Back to insights

Our Guide to Performance Max Campaigns

by Zachary Fry
Performance Max Campaigns

There is a brand new branch on the ever-growing tree that is Google Ad’s...and it’s called Performance Max.

We have put together this guide on Google’s new offerings to give you an idea of how they work and if they are suitable for adding to your digital marketing strategy!

What is Google’s Performance Max Campaign?

Performance Max is the name of the new campaign type offered on Google’s Ad platform and is focused on targeting goal-based results. This new campaign structure allows you to access all of Google's ad inventory such as Search, Display & Shopping; but does so in a simple and easy-to-manage way.

Similar to the social ad platforms such as Facebook; you are able to populate your key assets and information and then let them do the time-consuming and tedious work for you.

We have found more recently that we are moving the key focus of the campaigns we manage for most of our clients away from tracking clicks/impressions and onto goal-based targets. This isn’t something new for Google but over the past few years, they have increased dramatically the way their automation and algorithms are used in order to get your ads in front of the right audiences to convert.

What does Performance Max replace?

Although Google Max Campaigns are a brand new addition to their lineup of offerings, it will be replacing some of their more legacy campaign types. Google has stated that from Q3 2022 Performance Max will replace their existing Smart Shopping & Local campaigns.

If you have been running any of those campaigns recently you may have noticed Google’s suggestion of moving over to their Performance Max campaigns.

It is probably a good idea this move is made sooner rather than later as they will automatically be converted once they officially discontinue the separate smart shopping & local campaigns; Google has stated they will begin this process between July & September 2022.

Smart Campaigns vs Performance Max Campaigns

With Google’s big shift into automated campaigns, both Performance Max and Smart Campaigns are the key in utilising this technology. From maximising conversions to bid learning, Google is making the experience of running digital ads much more straightforward.

However, there are some big differences between these two campaign types. Firstly with Smart Campaigns, these are aimed at users with either less knowledge or time to be running a fully structured ad account.

By just taking an overview of your business and website, Google will link it with its other services such as Google My Business and run dynamic ads across its network. The key difference from the rest of google’s more advanced-user structures is that you are limited on how the campaign runs in terms of optimisation of bids, demographics and targeting.

In Comparison, Max Performance campaigns will automate the process and combine the power of all campaign types needed, but will also give you the power to be able to further adjust and improve the campaign; so you can still be in the driver’s seat.

Performance Max

Should I move from Search to Performance Max?

If you are currently running a targeted Google Search campaign this may not be the wisest decision at the moment. Although this new campaign type can be a good idea when trying to boost your conversions and events; you don’t have nearly as much control over the keywords you can target.

There’s also no option for negative keywords meaning you would need to completely rely on the way google automatically optimises your selected keywords.

What are the advantages of Performance Max campaigns?

There are a number of key advantages to new Performance Max campaigns such as the following:

  • Automated ad creation - Instead of having to create each ad for your campaign, Performance Max will allow you to upload or link all your existing assets such as imagery, videos, headlines, descriptions, products and so on and will dynamically create ads based on what will match best with your target audience.
  • Easy to manage - When running multiple campaigns separately for shopping, search and display you have the time-consuming task of monitoring and reviewing each campaign’s performance one by one. With Performance Max, it is all in one place! You can see the results and make adjustments easily...Google will even automatically adjust the way it runs the campaign based on the data accumulated and the results you want to achieve.
  • More targeted data - As Performance Max is taking over from Smart shopping & Local campaigns, it has combined the features offered by those legacy services into its new structure to allow for more accurate audience segments. It uses its real-time understanding of behaviour data and user intent to ensure you are getting in front of your ideal audience.

What are the disadvantages of Performance Max Campaigns?

Although there are some strong reasons to move your efforts to the new campaign type, there are a few disadvantages to consider before you make the change:

  • Less Control - The main downside that comes with the shift to automated campaigns is control. If you are used to manually reviewing keyword data and bidding adjustments based on location and placement, you may find this quite irritating to navigate in comparison.
  • Events & goals are mandatory - This may seem obvious but there are some businesses that do not operate using key events and conversion tracking. As part of this new campaign type, you will find it basically impossible to run without a comprehensive event tracking setup. This can be an almost impossible task for some businesses.
  • Potential Cannibalisation - Because Performance Max campaigns don’t allow you to access channel-specific data, you are never sure that you aren’t directly impacting other campaigns such as search or display.


Overall the launch of Google Max Campaigns is another leap further into automation and Google’s machine learning. Something that can really help some businesses to boost their conversions and get further with their ad spend.

However, if you are already running a tailored set of campaigns that you have meticulously set up, we would recommend not jumping into the world of Max Performance until you know it will benefit your marketing strategy.

With time, as with most of its services, it will be updated and we may see more features and improvements that make this a more desirable offering.

If you need any help getting started or would like to find out more about our Bespoke PPC campaign management services; Get in touch today!

Our Blog

Why Internal Linking is Important to SEO

Internal linking is a phrase that often appears when SEO is being discussed and it is considered to be an important SEO ranking factor.

5 top tips for setting up a strong remarketing campaign

Ensuring you are capturing your target audience is vital for success within your Pay-per-click campaigns but how can you carry that performance further? One solution we recommend using is remarketing!

What are Rich Results? Our Guide to Schema & Structured Data

You may have heard of the term Rich Results, Schema or Structure Data before but are maybe unsure what these mean for your website and its overall SEO potential.

GA4 vs Universal Analytics: Are you ready to switch?

It has been a few months since Google officially announced the sunsetting of Universal Analytics, yet there is still a lot of confusion about why, how to migrate and when to do it.

What is Sustainable Marketing and how it Benefits your Business

Many consumers want to buy from eco-friendly businesses. Here’s how to stay ahead of this planet-friendly trend with sustainable marketing.


Let's talk about your goals

Let's have a chat

020 8076 6429

Send us an email

[email protected]

Start your Project?

Get in Touch
01 02 03 04

Thanks for reaching out. What’s your message about?

What do you need?

What is business objective/goal for the project?


Your Details?

Thanks for your message!

We will answer on your request as soon as possible!

We use cookies to give you the best experience on our website. Close | Cookie Policy