Google Ads & Analytics Innovations Keynote Roundup

Enjoy Digital
By Enjoy Digital
5 minutes to read

Google now handles at least 2 trillion searches per year – so that’s a fair bit of data which puts them in a good position to know what consumers want and when!

On Wednesday Google held its annual Performance Summit where they announced the upcoming feature updates for AdWords and Google Analytics. The main focus was making lives easier for consumers, brands and marketers alike by optimising our micro-moments both in leisure time and at work. Yes – our lives are turning into marketing plans and we’re getting rid of the wastage because who has time to be shown incorrect ads based on an estimated location or a text ad when you could see a product image? 

In summary the topics covered were:

  • Bid adjustments by device
  • Extended headlines in text ads
  • Similar audiences for search
  • Increased local data
  • Ad formats within Google Maps
  • Responsive ads for Google Display
  • The Google AdWords makeover 
  • The crème de la crème of Google interfaces-  Google Analytics 360 suite
  • And, saving the best ‘til last - Google Machine learning

Google have hinted that they have a ‘mobile-first’ strategy for many months, this is evident in the changes made in February whereby text ads that were displayed on the right hand side of their search results pages have been removed from desktop to enable a more consistent user experience with mobile and tablet. In the same way you want a consumer to recognise your site from device to device, Google wanted to mirror this ethos in their search results.

From a brands point of view, all of the updates will be beneficial as it will enable more advertising real estate and more flexibility in optimising your paid search campaigns across different devices.

Bid adjustments by device

Google will now allow advertisers to manage bid adjustments at a device level. So if you know your product is more suited to commuters, you can increase your mobile bids during key commuter times, rather than increasing bids across all devices. You can now also optimise bids for devices that matter the most to you! Mobile ads should speak to users differently as they will be in a different mind-set therefore you should show them shorter, punchy pieces of information in your site links or direct them to a mobile optimised landing page that provides a seamless user journey on a smaller device.

Extended headlines in text ads

Google are now introducing longer headlines for mobile ad copy (increasing from 2 x 35-character description lines to one consolidated 80-character description line)  as it’s been proven these are more useful for users because they give more information before the user has to click. This is also great for advertiser’s right? No click, no fee!

It’s important for brands to take advantage of this new feature as soon as possible to ensure they keep up with the trend, it will help to increase the quality score. If your competitors jump on this before you, then your text ads that you haven’t adapted will look half dressed!

The date of this update is still to be confirmed but is rumoured for later this year, Google has released this table to demonstrate the future changes:



We mentioned this as a test back in our weekly search blog in April and illustrated an example of how the extended headline would look. 

Responsive ads for Google Display

Many advertisers may not have the budget to create additional assets such as HTML5 display ads however, Google are now making this easier by helping advertisers create responsive ads for the Google Display Network (GDN). All Google ask is for you to provide headlines, description, image and URL then Google will create these for you. 

This welcome update comes after the news that Flash ads will no longer be accepted in the AdWords interface as specifications move over to a 100% HTML5 model.



Similar audiences for search

Look-a-like modelling has been around in the display world for years and is often a great extension to the standard prospecting and retargeting campaign. The great news is that Google are due to offer this service to Google AdWords users.

Given the great success of RLSA ads, Google will now allow advertisers to build up a profile of users that have converted on their websites. They will then be able to target people within the same demographics that have similar behavioural patterns in terms of their search history. This means not only can you extend your reach to additional users, you also know to bid more on them because they are much more likely to convert. 

Increased local data

“Brands that reach users with location relevant ads will win!” according to Google, it’s all about reaching your consumers when they’re having their ‘micro-moments.’ In these moments consumers expect brands to address their needs with real-time relevance. The key takeaway we derived from this point is to always be there when your consumer needs you or something related to your industry.

You should be building content around your target users FAQs, and if you provide a local service you should ensure you are bidding more within a close radius to your business as we know that a third of all mobile searches are related to location. In order to help with location targeting Google are enhancing their accuracy by using additional beacons to improve data available in AdWords.

Ad formats within Google Maps

In addition to this, Google are introducing the ‘Promoted Pin’ which allows advertisers to advertise within the Google Maps and provide users with a search result relevant to their location or commute. What’s next? Will you be able to order your Starbucks through Google promoted pins so it’s ready for your arrival as you reach the shop?


Google AdWords is getting a makeover

Google has also listened to the continuous feedback they get from both agencies and businesses that advertise through them. 

There are three basic principles the updates are formed upon;

  • Data needs to be at your fingertips: AdWords will now highlight potential opportunities through highly visible graphs and quick bites of data which will enable marketers to take immediate action in order to keep up with the competitive environment of search. An example of this would be Google informing you if there were specific devices driving the majority of your clicks during a certain time of the day. This would then allow you to increase the bids accordingly
  • Google wants to make the interface more about your business than the Google products so will ensure your insights are always visible.
  • Tools should be powerful yet simple: Workflows are intuitive and remove the clutter so you will be able to build campaigns around specific objectives such as; driving traffic to your website or driving conversions. Google will guide you through how best to set up the campaigns depending on your goals.

When will this happen? Google plan to build out the additional AdWords features in 2016/2017, inviting key advertisers to try out and feedback.

The crème de la crème of Google interfaces- Google Analytics 360 suite

This is built for the multi-screen world and will integrate the likes of Google Tag Manager, Google Analytics and Google DoubleClick.

There are three key points to the suite:

1) Integrations: Tools need to be integrated, such as AdWords and Analytics, to make data more valuable. The new interface will increase testing agility and reduce set up times so that advertisers will be able to utilise goals and audiences already set up within Analytics to use in site experiments through Google Tag Manager - this means setting up tests are likely to reduce from 3 days to 10 minutes.

2) Collaboration: tools need to be easy to access and use so teams can get more things done, thus linking Google Apps (documents) and Google Analytics. This will enable multiple users to log into the interface and work on the same report simultaneously to create high quality, presentation ready, dynamic reports at the click of a few buttons.

3) Need built in intelligence to find and surface the most valuable insights? Google will allow more integration with APIs to link up multiple data points to help formulate valuable insights.

When will they be doing this? The Google Analytics 360 suite is due to launch in the US and roll out to other regions during the year. It will begin rolling out the suite to all google analytics premium customers initially.

Saving the best ‘til last - Google Machine learning

Last but not least and my favourite update of the summit ‘Google Machine Learning.’ Google are planning to roll out the facility whereby you will be able to speak or type a question to the Data Assistant in Google Analytics and it will provide you with the answer or report you need. An example of this would be if you were to ask “How does my revenue in April compare to last year”, Google will then display the answer through a report within Google Analytics.

For the full Google Ads & Analytics Innovations Keynote, watch below:

All in all it was a great update from Google with all new features feeling logical in their ‘mobile-first’ journey and we’re looking forward to them being rolled out in the UK so that we can utilise them for our clients! 

comments powered by Disqus