May 30, 2016

Google AdWords Changes for a Mobile-First World

The focus of the Google Performance Summit on May 25th was advertising in a mobile-first world. Our Smartphones are the first thing we pick up in the morning and the last thing we put down at night. They are at our sides throughout the day, and often found tucked under pillows or within arm’s reach when we go to bed. More than ever before, consumers are connected and marketers have great opportunities to be relevant to their customers and engage with them at the right time with the right message.

On May 24th, the team at Top Draw logged on to the livestream to learn about innovations that are happening across several Google products including AdWords and Google Analytics. The platforms have been completely redesigned and rebuilt, allowing marketers to keep pace with the constantly changing needs of consumers and how they use mobile technology. The changes announced revolved around advertising in a “mobile-first world”.

During the keynote speech, announcements were made regarding the Google Analytics interface update and some cool new features in Google Maps. This article will focus on the changes in AdWords because there are plenty. If you’re interested in knowing all the gritty details a great roundup of articles can be found on search engine land, or you can watch the keynote from the Google Performance Summit.

Expanded Text Ads

AdWords is seeing its “biggest changes to … text ads since AdWords launched fifteen years ago.” Almost 50% more text volume will be allowed in text ads, which means that advertisers will have more real estate to highlight products and services.  According to early testing performed by Google, ads with longer headlines are more useful to mobile users – they have access to more information before they tap the ad and some advertisers saw increases in clickthrough rates of up to 20 percent, compared to current text ads.

Similar Audiences for Search

Currently on the Google Display Network, marketers can use RLSAs (Remarketing Lists for Search Ads) to reach consumers who have visited their site but did not convert. Remarketing has proven to be an effective tactic and now Similar Audiences for Search will allow advertisers to reach searchers who have similar interests as those who have previously visited their site. These similar audiences are valuable because they have shown intent – maybe they searched for the same term, but didn’t visit your site. Similar audiences for search allows you to precisely target these users.

Demographics for Search Ads

The Google Display Network has offered demographic targeting for display ads for some time now; advertisers will now have the ability to also do so for search ads which will mean more segmented campaigns and  advertisements that can target more precise audiences.

Individual Bid Adjustments for Each Device Type

Marketers will be able to optimize bids at the device level – mobile, desktop and tablet, which will provide more “control and flexibility when it comes to optimizing bids”. With the the rise of mobile usage, it only makes sense that desktop and tablet be separated, and keywords can be tied to the device on which they offer the most value. Bids will also have the ability to be adjusted up to +900%, which offers even greater control to the marketer.

AdWords Interface Overhaul

Since it’s inception, AdWords has grown into a beast of an interface that a novice user can easily get lost in. The interface has been revamped with 3 key design principles in mind:

  • Surface insight you care about and visualize them so it’s easy to take action. Overview page are the new home page of your account – where you unearth deeper insights about your account – what’s performing well or requires attention? The overview page will also allow marketers to quickly see top performing campaigns and which devices are driving conversions.
  • Focus more on business, less on the product. Campaign creation flow will allow advertisers to enter marketing objectives, and Google will recommend the features to use to achieve the objectives. Every feature will still be available and campaigns will run the same – no upgrading/migration of any kind is required
  • Tools to help marketers do more with less time. The most important features will be front and center to allow for at-a-glance information that is important for making decisions around optimization. In addition, devices, locations, keywords and ad scheduling will be reachable from a single click from anywhere in the account

When Will Google Changes Come to Canada

So when can we expect to see these changes in Canada? Unfortunately Canada is not included in the initial roll-out, the U.S will initially see changes throughout 2016 and even into 2017. Advertisers will be invited to try the new interface and provide feedback before updates are distributed internationally. We’ve seen changes in Canada take as long as 2 years after a big announcement.
What do you think about all the changes? Tweet us and let us know!

Know What’s Next
from Top Draw