Settling Into Performance Max

When Performance Max campaigns were first introduced, marketers were hesitant in drinking the Kool-Aid on Google's latest offering. Now that this type of campaign has outlasted the Beta testing phase and has seen several upgrades, marketers are settling into the strategy and opportunities of utilizing Performance Max campaigns.

What is Performance Max?

Google describes Performance Max as "a new goal-based campaign type that allows performance advertisers to access all of their Google Ads inventory from a single campaign". Ads will appear across all of Google's channels like Search, Gmail, YouTube, Discover, and Maps. When setting up the account, you will provide assets including headlines, descriptions, images, logos, videos, and product feeds, and Google will deliver ads using several different asset combinations.

What are the benefits of using Performance Max?

Google states that the benefits of Performance Max campaigns are:

  • Increasing conversions and value

  • Finding new customers

  • Gaining richer insights

  • Working together with automation

While Google had those goals in mind, our team had its own opinion of this campaign type during the initial phase of the rollout:


  • Customer Reach

  • Minimal work and management

  • Various placement opportunities

  • Automation


  • Cannibalistic tendencies - Performance Max campaigns could be served in lieu of your other search campaigns

  • Minimal Insights - No real search term insights

  • Little Control - With automation comes less work, but also even less oversight and ability to control the campaign settings

Now that marketers have spoken up after testing, Google has listened. Marek Turnhofer of lists out a few of Google's improvements and fixes:

1. Search Ads with keywords should be prioritized over Performance Max

2. Marketers will be able to add account-level negative keywords

3. Ability to utilize campaign-level brand exclusions

When to use Performance Max?

Performance Max campaigns should be used to supplement your traditional keyword strategy, not replace. We've found that campaigns that utilize product feeds, along with a lot of campaign assets perform the best. This campaign type is also beneficial for those who don't necessarily have the time to manage and optimize the same way traditional keyword campaigns are handled. Google's automation and AI helps with heavy lifting.

Want to try out Performance Max campaigns for your business? See how SilverBack Advertising can help! Contact us today.