Performance Max Best Practices

In 2020, Google disclosed plans for a new goal-based campaign type, Performance Max (PMax), designed to help advertisers streamline their campaigns across all Google Ads channels. This innovation was officially rolled out in November 2021. This campaign type quickly gained popularity and changed the game for advertisers. But what exactly are the benefits of PMax, and can it really boost online performance?

Performance Max allows advertisers to use a single campaign to reach users across Google’s range of advertising channels – YouTube, Display, Search, Discover, and Gmail – to achieve their business goals, whether it be leads, sales, or traffic. It is really incremental, especially for businesses with limited budgets, and is highly automated, relying primarily on the Google algorithm. However, this means that we can do more than just set up the campaign, and it will generate the desired results. We can talk a lot about optimising this campaign type, but today, the focus is on the creative aspect, specifically banners and text messages.

As PMax can reach your customers across all of Google’s channels, we must consider and carefully select the creative materials needed for the set-up. The first and most crucial step is identifying our target audience based on interests and demographics.

Next, it’s time to set up our asset group. Three types of assets need to be added, and we will discuss each and every type, along with its best practices.


Similar to display campaigns, in PMax, we have to fill in short and long headlines, as well as descriptions.

Text requirements:

  • Headlines: 3-15 headlines, with a limit of 30 characters, without using punctuation marks such as question marks or exclamations.
  • Long headlines: 1-5 long headlines, with a limit of 30 characters, considering the same punctuation requirements as with short headlines.
  • Descriptions: 2-5 descriptions, with one of up to 60 characters and the rest of no more than 90 characters.
  • Business name: 1-25 characters.

Best practices for text assets in Pmax

  • Enhance text assets. Diversify the text messages to reach a broader audience. Users have changing behaviours and habits. 
  • Use the maximum number of text assets. Using as many text assets as possible allows the algorithm to find the best combination for each user.
  • Unique selling proposition. What sets your business apart from the competition? Remember to emphasise it, as it’s the surefire way to grab the target audience’s attention.
  • Grab attention. Holding the user’s attention is becoming increasingly challenging. Doing so in the first few seconds is essential to generate better results.
  • Optimise texts if needed in case of low performance.


In Performance Max campaigns, there are a total of six image assets available:

  • Landscape image
  • Square image
  • Portrait image
  • Square logo
  • Landscape logo

Formats need to align with the following specifications and requirements:

  • Landscape format (1.91:1) – minimum size 600x314px, recommended 1200x628px.
  • Square format (1:1) – minimum size 300x300px, recommended 1200x1200px.
  • Portrait format (4:5) – minimum size 480x600px, recommended 960x1200px.

The maximum number of banners is 20, and the maximum file size is 5120 KB.

  • Logo

The logo is used separately and can be in:

  • Square format (1:1) – minimum size 300x300px, recommended 1200x1200px.
  • Landscape format (4:1) – minimum size 512x128px, recommended 1200x300px.

The maximum number of images of your logo is 5, and the maximum file size is 5120 KB.

Design guidelines for your target audience

  • Emphasise the product or service that you promote in the banner.
  • Avoid using too much text. The inventory screen available on some display networks could be tiny. Therefore, long messages with small fonts can be challenging to read.
  • Engage your audience. We are bombarded with product banners daily, and users often ignore them until they encounter something engaging that triggers their emotions.
  • Unique selling proposition. It is crucial to highlight what sets you apart from your competitors. If you run ads for a shoe store, for instance, you should highlight the essence of what makes your product or service better.
  • Perform tests. Experimentation is crucial in advertising. What types of assets can you test with? Use, for instance, a banner with promotional text and one without it – the results may surprise you.
  • Automatic overlays. Avoid adding call-to-action buttons at the bottom of your banner since they could be overlayed with the automatic CTA buttons from the platform. 
  • Avoid uploading photo collages or images with complex compositions.

Although campaign set-up and targeting are essential, banners also play a significant role in optimisation. Be sure to monitor your Pmax campaign, as Google Ads will start to provide information about your creative performance a few days after the campaign begins. Feel free to replace banners with low ratings instead of solely deleting them.


As mentioned earlier, with PMax, you can advertise on YouTube. There is a single type of video asset with the following requirements:

  • Ratio: horizontal, vertical or square.
  • Length: 10 seconds.
  • The video must be uploaded to YouTube.
  • Suggested quantity: up to 5 videos added to your Pmax campaign
  • When you do not add your own video, one may be generated for you by Google Ads.

 *If you don’t have your own videos uploaded to YouTube, you can now create such within the Google Ads interface using your banners. There are ready-made templates to help you in the process.

