Big Changes at AdWords Will Affect Digital Marketers


Google is responding to critics who have said the search engine giant has inadvertently promoted terrorist organizations and pornographic websites. In an effort to make their metrics more transparent and accurate, Google has announced major changes to its AdWords program.

Though not directly related to digital marketing, you can bet these changes will alter how companies craft their Google strategy. Google says these changes are intended to help users — and advertisers — have better data within reach.


Watch time metric

This is specifically for measuring the success of video ads. Knowing the number of people viewing the ad is nice, but it doesn’t tell you that much about how effective the ad is. For example, you want to know how long they watched the video for. This is the kind of more advanced metric Google is now offering advertisers.

Changing exact phrase searches

Google is shifting how it approaches exact phrase searches—or those in double quotes. From now on, they’ll include close variants to that phrase and trigger related ads regardless of word order or usage. Here’s Google’s reasoning for why this change makes sense:

“People aren’t perfect spellers or typists. In fact, at least seven percent of Google searches contain a misspelling. And the longer the query, the greater the likelihood of a typo. But even if what they’ve typed isn’t perfect, people still want to connect with the businesses, products, and services they’re trying to find.”

Google has said that it is trying to reduce complexity and help advertisers better reach customers. This way, advertisers don’t need to include common misspellings of search terms in order to find people looking for their products.

Unique reach metric

In Google’s own words: “By analyzing reach and frequency data for display and video campaigns, you can better understand how many people were shown your ads and how frequently the same people were shown them over a certain period of time.”

Basically, Google is attempting to offer advertisers a crystal clear picture of exactly how many people viewed their ad in a certain timeframe. This way advertisers can see the number of unique users and average impressions-per-user regardless of what device the user is on. Many thought that this change was a long time coming.

Tailoring your Google ads strategy is critical to raising your company’s profile and engaging a wide variety of potential customers. We’ll keep you up to date as Google changes how its AdWords program works.

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Filed Under: Business Tips