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How Effective Is Google’s Display Network And Is It Worth It?

In the digital world, things are constantly changing, evolving, shifting. There aren’t too many constants, well, apart from Google. For us digital marketers, Google is our mogul.  

The trust it encourages, its brand recognition and market saturation make Google the elite service it is known as. However, it is so much more than a digital marketing platform.  

Google’s Display Network enforces the company’s power on a whole other level… But what exactly is it? And is it worth us using? Read this blog to find out. 

What Is Google’s Display Network? 

You might not think you know what it is, but you will have certainly seen it.  

Google’s Display Network is a collection of over 200 million sites, apps and videos where Google ads are shown. We are certain you’ll have seen it because the network reaches 90% of global internet users.  

Google ads can only offer so much, as in they’ll only appear on Google’s web search. Whereas, when using Google’s Display Network, ads will appear on other Google-owned properties, like YouTube or Gmail.  

Websites that utilise the AdSense side of Google Ads are also included in Google’s Display Network. AdSense (for those who don’t know) allows online publishers to earn money from their content.  

History Of Google’s Display Network 

If we take it back a few decades (sorry to offend anyone) … 

  • DoubleClick, founded in 1996, was essentially the front-running display server for online ads. 
  • 4 years later, Google launched AdWords (now recognised as Google Ads) in 2000.  
  • A company called Applied Semantics created AdSense in 2002, which was then acquired by Google in 2003, allowing publishers to monetise content with PPC ads.  
  • This was all before Google’s Display Network had even come to be, in 2005. 
  • Google then acquired DoubleClick in 2007 for a mere $3.1 billion.  
  • In 2018, Google merged DoubleClick with its now-established Display Network to become a part of the overall Google marketing platform. 

How It Works 

  1. Ads can be created in a range of formats to best suit the target audience or advertisers’ capabilities; 
  1. You choose how you wish to target your ads to meet customers; 

a. Contextual targeting- on sites with relevant content 

b. Audience targeting- based on demographics, interests and behaviours

c. Placement targeting- choose specific sites or pages for your ad

d. Topic targeting- on sites that relate to a chosen topic  

e. Geographic and language targeting- based on location and language settings 

f. Device targeting- ads for specific devices i.e. mobile, tablet, desktop 

  1. Smart Bidding Strategies are recommended to advertisers based on their goals; 

a. Cost-Per-Click (CPC): Advertisers are required to pay when someone clicks on their ad,  

b. Cost-Per-Thousand Impressions (CPM): Advertisers pay when their ad is shown 1000 times,  

c. Cost-Per-Acquisition (CPA): Payment is required when the ad results in an action, like a sign-up or sale.  

  1. Create and manage ads through Google Ads to ensure they are responsive and perform optimally.  
  1. Track the performance of ads through analytics and performance tools. You can measure; 

a. Impressions, 

b. Clicks,  

c. Conversions,  

d. Audience Engagement  

Benefits And Setbacks Of Google’s Display Network 

What Is Click Fraud? 

Like most things in the digital world, Google’s Display Network is susceptible to fraudulent activity. 

There are services out there that offer ‘bot clicks’. Appearing as a legitimate viewer of your ad, they will click through but intentionally not make a purchase and never convert.  

When a competitor catches wind that you’re paying for ads, which are driving your advantage and taking traffic they want, they may employ one of these shady services. The intent is to drain your marketing budget and damage the effectiveness of this platform. And because the clicks appear legitimate, it is hard to catch… 

… But not impossible. If you notice a spike in traffic for your ad, with no conversions, you can track down the site that is causing those clicks and blacklist it in your ad settings.  

How Effective Is Google’s Display Network? 

Despite the possible disadvantages and the threat of click fraud, we still argue that Google’s Display Network is effective.  

With any advertising platform, fraudulent attempts or setbacks will occur. Google’s detection methods for scammers are extremely sophisticated, which means that bot networks that attempt to trick the system are expensive. Competitors will be deterred by the price, as it’s barely worth it. 

Google’s Display Network is a highly integrated tool, with support from the search network itself, Google Analytics and even Google Help. You have got everything you need in one place, with a pretty bow on top.  

It’s less a question about how effective Google’s Display Network is, but how you use it to achieve your advertising goals. Ensuring you have a tight strategy in place and have conducted extensive market research is the real key. 

Is It Worth It? 

To harness the full potential of Google’s Display Network you must take a strategic and adaptive approach.  

Should you manage a campaign thoroughly, make data-driven decisions and adapt accordingly, then yes. It can be worth it.  

Though the results can be instrumental for your business growth, we understand that not everyone has the time to manage campaigns so meticulously. That’s where GrowTraffic comes in.  

Our PPC management services help you get instant enquiries and hit sales targets with a budget you control. We can set up a new Google Ads campaign for you and manage every aspect of the paid advertising process. Need proof? Check out our case studies.  

Don’t wait to grow your business, get in touch with us today by emailing info@growtraffic.co.uk or calling us on 0161 706 0012.  

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