2011 AdWords API Workshop

Improved control
In previous versions when you made a “get” request to the API (non-code speak: just means you request certain info from AdWords) it returned all information about that particular object.  For example, if you asked for all ad groups within a campaign then the API would respond with all ad groups and every option/setting within that ad group.  This worked great however it causes some excessive server usage when all you may need, for examples, are the ad groups’ names and if they are paused or not.  The new API addresses this and gives you more control to limit the information you need.  However, you can still retrieve all the information if you need to.  This has a double benefit both for users of the API as well as Google.  Google can now handle many more requests as it’s servers aren’t being used returning unnecessary information.  From the API user standpoint, we receive only the information we really need which increases the speed at which our program can execute since it doesn’t have to read all the “extra stuff”.

Standardized filtering
Now when you make requests to the API, you can use a standard selector to filter and retrieve only certain campaigns, ad groups, etc.  You can filter on almost every field so it brings us even closer to having the entire feature set that the AdWords interface has.  Furthermore you can sort and paginate as needed.

More reports
Geo Performance, Demographic Performance, Ad Extensions Performance,  Destination URL and Creative Conversion are the main report additions from the previous API version.  The available reports list is growing quickly.  This will be a large focus for us going forward as this allows anyone to receive reports in a variety of formats quickly and with little to no user interaction since the report can be customized for the user’s need.

Support for My Client Center reports
You can now use the ReportDefinitionService to access the entire My Client Center whereas previously you could only access each client individually.  This will speed up and reduce a lot of API calls.

Overall it was a great trip.  Got to meet some new folks (both Google and non-Google), visited Google New York (which was cool to see) and learned a lot from the engineers themselves.  Now I’d better hit the programming hard, need to put all the cool new features to work.  On that note, get ready Eric Koleda and the rest of the API team as I’ll be hitting you up with many, many questions in the AdWords API forum (big thanks for all the work you all do in there and outside).  Remember to update your code as most of the previous API versions and services are sunsetting (turning off access) in August 2011.

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By Chris Wilson

Chris joined Search Mojo in April 2010 as the Director of Technology. Chris primarily develops and maintains internal applications that improve SEO and PPC performance and reporting for clients. Additionally he supports client campaigns by assisting with development efforts needed for SEO and PPC campaigns. Chris holds an MBA and an undergraduate degree in Integrated Science and Technology with a concentration in Information and Knowledge Management from James Madison University.

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