Creating a compelling video

  • Use audio in your videos. Many people only listen to videos, especially with the picture-in-picture** feature, so engaging them with sound is crucial.
  • Use different formats. A new YouTube format – YouTube shorts – is gaining popularity. Adapting your videos to these formats will bring you additional reach.
  • Capture attention in the first 3-5 seconds while the “Skip ad” button is not yet visible.
  • Highlight your competitive advantages.

**Picture-in-picture (PiP) is a feature found in TV receivers, PCs and smartphones, consisting of a video stream playing within an inset window, freeing the rest of the screen for other tasks.

Performance Max campaigns are an excellent way to maximise results and explore the engaged audience. However, careful selection of materials according to your product/service specifications and target audience, as well as occasional optimisation, are crucial.

Follow our YouTube channel and see how to create a new asset group in a PMax campaign. Watch the video here.

Auto-Apply Recommendations in Google Ads

Online advertising helps you target your ads to the profile of customers you want and filter out those who don’t. If you advertise with Google Ads or plan to do so, you should know how to use the Recommendations tab by Google.

The recommendations tab is an entire section dedicated to helping you improve your performance. Each recommendation provides customized suggestions to help you increase your campaign’s performance.

However, it’s important to note that not all recommendations are suitable for all businesses. Each business has a unique goal, strategy, and user journey. Therefore, it’s essential to carefully review and evaluate the recommendations in the context of your specific business case before implementing them.

This article outlines our agency’s best practices of dos and don’ts in activating Google’s recommendations.

Types of Recommendations and How They Work

The Recommendations page analyzes your account’s performance history, campaign settings, and Google trends to generate automatic suggestions for your active campaigns. Recommendations typically fall into several categories:

  1. Repairs are recommendations related to the settings of your accounts, campaigns, and ads.
  2. Bidding and Budgets usually suggest increasing your daily budget or changing your bidding strategy.
  3. Keywords and targeting suggest modifying the targeting of a specific ad group, adding new keywords or modifying existing ones, and changing their match type.
  4. Ads and Assets indicate a need to rewrite your ads or add extensions to help improve your ad performance. You could optimize headlines, descriptions and landing pages and add images or videos.
  5. Measurement provides recommendations and changes related to measuring and analyzing the effectiveness of your campaigns. Suggestions include settings to track conversions (Conversion actions), automated bidding strategies (Smart Bidding), Google Analytics configuration, and other aspects of performance analysis.

Applying Recommendations Automatically

Auto-Apply recommendations are a feature that automatically applies recommendations from the Recommendation tab to your advertising campaigns without your manual approval. Google suggests optimization suggestions based on your campaign settings and performance and will only auto-apply your pre-set recommendations.

While auto-apply recommendations save time from manual work, the disadvantages are that they only sometimes work according to your business goals and, at times, require more manual control.

Below is a list of AARs we don’t suggest activating:

  1. Add responsive search ads & Improve your responsive search ads allows Google to generate new ads or change existing ones, including adding new headlines or descriptions. Even though Google uses semantic search to understand search queries, we can only partially rely on it to build grammar structures and spell words correctly in Bulgarian.
  2. Remove redundant keywords removes keywords Google considers inappropriate. For instance, identical words or phrases may appear in multiple match types (e.g., both in broad and exact match). Activating this recommendation may not be the best option for your account, as the platform doesn’t always consider your business specifics or strategy.
  3. Add new keywords & Add broad match keywords. These are two settings where Google adds new keywords or upgrades existing ones to broad match. Recently, Google’s been recommending upgrading to broad match types as it helps identify related queries. Once again, this option should be considered only in your business context. Regardless of the keywords match types that you use, ensure keyword selection is well controlled. Otherwise, you’ll be spending your budget on irrelevant search queries. 
  4. Expand search campaigns to display network suggests expanding your campaigns’ visibility to Google’s display network, using unspent Search budgets. Search and Display typically serve different advertising goals, campaign characteristics and audience types. We strongly advise creating separate Search and Display campaigns with their own budgets and settings.
  5. Change Bidding provides suggestions related to modifying your bidding strategy. Some of them are relatively safe to activate, but generally, changing the bidding strategy is a significant strategic step for your account that you should be able to manually control in the context of your business. 

Monitoring Performance with Auto-Apply Recommendations

If you decide to activate any of the automatic settings, click the Campaigns icon in your Google Ads account. In the top right corner, click Auto-apply, which will take you to a separate menu where you can review the settings you want to implement.

Another option for activation is within the Recommendations tab, where you can select any of the suggestions from the list and choose “Apply” or “Apply all”.

After activation, it’s essential to check the automatic changes applied periodically. You can do so from the menu on the left, navigate to “Change history,” use the “Auto applied” filter, and inspect all the changes made for the selected period.

