What Are AdWords IF Functions?

Estimated Reading Time 4 minutes

With standard ads being phased out at the end of last month, it was about time Google introduced another cool feature to AdWords to go hand in hand with their beautiful new expanded ads.

Enter; AdWords IF functions

Wordstream describe the IF function as ‘ad customisers on steroids’, which is pretty spot on.

IF functions allow you to show a specific message within your ad copy when a certain criteria is met, and if that criteria is not met, it reverts to a default text. IF functions are applicable to ads that are on the Search Network, and are applied by including parameters inside {braces}, and the parameter will adjust for your users search. The only aspect that this can’t be applied to is the final URL field.

There are two dimensions that are supported for IF functions; device, and audience.

If Function Targets

Using IF Functions

There are various ways in which these IF functions can be used within your ad copy.

Perhaps your company offers a discount to new customers, you could include that within your ad copy. If you’ve got an offer that cart abandoners simply can’t refuse, make sure they can see that offer within your ad copy. Maybe you want to push for more sales via mobile, so you offer a bigger discount to users that come to the site via mobile.

AdWords IF Function

When you begin typing { in the text box, you can click IF function and it will give an example of how the syntax looks. Device IF functions are straightforward, though audience functions are slightly more complex. Within the formula you can write the audience list that you want to include, though make sure  you write this exactly as it’s named.

As with any ad copy, we’d recommend testing to find out what works. If you’re promoting an offer only available to new customers, have a look at your conversion rate data for new users and see if it’s seen an uplift!

Key takeaways for IF functions

  • There are only two supported dimensions for IF functions; device and audience
  • They can be used anywhere in the ad except the final URL
  • Remember to set your default text for when the criteria isn’t met
  • IF functions are only available on the Search Network
  • Test, and test again. Assess what’s working and move on from what’s not
Sophie Burrows
As a Senior Digital Strategist, Sophie's role is focused around working with clients to achieve their business objectives, through a mixture of digital marketing channels. Having worked closely with clients in a variety of disciplines over the last five years, Sophie has gained an invaluable insight into what makes for a successful campaign. Applying a strategic process along with deep analytics insight has made Sophie an in-demand digital strategist.