Tips & Tricks for Getting Used to The New SA360

The new SA360 has now been widely rolled out with the most basic features available in the new platform. Despite the new platform’s familiar look, you might find yourself unsure where to start and are holding off diving into the platform until some of the more advanced features have migrated over. With this in mind, we have pulled together some tips and tricks for getting started with the new SA360.

Merel van Steen

Switching back and forth

First and foremost, you will continue to have access to Search Ads 360 as you know it – and this is important as there are still a number of advanced features yet to migrate over to the new platform, such as bidding. To switch back to the previous SA360, you need to click on Help in the top right corner. This will open a dropdown, where the first link “Open the previous Search Ads 360 experience” will take you back. 

Terminology changes

There are some important changes to certain entity and feature names, such as the below hierarchy name changes:

Additionally, some of the well known SA360 feature names have changed. Business data is now called custom dimensions, formula columns and custom conversion columns have merged together into custom columns, the new and improved budget management feature will be called performance center, and the feed-based features of inventory management and ad builder will live in a new area called templates.

Navigating around the platform

You’ll notice that certain elements have now moved. For example, rather than having a horizontal navigation for scoping down into different levels, there is now a  vertical navigation on the left-hand side in addition to a new campaign selector view.

Furthermore, the use of filters has been aligned with Google Ads, whereby pipes are no longer needed to specify ‘or’ conditions. If you’re familiar and comfortable with filtering in Google Ads, this will be an easy change to get used to, and you’ll be pleased to learn that similar to the previous SA360, filters are persistent i.e. they follow you around as you scope to different levels. However, specific filters which aren’t available at a certain level will no longer be grayed out, and will instead be removed altogether.

If you are looking after accounts that sit across multiple Search Ads 360 Manager accounts (i.e. SA360 agencies), it is possible to switch between these different manager accounts by clicking your profile picture in the top right corner. Again similar to Google Ads, this is how you can make the switch from one SA360 manager account to another. We are hoping a search function will be added here to improve this workflow for those with access to a large number of manager accounts.

You might also wonder where you can access certain features that were previously available in the left-hand side menu in the previous SA360. Some of these features have not been migrated across yet, but for those that have, most of them can be found under “Tools and Settings” in the top bar. This is where you’ll find business data (now called custom dimensions), various advertiser settings such as conversions and measurement, as well as automation and bulk features such as rules and uploads. Be sure to keep checking in on the Experience Hub, to see the migration status of all features.

Finally, with the news that Executive Reports are being deprecated, the brand new and improved “Reports” tool will be your primary chart and dashboard generator, accessible from the top bar.

Label parity

The new SA360 also brings label parity between Google Ads and Search Ads 360, however, it is important to understand how label creation location (i.e. which platform you create a label) can impact label visibility between the two platforms, so we have created this handy table for you: 

Click-date metrics vs Conversion-date metrics

Another great feature available in the new SA360 is the ability to create conversion columns based on click-date or conversion-date aligned data, for any conversion source. Historically, in the previous SA360 you could only report on conversion-date aligned metrics (i.e. conversions are recorded against the date & time the conversion occurred, with exception to the bid strategies console) and there was no clear visibility over click-date aligned metrics.

With this in mind, we would recommend creating a solid naming convention for custom columns, so you can easily differentiate between click-date aligned and conversion-date aligned metrics.

You’ll be able to create ‘custom conversion columns’ (available for reporting only) by clicking ‘+ custom columns’ and selecting ‘+ custom conversion column’ (this is a very recent addition to the new SA360 UI, so might not yet be available yet for your sub-manager). Here you will see the aforementioned toggle for switching between click-date or conversion-date aligned data.

Additionally, you can differentiate directly while creating a ‘custom formula column’, instead of a ‘custom conversion column’. Here, the conversion metrics that have “by conv. time” in the name are, as you guessed it, based on conversion-date aligned data – and will most closely line up with the conversion data you were already reporting on in the previous UI (and all auto-migrated conversion columns will already be set up in this way). All other conversion columns (i.e. those that don’t reference “by conv. time”) are click-date aligned. I.e. “All conversions” is click-date aligned, “all conversions (by conv. time)” is conversion-date aligned. Finally, we are also now able to isolate cross-environment conversion data into its own column (for both click & conversion aligned data).

There’s a lot we like about this new interface and the clear efficiencies that it unlocks for advertisers and agencies – we’re looking forward to the continued development of the UI and upcoming feature migrations. Keep an eye for our follow-up blog which will cover some of these more advanced feature migrations such as bidding and performance center.

For more information, or if you would like us to run a demo with you, please get in touch.

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