Follow Accella Digital’s YouTube channel for more information on Auto-Apply recommendations:

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Just like all other features, Auto-Apply Recommendations are not inherently good or bad. Depending on your account goal and expected business results, you have the flexibility to determine what’s right for you, but make sure you monitor any changes Google makes closely.

YouTube Advertising: Target Frequency Campaigns

In 2023, YouTube advertising became even more prevalent than ever. We’ve all been exposed to ads appearing before, during and after videos, with advertisers balancing the ad experience delivery and reaching the proper audience. Depending on the stage of your marketing funnel, there are a few campaign types you can choose from (Awareness, Consideration, Action), as well as a couple of ad formats. Today, we’ll take a closer look at the Target frequency campaign type. 

Target frequency is an optimisation solution with which you can reach more people with your brand awareness campaigns. It is used for driving higher ad viewership on YouTube when building your Video reach campaign.

Following the campaign creation steps, you can choose a frequency goal of up to four per week with the YouTube algorithm optimising towards maximum unique reach at that desired frequency.

Target frequency campaigns support the following ad formats:

  • Bumper ads

Bumper ads are 6 seconds or shorter in duration and play before, during and after other videos. Viewers do not have the option to skip the ad.

  • Skippable ads

Skippable ads play before, during and after other videos. After 5 seconds, the viewer has the option to skip the ad. 

  • Non-skippable ads

Non-skippable in-stream ads appear before, during and after other videos, usually 15 seconds or shorter. Viewers do not have the option to skip the ad.

If you don’t have a video available for your YouTube campaign, you can create one from the templates in the Google Ads interface.

Benefits and Drawbacks of This Optimisation Solution


  • Increases brand awareness: By optimising the frequency of your YouTube ads, you can raise brand awareness among your target audience.
  • Improves ad effectiveness: Frequency optimisation can enhance the effectiveness of your YouTube ads by ensuring that the right audience sees the message, increasing the likelihood of desired actions like website visits or purchases.
  • Reduces ad fatigue: Excessive ad exposure can lead to ad fatigue, making users less responsive to your message. Optimisation can minimise ad fatigue by limiting the number of ad views to the same audience.
  • Saves budget: By optimising ad frequency, you can avoid wasting your budget on ineffective videos, maximising your return on investment and achieving campaign goals with a smaller budget.
  • Increases engagement: Showing ads to the right audience at the right frequency can increase brand engagement, leading to more social shares, likes, and comments, ultimately boosting visibility on YouTube.
  • Improves targeting: Target Frequency can improve your targeting by showing ads to viewers most likely to be interested in your product or service, improving overall campaign effectiveness.


  • You can set up only one ad group per campaign.
  • Media buying is solely on a CPM basis (cost for 1,000 impressions).
  • Lower Reach: If the target frequency is set too low, the target audience may not see the ad often enough, reducing its effectiveness.
  • Missed opportunities: Setting the frequency cap too low may cause you to overlook potential customers who would’ve responded to the message if they had seen it more times.
  • Increased costs: Setting the frequency cap too high, on the other side, could increase costs as you’ll pay for more impressions. It could lead to a lower ROI, especially if only some of your impressions delivered the desired results.
  • Ad fatigue: While Target frequency aims to prevent ad fatigue, when your campaign is not optimised and the frequency cap is set too high, it can lead to “ad fatigue,” causing ad blindness with users not responding to your message.

Best practices to help you achieve results:

  • Add more videos to your ad inventory.
  • Target a broader audience, and avoid setting negative targeting and managed placements.
  • Test and optimise your campaign towards finding the optimal frequency that works best for you.
  • Monitor the performance metrics of your ads to make timely adjustments and improve effectiveness.
  • Run your campaign for at least seven days.

In conclusion, Target frequency can be a powerful tool for achieving your business goals. However, to make it work in your favour, you must consider the benefits and drawbacks of this strategy and whether it aligns with the goals you want to achieve.


Accella Digital ranks among the top 3% of companies awarded the Google Premier Partners status for 2022

This month, Google announced the achievements of its top-performing digital marketing partners worldwide. Our agency achieved the 2022 Premier Partner status, placing us among the top 3% of Google’s Partners that meet the new, more rigorous program requirements. Achieving this status underlines our dedication to managing results-driven digital campaigns and helping our clients achieve continuous growth and development.

What is the Google Premier Partner Program

Google Premier Partner is a special recognition by Google for advertising agencies with a demonstrated ads skill and expertise meeting higher ad spend requirements as well as certification and performance requirements that go beyond the standard Google Partner status (Google Partners).

“Congratulations to our Premier Partners for being among the first 3% of the Google Partners in Bulgaria. These companies stand out based on their commitment to developing product expertise, building new client relationships and helping existing clients grow. We look forward to supporting them as they help their clients succeed online.”

