Google AdWords is now Google Ads: What does it mean?

Today it was announced that Google AdWords, the backbone of most people’s paid search programmes, is being renamed/rebranded to Google Ads. It’s a nice logo redesign and is certainly more modern, but more importantly, does this have any inherent importance to you as an advertiser? We think it does.

Google Ads Animation transforming from Google Adwords

Google Ads: Change of Name & Change of Position

Flash all the way back to the Autumn of 2000 and Google AdWords was first launched. I was running my first online business then and we used AdWords to promote late ski chalet availability through search ads. I also remember thinking, wow I sometimes have to pay more than 10 pence per click, this could get expensive. I didn’t imagine that Cost per Clicks (CPC) in 2018 could exceed £100 for some terms. We would advertise on terms like ‘chalet holiday Chamonix’ and ‘last minute ski holiday’ – and no we never did grow and develop to be like Lastminute.com!

But the crucial thing was that AdWords was invented to serve ads based on the words that people searched for. This has been the case for many of the 18 years since its launch, but actually Google AdWords is so much more than advertising on words. Google Ads now reflects this reality.

Google Ads: A World of Advertising Options

If you look at the reality of what AdWords became over the last 18 years, it now allows you to serve not just to searchers on Google and other affiliated search sites, but to the 1 billion visitors to YouTube each month and more than 2 million visitors to other websites. So the nature of how you advertise and engage with your potential customers has changed. You can now advertise on the following:

  • In-market audiences – people who are looking to buy a certain type of product/service
  • Remarketing – people who have been to your website before
  • Similar to audiences – people who are like those people who have been to your website before
  • Affinity audiences – people that like certain things
  • Custom affinity audiences – these can be set up to include different things from interests to people who visit your competitor websites
  • Subscribers, customers, prospects – from people that subscribe to your YouTube channel to those that buy from you can be targetted
  • People by their attributes – from geography to household income, including age, sex and even if they have children

So it is clearly not simply about words anymore and this is why this rebrand of AdWords to Google Ads is probably long overdue.

What is the future of Google Ads? The Power of AI?

Well, there are more announcements coming on the 10th July and if you haven’t got an invite to Google’s conference in San Jose, then you can come to the Innovation Visual office where we will be live streaming it followed by our own analysis on some non-Google innovations that a marketeer should be aware of in our opinion. Register on this page. We do however know some of what the future can offer.

Google Ads Smart Campaigns

Smart campaigns are going to become the default mode for advertisers. This means that you will be able to set what you want your goal to be, from online purchases to phone calls and then the clever Google AI will go away and make it happen. While this looks appealing, it must be remembered that the power of any technological tool is in how you apply it. This will be designed to be easy, but there is still a very important role in defining how and where these tools are used and how exactly you set them up to execute. Remember Google is there to make money and you need to make sure yours is spent wisely.

Beyond Smart Ads – Voice Advertising?

Google has invested a lot in its Google Home and Google Assistant programmes and isn’t really monetising these yet. So we would expect to see advertising becoming a possibility for voice search in future. It’s not there yet, and we don’t know of any plans, but it seems an obvious next step.

Google Marketing Platform – for the Advertisers

If you are a media company and you are looking to monetise your own traffic, then the change to Google Ads is part of what you will see with the Google Marketing Platform, which is bringing together existing brands of Double Click, and Google Analytics 360 which is the analytics tool for media sites.

We expect more updates to be forthcoming on the 10th July, so why not join us at our event? Places are limited as we are providing food, drink and a place to watch the World Cup Semi Final, so please sign up sooner rather than later. Please register on this page.

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