Google Ads, formally referred to as Google AdWords, is undoubtedly the leading pay-per-click advertising network for marketers all over the world. Having over 80% of global brands who trust the network for their advertising, their 8:1 average return on investment, and over 3.75% average conversion rates, Google will surely remain dominant.
Aside from that, Google has now upgraded its Google AdWords API to Google Ads API. While this recent change introduced a lot of new features and improvements, it caused more inconveniences to many. That means that 80% of brands who use Google for their PPC campaigns are probably experiencing the API’s migration overhaul.
So comes the debate about the old Google AdWords API vs the new Google Ads API. What are their differences, similarities, advantages, and disadvantages?
Want to take a closer look? Let’s dive deep into the analysis!
Google AdWords API vs Google Ads API: The Differences and Similarities
The new Google Ads API is a new programmatic interface that lets users access the Google Ads platform directly. So, we will delve into a few technical bits, but don’t freak just yet—we will make it easy.
Let’s start with the new features.
New Features of Google Ads API
User Access Management is a new feature that allows the admin to query the users who have access to a specific Google Ads account to get details like the user ID, role, email address, etc., through the query, CustomerUserAccess. As an administrator, you can change their access levels and do a lot more admin things.
Another new feature that was introduced with the new Google Ads API is the Optimization Score and Recommendations. From the customer and campaign level, you can estimate how your account is performing and get relevant recommendations with the recommendations feature.
Performance Max campaigns are another new campaign-type feature that helps marketers dynamically allocate budgets to all the Google Ads products. It will improve your performance by removing the tedious work of setting and managing multiple campaign types.
To help you generate leads directly from your ads, the API introduced an asset-based feature, the Lead Form Extension. While this is in its beta version, it is the best feature marketers had been waiting for. Data submitted is valid for 30 days from the day of submission, so be sure to pull out data using the GoogleAdsService.SearchStream before you lose them!
The Target Impression Share is a new bidding strategy feature that automates or sets a percentage of search ads to show at a specific location, like the top of the first page, using the TargetImpressionShareLocation query.
Other new and exciting features include additional metrics on assets, invoices, account management precision, additional campaign types, Ad labels, etc.
The perspective of The Change Towards Productivity
The new Google Ads API is tailored towards achieving more productivity with the upgrade. From the intuitive Google Ads Query language to the way reports and updates are structured, they undoubtedly oriented the new API towards a more productive digital marketing experience.
It is now easier to use the API to learn and build complex programs that can offer endless possibilities to businesses and marketing experts. Before, this was a real nightmare for many users.
So, this is not only beneficial to developers who will use the platform, but also to the end-users of their products. From the businesses who use Google Ads to Ad agencies, digital marketers, and the data management tools, every part benefits from this upgrade.
The New and The Old: What is Similar?
Google AdWords API and Google Ads API have both kept their primary function—to help users programmatically access and interact with the Google Ads platform. They both aim to increase efficiency in handling multiple accounts and campaigns, which could be a nuisance if done manually.
That way, many of the core functionalities have not changed. For instance, the reporting of performance data has not changed but upgraded to be more flexible and more functional.
Depreciated Fields, campaigns, and reports
There are many Google AdWords API fields, features, campaigns, reports, and others that would no longer function in the new API. They have depreciated. They have also mapped many others to the new API. For a complete list, check here.
Here are a few fields that the new API does not support.
- Bidding strategy source
- Click assisted conversions & value
- Impression assisted conversions & value
- Impression reach
- Max CPA
The Creative Conversion, the Campaign Group, and the Campaign Negative Placements and Keywords performance are no longer supported in the new API.
Search Ads 360
The new Google Ads API will no longer support Search Engine Accounts, the Search Ads 360. So it’s important to update your queries accordingly.
With the new API, you cannot query the API to include zero impressions in your reports because it is no longer supported.
Incompatible Field Errors
The new API will show incompatible field errors if you request data with incompatible fields. A query like this in the old API would just return nothing.
Will the new Google Ads API improve your digital marketing experiences over the old API?
To a large extent, measuring the performance of Google Ads API is to measure the overall effectiveness of your Google Ad campaigns.
Because the API provides exactly the same features as your Google Ads dashboard, only that you access it programmatically.
So, we will rephrase our question to the advantages of using the new Google Ads API over the Google Ads User Interface. Therefore, will that improve your digital marketing experience?
Sure. There are a couple of things we can look into. So let’s dive right in!
Data is king to digital marketers. No matter how we like to frame it, we do things to get the best results for our inputs. We try to work with data to get the relevant information that can help us streamline marketing activities for the best results.
