SA360 brings to the table robust capabilities including management of campaigns across various search engines, analytical reports and enhanced optimisation features such as auction-time bidding. Moreover, it provides cross-channel integration with other Google Marketing Platform tools, as well as scalability for managing extensive campaigns. In this blog, we'll unpack the value of SA360, detailing a few key features in the new interface and exploring how it can drive success for search marketing professionals during peak periods. These features include:

  • The integration of Performance Max into SA360
  • The powerful budget management tool - Performance Center
  • The introduction of Custom Variable Adjustments



The Integration of Performance Max into SA360

Performance Max’s integration into the new SA360 UI means we can now bid towards floodlight conversions. Here are some advantages this integration could offer:

  • Unified Campaign Management: Performance Max campaigns in SA360 would likely allow for the centralised management of these campaigns alongside search, social, and display channels. This unified management could provide a streamlined and efficient workflow.

  • Consistent Data Measurement: Having all campaigns under one umbrella ensures consistent tracking and measurement across campaigns. This would provide more accurate results and actionable insights.

  • Improved Bidding Strategies: Performance Max can now be added to SA360 portfolio bid strategies and the budget management tool, Performance Center. These additions will lead to improved efficiencies and budget allocation.

If you’re unfamiliar with the new campaign type, Performance Max (PMax) utilises Google's machine learning capabilities to automatically generate various ad types, targeting multiple channels across the Google network. PMax leverages your marketing objectives, goals, feeds, and audience data, to drive value and efficiency. 

To maximise the performance of your Performance Max (PMax) campaigns during peak seasons, follow these key strategies:

  • Feed Optimisation: Optimise your Merchant Centre feed and ensure proper functioning of conversion tracking and remarketing tags. High-quality data is essential for effective automation!
  • Demand Generation: Adjust your Performance Max campaigns before peak holiday seasons to effectively reach customers and capture their demand throughout their holiday purchasing journey. Utilise insights from Google Ads, Optiscore, and Performance Center for better decision-making.
  • Bids and Budgets: Adjust your Performance Max campaign budgets and ROAS targets at least 4-6 weeks prior to peak periods. This allows you to capture additional opportunities while maintaining efficiency goals.
  • Asset Groups: Create dedicated asset groups for special events or sales during the holiday season. Upload creative assets for your holiday products in these separate groups. The more creative assets you provide, the better your performance is likely to improve.
  • Audience Signals: Leverage Audience Signals to shorten the campaign learning period and give direction to Google's automated targeting. Although not available in SA360 yet, use Conversion Value Rules to assign different values to conversions based on the importance of specific audience segments.

By implementing these strategies, you can effectively prepare and optimise your PMax campaigns for peak periods, driving stronger engagement and increasing conversion likelihood with consumers.


Performance Center

Performance Center combines the best features of Google Ads Performance Planner and Budget Management in the previous UI. The tool provides marketers with a centralised dashboard to monitor campaign performance comprehensively. This consolidated view allows users to analyse key metrics, track trends, and identify areas of improvement across multiple campaigns and channels. 

Improved features:

Forecasting and Planning: With Performance Center's forecasting and planning capabilities, marketers can proactively anticipate and prepare for future campaign performance. By leveraging historical data, seasonality models, and budget models, Performance Center offers accurate campaign forecasts with support for ATB, cross-engine and cross-channel. This forecasting enables marketers to plan and allocate resources effectively, ensuring optimal campaign performance during peak periods and promotional events. 

Multi-Group Budget Planning – FKA Scenario Planner

This feature enables advertisers to simulate different budget allocation scenarios and make informed decisions to maximise their ad spending.

By adjusting budgets across different groups, advertisers can evaluate the impact on performance metrics such as impressions, clicks, conversions, and ROAS. Furthermore, they can easily scope into individual campaign groups (budget groups) to customise the plan with support for custom allocations.

Peak Planning: 

Pre-Peak: Use the forecast curve to anticipate performance pre-peak and set optimal budget.

During Peak: Stay on track with budget pacing reports; compare your actual & forecast spend in line with where you should be pacing. Additionally, use Custom Alerts to set thresholds for alerts on key metrics to keep marketers informed about any changes or anomalies.


Custom Variable Adjustments (CVA)

Custom Variable Adjustments enable advertisers to set specific bid adjustments based on custom variables, such as product category or customer type. For example, a client may have a u-variable for New vs Returning Users, and using this new feature they could assign X amount more value to New users via adding, multiplying or setting a static value. By assigning different bid adjustments to these variables, marketers can precisely optimise their bidding strategy and allocate budgets where they yield the best results. This granular control allows advertisers to optimise bidding based on factors that impact campaign performance during peak periods.

Some of the more customisable elements of the Old UI around conversion measurement will be less possible now, so the ability to adjust u-variable values and manipulate the values we bid towards will become critical to how you can add value to your advertiser. 

With the new SA360 interface, advertisers can leverage a range of cool features designed to improve their campaign performance in preparation for their peak period. If you want to get some more detail or help your advertising goals, then get in touch.