Google AdWords Retires Position Preference

By Kevin


Google has recently announced that AdWords will be retiring the Position Preference feature within the UI. In the past Position Preference had allowed the advertiser to select the position that you desired your ad to be placed. AdWords would then increase or decrease your bid for that keyword in order to have your AdWords ad show at that position.

The decision to retire this feature was made by Google due to low adoption by advertisers as well as an alternative within AdWords.

The timeline for the transition away from Position Preference has already begun and the following information was sent out in an email by Google to it’s advertisers.

As of April 5th Position Preference is no longer an option for advertisers to enable in either the UI or through the API. If you are already using the feature it will remain enabled for the time being. It is important to note that if you disable it at any time moving forward you will be unable to turn the feature back on.

Starting in May, Google will begin to disable the feature within all campaigns. When this occurs the maximum CPC for those campaigns will be set to the bids that Position Preference most recently used. Since the purpose of Position Preference is to raise or lower your bid to the desired position by using the most recent bid as your max CPC you will minimize the potential disruption to your traffic.

Google has recommended & we suggest that before you disable Position Preference, you export your manual bids by downloading a keyword report. This will ensure that you have backed up any bids you set before you turned on Position preference.  This report will include your keyword level maximum CPC bids.

Although AdWords is retiring the Position Preference function there is still a way to achieve the same desired results by utilizing AdWords Automated Rules function.

There is a bit of set-up that comes with this but it is fairly easy and once you do it once it will become easier when you apply it to the next campaign. Let’s assume that you wish to maintain an ad position of 2 to3.

You will need to log into your account and select the keywords that you wish to maintain the desired position.

  1. Visit the Keywords tab
  2. From the Automate drop-down menu, select Change max CPC bid when…
  3. From the Automatic action menu, select Raise bid, and enter a value (let’s say 10%).
  4. From the Requirements menu, select Avg. position, and enter worse than 2.
  5. In the Frequency section, choose to run the rule Daily and using data from the Previous day.
  6. You can also select what time you’d like the rule to run each day.
  7. Enter a name for your rule.

  8. Click Preview results.
  9. If you’ve never set up a rule in your account, you’ll also be prompted to grant access to AdWords to make these changes on your behalf.
  10. Click Save.