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Billions of times per day, consumers turn to Google for I want-to-know, I want-to-go, I want-to-do, and I want-to-buy moments. And at these times, consumers are increasingly picking up their smartphones for answers. In fact, more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the US and Japan.1 This presents a tremendous opportunity for marketers to reach people throughout all the new touchpoints of a consumer’s path to purchase.

Together, we’ve come a long way since this time last year:
  • Our suite of app promotion tools are now driving real results, even as we’re piloting new innovations like ads in the Play Store. A study published today shows that search engines and app stores are among the top ways smartphone users discover new apps.2
  • Businesses around the world are measuring the impact of their search and display campaigns as consumers switch between multiple devices, using cross-device conversions.
  • And with mobile searches driving in-store commerce, we're helping businesses measure the full impact of their campaigns. Our store visits measurement is now available in the US, Canada and Australia and will roll out for thousands of advertisers in 10 countries in the coming months.
But there's so much more to come. This morning, we announced more AdWords innovations in front of a global livestream audience of 20,000 customers. Below are highlights from today’s announcements. You can watch a replay of the full program here.

Ad experiences that win the moment

Consumers, particularly on mobile devices, now have higher expectations than ever before - they want everything right, and they want everything right away. This requires that marketers answer their needs in the moment, whenever and wherever they are. Our investments in mobile are driven by consumers’ expectations for immediacy and relevance in the moment. Based on your feedback and our insights about how people search for information, we’ve built a whole new generation of ad experiences that are richer, more engaging and designed for screen-swipes instead of mouse-clicks so we meet consumers’ needs, right when they are looking:
  • Automotive: Car buyers spend up to 15 hours online researching, comparing and learning.3 When people browse the web for automobiles, they want to see pictures and visuals of their dream car. In fact, about half of Google searches for cars contain images.4 That’s why we introduced Automobile Ads - a new search ad format that takes you directly from Google.com to a beautiful carousel of car images that shows you how a car looks inside and out -- like how the sleek metallic finish looks with the black leather and wood trim. Tapping on an image brings up more information about the car, like horsepower and estimated MPG while tapping on the “Dealers” link takes you to a page with nearby dealer listings.
  • Hotel Ads: There are millions of searches for hotels everyday — that’s millions of potential hotel bookings. When people search for hotels, they’re looking for information like rates, availability, locations, user reviews, editorial descriptions, Google Street View, and high resolution photos. Today, we announced that Hotel Ads will start to show globally for hotel partners around the world, one click away from Google.com. Hotel Ads show current prices from a variety of sources and when a traveler is ready, they can select “Book” to complete their reservation on the partners’ sites.
  • Mortgages: Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions in life, so understanding your options and having the right tools is critical. The newest addition to Google Compare in the US is coming soon: mortgages. Whether someone is a first-time home-buyer or looking to refinance, consumers will soon be able to find the latest mortgage rates from multiple mortgage providers, and review a customized set of criteria like interest rate, terms of the loan and fees. They’ll be able to apply directly with an approved lender or speak to a qualified adviser for more information, directly from the Google search ad.

    Automation to capture moments at scale

    Consumers engage with brands, across billions of monthly searches, billions of hours of videos watched every month, and billions of interactions with various sites and apps. The sheer scale can be staggering, but with automation you can master the complexity and show exactly the right ads for consumers’ intent and context.
    • Automated Bidding: AdWords bid strategies are setting billions of bids per day5 for tens of thousands of advertisers, enabling you to be more efficient and effective. Today, we introduced a new reporting dashboard that provides more transparency and control as you evaluate the performance of bid strategies over time. New simulation tools also show advertisers the tradeoff between volume and cost at different CPA targets.
    • Dynamic Search Ads are a powerful way to automatically show timely and relevant ads based on the content of your website -- without the need to manage keywords. Today, we announced significant enhancements, including recommended category targets based on your website's content, suggested CPCs for every category and more visibility into the ads that will show and pages where your customers will land.

    Measuring every moment that matters

    Marketers need to ensure they’re measuring all the moments that matter -- from first impression to final conversion. To do so, you need methods and metrics that speak to today’s increasingly complex path to purchase--across devices, apps, calls, and stores. By incorporating all of these touchpoints, marketers can measure the full impact of their campaigns and make better decisions for their business.

