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Ad Schedule Bid Adjustment to Lower Budget not Bid

Top Contributor
# 1
Top Contributor

Hey fellow PPCers, 


I'm a HUGE fan of bid adjustments (mobile, location, sitelink, etc) including Ad Schedule bid adjustments according to the day of the week. 


But recently I have been wondering if it would be more effective simply lower the daily budget on statistically lower performing days rather than low the bid. 


Does anyone know if this is possible? Would it have to be done with AdWords scripts? Also do you guys think this will be effective or should I stick with modifying the bids? 



Joshua, Top Contributor
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Re: Ad Schedule Bid Adjustment to Lower Budget not Bid

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

@Joshua R; This is a nice question;

AdWords (like any system in nature) "prefers"  a steady state",  and planned / scheduled changes.


"Unexpected" / sudden changes is not  a behavior - I have found, the system "prefers".  Comparing schedule changes vs manual, I have found that a campaign is  more under control, with no (broad) "fluctuations"  in QS, and impressions (the metrics I compared -, back then). On the other hand,   if I manually change bids, or campaign hours (e.g pausing the campaign "manually" during   weekends vs campaign scheduling) -  there is  a broader span / range of performances. (This, though, was not a "pure" statistical test.)


So, my recommendation:  If changes  in a campaign is a  routine process / procedure,   I would prefer to   schedule them rather  than manually modify. (Even if "executed"  by a script.)


Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: Ad Schedule Bid Adjustment to Lower Budget not Bid

Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor
Interesting response. I also share a similar feeling that the AdWords system would not like the change to daily budget.

I would love to hear what an official AdWords employee has to say on the matter since I do have campaigns where they would genuinely benefit from a change in daily budget rather then a bid modification.
Joshua, Top Contributor
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Re: Ad Schedule Bid Adjustment to Lower Budget not Bid

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi Joshua R,

As per my experience, I would prefer to reduce bids than lowering the budget. Reason being, If you reduce the budget, but not the bids, then the chances are that your ad may show intermittently during those days, if you are keeping a tight budget and you will have no control on low performing hours of the day, until and unless you change budgets on hourly basis as well, which is not preferred at all. If your budget is way above your daily spend and then you reduce your budget by some percentage, on some selected days, and even after reducing it is still good enough to serve your ads throughout the day without any loss in impressions then there is no point of reducing the budget as it will not have any impact.

But by reducing the bids, not the budget, I am most probably (not completely) sure that my spend will not increase more than an approximately limit (based on past performance data) and you are in better control of your spend and you can control your spend on hourly basis as well during the day.

In other words, reducing bids may mean that you want to show your ads throughout the day without any interruptions at a lower position or you do not want to spend much during low performing hours of the day but reducing budget may mean that you want to bid on higher position whenever your ad shows and you are ready to lose some impressions during the days due to limited budget (it only applies when you are setting budget close to your daily spend).


Re: Ad Schedule Bid Adjustment to Lower Budget not Bid

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# 5
Top Contributor

Hi Joshua,


As to whether or not this is a good approach, that's a matter of opinion.


Technically, you can adjust your budgets on a daily basis via automated rules quite easily. Just remember to account for each previous adjustment when you set up the next.  


For instance, and increase of 10% on a daily budget of $100 will equate to a budget of $110 - if you wanted to reduce it the next day, back to the original $100, 10% is now too much of a reduction, it would be closer to a 9% reduction and so on.  


But if you're interested in using scripts, I believe that budget management is one of the tasks that a lot of folks accomplish with scripts. Now, I'm not exactly sure what it would take to adjust for day of the week, but I'm almost positive that it's possible. The one thing to keep in mind here is that when you start playing with your daily budgets in the middle or throughout the month, Google doesn't really know how to appropriately figure for what you want your monthly spend to be. They try to work off of the daily budget * 30.4 for a monthly figure but as you can imagine, fluctuations in daily budgets can throw this off pretty easily and you may end up with more (or less) days with additional 20% spend etc...


So, if you do decide to go this route, I have learned that (assuming you have a specific target monthly budget) you would likely want to take a percentage route of sorts vs using hard numbers.


You have a monthly target spend, say $5000. Now let's say across your 5 campaigns you want this spread out evenly. $5000/30.4 = $164.47 - we'll call it $165 a day and call this X or your base daily spend and that would be divided evenly (or otherwise) between your campaigns and you could make adjustments from there based on day of the week.


The thing is here, for each daily budget adjustment (however that math looks), you'll likely want to also account for your monthly spend so far and how many days are left to recalculate your 'X' before making any specific day of week adjustments. By taking this into account, you'll naturally account for the days you over spend and the days you under spend, while still maintaining a higher/lower allocation on certain days and maintaining a goal to reach your monthly target spend.


I'm actually not so sure any of this makes sense and I may be over complicating things so i'm going to quit right about now.  Smiley Happy


My attempted explanation is a variation of the functioning logic used in a script that our friend @Jon_Gritton shared, one that I use currently (and works very well).  I would also read about this other version for additional insights into budget management ideas.  (I don't think either are exactly what you're looking for specifically but they may shed some light on the concepts and capabilities of scripts for budget management.).


Jon is really clever and up to date with current scripts and their capabilities.  He's a pretty nice guy, I'm hoping he'll just chime in when he has a few moments.  Smiley Happy



Tommy Sands, AdWords Top Contributor | Community Profile | Twitter | Philly Marketing Labs
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Re: Ad Schedule Bid Adjustment to Lower Budget not Bid

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# 6
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Hi @Joshua R (thanks for the mention @PPCBossman).


As with anything AdWords, really the first thing you need to consider is your objective.  You've mentioned "lower performing days" but in what way are they lower performing?  If it's in terms of ROAS, are they still making a profit or not?  More importantly, even if that day is not making a profit, are the clicks/impressions for that day acting as an assist to other conversions at other times?


If you're still making a profit on these days - even a much smaller one than on other days - I wouldn't recommend reducing your budget since all that's going to do is reduce your profit and there's a good chance it'll impact the other days because of missed impressions on a conversion path.  If they're not making a profit you really need to look closely at the conversion paths and only if you can be really sure these clicks/impressions don't form part of a longer path might I consider reducing the spend.


However, when I control budgets via scripts it's always purely to hit a fixed client spend (where ROAS cannot be taken into account for some reason) rather than based upon performance.  If performance is the issue then you're better off making changes to bids or other adjustments to improve that ROAS rather than restricting the display of Ads and bid adjustments can be controlled very effectively with scripts.


As a side note, for the Campaigns where I use scripted budget control I've not seen any evidence of this affecting Account performance.  I wouldn't recommend making multiple changes during a day but changes once per day, especially where they're small changes, seem to have no detrimental effect.  In terms of Google's own opinion of making budget changes by script, I think it could be argued that since they provide a script to do this on their own help pages:


there's no perceived problem in doing so.



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