AdWords Editor is a great tool to help speed up your work by making bulk uploads and changes easier. Here are a couple of tips and tricks to speed up your work even more:

1. Use the different advanced search, view, and sort options to your advantage.

Creating custom views and filters will not only help you speed up work, but also help cut down your mistakes. The advanced search feature has a ton of different combinations that you can use to look at your keywords, ads, or campaigns. Let’s say you want to edit active keywords that are from a specific ad group. You can easily search that by doing an advanced search:

AWE advanced search

2. Paste into selected ad groups.

This trick has saved me hours of work and has stayed in my top 3 AWE tricks. Let’s say you have a bunch of image ads in one ad group, and you’d like to apply them to a new set of ad groups. If you had the images on hand, it would be a simple upload and editing of the destination URLs.

This gets a little tricky, however, if you don’t have those images on hand or if the destination URLs are complex and need to be hardcoded. Instead, you can follow these simple steps to apply the group of ads to multiple ad groups:

a. Go into the ad group and highlight all the image ads that you want and copy (ctrl+c)

b. Move over to the ad group tab and select the ad groups that you want to paste the ads in

c. Right-click the highlighted ad groups and hit “Paste into selected ad groups” (see image below)

AWE ad groups

d. Switch back over to the Ads tab and marvel at how much time you just saved!

Pro tip: If you have any sort of Marin or SearchForce tracking that cannot be copied over into different ad groups because of the unique ad ID on top of another tracking code, edit the destination URLs within the ad group BEFORE you copy and paste into your new ad groups. After you’re done with that, go back into the original ad group and revert your changes.

3. Paste your ad scheduling.

Have you tried ad scheduling in Enhanced Campaigns yet? It kind of sucks. You have to schedule it in the UI, and there’s no way to bulk-apply it to multiple campaigns. You have to set the ad schedule for each campaign, which can be a very manual process.

But fear not, there is a solution in AWE!

All you have to do is set up your ad scheduling in one campaign, download most recent changes in your AWE, go to the Campaign tab, copy the campaign with the ad schedule, highlight the campaigns you want to apply the ad schedule to, go into the Edit Selected Campaigns section, and click on “Paste.” Voila!

AWE ad scheduling

4. Use Formula Words to build tracking for destination URLs.

AWE has a great feature called Formula Words that works very much like the =SUBSTITUTE feature in Excel. Basically, you use the Find and Replace function in AWE, and by using brackets, you can have AWE dynamically replace the dummy parameters with campaigns, ad groups, keywords, and more.

Upload your new ads and apply the base destination URLs with a tracking code with some dummy params (e.g. where the campaign name should go, put in “campaign”).

append text AWE

Next, select all the destination URLs with the dummy params and hit “Replace Text”. Have it find “campaign” and set “Replace with” [campaign]. The URLs will now have the unique campaign name in the tracking parameter. If an ad lives in a campaign called “Pizza Party,” the “campaign” dummy parameter will now read “Pizza Party.”

replace params

new urls in AWE

Here are some of the formula words you can use:

[account] – Account name
[campaign] – Campaign name
[adgroup] – Ad group name
[keyword] – Keyword text
[headline] – Ad headline
[description1] – Ad description line 1
[description2] – Ad description line 2
[displayUrl] – Display URL text
[destinationUrl] – Destination URL text
[negativeKeywordSite] – Negative keyword or site
[field] – Any field that’s editable on the selected tab

Note: Formula words do NOT work with the Append Text feature. It won’t work if you try and append ?utm_[campaign] to your destination URLs. Also, if there are spaces in your campaign or ad group names within a destination URL, AWE automatically changes the space to a value with a % and a number. You’ll have to do an additional find and replace to fix it.

And that’s it! Leave a comment if you have other favorites to add to the list.


  1. Norm July 29th, 2013

    Great tips! I didn’t even know there was an advanced search! This may not be much of a secret, but I love the ability to globally set keyword bids to first page or top of first page bid estimates. I think it is certainly worth making this list the list of the top FIVE time saving tips.

    Do you know though, if there is a way to add a fixed dollar amount to the current bid for a group of keywords? For example, what if I wanted to set a group of keywords to their first page bid estimates plus $1.

  2. Bailey July 31st, 2013

    Hey Norm!

    That’s definitely another great feature of AdWords Editor. As to your question about increasing a set group, you definitely can! All you need to do is highlight the keywords you want to change, go to Advanced Bid Changes”, then set it to “Increase” by 1 USD. AWE automatically will increase by a percentage, so be sure to change that dropdown before changing your bids.

  3. @mattjgillooly September 17th, 2013

    Thanks Bailey these tips have been a huge help as evidenced by the fact that I still reference this months later.

    Do you (or anyone else) know if there is an equivalent to Formula Words in Bing Ads Editor? Specifically wondering about one that will populate Ad Group.

    Otherwise, I’ll probably have to use param1 or param2 as a workaround but if theres a built in Bing Ads editor trick that would be an epic win.

  4. Bailey Lau September 19th, 2013

    I have not come across an equivalent to Formula Words for BAE. I usually just use the =SUBSTITUTE function in Excel and upload a build sheet manually since I personally don’t like spending too much time in the BAE platform, but the param1 or param 2 is probably the closest thing!

  5. Matus October 27th, 2014

    Hi Bailey!

    Thank you for your tips. However I have not found way how to find and replace a string with “Ad name” or “Dimensions” of a banner. This would be helpful for tracking in Google Analytics (in case you do not have access to autotagging). Is there a way how to solve this? Perhaps with the formula word [field] ? I have not managed to bulk change the characters with [name] or [dimensions].

    Thank you for your answers!

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Bailey Lau
Bailey joined 3Q Digital in September of 2012 after interning at Internet Marketing Inc. in San Diego. Bailey graduated from UC San Diego in 2012 with a bachelor's degree in Sociology. She loves finding new places to eat, watching sports, and playing softball and football. She currently works for