Save Your Budget With Custom Segments in Google Ads

Ellie Burns Written by Ellie Burns

3 min read   -  26th March, 2024

Save Your Budget With Custom Segments in Google Ads

Google Ads can be a powerful tool for businesses, but managing budgets effectively is crucial to any campaign success.

Custom segments are a small but mighty element of any ad campaign that can easily help you save money and optimise your ad performance. These often overlooked features of Google Ads can make a significant difference to your campaign performance, but only if you know how and when to use them.

This article will set you up to bring out the very best in your campaigns as you add custom segments with confidence:

What are custom segments?

Custom segments are the third audience type available through Google Ads (alongside Google’s audience segments such as affinity segments and demographic details, and any audience segments from your collected data direct from your customer-base). These segments allow advertisers to group and analyse audience data based on specific criteria, then show your ads to that automated audience.

These custom segments provide deeper insights beyond standard campaign metrics, enabling better targeting and optimization.

Segments can be based on various factors such as device, location, time of day, and more. They help identify trends and patterns that influence ad performance.

How to create custom segments

First, choose up to three criteria for your segments. Here are your options:

  • Interests or purchase intentions of users based on keywords (what products and services they’re searching for.)
  • Website types that users are searching for (you can add in an example URL that is similar or the same as your company URL.)
  • The types of apps your custom audience is using.

Once you’ve chosen your segment, it can be added to your Display, Discovery, Video and even Gmail campaigns. 

Google Ads will take your campaign goals and dissing strategy into consideration, then show your ads to an audience that matches your segment preferences.

How You Can Save Money

Now you’ve mastered the basics, here’s how custom segments can help you save your budget through targeted use of your segments and campaigns.

Once you've tested out and refined a few custom segments for various campaigns, you’ll be in a strong position to identify underperforming areas, allowing reallocating budgets to more effective campaigns.

Analysing data by device type can reveal which devices drive the most conversions, optimising bidding strategies accordingly. Partner this with your custom segments for some of the most detailed audience data available through Google Ads.

Geographic segments 
Match your segments with target high-value locations and exclude areas with low conversion rates, saving on ad spend.

Time-based segments 
Identify peak hours for conversions, enabling ad scheduling to maximise efficiency, then combine these hours with your highest converting segments.

Specific targeting
Demographic, age and location targeting are standard practice across digital marketing targeting. But like many online businesses, the real audiences of interested and engaged users are complex, unique and highly specific. So your targeting should match this level of detail when possible. Custom segments gets you one step closer to the ultimate goal of only showing your ads to people who are genuinely interested in visiting your site.

Tips and Tricks

To finish up, here are some tips for making the most of your custom segments.

Monitor and Optimise
As your audiences' behaviours change, your understanding of your audiences develop and shopping seasons come and go, you’ll need to refine your segments. Regularly monitor and adjust custom segments based on changing campaign goals and performance to bring the best results.

Segment-specific ad copy
Allow tailored messaging to different customer segments, improving relevance and reducing wasted ad spend. It makes sense to direct your specific segments directly in the ad copy, helping your ads stand out in a highly competitive online space.

Creative Combinations
Combine multiple segments for deeper insights, such as analysing device performance within specific geographic regions. The more specific you can be, the more accurate and useful your results will be to your campaign analysis and optimisation.

Analyse Everything
Use Google Analytics alongside custom segments for a more comprehensive understanding of user behaviour. Combining your manual analysis and optimisation with the powerful automated, machine learning-led analysis of Google Analytics will provide the strongest foundation for your campaign’s success.

In Conclusion

Custom segments in Google Ads offer a powerful way to optimise budgets and improve campaign performance. If you’ve taken the time to understand the specifics of your audience, this is a fantastic opportunity to refine your targeting and hone in on the most relevant audience and traffic. 

This deceptively simple option for your campaign offers countless opportunities to be highly specific with your ad targeting. Experiment with this tool to see just what results you can bring to your next campaign, or optimise your existing campaigns to save your budget and level up your ROI.

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