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PMAX Basics: Definitions & Best Practices

Written by : 
Georgi Todorov
Reviewed by :  
Jack McLaren
Publish Date:  
June 21, 2024

What is Performance Max?

Performance Max (PMAX) is a conversion-based campaign type that improves performance by accessing all of Google’s ad inventory. PMAX is designed to serve the best inventory across all Google properties to reach potential customers. This campaign type is path-to-purchase aware, meaning the right ad can be served at the right time according to the marketing objective. For more detail about PMAX read our article.

What are Asset Groups?

Asset Groups are where you manage different kinds of creative assets including text, images, videos, logos, and final URL that are either related to a product theme or an audience.

Within PMAX asset groups you can:

  • Create unique asset groups based on the Final URL (leashes, treats, grooming or treatments)
  • Asset Groups are linked to a particular “listing group” which represents a collection of items. These listing groups can be based on item IDs, brands, categories, custom labels, etc.
  • Asset Groups provide an opportunity to prioritise specific collections, products or price points.

What are PMAX Testing Timelines?

Testing timelines recommended for PMAX campaigns are between a 6 - 9 week period, allowing your campaign time to gather enough data. It is important to allow enough time before reviewing the campaign otherwise, you won’t have sufficient data to make necessary optimisation.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I protect my brand from appearing against unwanted content?

Account-level brand safety controls can be applied to PMAX campaigns. Account level keyword and placement exclusions are available on the platform and via your Google Strategist (in-game ads, live streaming and gambling sites).

What is the role of Audience Signals?

We know which audience segments are likely to convert, and we pass this insight to Google to help with machine learning as guard rails. Google will not only reach these audiences but target users beyond the selected signals if they might result in a conversion.

When you add a specific audience list to your asset groups, it will not be as ‘targeting’ but will actually be as an ‘observation’ audience.

How is PMAX different to Smart Shopping Campaigns?

There are two key differences: The first one is that Performance Max Campaigns feature a broader range of ad formats. This includes Display Ads, Text Ads and Shopping Ads. This allows us to reach more users across more placements with new signals. The second difference is the Asset Groups, these replace Ad Groups and Product Groups.

If you would like some help with setting up PMAX campaigns or anything else PPC or Paid Social related, don’t hesitate to get in touch!