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Build Custom Audiences In Google to Better Reach Your Ideal Audience

Tuesday, October 18th, 2022
Written by Content Team

What are custom audiences?

Audience targeting can be an effective means of directing your Google campaigns and getting the most out of their performance. Audiences in Google can be based on a number of different elements including interests, habits online, demographics and your own data.

Google puts together a large array of these segments that can be added for either targeting or observation to your campaigns. Sometimes these segments fall short or don’t completely suit your needs, that’s when custom audiences that you build yourself can be used to fill in the gap. Previously there were custom affinity and custom intent segments but google has now rolled that into the new custom segments.

In this post we will go through the options you can input for targeting when creating a custom segment.

Targeting based on Interests or Behaviours

The first option you will be able to choose when building a segment is based on interests. Choose between either targeting based on their interests and purchase intentions or based on the terms they search for on google properties.  Then enter in the box below keywords and phrases you wish to target. It is important here that you understand your audience, their online activity and your product. As you customise your audience, Google will show an estimation of their expected size.

People who browse types of websites or apps

After completing the first section, you will encounter 2 more options to build up your audience. First is those that browse certain websites. Here google asks you to provide URLs that your target audience would visit. This is not a means of targeting placements instead it harnesses the audience signals from those sites to find new users.

This option can be effectively harnessed to target your competitors by entering the URLs of your competitors. You can actually use all options when building your custom audiences to strategically target your competitors’ customers however the URL targeting can be especially effective because you are tapping into their own sites’ audience signals

People who use types of apps

You will then be given the chance to target based on what apps people use. Look for the apps that your ideal customer would be using, and the best performing apps related to your product. Again, remember this is not placement targeting.  Rather than just targeting apps directly related to the purchase of your product, consider looking at apps that users would use before making that purchase or are otherwise related.


Custom Audience provide the opportunity to build your ideal audience in Google and direct your campaigns beyond keywords. This can increase page views, reduce bounce rate, help you to reach relevant audiences and reduce wasted ad spend. Leverage your expert knowledge of your business and customers for the best result and consider targeting competitors for additional gains. Used properly custom audiences can be a powerful tool.