Google Ads has two ways for how to collect data from their platform, the “Adwords API” and the “Google Ads API”

The Google Ads API is now out of Beta and users are recommended to use it as a first choice. The old Adwords API will no longer be updated, all new features are only available through the new Google Ads API. Since there are differences to the APIs, Funnel users can choose which API to use. There is not yet any sunset date for the Adwords API but we recommend to use the new Google Ads API when possible.

The main difference between the APIs is which Campaign types and Ad types that can be collected. Most types can be collected by both APIs but some types can only be collected by one or the other (see details below).

Currently, the Google Ads API can only be chosen with standard report, shopping report, audience report, geo report, search query or non-aggregatable metrics. Please note that not all options are available when choosing the Google Ads API, we are gradually adding support for more reports and options.

Differences between types in the APIs (as of June 2020)

Campaign Types / Advertising Channel Types

Campaign Types that can be collected from both APIs

  • Search
  • Display
  • Shopping
  • Video
  • Multi channel

Campaign Types that can be collected only by the Google Ads API

  • Hotel
  • Local
  • Smart

Campaign Types that can be collected only by the Adwords API

  • Express

Advertising Channel Subtypes

Advertising Channel Subtypes that can be collected from both APIs

  • Search mobile app
  • Display mobile app
  • Search express
  • Display express
  • Display smart campaign
  • Display gmail ad

Advertising Channel Subtypes that can be collected from both APIs but with a name change

Advertising Channel Subtypes that can be collected only by the Google Ads API

  • App campaign
  • App campaign for engagement
  • Local
  • Shopping comparison listing ads
  • Shopping smart ads
  • Unknown
  • Unspecified
  • Video action
  • Video non-skippable
  • Video Outstream

Advertising Channel Subtypes that can be collected only by the Adwords API

  • Shopping Goal Optimised

Ad Group Types

Ad Group Types that can be collected from both APIs

  • Display Standard
  • Hotel Ads
  • Search Dynamic Ads
  • Search Standard
  • Shopping Product Ads
  • Video Bumper
  • Video Non Skippable In Stream
  • Video True View In Display
  • Video True View In Stream

Ad Types Group Types that can be collected from both APIs but with a name change

Adwords API              | Google Ads API
-------------------------+---------------------
Goal-optimised shopping | Shopping Smart Ads

Ad Group Types that can be collected only by the Google Ads API

  • Promoted Hotel Ads
  • Shopping Comparison Listing Ads
  • Video Outstream
  • Video Responsive

Ad Group Types that can be collected only by the Adwords API

  • Display Engagement
  • Shopping Showcase Ads

Ad Types

Ad Types that can be collected from both APIs

  • Call Only Ad
  • Expanded Dynamic Search Ad
  • Expanded Text Ad
  • Gmail Ad
  • Image Ad
  • Responsive Display Ad
  • Responsive Search Ad
  • Text Ad

Ad Types that can be collected from both APIs but with a name change

Ad Types that can be collected only by the Google Ads API

  • Hotel ad
  • Video ad
  • Legacy responsive display ad
  • Legacy app install ad
  • App engagement ad
  • Shopping Comparison Listing ad
  • Video responsive ad

Ad Types that can be collected only by the Adwords API

  • Deprecated Ad
  • Dynamic Search Ad
  • Showcase Ad
  • Third Party Redirect Ad (Rich Media Ad)

Geographic dimensions

When downloading a Geographic report from the AdWords API with several geographic breakdowns you will get rows for all the locations registered in the selected breakdown. If a geographic breakdown is missing for one row it is marked as “--”. For example, if you have chosen a Geo Performance report with the optional Geo Dimensions “county” and “city”, if some of the rows are missing the city value but have a value for the country you will get rows where the city is marked as “--” and the other fields have values.

However, in the Google Ads API if you have chosen “country” and “city” only the rows that have values for both the city and the country will be downloaded. This means that you will lose all the rows that only have a country registered but no city. Hence you need to consider carefully what optional Geo Dimensions to choose when connecting a Geo Performance reported with the Google Ads API selected.

Google has chosen this new behaviour in the Google Ads API to better match what is seen in the Google Ads UI.

Audience report

  • Adwords
    From Adwords, all Audiences will show up in the results as long as the Impressions > 0 statement is true. If you're downloading the Audience report using the Adwords API then the result should match the Google Ads UI as long as you filter the Google Ads UI result with Impressions > 0 for that interval.
  • Google Ads API
    Unlike Adwords, Google Ads API will not return any results for Audiences that have the campaign type Discovery. Even if an Audience exists on a campaign of another type than Discovery but that campaign have 0 impressions it still won't show up.
  • Google Ads UI
    In the Google Ads UI all Audiences will be available by default assuming that no filters are enabled. This is the source of truth and can always be used to find out why you can't see an audience in Funnel the way you were expecting.

Other known quirks

  • More decimals on some metrics, for example on the “Absolute Top Impressions” metric.
  • The name format of some types are different in the APIs. For example in the Adwords API, the Ad Type “Text Ad” is written as “TEXT_AD” in the Google Ads API.
  • Discovery campaigns can’t be collected properly by any of the APIs.
  • The “Display Upload Ad” in the Google Ads API only replaces some “Template Ads” in the Adwords API.

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