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The Google Ads API provides the ability to run experimental campaigns as a way to A/B test ideas for new changes to your campaign structure, bidding, etc. You specify the changes you want to make on a special draft campaign, and then apply those drafted changes to an experiment running alongside your base campaign, making it easy to compare performance.

The general workflow for using campaign drafts and campaign experiments is:

  1. Create a CampaignDraft from an existing base campaign. The draft acts as a mirror of the existing campaign and cannot serve ads.
  2. Modify the draft campaign in some way that you think might be beneficial to performance. This does not serve ads and does not affect the base campaign.
    • Optional: Promote the draft campaign to the base campaign, applying all the changes made to the base campaign. In this way you use drafts without experiments to stage changes until you are ready to apply them all at once.
  3. Create a CampaignExperiment from your draft. This will cause a new experiment campaign to be copied from the base campaign with the changes from the draft enacted. The created experiment campaign will split traffic with the base campaign and serve ads.
  4. Compare the metrics from the experiment campaign to determine whether the changes were an improvement.
  5. Either promote, graduate, modify, or delete the experiment campaign. More details on these options in the campaign experiments section of this guide.

These steps represent the most common workflow, but these services are flexible and can be used in other ways. For example, you can use a draft to stage changes to a base campaign, then integrate the changes back into the base campaign without ever using an experiment. Also, depending on the results of the experiment, you may choose to promote the experiment to integrate the changes back into the base campaign or graduate the experiment into its own independent campaign.

This flowchart shows the workflows you could employ using campaign drafts and experiments: