Adwords SEM

Why Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs) are a great way to Increase Traffic

What are Dynamic Search Ads?

Dynamic Search Ads automatically match user search queries to the content of your website. Google does this by scanning the content of your website using its organic web crawling technology and dynamically generating a Headline and choosing an appropriate Landing Page when it finds a match between the user search query and your website content.


What are the benefits of using Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs)?

They help you fill in the gaps in your Keyword Portfolio: Since DSA’s match with your website’s content, and not with a set of keywords that you list, they can show up for relevant search queries even if you don’t have keywords targeting those topics.

High Quality Score: Since Google dynamically generates the Headline and chooses an appropriate Landing Page, there is a very high chance that the user search query matches with the Ad Headline and the content of the Landing page, thus pushing up your Quality Score.

Capture additional traffic: Dynamic Search Ads can help you gain additional traffic and sales by promoting your business to more customers than you can reach with a keyword-targeted campaign.

Frequent, automatic updates to your ads: When you make changes to pages in your website, Google will crawl your website again to help ensure that your ads are as up to date as possible.

Easy setup: You don’t have to go through the hassle of uploading keywords, choosing match types and creating ad copies.


Does Google make the entire Ad Copy dynamically?

No. Google only generates the headline and chooses the Landing Page – you still have control over Description Line 1, Description Line 2 and the Display URL.


Do I have a choice of what pages of my website I want Google to scan?

Yes. You can either include all web pages or select a few:

All Webpages: If you choose this, Google will match user queries to your entire website.

Specific Pages: You can decide to include or exclude a number of pages by:

  • URL
  • Page title
  • Page content
  • Category


Okay, so I would like to try out Dynamic Search Ads, how do I set them up?

Google has a complete step by step guide on how to setup a DSA campaign here.

I would recommend using an automated bid strategy like Target CPA, Target ROAS or Enhanced CPC since Google would know best what to bid on the search terms (yes I know this sounds like we’re giving Google the control to manipulate our bids and make money but trust me, it worked for me)


How can I optimize DSAs?

Once you’ve set the campaign(s) up, be sure to look out for the following:

Search Term Report: There might be search queries that are irrelevant to your business. In this case you can filter these searches by adding negative Keywords from the Keywords tab. To see the search term report, click on the Auto Targets Tab, and then choose ‘See search terms’.

How to see Search Terms

In the Search Terms report, you can also see which Headlines and Landing Pages are doing well.

Landing Page Exclusion: You can block out undesired Landing pages by using Dynamic Ad Target Exclusion from the Auto Targets tab in your account.

Categories report: Use the categories report to see how different categories of your website are performing. To see the category report, click on the Auto Targets Tab, and then choose ‘See categories’.

Performance of Ad Copies: While you don’t have control over the Headline and Landing Page, you can certainly A/B test between different description lines and Display URL.


Dynamic Search Ads look great, are they for everyone?

No. If you have a website that displays real-time content, or a website whose content changes very rapidly, I would advise you not to use DSAs. This is because Google does not update your website’s index regularly, and thus may show ads for content that no longer exists on your website.



I was a bit skeptical of using DSAs at first, not only because it would allow Google to control my bids (I still have a lingering suspicion that Google’s number one goal is still to make as much money as it can), but also because I wasn’t sure how good Google’s matching algorithms will be. However, to my surprise, I found that DSA’s helped me get additional traffic at a very decent ROI (return on Investment). I would highly recommend all account managers to try out DSAs.

Shreyans Jain is a Senior Programmatic Marketing Manager and the Head of GDN at Affinitas GmbH - one of the world's biggest Online Dating companies based in Berlin, Germany.

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