    Today we introduced several new products to help you do so:
    • AdWords attribution: We are making it easy for search marketers to move beyond a last-click attribution model. You’ll be able to select an attribution model for each of your conversion types. The choice you make will be reflected in your AdWords reporting and integrated into your automated bidding. We’re also introducing data-driven attribution, which uses your own conversion data to calculate the actual contribution of each keyword across the conversion path.
    • Cross-device conversions integrated with automated bidding: New consumer paths to purchase make it more important than ever for marketers to measure activities that start on one device and are completed on another. Later this year, you’ll be able to take action on these insights when cross-device conversions are integrated into automated bidding. This is part of a broader update that will give you the option to include cross-device conversions as part of the Conversions column.
    • Marketing experiments: This morning, we introduced new tools to help marketers measure the incremental impact generated from your Google ads. HomeAway, a global vacation rental marketplace, worked with the Google account team and learned that its Google Display Network ads are driving a 49% lift in click-related traffic to its website. Read the case study here and reach out to your AdWords account team to learn more.
    Google is a company built on intent and immediacy. Our mission has always been to connect people with what they are looking for in the exact moment they are looking. These are moments that matter to consumers, to marketers and to us at Google because they are when decisions are being made and preferences shaped.

    Thank you to everyone who attended the AdWords Performance Summit or watched the livestream. I can’t wait to see the great things you do with these new products. We look forward to continuing this journey with you: delivering the best possible experiences for consumers in the moments that matter.

    Jerry Dischler, Vice President, Product Management, AdWords

    1 Google Internal Data.
    2 Mobile App Marketing Insights: How Consumers Really Find and Use Apps, Google/Ipsos MediaCT, May 2015
    3 Polk Automotive Buyer Research, 2013 (source)
    4 Google Internal Data.
    5 Google Internal Data.

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Welcome to the AdWords livestream 2015! Today, Jerry Dischler, VP of Product Management, will announce the next generation of AdWords innovations. Tune in to the livestream below. We look forward to engaging in the conversation with you at #StepInsideAdWords.

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The annual AdWords livestream is just around the corner. On Tuesday, May 5th at 9:30am PT / 12:30pm ET, we’ll be sharing new mobile ad innovations that we’ve been building. Check out the video below for a sneak peak with Jerry Dischler, VP of Product Management for AdWords. Register for the livestream here.

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When it comes to attracting customers, small businesses know that showcasing their products online can help them get in front of more people -- even when their physical store doors are closed. In fact, one-third of small business owners said new or existing clients engaged with them through their e-commerce websites at least once daily.1

But getting started with a website is just the beginning. Google Shopping helps small businesses like you tap into the power of customer intent to reach the right people with relevant products ads, when it matters the most. Here’s how two local businesses, Paper Culture and PUBLIC Bikes, used Google Shopping to gain a competitive edge and spark shoppers’ interest across the country by leveraging their strengths: unique designs and inspired products.

Paper Culture uses Shopping ads to connect with design lovers online
Unique, modern design is a top priority for Paper Culture, an environmentally-conscious stationery company that sells 100% post-consumer recycled cards, coasters, and other personalized products online. To complement their AdWords text ads, Paper Culture turned to Google Shopping to put their product designs front and center, and reach new customers with rich, visual ads that jump off the search page.

“One of the toughest challenges for us as a small business is that we don’t have the brand of our larger competitors,” says Chris Wu, CEO and co-founder of Paper Culture. “Google Shopping helps us tell our story through showing searchers our unique product designs, right on Google search.”

By coupling customer intent with Google Shopping’s image-focused approach, Paper Culture was able to highlight their designs in a cost-effective way -- ensuring that each shopper that clicked on a Google Shopping ad was an already-interested buyer. Through Shopping campaigns, Paper Culture decreased their cost-per-lead (CPL) by 50%, and saw 3x ROI overall when compared to their other online channels.
PUBLIC Bikes reaches more searching cyclists with Google Shopping
Multi-channel retailer PUBLIC Bikes is in the business of selling colorful, trendy city bikes with a mission to help people fall in love with urban biking. But as a small business that designs, manufactures, and sells their own merchandise, the team often found themselves short on time and resources.

