[SMK] Social Media Knowledge


Google Ads’ Mega Visual Upgrade

Google's Richer, Personalised Creatives Across Search, Shopping & Display 

In 2018, to mark Google’s 20th birthday, Ben Gomes, former Senior VP, Search, News and Assistant, used the occasion to shine a light on the next chapter of Search.

Gomes claimed that the future would be driven by three fundamental shifts in how Google thinks about Search:

  1. The shift from answers to journeys.
  2. The shift from queries to providing a queryless way to get to information
  3. And the shift from text to a more visual way of finding information

The past two years have seen Google holding true to these redefining principles as it shifts its product roadmap to future-proof its business against Amazon and Facebook.

With the third of these principles in mind, Google has recently released a significant upgrade delivering a more visually compelling ad offering across Search, Shopping and Display campaigns.

Google’s latest release builds upon the recent launch of social media-like Discovery ads.

Darshan Kantak, Google Vice President, Ads Product Management

“Recently, we shared how Discovery ads can help you visually inspire shoppers scrolling their feeds on YouTube, Discover, and Gmail as well as how you can make your videos shoppable on YouTube. Today, we’re bringing the same rich product experience to Search, Shopping, and Display ads.”

In other words, the gradual Facebook-ification of Google Ads continues unbounded.

Rocking New Image Ad Extensions

For Search ads, Google has announced an image extensions beta program.

Now, you can easily add high-quality, rich assets, so searchers can quickly see products to consider and act faster. With image extensions, you can upload relevant images or automatically curate them from your website with machine learning.

For the unfamiliar, Google ad extensions are essentially snippets of additional information that you can add to your campaigns to make them more effective.

There is a wide range of existing ad extensions, with each offering distinct benefits by providing information or clickable CTAs that can improve the performance of your ad campaigns.

Importantly, they’re free to use, easy to set up and dramatically increase your onscreen real estate. Helping to drive ad click-throughs and conversions.

According to Google, Hugo Boss used the new image extensions with responsive search ads and saw a 2.5x improvement in ROI and 5% bump in click-through rates.

Snazzier Shopping & Display Ads

Meanwhile, for retailers, with Smart Shopping campaigns (US only at launch), you can now highlight features like free and fast shipping (see image above), which has shown to increase average conversion rates by 9%.

Later this year, Google claims you’ll also be able to better differentiate with a dynamically curated carousel of your most relevant products in a new immersive, browsable shopping experience plus include video content in your Display ads.

Building on the changes noted above, and with a passing nod to the new shoppable video campaigns which just launched on YouTube, Google has announced an upgrade for responsive display ads.

Darshan Kantak, Google Vice President, Ads Product Management

“Starting today, you have new creative layouts, automatically generated video ads, and updated dynamic ads, which can now display your business name alongside your logo, emphasise your latest promotions, and even spotlight a single product.”

The new creative layouts for responsive display ads are a welcome new addition since many brands refuse to consider them due to the suspect look and feel, despite the fact, they do often work quite well.

Very Smart, Smart Ad Bidding

And finally, aside from creative ad developments, Google has released what, on the surface anyway, appears to be a pretty nifty new targeting feature for retailers.

Darshan Kantak, Google Vice President, Ads Product Management

“Smart Bidding evaluates billions of combinations of relevant contextual signals present during the auction like time of day, device type, or operating system. This means you’ll reach the right customers at the right time to drive more online sales, even when consumer demand fluctuates across Google, in real-time.”

Recently Google has launched several new tools like portfolio bid strategies and bid strategy reports to get more performance out of every dollar. Building on that, you’ll now be able to optimise your Smart Shopping campaign to grow online sales specifically from new customers.

With Smart Shopping campaigns, retailers will be able to toggle between optimising ad delivery to appear for new and/or existing customers.

Google’s not lying about the smart bit, is it?

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