AdWords is one of the most popular advertising platforms available today. Run by Google, it allows a business to advertise in search results pages for specific keywords and phrases. Though the basics of AdWords will stay the same through the new year, Google has some notable changes planned for 2017. On this page, we’ll talk about the most important, but first, we’ll go over the basics of Google AdWords and what will stay the same.
What’s staying the same
Though there will be new features added to the platform, the foundation of AdWords will stay the same. Here are a few aspects that aren’t changing at all (as far as we know):
The bidding process
The keyword selection and bidding process are central to AdWords, and advertisers can be confident that this is remaining the same. You don’t need to change anything about how you approach the basics of the platform, and your existing bids and ads will still perform as they do now. Of course, necessary bids will fluctuate as they always have based on the popularity of a keyword, and this is especially true within particularly competitive industries.
For example, 78% of Google searches relate to legal matters, which means that bids will be exponentially higher for terms like “attorney.” If you were to only bid $1.00 for a keyword like “San Antonio car wreck attorney,” you wouldn’t have a fighting chance at a high ad placement this year – and the necessary bids will likely get even higher in the coming years.
Google’s goal is ultimately to provide the best possible results for their users. Quality Score is their way of ensuring that they achieve that goal with AdWords, meaning that it will remain as important as ever. Google decides which ads to place based on a combination of bid amounts and Quality Score.
The more relevant and effective your ads, the better chance you have at reaching users. So even if your ads are currently achieving the results you want, looking for opportunities to improve this score could be a great way to make them even more effective in 2017.
The ads that you create in AdWords can show up in a handful of places outside of Google’s search results, and that will not change. You’ll still be able to advertise to your target audience on sites that are part of the Google Display Network and can target users based on keywords, specific websites, or demographics.
Your expected results
AdWords is an extremely useful and effective platform for businesses that use it, and if your existing campaigns are driving results, you’ll likely see similar results in 2017. As long as you continue to bid on keywords that are relevant to your target audience and set realistic bids, you have nothing to worry about with the upcoming changes. That being said, learning about new options and possibilities can help you stay ahead of your competitors and be even more successful on the platform in the coming year.
In 2017, there will be a handful of changes that affect AdWords advertisers.
Earlier this year, AdWords announced its new expanded headline format and began allowing advertisers to create ads with two 30-character headlines instead of one 25-character one. You can currently change your 25-character headlines to the new format – in fact, Google urges you to do so because of the increased success with the new format. At the time of this writing, these expanded headlines are still optional.
But as of January 31st, 2017, AdWords will no longer support its single, 25-character ad headline format. This means that if you haven’t done so already, you’ll need to update your copy to match these new guidelines. Given the success that many advertisers have seen with expanded ads, though, you should view this as an opportunity to make your campaigns even more effective – and not simply an obligation you have to fulfill to continue running ads on the platform.
Phone calls to salespeople are becoming more and more of a hassle to people who center their lives on the convenience of text messages and online chats. For that reason, AdWords is introducing a campaign that allows customers to chat with them in a way that they love – texting. Not only is it quick and easy, but it’s convenient as well.
All users have to do is click on a small text icon that will appear in the search ad that they want more information on.
Similar audiences for search
When users display similar search behavior as current customers, you should be able to reach new audiences based on what you already know. AdWords will consider the browsing activity that is available on Display Network sites and find similarities between the people you’re remarketing to and new potential customers. From there, a new list is created and you’re left with a brand new pool of potential customers.
Remarketing to YouTube viewers
If you’re interested in adding a new advertising platform to your campaign, YouTube can be a great option. Within YouTube, you can target your ads based on past user interactions – meaning that ads on YouTube are targeted towards your most valuable audience. TrueView video ads are another option that allows you to know when users are truly interested in your brand, since you have the choice to skip or watch the ad.
You’ll only pay when users choose to sit through your ad, much like PPC. With this technique, you can ensure that you are targeting your most valuable audience and that they actually want your ads.
The purpose of an ad extension is to show extra information about a business and help improve the visibility of your ads and give them more value. AdWords automatically shows extensions when it determines that it will improve the way your ad performs, but just because you add an extension doesn’t mean that it’ll show up. Your Ad Rank also has to be high enough, which means that you might have to increase your bid if you want the extension to appear.
Are you prepared to adapt to these changes?
What are your thoughts on the new AdWords updates? Do you have any plans to alter your existing campaigns to be more successful in 2017?
Share your thoughts in the comments below!