“With a small team, it’s challenging to do everything we want to do and get our brand and products out there,” says Dan Nguyen-Tan, founding executive of PUBLIC Bikes. “We need a way to scale our marketing efforts and get in front of potential customers where they can discover and engage us. That’s why Google Shopping is so important: it helps us reach customers looking for our products across the country.”

PUBLIC Bikes used Google Shopping to find new customers beyond their brick-and-mortar stores. Bidding by product allowed them to more easily prioritize those products that were new or on sale, turning once low-converting search terms into profit. For every $1 invested in Shopping campaigns, PUBLIC Bikes was able to see 2x the ROI as compared to their other online channels.
A new hub for retailers, large and small
Whether you’re an ecommerce business or a multi-channel business, the new Google for Retail offers a one-stop hub to learn more about Google’s solutions for retailers of all sizes.

If you’re a small business like Paper Culture or PUBLIC Bikes, we’re introducing a new Shopping Campaigns page as a go-to resource to help you get up and running on Google Shopping and make the world your storefront. Here, you’ll find product overviews, success stories, tutorial videos, and help resources to show how Google’s various retail tools work together to let you find your shoppers, wherever they are.

Posted by Kim Doan, Product Marketing Manager, Google Shopping

1eMarketer, Do Small Business Websites Drive Client Engagement?, Feb 2015

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Spring is here, and it’s a great time to set your sights on creating new marketing goals and ensuring that your campaigns are set up for success. You now have access to new and improved reporting tools that will help you identify opportunities in your account, track the right metrics, and find deeper insights that might help you improve performance.

Read on to find out how you can put these tools to work in your campaigns this year.
  • Campaign details reports provide a faster, easier way to see which features and settings are enabled in each of your campaigns.
  • Custom Columns let you create and view segmented columns for the metrics you care about most in your account. 
  • Top Movers Report improvements help you identify significant performance changes in your campaigns and ad groups so you can take action to optimize your account. 

1. Check your settings and close easy gaps 

Understanding the status of your settings is an important part of ensuring that your campaigns are set up for success. Consider the impact, for example, if your campaigns were accidentally missing mobile bid modifiers? With the new campaign details report you can quickly see settings that aren’t being utilized and identify opportunities for improvement across your account or MCC.

With the new reports, you can:
  • Quickly find inconsistent settings that could be limiting performance
  • Identify settings that you aren’t yet utilizing
  • View details alongside your performance metrics to get a more comprehensive look at account performance
Let’s say you want to improve CTR across your text ads by adding sitelinks to all of your campaigns. Previously, you would have individually looked at the ad extensions tab for each campaign to check the status of your sitelinks. For a hundred campaigns, this task could take a couple hours to complete. Using the campaign details report, you can see all of the campaigns that currently have active or disapproved sitelinks in just a few minutes. Now, you can spend less time searching for your settings and more time activating opportunities that might improve performance.
Find settings and opportunities on the "Campaigns" tab
2. Analyze for deeper insights 

As we announced a few months ago, Custom columns lets you customize the data and columns you see in your accounts. By selecting an existing metric, such as ‘CPC,’ and applying another segment such as ‘Mobile,’ you can quickly create a new custom column that lets you see ‘Mobile CPC’. With this new flexibility, Custom columns can help you save time and monitor the business metrics that matter most to you. Shaan Rupani from Dropbox tells us, “Custom columns have been a huge time-saver. Evaluating performance by conversion type, device, and network in columns instead of ad-hoc segmented reports will easily save us hours of work each month.” Learn more.

3. Keep tabs on your performance

The Top Movers report helps you identify the campaigns and ad groups that have changed the most over a specific period of time and helps you identify possible causes.

In the last few weeks, we’ve made some improvements to the report. You will notice a new, simplified interface that makes it easier to spot significant changes across your account and quickly take action on developing trends. For example, the summary table at the top has been distilled to show key changes in your top movers metrics for the date range you set. And, you can scroll down to see the campaigns and ad groups that have changed the most for cost, clicks, and conversions so you can quickly take action to improve performance. Learn more.
Use the Top movers report to find significant changes across your account
Getting started 

We hope these three tools help you more easily monitor performance, view actionable insights, and quickly identify opportunities to improve performance. To learn more about these and other reporting tools designed to help you monitor and measure the success of your campaigns at scale, check out our AdWords Help Center.

