When it comes to structuring your Google Adwords account, you may think the account/campaign/ad group layout is confusing, but it’s really quite simple and VERY important in setting up your account.

The structure of a Google PPC account is as follows:

Campaigns should be thought of as large categories. So for example, if you sold shoes, you may wish to have two campaigns, or categories,  for ‘mens trainers’  and ‘womens trainers’. Ad groups are smaller catagories inside the campaigns. Therefore a campaign should cover a product set with relevant catagories inside it. So using our shoe example, a campaign for ‘mens trainers’ may then include ad groups for ‘mens running trainers’, ‘mens tennis trainers’ etc.

Keywords and adverts are then attributed to each ad group. Each ad group has one set of keywords and one set of adverts so it is best for each adgroup to stick with one theme to encourage relevancy throughout the account.

Our account now looks like this:

Adwords Account Example


The main aspect to remember about Adwords is that it’s all about relevancy. By having specific ad groups, you can tightly theme the keyword lists and adverts within. Google likes to see your keywords being highly relevant to the advert and the most themes you are trying to cover in one ad group, the harder that is.

You may wish to structure your account differently (e.g. By size, colour, location or quantity) depending on your business and user behaviour in your particular industry.


The best, most granular accounts have multiple campaigns and ad groups but here are some things to bear in mind…

  • Settings are applied at campaign level so geographically specific ads will need to have a campaign per location. This also applies for ads targeting specific times of day and languages.
  • Keywords should only be present once in any given account so choose how to structure your account wisely as you should not include duplicate keywords. Duplicate keywords are only allowed if they are targeting different locations/times – You must just ensure that you don’t have the keyword targeting the same audience more than once.
  • Negative keywords can be applied at campaign or ad group level so this should not be a determining factor in the structure of your account.
  • Although it might seem tempting to name your campaigns ‘Campaign #1’, ‘Campaign #2’ etc, this makes it difficult to differentiate the content of each of them at the optimisation stage so try to name them according to the products/services you are promoting in them.
  • Only one advert destination URL is allowed per ad group. Although you can have multiple destination URLs in one campaign, it is best to set up separate campaigns for separate websites, should you be advertising these in the same account. This way you can allocate specific budgets and settings as well as using the Adwords account structure to its full extent.
  • You may find it easier to structure your Adwords account in the same way you have structured your website. If your website is not structured in a relevant way, write down every product/service you want to promote before deciding on a layout.
In an account you are allowed 500 campaigns each with up to 20,000 ad groups so there is plenty of space for organisation depending on how granular you wish to be.
Happy Structuring!