Last updated November 2nd 2023
Optimised targeting and audience expansion are two different features, but they are grouped into one setting.
This bundle setting can be switched on or off in audience manager or under ad group targeting.
Optimised targeting and audience expansion can incur significant spend, often surpassing the spend allocated to your targeted segments, It is important to keep an eye on this to make sure these features are spending on searches that are relevant and profitable to you.
Optimised targeting looks for users similar to users who have already converted on your ads. Optimised targeting does not take into account the audience profile you use for targeting, and it will direct budget away from your signals and targeted audiences if it finds better performing traffic outside them.
Optimised targeting is available for reach based campaigns Discovery, Display, and conversion-focused Video campaigns (Video action campaigns). Any campaign of these types which was using similar audiences per August 1st 2023 was automatically opted into optimised targeting. If you wish to undo this, you can manually opt out as described above.
Optimised targeting is best at finding new converters for your campaign, as it gives the algorithm the liberty to go beyond your targeting and try to find more traffic within your CPA/ROAS target range.
Do not use Optimised Targeting for Remarketing
This feature specifically looks for new users, and as it goes beyond your targeting directly defeats the purpose of a remarketing campaign.
Audience expansion takes a point of departure in the audience segments you are optimising for and looks for similar audience segments to target. While optimised targeting looks at your converting users and tries to find similar ones, audience expansion looks at your audiences and tries to find similar ones.
For display campaigns this setting is consolidated with optimised targeting, and you can only opt in or out of both at the same time.
This setting is available for display and reach-focused Video campaigns (Video campaigns that use the “Product and brand consideration” or “Brand awareness and reach” goal).
Any campaign of these types which was using similar audiences per August 1st 2023 was automatically opted into audience expansion. If you wish to undo this, you can manually opt out as described above.
Do not use for bottom of funnel traffic
This function is not oriented towards conversions, and is unlikely to find you bottom of funnel traffic. Switching on Audience expansion is likely to increase spend on new upper funnel customers which are not included in your current targeting, similarly to when you would previously use similar audiences.