The AdWords Next Interface | Navigation & New Features

By Tinuiti Team

After allowing advertisers to prepare for the new interface for nearly a year, Google is now finally making all users upgrade to AdWords Next.

Here’s a quick guide to get you up to speed with the new interface, our favorite new features, and some pro tips from the experts.



A New Dashboard

First, let’s take a look at the major differences to design.

The look and feel are significantly different. Advertisers that spend a lot of time in the interface will need to adopt some new workflows.


Caroline Rice, Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy


-Caroline Rice, Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy

1. The main navigation panel, formerly located across the top, is now located on the left side.


adwords next new interface nav bar


The navigation bar is now on the side rather than the top. It does take a bit of getting used to. All of your campaigns, metrics, and more are now located on the left.


chris pezolli senior retail search manager


-Chris Pezolli, Senior Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy

2. Reports, dimensions (formerly predefined reports), and other features like shared library and keyword planner are located in the top right.


adwords next interface dimensions and reports



Navigating the AdWords Next Interface

For most of us, the biggest challenge comes with locating features new and old.

Thankfully, there are handy keyboard shortcuts and even a search tool that can be used to zip around the new dashboard.

Chris Pezolli says,

Pro-tip: There are shortcuts for everything that make navigation easier. I frequently use the G+C shortcut to bring myself back to the main campaign page.


AdWords Keyboard Shortcuts


Other favorite shortcuts:


In addition to using keyboard shortcuts, there’s also a handy search bar for finding everything you need.


adwords search bar adwords next


Finding where everything is is the biggest pain point. Figuring out where everything lives, as many features have been rearranged. The search bar and keyboard shortcuts are your friend.


LaBroi-Walton Senior Retail Search Manager


LaBroi Walton, Senior Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy


Notable Changes to Old Features

Google has also made changes to a few features. Thankfully, most of these changes are just rearrangements.


Caroline Rice says,

You’ll need to recreate your column preferences and saved filters. There are some key elements that are different like dimensions changing to predefined reports and the display planner is no longer available.


Our Favorite New Features

AdWords Next brings a host of new features — all bringing new capabilities to advertisers.

Here are some of our favorites.

Audience Insights

Chris’ favorite new feature is Audience Insights — a powerful new tool that allows you to view demographic insights for each of your audiences.


audience insights google adwords next


You can use this to gather data on your website visitors, CRM lists, converters, etc.

chris pezolli senior retail search manager

Chris Pezolli says,

If you are wondering where to start with prospecting, you can start here to find what in-market audiences are likely to convert. You may even find an audience that performs well you didn’t know even know about.

Where?  Tools > Shared library > Audience manager > Audience Insights (left panel)

Carolien Rice, Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy

Ad Variations

Caroline’s favorite new feature is Ad Variations, which enables you to test ad copy and landing page performance across an entire account or within specific campaigns before creating a new ad.

Caroline Rice says,

Start by selecting which campaigns you want to add your ad variation to. You can test within specific campaigns, your entire account or specify with filters like “final URL contains” or “headline 2 equals.”


ad variations adwords next cpc strategy


Caroline notes that you can select three types of ad variations:


  • Find and replace (looks for specific text and replaces with something new)
  • Update text (adds a new element)
  • Swap headlines (flips H1 and H2)


Where? Drafts & Experiments > Ad Variations


In-market Audiences for Search Ads

Another feature we are excited to leverage for our retail clients is In-market Audiences for Search Ads.

Powered by Google’s machine learning, in-market audiences are users that have been determined to be in-market or researching a particular product.

It’s much more than just serving an ad to someone who is browsing the web like Display does. Essentially, In-Market Audiences for Search is adding an extra level of intent targeting, which should help improve conversion rates.



-Lewis Brannon, Senior Retail Search Manager at CPC Strategy


in market audiences search ads


This capability is useful for prospecting and targeting high-intent shoppers to support your Search campaigns.

Where? Audiences > Observation > In-market Audiences


Search Term Data & Other Reports

Anything that saves valuable time for advertisers is going to be a favorite. Which is why our Search experts love the ability to view search term reports right from within AdWords.

The ability to see search term data at the product group level within the search tab is a big time saver. Previously you had to download data to excel to see this.

josh brisco


-Josh Brisco, Senior Manager Retail Search Operations at CPC Strategy



Where? All Campaigns > Keywords > Search Terms


Other notable new features:



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