btw). We can help you get the best version of your campaign easily.

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