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What is Google Display Ads & How to Use It to Grow your Business in 2021

As long as there have been businesses, advertising has existed.

Of course, back in the day, advertising took on simpler forms – these included leaflets, signage, word of mouth and so on.

With the invention of mass media channels like television and radio, advertising took on different dimensions, with content that was more creative and entertaining.

The core purpose of advertising has not changed throughout the ages. Its main aim is always to raise awareness about a business’ products and services.

However, with media platforms like television and radio, advertisers found that viewers and listeners tended to skip advertisements, especially when recording their favorite shows using VCR technology. This created an issue that marketers in general needed to figure out.

With the introduction of the internet, advertising has taken on yet another dimension.

This time, the concept of social media advertising and digital advertising was created.

Digital advertising is a lot more flexible and dynamic compared to the rigid requirements of traditional advertising. In this article, we’re going to look at one type of digital advertising, known as Google Display Ads.

What are Google Display Ads?

Google Display advertising, also known as display ads, is an ad campaign program that features your advertisement on websites that exist on the internet. These websites would have a spot or a dedicated space somewhere on their web page for advertisements from Google to appear.

There are literally millions of websites your online display advertising can appear on. Google encourages websites to feature Google ads by making it a way for websites to monetize themselves and earn money every time a visitor clicks on the display ad on their landing page, or any other page.

There are currently five types of Google ads in existence. Among the most popular is Search Ads, while the other is Display Ads. Search ads, as its name suggests, shows up when Google users search for a related term on that search engine. It will be an ad that shows up as part of the search list.

Google Display ads on the other hand, show up on websites that users are browsing. The main difference between Search ads and Display ads is that Search ads are ‘pull’ ads whilst Display Ads are ‘push’ ads.

This just means that Search ads ‘pull’ in Google users who are actively looking for that product or service. On the other hand, Google Display ads are ‘push’ ads because they are targeted at a certain demographic and placed into websites where that demographic is most likely to visit.

Targeting is a process by which marketers will be able to use the online options Google provides to narrow down the audience that their ads will reach. Google provides many types of targeting including website-based targeting and user-based targeting.

Understanding what display advertising is also means understanding the concept of targeting. There are several steps involved in the process for targeted display advertising:

1. Defining Your Target Demographic

This step involves determining who your market is. For example, if you’re a clothing company selling maternity wear, your target market would be expectant mothers. Expanding on that, you should determine that your target demographic would be women of child-bearing age.

2. Determining Target Keywords and Topics

Once you’ve locked onto your target market, it’s time to pick keywords and topics which are related to your services or products. The Google ad network will then match your ad with sites that have that topic and keywords.

3. Planning Placements in Websites

Determine the parameters of the websites where you’d like your ads to appear. Google has this feature so you can narrow down the sites for your display ads to appear.

4. Target Visitors Based on Interests

Select sites that correspond to a certain interest topic for your ads. Many websites have interest tags that can be used for this purpose.

5. Retargeting and Remarketing

Google display ads have a feature called retargeting that allows you to target users who have visited your site before, in a marketing strategy called brand amplification.

6. Rephrasing and Amending

Google has a control setting that allows you to modify the parameters surrounding your display ad so you can improve it based on performance and feedback.

The Common Types of Google Display Ads Out There

Google’s display advertising services offer many different ad formats that are designed for different parts of a website. Once you sign up for Google ads, you’ll be provided with guidelines on how to create google display ads for each of the formats available. Here are the different types of display advertising available:

1. Banner Ads

Banner ads are large, rectangular ads that usually appear at the top of a web page. They are designed to be eye-catching and attention grabbing. Banner ads span a very long length and are meant to be dominant on a webpage.

A good banner ad has very few words and striking colors that can convey the ad’s message in a simple and quick manner.

In this way, banner display ads actually resemble banners in real life, which are mostly quick and brief in terms of message. Most banners are static images, but there are also those that have simple animations or come in gif formats.

A simple banner display ad with a call to action. Source: SAYS.com

2. Rich Media Ads

Rich media ads are a type of ad in marketing that combines several different features in order to encourage viewers to interact with it. There are many ways to frame and present a rich media ad, but basically they’re considered Google responsive display ads.

Often they combine elements like animation, videos and audio in order to encourage you to click a link or perform an action.

Rich media ads that allow viewers to draw on it, or take part in the animation are some of the rarest but most interesting ads available on the internet. The following are some rich media Google display ads examples:

Source: News 5 WCYB

3. Interstitial Ads

Interstitial ads are a type of ad that presents itself to website visitors in a full page format or almost fully covering a website. This means that visitors will have to read the ad first and then remove it before being allowed access to the website.

Interstitial ads involve a little more cost to put up because they are designed to be read by everyone on a landing page, and therefore will reach more people.

With normal ads like banner ads, sidebar ads and picture ads, visitors are free to ignore them. However, interstitial ads cannot be ignored.

