By Danielle Whetstone
While Google is a relatively young concept, launching in 1998, most Americans can hardly imagine existing without it. Its dominance in the marketplace has even led to the official adoption of “Google” as a verb, as in “Just Google it”. Its rise to glory and fame, however, is a topic for another blog post. Here, we’ll consider what Google’s prominence means for marketers and what’s on the horizon of a changing landscape.
If you’re new to Google Ads, the platform offers several avenues for paid advertising, including search (text) ads, display (image) ads, video (YouTube) ads, shopping (product) ads, and more. For our purposes, we’ll be looking specifically at the benefits of Google Search Ads.
The real firepower with Search Ads is the ability to display your product or services to people actively searching for what you have to offer. While social media ads implore a more “passive” type of advertising – hitting users with your message while they’re scrolling updates from family and friends and enjoying funny memes – search ads are a more aggressive approach. As users search, your ad can be displayed at the top of their results. Think of it in terms of retail product placement. Social media ads are the impulse items by the register. The “Hey, while you’re here, you might want this, too.” type of products, versus Search Ads being the aisle of shampoo “You’re looking for shampoo? You’re in luck. Consider this brand, too” type of products.
To be fair, Google is not the only search engine where you can advertise. There are others in the space, including Bing, Yahoo!, DuckDuckGo, Ecosia, and MSN. But when Google held 87.8% of the market share in 2020, let’s be honest — Google really is the only option for advertising.
Google ads are certainly nothing new in terms of marketing strategies. Already an integral part of digital life, as brick and mortar stores and restaurants closed during the pandemic, consumers increasingly turned to online shopping. The advantages of leveraging Google ads right now have never been greater.
As to be expected, e-commerce has seen an impressive uptick in sales during recent months, making Google ads a viable, even necessary, strategy to employ if merchants aren’t already. But when you consider that 65% of consumers looking for a product or service online click on a Google Ad, it becomes evident that most businesses should be spending a portion of their advertising budget on Google.
Besides visibility, another benefit of Google Ads is that you pay for what you get. Unlike a billboard, where regardless of whether you garner customers, you pay to advertise, with Google, if you optimize for, say, clicks or conversions, you only pay for clicks or conversions. And with robust analytics of your results, you’ll be able to make informed decisions about what’s working and nix what’s not (unlike that pesky billboard).
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