The AdWords Secret to Creating Mobile-Only Campaigns

Splitting AdWords campaigns into mobile-only campaigns enables you to target people better than just lumping all devices into one campaign. And YES, it is possible to run single-device campaigns in enhanced campaigns.

Digital Devices

Why should I run single-device campaigns?

The real question you should be asking yourself is, “Why aren’t you running single-device campaigns?” Mobile devices are essential to most individual’s day-to-day lives and it shows no signs of slowing down.

Mobile and Desktop Statistics

If you run single-device PPC campaigns, you could optimize campaign settings, ad extensions, and bids by the device. Let’s take campaign settings for example. You will probably find certain devices are more effective with different ad schedules and location targeting. Plus, you can allocate a bigger budget to the better performing device campaign.

Ultimately, I would let device performance data determine if you should create single-device campaigns.

5 Steps to Create Single-Device Campaigns

Let’s get crackin’. Follow these instructions to create device specific campaigns.

Step 1

Duplicate the campaign(s) you want to be device specific. Rename one as desktop/tablet (DT) and the other as mobile. This is the format I use:

Network | Theme | DT

Network | Theme | Mobile

Step 2

Decrease the desktop/tablet campaign’s mobile bid adjustment by 100%. This will prevent the campaign from showing on mobile altogether.

PPC Mobile Bid Decrease

Step 3

Increase the mobile campaign’s mobile bid adjustment by 300%. This makes it so the campaign will run on mobile devices. Keep in mind, there is no way to completely exclude mobile ads from displaying on desktop and tablets.

PPC Mobile Bid IncreaseStep 4

Here is where it gets slightly tricky. Since the mobile campaign’s mobile bid adjustment is increased by 300%, this means the mobile campaign max CPCs are four times higher than the desktop/tablet campaign max CPCs.

To return mobile max CPCs back to a reasonable level, you need to lower the mobile campaign’s max CPCs by 75%. This lowers the bids by four times.

Step 5

Lastly, make sure the right device targeted ads are running in each campaign. Oh, and don’t forget to optimize ad extensions by device campaign.


Running mobile-only campaigns are not always guaranteed to work. In some cases, you might find your mobile ads pop up on desktop and tablets. This might be due to higher quality scores or higher bids in the mobile campaign.

However, single-device campaigns are worth it if the data shows a particular device performs better than the other. Besides, you can always make bid adjustments down the road if you find mobile ads popping up on desktop and tablets.

In the end, don’t wait on Google and Bing to bring back single-device targeting. Google killed it with enhanced campaigns in 2013 and Bing Ads ended the ability in 2014 with Unified Device Targeting. It’s up to us to take charge and implement workarounds to get the results we need.

Let’s raise our glasses to single-device campaigns.

Single-Device Campaigns Meme

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