With Google’s recent mobile update to their algorithm, we saw mobile-friendly, responsive sites starting to earn a ranking advantage over non-responsive ones. Now we’re seeing another concerted effort from the search engine giant, to shift attention to the increasingly dominant smartphone market.
New Google Ads ad mediums and platforms are soon being released that will directly address the needs of the mobile searcher, their stage in the buying cycle and their often-distinct buying psychologies.
Some of the New Ads You’ll See
The new advertisements look and feel will continue with the natural user interface strategy they’ve been following so far, leveraging their ever-growing Knowledge Graph to return very simple result at the top of the SERP, which emphasises touch and swipe functionality over cursor (click) functionality.
- Automotive Ads – These will focus on the vehicle details that are pertinent to prospective buyers, including: vehicle specs, the official site, local private offers and dealers in your area. It also has a richer vehicle photo carousel that actually explores the car and interior.
- Hotel Ads – Offering similar functionality to the automotive adverts, these accommodation ads will also include directly useful data, such as: user reviews, ratings, rates and availability, Users will also be able to book rooms, directly from their device.
These ads will be geared towards mobility and direct action, providing options such as directions to the location and click-to-call buttons. The result hopefully being that it will lead to more accurate measurements of performance for these kinds of ads, which has been a challenge for mobile ads ROI measurements in the past.
These tools make good business sense within their Google Ads business model. They promote Google’s commercial clients (responsible for the lion’s share of their revenue) while enhancing the user functionality. However, the other tool they’re promising an upcoming release on could shift attention further towards Google user experience, and possibly further from their Google Ads clients.
Called Google Compare, it currently has a very limited scope. Existing solely as a vehicle insurance comparison tool, it’s now being expanded. It’s starting out modestly, allowing users to directly compare different mortgage rates from a huge range of providers, based on a large range of criteria, which will also be customisable.
Many businesses avoid direct comparison data, particularly on price, as it tends to negate marketing efforts based on emotional inputs. However it’s common practice in the insurance industry (such as SA’s own Hippo.co.za) and financing industry, as there will be several factors a client considers beyond the rate. But future updates to the broadly titled Google Compare, could possibly see them comparing a range of product categories, which could harm advertisers.
The Future of Mobility
The convenience of mobility indicates that it won’t stop growing any time soon or that it will stop being the dominant online medium. The only thing that’s a factor now is how fast online advertising platforms will move to address this shift. And when you consider that it was only revealed at the beginning of 2014 that mobile views had superseded desktop, it looks like it going to be quite fast indeed.