Five Features To Know In AdWords Editor

Friday, October 15, 2010 | 12:26 PM

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Do you manage an AdWords account? Do you use AdWords Editor? If not, you should check out this free application for managing and making mass changes to your AdWords account. The program allows you to download your account, edit your campaigns offline, and upload the edits live in your account.

Essential tasks made easy within AdWords Editor include:

  • Adding, editing and deleting campaigns, ad groups, ads, keywords and placements
  • Advanced searches using various filters
  • Sharing proposed changes with others before uploading along with any comments
  • Using performance statistics like clickthrough rate and cost/conversion to view certain results and take action on those results accordingly

While the program is easy to use and fairly intuitive, there’s also a plethora of options. Here are five key features to know.


Use advanced search to find exactly what you’re looking for. Click on the link at the top right of Editor, and choose from more than 30 criteria. For instance, you can find all keywords with a certain word, or all ads with an exact specific destination URL.

You can also use advanced search to view performance over selected time periods. Choose one to two performance metrics to filter results, like clickthrough rate and conversion rate to identify areas to either delete or optimize. This is an especially great method for identifying underperforming keywords. Note that you can only have two metrics in the filter, but you can sort by columns by clicking on each one within the results to gain additional perspective.


Use this feature from the Tools menu to easily identify duplicate keywords across the account so you can leave only one keyword in the most appropriate ad group (with the most relevant ad text for that keyword). You can either look within an ad group or across ad groups or campaigns.

When the duplicates are displayed, there will be a button beside the tabbed navigation called “Select Duplicates By” which allows you to highlight instances based on different criteria. If there is no difference between the keywords (in terms of bids, etc.), you can hit “Order of Appearance > First” and then the “Delete” button underneath the tabs.


Use “Advanced Bid Changes” to make mass changes to keyword bids. Increase or decrease your bids by a certain amount or percentage. You can also set a max or minimum amount so the bids don’t fall below or exceed certain values. You’ll have this option as a small link at the bottom of the Keywords, Placements, & Ad Groups tabs.

Use “Advanced URL Changes” to update display or destination URLs. The great feature here is the ability to append text to each selected URL – most likely, adding a particular external tracking code to all ads within an ad group or campaign. Many people add a tracking URL that contains “google” so they know a particular visit came from AdWords, especially if they do not use AdWords Analytics for deeper insight.


A commonly used feature that is available for keywords, placements, negative keywords, ads and extensions. Found a misspelling across all of your ads? No problem. Need to update your donation related keywords? Change them in seconds. This tool is a very valuable time-saver.


Sharing your proposed changes with someone else is one of the greatest features of Editor. To share, view the export options in the File menu. The most common and easiest is the AES file that clearly shows all changes in bold when the person imports the file into AdWords Editor to view it. They would save the file to their computer, then go to File > Import Account Snapshot, and choose the file. Keep in mind that “Keep proposed changes” does NOT make changes to the live account, and they can make any further changes they like.

If they can’t use Editor, you can send the HTML version which displays an overview (will not identify what was changed vs. existing) but can be viewed without any program. CSV (which can of course be formatted for Excel) is also an option for those who prefer a spreadsheet format.

No matter what format you choose, you will export through File > Export Changes For Sharing (AES), and then choose the ad groups, campaign or campaigns you want to share. Also, it’s important that when you’re collaborating on an account, both are using the most current view of the account. For the most recent version, Click Get Recent Changes > All campaigns.

For more comprehensive instructions on how to use this tool visit the AdWords Editor Help Center. Happy editing!