Not Your Father’s AdWords: The New Google Ad Formats
Moderator Matt Van Wagner, president of Find Me Faster, introduces the panel who will focus on new ad formats in search.
Nicholas of Google is going to start us off strong. Nicholas’ team is in charge of details of text ads in search results pages. Over the years Google’s search ads haven’t changed that much. Meanwhile Google’s organic results have exploded with variety and content. Universal search is being responded to well because they serve the right content at the right time. So they’re taking that same philosophy and extending it to ads.
They started by asking what the user is trying to do. Advertisers are also going to be helped when the user knows as much as possible because it will improve the chances of the click going somewhere.
Nicholas will be doing demos of new platforms:
Ad extensions: appending additional info to AdWords ads. Same pricing model as traditional PPC.
New ad model: fundamental changes to the format, pricing model, and targeting model
- Ad Sitelinks
- Product ads
- Local ads
- Comparison ads
Sitelinks: If the searcher knows the right site, search can help by directing the searcher to the right page. Sitelinks bring users to a specific page on a site. They’re typically seeing 30-40 percent increase in click-through rates with solid conversion rates as well when advertisers adopt Sitelinks.
Product advertising: By expanding a plus box, individual products can be listed in an ad, including images, product name and price. It’s a little like a virtual storefront and searchers will have an idea of the offerings a site has. This is implemented through a Google Merchant account. It’s an ad extension. From a user’s perspective, ad units are grouped based on products, making the comparison experience much easier.
Local ads: There are two kinds of businesses that are working this space, chains and not chains. A business’s name, address, phone number, directions and a map are all served to a searcher. For chains, when an ad is displayed, it will include a map with all the locations around the area. By dragging around the map, the area seen will update with locations. This feature launched about a week ago.
Comparison ads: For some searches, an ad will come up with a button to compare. Here’s an example:
Clicking on “compare rates” brings the user to a page where they can add filters to their search and contact different advertisers.
They want to align what the advertisers and users want with an appropriate pricing model. They expect to be experimenting a lot in 2010.
Matt asks the audience who is from an agency and who is doing it for their own business. It’s about half and half. After hearing from Nicholas about what advertisers can do, the rest of the presentations will be on what PPC advertisers should do.
David is next. He says that after his presentation, you should also check out http://om.ly/dtXc and clixmarketing.com… for more info. He’s going to look at Sitelinks, product extensions and product listings in this presentation. Sitelinks, he says, is like displaying more than one ad, with more opportunities to add persuasive language. They saw an average uplift of 60 percent click-through rates during the holidays.
- Up to four links below ad
- Ads must meet “certain quality criteria” (i.e., position #1)
- Appears automatically for qualified campaigns
- Google claims “30% average increase in click-through rate”
When it comes to click-through rates and Quality Score and Sitelinks, keep doing what you’re doing. Exceptional click-through rates and Quality Score is needed. You’ll know you’re eligible if the Sitelinks option shows up in your campaign settings, under ad extensions.
- Not in beta any longer
- Must submit product feed via Google Merchant Center (formerly Google Base)
- Google chooses which products are shown
An advertiser doesn’t pay for clicks, just for conversions.
Tracking New Ad Formats
For product extensions you’ll receive more data than you’ll ever need. Several new data points to help you optimize. For Sitelinks, he doesn’t know of any intrinsic reporting.
Next up is Cory, who will be speaking about retail-focused ad formats. Getting the consumer closer to the conversion is what everyone wants. 40 percent of in-store purchases start online. 25 percent of consumers that use Google for their product search
What should I know about these new product ad types? Yes, they’re easy to launch, but it can create a bit of a mess.
1 Feed & 3 Ad Networks
Google Merchant Center feeds to:
Google Affiliate Network > Product Listing Ads (CPA)
Google AdWords > Product Extensions (CPC)
Google Product Search > Product Search One Box (Free)
- Paid search marketing team
- Affiliate marketing team
- Shopping feed marketer
- Focus on where the talent is. Each ad type needs to be implemented correctly across networks.
Product listing ads: Uses GAN to track performance. Supports unique product URLs / tracking variables
Product extensions: Cost is tracked to AdWords. Sales are tracked to GPS.
So is it worth doing? Yes, and here’s why. Let’s focus on Product Listing Ads (PLA)
Will PLA affect my other ads on Google? From what they’re seeing, there’s been no effect.
- 30-50 percent year over year increase in revenue from Google Product Search.
- Product Listing Ads produced additional growth over that
- With PLA you can dominate a SERP
- PLA: set category level commissions in GAN to compete effectively and control costs
- Product extensions: adding keywords increases CTR by 1.7 times
- GPS OneBox: 80 percent of traffic from GPS is generated from the SERP OneBox.
Nicholas: Sitelinks is pretty well adopted, but the other ad options are in early days, so there’s a lot of opportunity for advertisers now. Advertisers can reach out to their customer service reps if they want to get in on the early beta.
To learn more about sitelinks and how to win more clicks, read What Are Sitelinks? Best Practices for Google Sitelinks.