Google has announced it’s replacing the default ‘Search & Display Networks’ campaign setting with a new and improved setting called “Search with Display Select.”  This new default setting provides “improved signals and methods of predicting when and where your ads are likely to perform best, and sets a higher bar for when to show them”. According to initial tests, Google states that advertisers could see on average a 35% increase in CTR and a 35% decrease in Cost-per-Conversion on the display portion of their Search Network with Display Select campaigns. Initial tests have also shown the possibility of seeing a 10%-15% increase in conversions.

Below is the new campaign setting:

Google's Search with Display Select Campaign Type

So What’s Different?


Google hasn’t explained what these ‘new and improved signals’ are but I expect better than the ‘old and non-improved signals’ (My poor attempt at humor)! I suspect the difference is Google somehow incorporated a variation of their display campaign optimizer (DCO) technology into this new setting. In theory, your campaigns should receive higher quality traffic that is more likely to convert for you. As with any paid search advertising you do, make sure you monitor your performance early and often!  Let your data be the final judge of how successful this new setting is working.

The table provided by Google listed below clearly outlines the difference between the old setting and the new and improved one.

“Search Network only” “Search Network with Display Select”
Ad placement Standard & All features Standard & All features
    Google search results     Google search results,
    Search partner sites     Search partner sites,
    Google Display Network
sites and video
Ad formats Standard Standard
    Text ads     Text ads
All features All features
    Text ads     Text ads
    Product listing ads     Image ads
    Dynamic search ads     Display ad builder ads
    App / digital content ads
    WAP mobile ads
    Product listing ads
    Dynamic search ads
Targeting Standard Standard
    Keywords     Keywords
All features All features
    Keywords     Keywords
    Remarketing lists for search only     Placements
    Remarketing lists for search only
    Site category options
Standard & All features Standard & All features
Bidding     Manual and automated
bidding for the Search
    Manual and automated
bidding for the Search
    Automated bidding for the
Display Network.

How To Set it Up


Over the next few weeks Google will be phasing out and migrating your campaigns to the new setting if you are opted into search and display within the same campaign. If you want to get a head start migrating your campaign, follow the simple steps listed below.

  1. Sign in to AdWords at
  2. Click the Campaigns tab and go to Settings.
  3. Next to “Campaign type” you’ll see a yellow notification about upgrading to “Search Network with Display Select.” Click Get started and then Continue.
  4. Select a campaign to upgrade and click Continue.
  5. Click Upgrade now

Should I Use The New Setting?


My advice is not to use this setting but rather break off search and display initiatives into separate campaigns. The main reasons for breaking out your search and display campaigns are control and visibility. Using your search campaign setup to run on the GDN is not always the most effective way to get the results you need for your accounts.

I would not change the way I manage my display campaigns because of this new setting. If you do not currently break out your campaigns by network, I urge you to do so. That being said, if you decide to keep your search and display campaigns tied together, this new feature will definitely increase your chances of success!