Google AdWords

A Guide To The New Google AdWords Interface

Back in March 2016, Google announced a complete redesign of its Google AdWords interface in order to adapt to marketing in a mobile-first world. They’ve recently announced that the old interface will be disappearing in the next couple of weeks, so it’s a good idea to familiarise yourself with the new interface.

AdWords was first created over 15 years ago and although we’ve seen a small number of updates in the last few years, it’s hard to deny that the platform is looking increasingly dated.

So let’s take a quick look at what Google have been working on…


Overview dashboard

When you log into your account you’re immediately sent to the Overview page, which looks something like this:

As you can see, this dashboard gives you a brief summary of some of the top stats you might be interested in; CTR, cost, biggest changes, top campaigns, top keywords, devices and a day/hour breakdown.

Personally, I’d prefer to go straight to the Campaigns dashboard – but maybe that’s because I’m used to it! It will be interesting to see whether users actually find this summary helpful.

The menu on the left has replaced the options that previously sat above the graph, making the interface look a lot less busy. The downside of this is that it’s not quite as easy to click straight through to a Campaign, which can be done by clicking on ‘Campaigns’ or by clicking on the small white arrow in the top left corner.

Other account options and tools, including Keyword Planner, can be found by clicking on the three dots in the top right corner.


The next option on menu down the left hand-side is Opportunities.

The Opportunities section used to be in the top navigation and, I’ll be honest, I never really used it much. Again, I wonder whether it’s something we’ll make more of now that it’s more accessible and a little cleaner to look at.



Next on the menu is the Campaigns dashboard.

The interface here is much simpler than before, with the top navigation (Ad Groups, Settings, Ads, Ad Extensions, Keywords) completely gone and instead showing in the side menu.

On the right side below the graph, you can see four symbols which enable you to filter and segment campaigns, add new columns and export the data.

To create a new campaign, you just need to click on the big ‘plus’ symbol. The process for creation is slightly different, but seems a lot slicker than before. Here’s a small snippet:

Ad Groups

Once you click onto a Campaign, or click ‘Ad Groups’ in the left menu, you go through to the Ad Groups dashboard.

This is pretty similar to the Campaigns dashboard, although much simpler and easier to manage.

When you filter down into a specific Campaign, the left-hand navigation changes so that the ‘Campaigns’ option is no longer visible. The easiest way to get back to the Campaigns dashboard is to click the ‘All Campaigns’ button in the top left corner of the interface. In terms of user experience, I find this a bit frustrating – I’m not a huge fan of menus changing whilst moving around the site.

The process of setting up an Ad Group is pretty similar although, as with Campaigns, the interface looks a lot cleaner.


With the keywords dashboard, the main menu along the top allows your to switch between keywords, negative keywords and search terms. All other options are in the left navigation.

Once you’ve filtered down into a specific Ad Group to view its keywords, the ‘Ad Groups’ option is removed from the menu along with ‘Campaigns’.

Adding new keywords is fairly simple – just click the big blue ‘plus’ symbol below the graph.


The Ads dashboard is fairly similar to before and the new interface makes it really easy to switch between Ads and Ad Extensions.

Creating a new Ad is also easy – it’s very similar to before, but with a less outdated feel.

Change history

Before, the AdWords Change History feature was slow, hidden and fairly unmanageable. The new dashboard looks far better, with a clear breakdown of the types of changes that have been made.

It will be interesting to see whether we start using this a little more!

So that’s a brief overview of the new AdWords platform. These changes have been rolling out to more users recently, with the aim of having the redesign fully rolled out to all users by the end of 2017.

Any thoughts or questions? Let us know in the comments below or drop us an email.