The 2024 Guide to Mastering Mobile Ads with Google Ads Enhanced Campaigns

In today‘s digital landscape, mobile is dominating. Consider these eye-opening statistics:

  • Mobile devices account for over 60% of total search traffic globally (Statista)
  • 79% of smartphone users have made a purchase online using their mobile device in the last 6 months (OuterBox)
  • Mobile ad spend is projected to reach $413 billion by 2024 (eMarketer)

The message is clear: if you want to reach and convert your target audience, you need a strong mobile advertising strategy. And Google Ads enhanced campaigns are one of the most powerful tools at your disposal.

What Are Enhanced Campaigns?

Google Ads enhanced campaigns, launched in 2013 and continually refined, are designed to help advertisers streamline campaign management across multiple devices. Instead of having to create separate campaigns for desktop, mobile, and tablet, enhanced campaigns allow you to manage all devices within a single campaign interface.

The key benefits of enhanced campaigns include:

  • Simplified campaign setup and management
  • Ability to set mobile-specific bid adjustments at scale
  • Customized ad messaging by device to match user context
  • Detailed reporting on cross-device behavior and performance

With enhanced campaigns, it‘s easier than ever to deliver targeted, relevant ads to users no matter how they‘re searching. And when your AdWords campaigns are optimized for multiple devices, your reach and impact are significantly amplified.

Step-by-Step Guide to Setting Up Mobile Ads

Now, let‘s walk through how to set up mobile-preferred ads in an enhanced campaign for optimal performance.

Step 1: Create a New Responsive Search Ad

  1. In your Google Ads account, navigate to Ads & Extensions in the left menu
  2. Click the blue "+" button and select Responsive Search Ad
  3. Enter your final URL and display path

Step 2: Write Your Ad Copy

For your headlines and descriptions, keep the following mobile best practices in mind:

  • Prioritize your key message and CTA in headlines
  • Use action-oriented language to drive engagement
  • Include top keywords and unique selling points
  • Maximize headline and description character limits
  • Avoid redundancy and aim for variety across assets

responsive search ad setup

Example of mobile-optimized responsive ad creative

Step 3: Set Mobile Preferences

  1. Click Additional Settings below the ad preview
  2. Under Device preference, check the "Mobile" box
  3. Enter a separate final URL for mobile if desired

By setting the device preference to Mobile, you‘re telling Google Ads to prioritize showing this ad to mobile searchers.

Step 4: Add Ad Extensions

Ad extensions are crucial for mobile ads, as they provide additional information and CTAs to help searchers take action. Key mobile extensions include:

  • Sitelinks – Drive traffic to specific pages on your mobile site
  • Call extensions – Make it easy for searchers to call your business directly
  • Callouts – Highlight key value props and offers
  • Structured snippets – Showcase product categories and attributes
  • Price extensions – Show searchers your offerings and price points

Ad extensions for mobile

Mobile ads with extensions drive higher engagement

Step 5: Preview and Publish

Before publishing your mobile ad, preview it in the Google Ads interface to ensure it looks and reads as intended. Click the Preview button in the top right to generate desktop and mobile previews.

Once you‘re happy with your mobile ad, click Publish to set it live.

Mobile Bid Adjustments

One of the key advantages of enhanced campaigns is the ability to set mobile bid adjustments to control how aggressively you compete in mobile search auctions.

To set a mobile bid adjustment:

  1. Go to Devices in the left menu of Google Ads
  2. Find the Mobile row in the table
  3. Click the pencil icon to edit your mobile bid adjustment
  4. Choose Increase or Decrease from the drop-down
  5. Enter your desired percentage (up to +900%)

mobile bid adjustment

Increasing mobile bids to capture high-intent traffic

So what‘s the right mobile bid adjustment? It depends on your business, industry, and goals. A good starting point is to analyze your mobile vs. desktop performance:

  • If mobile is converting at a lower cost-per-action (CPA) than desktop, increase your mobile bids
  • If mobile has a higher CPA than desktop, decrease your mobile bids
  • If mobile and desktop performance is comparable, keep bids equal

Keep in mind that conversion rates typically lag click-through rates, as many users start their journey on mobile but convert later on another device. Use the cross-device reports in Google Ads to uncover these mobile-influenced conversions.

Advanced Mobile Ad Strategies

To squeeze even more performance from your mobile ads, try these expert-level tactics.

1. Make Use of Countdown Timers

Countdown customizers allow you to display a dynamically-updated countdown timer in your ads to highlight time-sensitive promotions or sales. This instills a sense of urgency for mobile searchers.

