The shift to mobile is no longer a change on the horizon. It’s here.
With this philosophy in mind, Google Inc. announced significant changes to AdWords, the company’s advertising programme and its cash cow. The updates were announced in a blog post by Sridhar Ramaswamy, senior vice-president, Ads and Commerce.
Ramaswamy explained that every year, there are trillions of searches on Google, over half of those searches happen on mobile and the company is seeing more than half of all web traffic now coming from smartphones and tablets. “When we asked people to describe the role smartphones play in their lives, they used phrases like ‘attached to my hip’, ‘butler’ and ‘lifeline.’ Smartphones have become the companion that people turn to in I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-do and I want-to-buy moments throughout the day. To help marketers succeed in this mobile-first world, we have redesigned AdWords -- from the ground-up -- and re-thought everything from creatives and bidding, to workflow and measurement,” elaborated Ramaswamy.
Here are the main updates explained:
What do text ads look like in the mobile-first world?
Earlier this year, the company had removed right-hand side ads on desktop to improve the search experience and make it more consistent across devices. Now with the current updates, AdWords will have expanded text ads that will provide advertisers with more ad space to showcase more information about their products and services. The key changes include:
Two 30-character headlines instead of the current 25-character headline
One 80-character line of description line instead of the current two 35-character lines.
Display URLs will automatically pull the landing page domain, but advertisers will be able to customize the URL path—to provide description about the landing page content. This is a big change from the current system where the display URL had to be manually entered and any mismatch between the display and destination URL could cause the ad to be disapproved.
How do display ads look in a mobile-first world?
Google has more than two million publisher sites and apps on the Google Display Network (GDN) so in a mobile-first world, advertisers can engage consumers with responsive ads that match the look and feel of the content they’re browsing. All advertisers will now need to do is provide headlines, a description, an image, and a URL—and Google will automatically design these responsive ads.
Google also announced that it is expanding the potential reach of GDN remarketing campaigns “by giving you access to cross-exchange inventory, which includes more websites and apps around the world.”
What does bidding look like in a mobile-first world?
Google will also modify its ad auction process to allow advertisers to bid different amounts for each platform within a single ad campaign. This means advertisers can offer different amounts to run their ads on mobile, desktop, or tablets, depending on their needs and audience. Additionally, advertisers will have a wider range to adjust bids, up to +900%.
Mobile bridging digital and physical worlds for marketers
To help advertisers reach consumers searching for physical business locations, Google is now introducing new local search ads across Google.com and Google Maps. Advertisers using location extensions will be able to prominently showcase their business locations when consumers search for things like “shoe store” or “car repair near me.” The company is also experimenting with a variety of ad formats on Maps that will make it easier for users to find businesses as they navigate the world around them. For example, Maps users may start to see promoted pins for nearby coffee shops, gas stations or lunch spots along their driving route.
Google introduced store visits tracking and measurement in AdWords in December, 2014. Since then, advertisers have measured over 1 billion store visits globally.
AdWords store visits measurement is now available to 1,000 advertisers in 11 countries, including automotive dealers, Google announced on Tuesday.
In one case study, Nissan UK discovered that 6% of mobile ad clicks resulted in a trip to a dealership, delivering an estimated 25x return on investment.
You can see the full range of ads and analytics innovations announced here .