Google Unveils AdWords Upgraded URLs - Bright Shiny Things!


This week Google unveiled its latest update to AdWords, Upgraded URLs. Having looked at the details it could have huge reporting benefits for advertisers who use third party tracking, as well as AdWords and Google Analytics.

For those who do not, it could still be a useful feature, especially when it comes to updating pages or page content that is linked to a particular AdWords campaign. The upgrade will not have any effect on auto-tagging.


Upgraded URLs are designed to provide an easier and faster way to manage and track information about your AdWords ads. With perhaps the most interesting benefit to PPC account managers being the generation of additional insights about your ads.

In the past whenever destination URLs needed to be updated and changed, that particular ad or set of ads was effectively stopped and replaced with the new content. In reporting terms this meant that the ad was retired and the data accrued around it was final. The data around the ad was re-set to zero and a new set of data was produced, the Upgraded URLs feature puts an end to this. If you choose to, you can have the data for the ad continue seamlessly, despite changing the destination URL details.

If you’re using tracking with your AdWords Destination URLs you’ll be familiar with implementing any ValueTrack parameters of custom Ids simply by adding them to the destination URL

The change to Upgraded URLs will mean that you will input these two elements separately. You’ll be able to update your tracking information at account, campaign or ad group level without having to reset any ad data.

In the AdWords interface you’ll now start using a ‘Final URL’ field instead of a ‘Destination URL’. The Custom ID part of the process is managed using tracking templates that you set up to tell AdWords how to create your URLs. There are two types of template; a shared template will enable you to update multiple URLs at account, campaign or ad group level. A standard template will enable you to manage tracking at an individual URL level for ads, keywords or sitelinks.

For AdWords users who do not employ any additional tracking the upgrade will not change anything. There is no difference between Final URL and Destination URL, you simply won’t use the tracking templates.

Additional AdWords Insights

Upgraded URLs adds more layers of information about your ads’ performance. For instance by including ‘ValueTrack’ parameters you can gain information about the geographical location of a click or the location of interest that helped trigger an ad.

Google are rolling out the change from this week so expect to see the feature appear in an account near you very soon. On July 1,2022 all URLs will be updated to the new structure, so it makes sense to start using the feature and become familiar with it as soon as possible.

If you’ve got any questions about tracking AdWords activity or Paid Search campaigns, contact our Paid Search team here, or call us on 0844 245 6677.


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