To set up a countdown customizer:

  1. In Google Ads, go to Ads & Extensions
  2. Click Ads and then the blue "+" button
  3. Select Responsive search ad
  4. Click Insert Countdown above the headline fields
  5. Choose your end date and time as well as your language and formatting
  6. Click Apply to insert the countdown into your headline

2. Experiment with Ad Scheduling

Ad scheduling allows you to specify when your mobile ads are eligible to show. This is useful if you see stronger mobile performance on certain days or times, such as weekends or evenings.

To set up an ad schedule:

  1. Click Settings in the left menu of Google Ads
  2. Click Additional settings and then Ad schedule
  3. Click the pencil icon to edit your ad schedule
  4. Choose the days and times you want your mobile ads to run
  5. Adjust the bid adjustment to increase or decrease your mobile bids during the selected time slots

3. Leverage Mobile Audiences

Mobile audience targeting allows you to show your ads to searchers based on their past behavior, interests, and demographics. This includes options like:

  • Affinity audiences – Reach searchers based on their long-term interests and habits
  • In-market audiences – Engage searchers actively researching or considering products in your category
  • Remarketing – Re-engage past site visitors and customers to drive repeat purchases and loyalty
  • Customer Match – Upload your first-party customer data to target known contacts

To add an audience to your mobile campaign or ad group:

  1. Go to Audiences in the left menu of Google Ads
  2. Click the blue "+" button to create a new audience segment
  3. Select your desired audience type, such as Affinity or In-market
  4. Browse the available segments and click to add relevant audiences
  5. Adjust your audience bid adjustment to control spend

Mobile audience targeting

Applying mobile audience targets to reach high-value users

Measuring & Optimizing Mobile Performance

Regularly monitoring and optimizing your mobile ad performance is crucial for driving continued improvement and ROAS. Key mobile-specific metrics to track include:

  • Mobile CTR – The percentage of mobile impressions that result in a click
  • Mobile conversion rate – The percentage of mobile clicks that result in a desired action
  • Mobile CPA – The average cost for each mobile ad conversion
  • Mobile impression share – The percentage of eligible mobile impressions your ads captured

To view these metrics, use the Device segmentation option in Google Ads reports. You can also create saved filters for mobile to access the data more quickly.

Mobile performance dashboard

Example Google Ads report segmented for mobile performance

Use these insights to identify areas of strength and opportunity in your mobile ad strategy. For instance:

  • If mobile CTR is high but conversion rate is low, work on building a better mobile landing page experience
  • If certain mobile ad copy or extensions outperform others, reallocate budget to the winners
  • If mobile CPA is higher than your goal, test decreasing mobile bid adjustments or improving ad relevance
  • If mobile impression share is low, increase mobile bids to capture more of the available inventory

Mobile Ads in an Omnichannel World

Today‘s consumers don‘t operate in silos, and neither should your marketing. Mobile ads are just one touchpoint in the broader customer journey, which often involves multiple devices, channels, and interactions.

According to Google, 75% of people start an activity on one device but finish it on another. And Salesforce found that it takes an average of 6-8 touchpoints to generate a qualified sales lead.

To maximize the impact of mobile advertising, integrate it into a holistic, omnichannel strategy that provides a connected experience across the entire path to purchase. Some examples:

  • Use mobile location extensions to drive foot traffic to your physical stores
  • Combine mobile search ads with mobile-optimized email and social campaigns
  • Utilize mobile display ads to build brand awareness and recall
  • Deploy mobile video ads to engage users and showcase your products or services
  • Promote your mobile app through app install campaigns to acquire new users

Omnichannel marketing

Mobile is a key component of an integrated, omnichannel marketing approach

The key is to deliver consistent messaging and experiences across all channels, with mobile playing a central role in reaching and converting on-the-go audiences.

Mastering Mobile Advertising with Enhanced Campaigns

As you can see, Google Ads enhanced campaigns offer a powerful, simplified way to create effective mobile search ads at scale. By customizing your ad creative, bids, and extensions for mobile, you can engage users in key moments and drive meaningful business results.

To recap, the main steps to mobile success with enhanced campaigns are:

  1. Craft compelling, mobile-first ad messaging with top keywords and CTAs
  2. Implement mobile-specific extensions like click-to-call and location
  3. Set strategic mobile bid adjustments based on performance data
  4. Utilize advanced targeting tactics like countdowns, ad scheduling, and audiences
  5. Continuously test, measure, and optimize your mobile campaigns
  6. Integrate mobile into your broader omnichannel marketing mix

By following these steps and keeping the mobile user experience top of mind, you‘ll be well-positioned to capture and convert your share of the ever-growing mobile search market. As consumer behavior continues to evolve, embrace the power of enhanced campaigns to future-proof your PPC strategy and stay ahead of the competition.