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Ads not showing? Prepare to have them paused.

Anyone managing their own Google Ads campaign may be interested to know that Google is introducing a change that “automatically pauses search campaign ad groups that were created at least 13 months ago and have not had impressions in the past 13 months.” This is being done, they say, “to improve Google Ads experience for advertisers”, but I can’t see how it’ll help us much, so I guess it’s more to scale down their own data processing requirements.

They continue: “Advertisers who are affected by this change will be able to unpause ad groups if they still need them. However, we recommend that advertisers review their ad groups and only unpause the ones you expect to get impressions in the coming weeks. Unpaused ad groups will be automatically paused again if they don’t receive any impressions over the next 3 months.”

Low search volume keywords do not hurt our ‘Quality Score’. As the name says, they are most likely caused by a lack of relevant searches. However, what are known as ‘zero impression’ keywords are a little broader, and can be caused by budget not stretching far enough, so are of more concern. Obviously if our ads aren’t showing, our campaign numbers aren’t being directly harmed, but if we want to get exposure for more obscure terms, other tactics are useful. One is to use them as ‘Sitelinks’ in related ads that are showing.