Posted by Jon Diorio, Group Product Manager, AdWords

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Since 2008 we’ve been working to make sure all of our services use strong HTTPS encryption by default. That means people using products like Search, Gmail, YouTube, and Drive will automatically have an encrypted connection to Google. In addition to providing a secure connection on our own products, we’ve been big proponents of the idea of “HTTPS Everywhere,” encouraging webmasters to prevent and fix security breaches on their sites, and using HTTPS as a signal in our search ranking algorithm.

This year, we’re working to bring this “HTTPS Everywhere” mission to our ads products as well, to support all of our advertiser and publisher partners. Here are some of the specific initiatives we’re working on:
  • We’ve moved all YouTube ads to HTTPS as of the end of 2014.
  • Search on Google.com is already encrypted for a vast majority of users and we are working towards encrypting search ads across our systems. 
  • By June 30, 2015, the vast majority of mobile, video, and desktop display ads served to the Google Display Network, AdMob and DoubleClick publishers will be encrypted.
  • Also by June 30, 2015, advertisers using any of our buying platforms, including AdWords and DoubleClick, will be able to serve HTTPS-encrypted display ads to all HTTPS-enabled inventory. 
Of course we’re not alone in this goal. By encrypting ads, the advertising industry can help make the internet a little safer for all users. Recently, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) published a call to action to adopt HTTPS ads, and many industry players are also working to meet HTTPS requirements. We’re big supporters of these industry-wide efforts to make HTTPS everywhere a reality.

Our HTTPS Everywhere ads initiatives will join some of our other efforts to provide a great ads experience online for our users, like “Why this Ad?”, “Mute This Ad” and TrueView skippable ads. With these security changes to our ads systems, we’re one step closer to ensuring users everywhere are safe and secure every time they choose to watch a video, map out a trip in a new city, or open their favorite app.

Posted by Neal Mohan, Vice President, Product Management, Display and Video Ads and Jerry Dischler, Vice President Product Management, AdWords

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Over the next few weeks, we’ll be rolling out three new features to help multi-channel advertisers more easily manage their reporting and find the insights that matter most to them.

For advertisers with multiple types of campaigns and advertising goals, reporting can be a tedious and time-consuming task. For example, to report on specific goals related to your Search, Display or Shopping Network campaigns, you may find yourself filtering for your campaign type, and re-adjusting your columns several times to view the information you need.

With these three new reporting features, you’ll now be able to easily
  • Filter your account by campaign type
  • See more relevant columns more quickly 
  • Apply column sets based on your advertising goals 

Easily filter your account by campaign type

The new campaign type selector lets you quickly filter your account by campaign type, so you can see results for just your Search, Display or Shopping Network campaigns. For example, if you’re reporting on Display Network performance, you can quickly see all ad groups in your Display campaigns with one simple step.
Easily filter for the campaign types you want to view
See more relevant columns based on campaign type 

Are you tired of constantly switching columns when you go from reporting on Search Network campaigns to reporting on Display Network campaigns? Now, your last viewed columns, which previously have only been stored by tab - like campaign, ad group or keywords - will be stored by both tab and campaign type.

Let’s say you're on the Ad groups tab looking at the Clicks and Avg. CPC columns for a Search campaign. Then, you look at the ad groups in a Display campaign and adjust your columns to see Impressions and Avg. CPM. Now, when you look at the Ad groups tab for Search campaigns, you’ll see columns for Clicks and Avg. CPC.  But when you switch to Display Network campaigns, you’ll see Impressions and Avg. CPM. This lets you quickly see more relevant columns based on your campaign type.

Quickly apply column sets based on your advertising goals 

To make it faster and easier to view data for specific advertising goals, we’re introducing pre-defined column sets. These column sets help you quickly load up reporting columns that are tailored to different advertising goals. For example, you may have multiple Display campaigns, some that are focused on branding goals, and others that are focused on performance goals. With pre-defined column sets, you can easily switch your reporting view to see columns specific to each of these advertising goals. And, you can always get back to your last column selection by choosing Custom from the "Columns" drop-down menu.
Pre-defined column sets help you find insights for Branding or Conversion Goals
Next steps

These reporting improvements will be rolled out over the next few weeks to advertisers with more than one type of campaign in their account. To learn how you can start using them in your daily reporting, check out our Help Center.

