Forgot to Transition Your AdWords PLAs? Here’s What Happens

google shopping ads

Did you forget to transition your AdWords Product Listing Ads to Shopping Campaigns before the deadline?  If you did, here is what you need to know about how those campaigns will be affecting during September.

Limited Functionality

Starting today, advertisers will no longer be able to edit PLA product targeting, max CPC bids, promo text or destination URLs.  You can manage both the campaign statuses and budgets, so you don’t have to worry you will be spending money on campaigns that run beyond your control.


Later in September, if you still have not upgraded, Google AdWords will begin auto-upgrading PLA campaigns that have received impressions over the past few weeks.  Google warns that some settings and bids might not be carried over due to technical limitations.  However, they will carry over whether a campaign is enabled or paused.  Once the auto-upgrade takes place, the regular PLAs will stop serving impressions and you will receive email notification of the changes.

The auto-upgrade from regular Product Listing Ads campaigns to Shopping campaigns will take place on an advertiser-by-advertiser basis throughout September. After your campaigns are auto-upgraded, all original regular Product Listing Ads campaigns will stop serving Product Listing Ads. You’ll still have access to historical data for these campaigns.

All enabled or paused regular Product Listing Ads campaigns that have received impressions in the past few weeks are eligible for the auto-upgrade. Auto-upgraded Shopping campaigns will be set to the same status (“enabled” or “paused”) as their corresponding regular Product Listing Ads campaigns.

There is the possibility that if you made changes to your regular PLAs shortly before the auto-upgrade, there are changes that could be lost in the transition.  So it is best you upgrade yourself prior to your account being auto-upgraded.  Auto-upgrades will begin on September 3, 2014, according to Google.

Upgrading yourself

You can still upgrade yourself, either manually or through the update tool, prior to Google automatically doing it for your account.  You do need to ensure that once you upgrade, you delete the regular PLAs so that Google won’t duplicate an upgrade when it auto-upgrades.

If you upgraded any regular Product Listing Ads campaigns yourself (manually or with the upgrade tool) after August 31, but hadn’t removed them yet, these regular Product Listing Ads campaigns may still be eligible for auto-upgrading. To avoid duplicate Shopping campaigns, make sure you remove any of these upgraded regular Product Listing Ads campaigns before the auto-upgrade begins September 3. You’ll still have access to historical data for removed regular Product Listing Ads campaigns. Find out how to remove a campaign.

And in case you missed it, AdWords released a YouTube video about the transition from PLA to shopping campaigns.

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Jennifer Slegg

Founder & Editor at The SEM Post

Jennifer Slegg is a longtime speaker and expert in search engine marketing. When she isn't sitting at her desk writing and working, she can be found grabbing a latte at her local Starbucks or planning her next trip to Disneyland.

She regularly speaks at Pubcon, SMX, ClickZ and more, and has been presenting at conferences for over a decade.


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