Display advertising with Google is a great option if you want to get your brand in front of a high volume of customers and prospects. Download this handy guide to the best performing sizes
What are Google display ads?
Google display ads are visual banner ads that appear to your audience throughout the Google Display Network (GDN) – a network of more than two million sites that support advertising. As this is a powerful, global system that reaches a reported 92% of all internet users, the GDN provides a variety of targeting options to reach existing and prospective customers at every stage in their purchase journey.
The consumer journey has increased in complexity and now involves multiple research and consideration stages. In the digital era these steps tend to involve multiple channels; display advertising can play a big part in:
- Establishing a want or need
- Assisting with research and consideration
- Establishing or reinforcing a positive brand sentiment
- Assisting or directly attributing to sales
Why use display advertising?
Display advertising across the GDN allows you to reach your target audience more accurately and in more cost effective way than with traditional channels like billboard, press or TV. You’ve got the potential to reach an enormous audience, but with much greater precision, as you pay ‘per click’ rather than for blanket coverage.
On top of this, with online display advertising you are able to monitor the user response and engagement with your brand more closely than when using traditional advertising.
- The ability to reach the people you are truly interested in and who you know will be interested in you.
- The visual nature of display – you can use animation as well as image – captures your audience’s attention more effectively than text alone. You can even go interactive.
- The range of targeting methods available enables the development of focused campaigns in which ads appear to a very specific, highly relevant audience.
- Users can be targeted at different stages of the buying cycle, putting them into the start or middle of your conversion funnel.
Standard or responsive?
Across the Google Display Network (GDN), responsive ads are now the default to ensure a smooth experience for consumers across devices and greater efficiency for advertisers (automatically adjusting their size, appearance, and format to fit available ad spaces). However, if you want to retain full creative control over your display ads, standard image ads are the way to go.
You can customise the colours, fonts, and layouts used in your ads – ensuring your image is consistent and high quality, allowing you to strengthen brand awareness.
The three critical elements of a display ad: design, message, and targeting
Ads with clear and crisp images are more likely to stand out and encourage people to click – so getting the size and format right is essential.
Download this cheat which shows the five most successful ad sizes for those on a basic budget (and that can be automatically resized to fit 95% of the available placements on the GDN); and which other sizes to consider including as your budget allows.
As with all ad copy, the wording for display ads should be clear and focus on unique selling points, prices and promotions. Don’t detract from the impact of your image by cluttering with unnecessary words.
- Headline – use a clear and simple text to describe your product, service or brand.
- Description (80-character limit) – use sentence case and avoid using all caps to ensure your text is easy to read and understand.
- CTAs – trigger attention and generate action by creating a sense of urgency.
Display advertising allows you to target different segments of your audience with messages that are specific to them. These targeting methods can include:
- Location – target users in a specific location that your business services or tailor ad messages exclusively to different locations.
- Demographics- target your users based on gender, age and parental status.
- Ad scheduling- decide what times of day and days of the week you want your ads to appear on.
- Contextual – use keywords content you want your ads to appear next to.
- Placement – nominate the sites on which your ads will show.
- Remarketing – allows you to show content to users that have previously visited your site.
- Topic – target based on the theme of the sites.