Example of an interstitial ad over a landing page. Source: The Star

4. Video Ads

Video ads are one of the more interesting types of ads as they take on a more traditional approach. These types of ads are advertisements in a video format, not very different from the TV ads we grew up with.

A video ad that you can pause and play. Source: Buzzfeed Malaysia

Why Use Google Display Ads?

Google display ads or display campaigns offer many benefits to marketers and business owners. They’re easy to use and cost effective, plus you have a lot of control over them.

For example, you can determine where and how long they run. You can also determine who views them. Before we look further on the pros and cons of Google Display Ads, let’s see how they’re different from Search ads.

Search Ads vs Display Ads

Both Search Ads and Display Ads have their own benefits and are used differently. The main difference of course is that Search ads appear when netizens search for a term related to the services or products in that ad.

Search ads are sometimes called ‘pull’ ads because they attract the public towards them. One typical example of a Search ad is a Google pay per click ad. These ads are paid for and appear on the top of search lists.

Marketers pay a deposit for having them on the top of these Google search pages, and every time a user clicks on that link, a small sum is deducted from that deposit and the pay-per-click (PPC) ad expires when the deposit dries up.

Pay-per-click ads appear at the top of the Google search results: Source: Google

Meanwhile, Display Ads are presented to netizens without them searching for it. They appear as ads on websites, which may or may not have anything to do with the products and services within the ads.

This is why Display Ads are sometimes called ‘push’ ads as they put out messages for netizens to pick up on.

The Pros and Cons of Using Display Ads

Pro: Increase Brand Awareness

Display Ads are a perfect way for companies to increase the brand awareness of their services or products beyond their social media accounts and websites. Advertising on other websites with traffic will diversify the target audience much better.

Pro: Easy to Track Results

Google advertising services provide analytics at the back end of their display ads. This means that you’ll be able to track the number of clicks and interactions your ads get. Additionally, you’ll also see the demographics and locations of the users who click on your ads for future improvements.

Pro: Available for Various Platforms

Although display ads are mainly found on websites, they’re also designed to appear on social media accounts and apps. This means you can diversify your reach even further for better conversion rates.

Cons: A Distraction or Annoyance

Certain display ads are designed to cover content in a very invasive way, and that may cause users to be turned off by your ad, rather than being curious about it.

Too many ads may not be a positive thing for your site. Source: Merriam Webster

Cons: Low Click-Through Rate

It’s no surprise that display ads have lower click-through rates as they are ads that are not searched for and depend on the interest and attention of the site users. In order to increase the interaction with the ads, targeting has to be done well.

The Best Strategies in Designing a Google Display Ads

There are several strategies you can employ in order to increase the effectiveness of your Google display marketing. These methods will allow your display ads to reach more people with a strong and effective message, without being too invasive or annoying.

1. Always Include a CTA

A Call to Action (CTA) is a marketing term whereby the content contains a rallying call for visitors or viewers to do something with relations to the brand or product. These can include clicking on a link leading to the website, leaving a message or making a call.

2. Track Your Ad Analytics

All Google ads including display ads will include analytics that you can monitor. These analytics will include how much click-throughs your ad is receiving over a period of time, and where it is performing best.

Apart from that you’ll be able to observe some demographics about those who are clicking on your ads. This way, you will be able to target and re-target with these demographics in mind.

3. Optimize Your Ad Placements

In addition to having display automatic targeting on your display ads, you’ll need to optimize them. Make your ads more audience friendly by following the specifications given by Google display ads for each type of ad. Also, try to keep your message as brief as possible so as not to have too much text.

Another tip is to avoid putting your ads as pop-ups so that you don’t disrupt the website visitors’ experience, thereby causing them to be turned off by your ad.

Any animation of video should be kept small and light so that it will be able to load fairly quickly. Also, video ads should be set to mute as a default so that it doesn’t disrupt the visiting user’s website experience and to reduce bounce rates.

4. Keep Your Copy High Quality

No one wants a wall of text when they look at ads on any site. Good quality ads have minimal texts, and can convey messages in less than 10 words for the entire ad.

Also, make sure your ads have correct grammar and spelling, to maintain the quality and prestige of your brand.

Display Advertising: A Modern Day Advertisement Platform

Compared to traditional advertising platforms like billboards and TV ads, advertising is changing for the better with digital ads. Digital ads give you much better control over the targeting and outcome.

It also allows you to monitor reactions to your ads better, by knowing the analytics behind your ads over time.

Digital ads in general and Google display ads in particular should be a part of your online marketing strategy, in addition to just social media marketing in Malaysia.

One way you can start your display marketing campaign is to contact us at One Search Pro.

In One Search Pro Digital Marketing Agency, we help you plan and design your ads on Google with our Google Ads services in order to increase your brand awareness to a more significant level.

Wait no more!

 

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