Google Expands Customer Match Lists to Automation

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Smart bidding and optimized targeting will now use Customer Match lists

Google recently notified advertisers that Customer Match lists will now be used more extensively within the Google Ads platform.

Customer match marketing is the practice of setting up ad audiences by using customer data. By implementing this strategy, brands can reach their goals, ranging from brand awareness, conversions, or sales.

Customer Match is also a Google Ads product that provides an audience targeting tool that can be leveraged on the Google Search Network and through Google Display Network ads. Through Google’s Customer Match tool, advertisers are able to leverage both online and offline customer data to identify and reach new potential customers that are similar to the existing audience list or to re-engage an existing customer list.

Within Google Ads, the Customer Match lists will soon be able to be used within a Google Ad account to boost the effectiveness of Google’s Smart Bidding and Optimized Targeting features.

This represents a change in how Customer Match lists are used currently. Until now, advertisers were required to add the lists to a specific campaign manually.

Customer Match lists will not be added to campaigns that are set up with manual bidding strategies. However, advertisers can still manually use bid modifiers to change their bids.

How to opt out of Google automatically using customer lists in your account

It is possible for advertisers to opt out of the new feature, which will impact your overall ad account. Suppose you do not want Customer Match lists to be automatically added to setups involving Smart Bidding or Optimized Targeting. In that case, you can still opt out and this will be functional at the ad account level. In order to opt out, you can go to your ad account settings, then select Customer Match and deselect the box that applies to using all Customer Match lists in Smart Bidding or Optimized Targeting.

Here are the steps to opt-out of automatically using available customer lists in your account:

  • Select the relevant customer ID for the individual ad account you would like to opt out of.
  • You will then see the page menu appear on the left, then select Settings, and then Account Settings.
  • Within the “Customer Match” area, deselect the “Use all Customer Match lists in Smart Bidding or Optimized Targeting” checkbox.

It is also possible to remove lists that you would prefer to exclude from this targeting function.

It should be noted that Google Ads Managers are not able to opt out of all campaigns, as it is required to be initiated at the individual ad account level.


Improved indicators that optimize the automation process represent a positive change. 

The overall benefit of automation in relation to advertising is to help brands use resources wisely and to launch and manage campaigns effectively and efficiently. In order to deliver successful marketing campaigns, it is essential to make use of highly targeted marketing, which means serving the right message to the right prospect at the right time.

The added feature on Google Ads of being able to curate the lists that your brand would like to use should represent an opportunity for advertisers. However, care should be taken to ensure it works for your campaigns. As it is necessary to opt out, should you wish, it is a good idea to monitor and maintain each of your ad accounts so that the relevant Customer Match lists are being used.

If you have any questions about Google Ads or how to use automation to optimize your results, please feel free to contact our expert team at for more information.

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