Posted by Pallavi Naresh, Product Manager, AdWords 

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Mobile has forever changed the ways people engage with the world around them -- from the way we shop to the way we communicate. In fact, 91% of smartphone users now turn to their phones for ideas while right in the middle of a task1 -- like picking out new running shoes or looking up a chocolate cake recipe. Because we can be online anywhere at any time, we count on information being immediately available and relevant. This expectation has changed how people make decisions and has created tremendous opportunities for marketers.

To meet the heightened expectations of today’s consumers, Google is focused on delivering AdWords innovations that enable you to better reach and influence your customers in the countless moments throughout the day when they are looking for answers, discovering new things, or making decisions. On May 5, 2015 at 9:30am PT / 12:30pm ET, I will be hosting a livestream to share these new products with you. You can watch the 45-minute event live, right here on the Inside AdWords blog.

Register for the livestream here.

Join us to learn about new products that are designed to:
  • Create better mobile experiences for your customers at the moments when they’re looking for your products and services
  • Measure all the moments that matter to your business – online and offline, across multiple devices and touchpoints
  • Customize and scale everything you do in AdWords, to unlock the full potential of increasingly complex consumer journeys

These innovations are built based on unique insights about how consumers engage with technology and feedback from customers, large and small, from around the world. I can’t wait to share them with you.

Please register and join us May 5th. Until then, follow us on our +GoogleAds page for sneak previews of what’s to come.

Posted by Jerry Dischler, Vice President, Product Management, AdWords

1Google/Ipsos Consumer Research Study, March 2015

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Constant connectivity has forever changed the way people live and shop, giving rise to new consumer paths and blurring the lines between digital and physical experiences. With a quick search on any device, we can locate nearby businesses or find product availability in a local store in just a matter of seconds. In fact, 88% of US shoppers research online - on phones, tablets and computers - before making an offline purchase.1

As consumers’ paths to purchase continue to get more complex, it is more important than ever to understand how various devices, channels and media influence decisions along the way. Only then can marketers give credit where it’s due – both between and within channels.

We’re working hard to measure these new paths to purchase in AdWords. Last year, we announced store visits as part of Estimated Total Conversions to help marketers measure these new conversion paths -- an important step in bridging the digital and physical worlds. Since then, businesses across many industries have been able to measure the full value of their AdWords marketing. When businesses include store visits data as part of their overall conversions, they see that their marketing is driving more impact.

For example, in the US, retailers are measuring, on average, 4x more conversions overall and 10x more conversions on mobile when including store visits data as part of their search ads performance.
In the US Auto and Travel verticals, where driving a consumer to a dealer lot or hotel is a high value event, advertisers are measuring 2x more conversions when including store visits data. This means an auto dealer can attribute twice as much impact for every click on their AdWords search ads because they are now able to include visits to their showrooms.

As marketers across many industries recognize that digital media drives people to stores and begin to use these insights, we wanted to share more perspectives from advertisers already using the data, information about how the product works and best practices for ad creative, targeting and attribution.

Customer Stories
With AdWords store visits data, Sephora is able to measure how digital advertising acts as a magnet to draw customers into its 803 US stores. Sephora learned that it receives an 18% higher store visits rate from mobile clicks compared to desktop. Based on that data, Sephora optimized its mobile bidding strategy to achieve a 25% higher return on ad spend than when measuring the impact of paid search on ecommerce sales alone. With insights from store visits, Sephora continues to use Local Inventory Ads to let customers looking for lipstick, eyeliner, or perfume know when those products are available at a nearby store.

Buffalo Wild Wings, a national restaurant and sports bar franchise with over 1,000 locations, used insights from store visits data to validate and adjust its bidding strategy and realized an 84% lift in conversions. Buffalo Wild Wings is also optimizing bids for local keywords and improving the online to offline guest experience. For example, its mobile search ads feature location extensions that show phone numbers and directions to nearby restaurants and to people searching for wings, beer and live sports.
As a reminder, store visits are estimates based on aggregated, anonymized data from a sample set of users that have turned on Location History. This data is then extrapolated to represent the broader population and only reported if it reaches a strict, highly conservative confidence level. To learn more about how the product works, visit our Help Center or watch this helpful video.
Best Practices Guide

Finally, to help advertisers succeed with their online to store campaigns in AdWords, we’ve created a new Best Practices Guide.