As we had discussed, the new Google API has been designed for maximum productivity. It allows businesses and brands across industries to tap into their unrealized potential that could otherwise be impossible with Google Ads UI alone.
The main visible form of productivity features in the API is the Google Ads Query Language and its builder, optimization & recommendations, performance max campaigns, among other new features that save a lot of production time and resources.
Think about the business intelligence tools that help you analyze your business data to provide the best recommendations for improving your marketing campaign performance. Think about our own amazing products, like the Dataslayer for Google Data Studio—all provide immense value to our users because of API services like the Google Ads API.
In fact, a recent study by GlobeNewswire found that 83% of businesses find API services to be critical to their business strategy, and over 56% of businesses leveraging the services have recorded more productivity, thus realizing their goals much faster.
Enhances Integration Capabilities
The new Google Ads API doesn’t just allow integration with several other tools. It also simplifies and enhances the connections and interrelationships with different third-party software applications.
Improved interconnection reduces developmental costs and allows digital marketing agencies to offer better services that optimize their software functionality and usability.
Think about the business intelligence tools that help you analyze your business data. These tools provide the best recommendations that can improve your marketing campaign performance.
Also, think about our own amazing products, like the Dataslayer for Google Data Studio. They all provide immense value to our users because of APIs like the Google Ads API.
Automates Repetitive Tasks
Not just Google Ads API, most of the API service’s primary advantage is that it can significantly reduce manual work. For instance, a data agency that manages hundreds of accounts all at the same time would not like repeatedly logging into each user’s account just to see the overall performance of their ads.
Another example is if you own an eCommerce store, and you promote each of your products heavily, it would be wise to integrate Google Ads to pause or run ad campaigns based on your stock levels. So, that’s where Google Ads API comes into play. You can integrate it into your inventory management software and ask your developer to automate everything.
Google Ads API will therefore remain indispensable as long as the thought of performing your ad campaign tasks a million times in a day is still a headache to you.
Google Ads APIs allow businesses to supercharge innovation. The API allows you to introduce new technologies faster. They provide flexible approaches to development that require fewer resources and adapt to the changing needs of users.
Improvements from the old AdWords API, like the Google Ads Query Language Builder, allow faster application developments.
The new API is also can support upward compatibility. New features, improvements, and bug fixes will now update without disrupting the services.
There is a high possibility that more companies often try harder to differentiate their services by providing more value and efficiency. And their efforts often pay up with an increase in revenue.
In a recent study on companies that use API services, their innovation rose by 51%. That means using the new Google Ads API can dramatically improve innovation by using the Google Ads Platform and enhance your company’s value.
The Dark Sides of Google Ads API
After checking out how the new API can benefit your digital marketing, let’s now look at its disadvantages.
Migration is Costly
The new Google Ads API caused a necessary migration from the old Google Ads API, which was costly to many companies.
To implement and provide the same capabilities that your app depended on in the past required rewriting the codes that interact with the API.
So, even if you have in-house developers on your team, it will cost you more time and resources to migrate.
Vulnerability to Security Breaches
Another major issue that is a concern not only to the new API but to all other APIs is the security issues. How will digital marketing companies handle potential attacks to safeguard their user’s data? That’s always a bigger question to answer.
Even though the Google API is powerfully secured, you cannot guarantee that thousands of users will also vibe up to the same security level. More so, the recent Gartner report affirms that vulnerabilities in APIs will still make up a large percentage of data breaches in 2022.
Leads to Dependency
Another disadvantage of the new Google Ads API is that it causes overreliance on them. While it is a good thing for an API to present all-in-one solutions, relying too much on them may tarnish your team’s creativity.
Because when you depend so much on the Google Ads API, you rely not only on their availability and performance, but you also depend on more basic features that you could develop and make better or tailor to your specific needs.
That means everything that happens to the Google Ads platform also affects your services as an agency if you depend on it solely. For example, if you manage a lot of campaigns from several users who depend on Google Ads, you will have a hard time keeping your business if the policies governing the API change.
Final Thoughts About The New Google Ads API
The migration from Google AdWords API to the new Google Ads API has caused a lot of inconveniences to businesses that relied heavily on it to access Google Ads services. Nonetheless, the migration came with so many features that can help you more than you would with the previous API.
In this article, we discussed at a great length the differences and the similarities between the two Google Ads APIs. More so, we have also checked out the advantages and disadvantages of the APIs.
We hope that you have enjoyed reading this post. We also hope that you indeed found value in it, and we really appreciate it. So be sure to check out the other content on our blog. And if you want to improve your digital marketing, check out how we can help you here.