Table of Contents

Cross-network (Google Ads)

What is cross-network?

Cross-network in Google Ads refers to the feature that allows marketers to extend their reach beyond the Google network, including partner websites and apps, by displaying their ads on the Google Display Network (GDN).

How does it work?

When you opt for cross-network advertising, your ads can appear on relevant websites and apps within the Google Display Network. Google uses a combination of contextual targeting, audience targeting, and placement targeting to determine the most suitable places to display the ads.


Cross-network in Google Ads is an advertising feature that enables you to broaden your audience reach by displaying your ads on websites and apps that form part of the Google Display Network.

The network comprises millions of websites, news pages, blogs, and apps partnering with Google to display ads.

By utilizing cross-network advertising, you can tap into this extensive matrix to reach potential customers across various online platforms.

Key Takeaways

  • If you're using cross-network advertising, then your focus won't only be Google but will also work across other main search and social networks to expand your reach. 
  • Cross-network advertising in Google Ads expands your reach beyond the search results page (SERP).
  • Google's targeting algorithms help match ads with relevant websites and apps to maximize their effectiveness.

How can I measure the performance of my cross-network advertising campaigns?

To measure the performance of your cross-network advertising campaigns, you can use various metrics and tools available in Google Ads.

Here are some key performance indicators (KPIs) and tools to consider:

  • Impressions: This metric indicates the number of times your ads appeared on websites or apps within the Google Display Network.
  • Clicks: The number of clicks your ads receive is a crucial metric that shows user engagement and the effectiveness of your ad placements.
  • Click-through Rate (CTR): CTR provides insights into how often users click on your ads relative to the number of times they are displayed.
  • Conversion Tracking: Implementing conversion tracking allows you to measure the number of conversions (e.g., purchases, form submissions) gained from your ads. 
  • View-through Conversions: View-through conversions refer to conversions that occur after a user sees your display ad but doesn't click on it directly. This metric helps evaluate the influence of display impressions on driving conversions.
  • Google Analytics: Integrating Google Ads with Google Analytics provides more advanced insights into user behavior on your website. You can track user journeys, engagement metrics, and conversion paths to understand the overall impact of your cross-network campaigns.

By regularly analyzing these metrics and tracking the performance of your campaigns, you can make informed decisions and optimize your advertising strategies to improve results.


Follow the guidelines below to get the most out of the cross-network feature.

  • Use appropriate and specific targeting options to ensure your ads reach the right audience.
  • Monitor and analyze performance metrics like click-through and conversion rates to optimize your campaign.
  • Test different ad formats and creatives to find what resonates best with your target audience.
  • Continuously refine your targeting settings based on the performance data to improve ad placements.
  • Leverage remarketing campaigns to reconnect with users who have previously shown interest in your products.


Suppose you're an ecommerce retailer selling athletic shoes.

By utilizing cross-network advertising, your ads can appear not only on Google search results when someone searches for “athletic shoes.” It can also appear on sports-related websites, fitness blogs, or mobile apps that are part of the Google Display Network.

It enables you to reach a broader audience interested in sports and fitness, potentially increasing your brand exposure and driving more relevant traffic to your website.

Additional considerations

  • It's essential to regularly review the performance of your cross-network campaigns and adjust your targeting and bidding strategies accordingly.
  • Keep an eye on your campaign's budget to ensure it aligns with your goals and doesn't exhaust your resources.
  • Ad placements on the Google Display Network may vary, so monitoring and excluding irrelevant or underperforming websites is crucial.


How do I enable cross-network advertising in Google Ads?

Cross-network advertising is automatically enabled when you create a campaign in Google Ads. By default, your ads can appear on the Google Display Network.

Can I control where my ads appear within the Google Display Network?

While you cannot control individual websites/apps, you can use placement targeting to specify certain categories where you want your ads to appear.

Can I control the budget for my cross-network advertising campaigns?

You have control over the budget for your cross-network advertising campaigns. In Google Ads, you can set a daily or total budget for a specific period.

Can I exclude certain websites or apps from showing my ads within the Google Display Network?

In Google Ads, you can review the placement report to identify underperforming or irrelevant websites and exclude them from your targeting. You can refine your ad placements and focus on websites and apps that generate better results.

Are there any additional costs associated with cross-network advertising?

Cross-network advertising costs are generally incurred based on your chosen bidding strategy. However, additional charges may arise if you use premium targeting options, such as remarketing lists for search ads (RLSA) or specific placement targeting on high-traffic websites.

Related Terms


What is remarketing? Remarketing, also called retargeting, is a digital marketing approach that engages audiences who previously interacted with a brand to encourage specific actions.

Ad Variations

What are ad variations? Ad variations are different versions of your ads that you create to test and optimize your campaigns, which can help you

Ad Scripts

What are ad scripts? Ad scripts are snippets of code written in JavaScript that allow you to automate and customize various aspects of your Google

Activity rate by channel

What is ‘Activity rate by channel’? Activity rate by channel measures how often users engage with your ads across different advertising channels. This metric considers actions


What is Abandonment-rate? Abondment-rate is the percentage of users who click on a Google Ads ad but then leave the landing page without completing the

Brand-Focused Shopping Campaign

What are Brand-Focused Shopping Campaigns? Brand-Focused Shopping Campaigns are a type of Google Shopping campaign that targets users who are searching for your brand or

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