This guide will show you how to:
  • Enhance your online ads to help potential customers looking to visit one of your business locations
  • Improve the chances that the right person will see your ads through smarter targeting and bidding
  • Measure the incremental offline value of your online efforts
  • Fine-tune your campaigns for maximum return for your business, factoring both online and offline conversions
Throughout the year, we’ll continue to share best practices and stories from customers already using these insights to improve their businesses.  And we’ll be launching store visits conversions in 10 additional countries, starting today, in Australia and Canada.

We look forward to working with you to build better online to offline experiences for your customers.

Posted by Surojit Chatterjee, Director of Product Management, Mobile Search Ads

1PWC, Research: Understanding how us online shoppers are reshaping the retail experience, March 2012

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In today's constantly connected world, there are billions of moments throughout the day when people are looking for answers, discovering new things, making a decision or looking for entertainment. In these moments, consumers' expectations are very high – they want things right, and right away. Successful brands are those that deliver a great experience at the exact moment a consumer is looking for it.

It was with this belief in the importance of intent and relevance that 5 years ago we launched TrueView ads, which gave users the choice to watch or skip ads. It was a leap of faith based on the belief that viewers would choose to watch ads on YouTube if these ads were interesting, relevant, and engaging. Since then TrueView has come a long way, expanding to mobile, becoming more measurable with Brand Lift, and enabling more interactivity with features like app downloads seamlessly within your ad.

Today, we’re making TrueView an even better creative canvas for brands with greater interactivity and more accurate accounting of audience engagement.

Greater interactivity through cards
One of the top requests from brands has been to make videos more interactive, particularly on mobile. So we’re introducing cards for TrueView in-stream ads, a new feature which will make video ads a more engaging, interactive experience for viewers across all screens.

An evolution of our annotations feature, cards launched to videos on YouTube last month providing a more beautiful and seamless way to inform viewers about other videos, playlists, and more. Now with cards coming to TrueView in-stream ads, you can share more information about your brand, related videos and playlists, and soon link to your website directly from your TrueView video ad. For information about how to enable cards in your campaigns, visit our Help Center.

Cards panel on mobile in portrait

Expanded card panel on desktop

Unlike free-form annotations on ads, cards work on mobile and will come to connected TVs, so you can create one ad and run it across all screens. This means viewers will always know how to get more info about video ads, regardless of how they’re watching YouTube.

Cards also provide a platform to bring you additional features that make TrueView a more actionable format. Throughout this year, we’ll roll out specialized cards that cater to specific use cases, a process we started with TrueView for app promotion last year.

Optimizing for viewer actions
TrueView is built on the notion that when someone chooses to watch your video, they have stronger intent and interest for your brand. For that reason, we only count a view when someone shows an intent to watch. Now, with greater interactivity signals, we can go a step further and enable you to to optimize for viewer actions. In addition to counting a view when someone watches an ad, we will also count a view when viewers click on a card or other elements of your in-stream creative, as we believe this is a strong indication that they are interested and engaged. We’ll bill for these click interactions, similar to what we currently do for TrueView for app promotion campaigns. As always, we’ll only charge when a view is counted and will bill for either the full view or click (but not both). This change will roll out to all TrueView in-stream ads in May.

New click behavior for in-stream
To ensure you only pay for deliberate clicks on your video ads, we’re also changing where you can click on in-stream ads. Formerly clicking anywhere on the player would register a click; now only clicks to cards or CTAs, the video header, companion banner or a link at the bottom of the player will count as a click.
Phew! That was a lot of info. TrueView has always been focused on user choice – and we believe these new features will make video ads even more engaging. We’re excited to continue to evolve our TrueView platform in 2015 and beyond.

To take a stroll down memory lane for TrueView’s fifth anniversary, check out our Agency blog post.

Posted by
Avi Fein, Product Manager, AdWords for video
JR Futrell, Product Manager, YouTube Ads
Jim Habig, Product Marketing Manager, YouTube Ads