AdWords Scripts: how to find landing page errors

If you are managing a large-scale AdWords account this holiday season, it’s important that you stay on top of it. 

Aside from ad copy updates to promote seasonal offers, and bid adjustments to stay competitive, it’s also important that you have a simple way to check URLs in bulk to ensure everything is working properly. 

This is especially important during Q4, when traffic to ecommerce sites grows significantly. You need to make sure everything is functioning as it should and no error responses are being returned.

To get prepared, my team and I decided to institute an AdWords Script for automated URL checks across all of our AdWords accounts. These can be set at the MCC level if you are an agency or at the account-level if you are a singular advertiser. 

Depending on the size of your account, you can set the script to run hourly or daily. It is attached to a Google Spreadsheet that you can access at any time to see which of your URLs are in good condition, are redirecting or going to 404 pages. As a bonus, you can set up emails once daily to notify you of any errors.

For full transparency, this is a Google AdWords Script that we found in Google Developer tools, called the Link Checker.

  • The first step to create an account-level AdWords Script to check your URLs is to make a copy of the Link Checker Google Spreadsheet. You can do this by clicking the link checker and then navigating to File>Make a Copy

link-checker-dashboard

 

  • After you’ve made a copy, be sure to name the file accordingly and put your CID on the Dashboard and Reporting tabs in the given field. Click the following for the MCC version.
  • Once you create the spreadsheet, configure it appropriately. You can choose to have the script run on Keyword-level or Ad-level URLs and can set your email preference and email address all within the spreadsheet.
  • After you’ve filled out the spreadsheet, login to your AdWords account and navigate to the Bulk Operations tab on the left hand side, under the Campaigns tab. Then click Scripts>+Script to add in your script.
  • In the field called var SPREADSHEET_URL = ‘YOUR_SPREADSHEET_URL’ remove YOUR_SPREADSHEET_URL and enter your own Google Spreadsheet URL.
  • In the next variable called var STATUSES_TO_CHECK = [‘ENABLED’, ‘PAUSED’] remove , ‘PAUSED’ if you only want the spreadsheet to check active keywords and/or ads. Since our accounts are so large and we have many seasonal landing pages, we only chose to check active links in our accounts.

Now, here’s some personal advice. When I’ve previewed the script, it hasn’t always worked as planned, so instead, I suggest you just click Run Script Now. If you select this and then navigate over to your Reporting tab of your Google Spreadsheet, you should start to see links being checked. 

Normally, I would always recommend a preview, but this script is only seeking to look at the links, not pause them or take further action. The only change made by the script to your Adwords account is that each piece of data (keyword and/or ad) will be labeled with a link_checked label, so that the script can keep track of what has already been checked for the day.

  • If your spreadsheet is filling in correctly, it’s time to schedule the script.

Keep in mind that the script will only check the same URL once on a given day. A single execution of the script will review 800 URLS, as there is a 20,000 daily quota. 

If you have less than 800 URLs, run the script daily. If you have more, schedule the script to run hourly, but keep in mind that you will only receive one email per day based on the previous day’s URL check. 

  • Once you’ve run the script, click Save in the top left corner and then Close in the bottom right corner.
  • After you’ve closed the script, you will be taken back to the Scripts page. Next to the Script you’ve named, you’ll see Actions, and underneath “Create Schedule”. Click on this to set up scheduling for your script.

If you have any questions about how to set up or run the script, comment below. Or if you’ve used any great scripts feel free to share them!

Related reading

fr4
screen-shot-2016-10-27-at-21-52-11
q3-2016-snapshot-e1477413505881
Bing: the most searched Halloween costumes
Simple Share Buttons