What you need to know about the Google Performance Summit 2016

Published June 16, 2016 1:55 pm by LoSasso
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Two weeks ago, Google announced some of the biggest changes to AdWords yet at its fourth annual Google Performance Summit in San Francisco. As we evolve into a world that relies more and more heavily on mobile devices, it’s only natural that marketing strategies and objectives evolve in tandem. With that in mind, Google announced several big changes that adhere to this ideology and begin to address a growing need around a mobile-first world.

To help digest some of this news, we here at LoSasso have put together this need-to-know list so you’re prepared for every important change on the digital marketing horizon and what it might mean for you.

losa-5084-01_Blog-Content_June_DerekA_1Of all the changes announced at GPS 2016, expanded text ads are without a doubt one of the most important. On the heels of removing right rail ads, Google will begin rolling out a new universal text ad format that effectively increases potential text volume by 47% (!). According to early tests by Google, this new ad space has proven highly successful with CTR’s increasing nearly 20% in some instances.

What it means for you: Higher CTRs = higher Quality Scores = lower CPCs. Take advantage and stay ahead of the pack when it comes to making the transition to the new format. This change specifically puts a lot of work in the hands of advertisers, but it will come as a great benefit for those willing to work hard for it!

losa-5084-01_Blog-Content_June_DerekA_2Ever since Google coupled desktop and tablet performance together through the introduction of Enhanced Campaigns, advertisers have been struggling to optimize between devices. Luckily for us, Google heard our prayers and has introduced setting base bids by device. Any device! Instead of only being able to set a base bid for desktop/tablet, you can now set a base bid on any one device and set bid modifications on any other.

What it means for you: This separation of devices gives your accounts more flexibility by allowing you to set a base bid on any device and setting bid modifiers as your heart (or client) desires on any other. Given the inherent differences in performance between desktop, tablet and mobile, this is a welcome change.

losa-5084-01_Blog-Content_June_DerekA_3According to Google, nearly one-third of all mobile searches are related to user location. And as mobile overtakes desktop as the preferred device for users, this means it’s more important than ever for businesses to reach local searchers. To support this, Google has introduced promoted pins on Google Maps that showcase nearby businesses based on user location and search intent. Business pages in search are also seeing an overhaul with special offers and the ability to browse product inventory straight from Google Maps.

What it means for you: Google recognizes that the line between people’s online and offline worlds are blurring more than ever. With promoted pins and enhanced business pages, users can now explore your store before they even arrive. Putting this knowledge at your user’s fingertips helps build an experience that is aligned with the mobile-first world we’re living in.

As mobile evolves, so do the spaces in which ads can appear. This puts a burden on advertisers to constantly create assets that match the varying specs and ratios and rules across a plethora of experiences. Responsive display ads help combat this ever-growing work load by adapting your content to fit the inventory it’s meant for.

What it means for you: By simply providing Google with a headline, a description, an image, and a URL, it will build the ad for you and your clients. This is great news for clients and businesses that can’t necessarily afford the costs or time involved with building out assets for every image size. An added benefit is that Google will be able to match the style of your ad to mimic the content on the page, something known as native display advertising.

The path is clear. The goal is set. Mobile is the road to success and Google has paved the way. Take advantage of these changes as they roll out over the next few months and you and/or your clients will be right where it matters most: on top.

To catch the full Google Performance Summit keynote, click here.