– Davang Shah, Global Managing Director, Google Ads Marketing

How to become a Premier Partner

The Google Partners program has undergone significant changes in 2022, including redefining what it means to be a Premier Partner through new, expanded requirements and offering Premier Partners unique benefits to help them grow and succeed with Google Ads.

To be recognized as a Google Premier Partner, agencies must meet strict requirements such as:

  • Investment in Google Ads measured by ad spend and acquired revenue across managed accounts
  • Agency growth measured by the number and size of associated Google Ads accounts
  • Ability for partners to acquire new clients and maintain current ones
  • A team of specialists who have passed the Google certification exams

Benefits of being a Google Premier Partner

Being a Google Premier Partner for 2022 comes with a whole host of benefits that positively impact both us as an advertising performer and the results we achieve for our clients.

As a Google Premier Partner, we benefit from:

  • Access to the most current beta versions of Google Ads features
  • Access to the most up-to-date information on market research, trends, best practices and changes in the Google Ads platform
  • High-value promotional offers with which our new clients get up to BGN 700 for free on top of their advertising budget
  • Access to 24-hour Google Ads support, which help us quickly and efficiently solve client challenges
  • Access to selected industry events, such as an invitation to the Google Partners Annual Meeting

For our clients, this means we have the necessary prerequisites to work optimally with Google to support and nurture our client campaigns.

Follow us on LinkedIn and Facebook to keep up with industry trends and best practices.

10 common mistakes people make when starting an online business

Today, we turn our attention to the common mistakes and the traps we often fall into when starting new businesses.
Here are some points to keep in mind when you start out so you can achieve sustainability of your digital project faster and smoother:

1. Lack of knowledge about digital marketing and its tools

Digital marketing is a living, breathing organism – there is something new every month. It uses a huge range of tools and platforms and luckily many of them are free and extremely useful for any type of business. There are also a wide range of online trainings that can help you get to know your way around.

Here is a list of some useful sources:

Digital Garage –
Google Analytics –
Google Academy for Ads –
Facebook Ads –

2. Wrong choice of partner

If you are planning to start an online business, the most important things to have is 1)a well-built and optimized website that responds quickly to your users’ needs and 2)for you – to have a CRM system that allows easy management of orders and inquiries. You can always trust in proven platforms like WordPress, Magento, OpenCart, etc., as well as partner with a developer to create your site from the ground up.

3. Unrealistic expectations

Anyone can create a website and expect the orders to come rolling in right away, but things are not quite happening this way. Starting an online business requires users to become familiar with your brand/service/product. You must first generate a critical mass of traffic to the site to see how users respond to what you are offering and interact with it. You will need to run ads on different channels and do not expect them to start bringing sales your way immediately. After all, before placing that order online, each of us checks the comments and reviews for the site, whether there is any business information, and more.

4. Lack of USP

The unique selling proposition is especially important when starting a business. What is that different and special thing you are offering to users that distinguish you from the other existing stores? What will be your competitive advantage? Why choose you over proven sites with a large selection of products? Think about this before launching your marketing campaign, as it would play a key role in communication and allow you to “steal” clients.

5. You do not know your customers well

When building a site, choosing product designs or even the color of the logo, you need to know who your shoppers will be. Write down exactly what your “ideal” customer would look like and you can even give him a name. Point your thinking into making the right type of people like your work and make sure the design of your site is the right design for them.

6. Lack of strategy at the start

The initial traffic to each new site is usually paid. After all, no one knows you yet and writing your domain directly is unlikely. Don’t expect to have a profit and great direct traffic from the get-go. This will take time.
A major mistake with startup businesses is the limited budget and the desire for orders raining down. Paid traffic requires you to plan a specific budget to run your campaigns. Here, we recommend that you come up with a clear strategy for how you will grow your business in 6 months, rather than go with “Let’s see how the first month will go and then decide if we will continue”.

7. Unclear user path to purchase

Imagine you start running campaigns, invest funds into a budget, bring in a lot of traffic to the site, but see users leave it right away… Most probably this is due to a poorly built homepage that does not meet visitors’ expectations and does not convey them into taking the action you want them to take.

8. You are not familiar with good SEO practices

When managing a site, it is advisable to get acquainted with what element of your site is important to be indexed better by the search engines and have more organic traffic, as well as what do words like meta titles and descriptions mean and how they should be filled in.

9. You do not accept specialists’ advice

When you approach a digital agency or a marketer, they are the specialists who should help you in your endeavor and in improving your performance and results. Listening and trying to assist them is vital.

10. Daily changes to campaigns

Your ad campaigns need some time to collect statistics. We do not recommend daily changes. If you are in doubt about a message or image, do beta testing for 3-4 days before pausing one of them.

Surely this is NOT a guide to how to run a successful online business, but it is a list of things that might help you get started. If you need any help or advice, feel free to email us.