Types of Google Ads

December 14, 2021

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Google Ads has come a long way since the beginning of Google where you could only run text ads on the search engine. Now, there are many different types available for marketers to use in their campaigns and increase brand awareness!

How you set your pricing structure and what each option offers will help maximise the return on investment for advertisers. Understanding these different options is crucial in deciding which one best suits an online business’ needs.

Google Ad Types 101

Google offers plenty of options when it comes to paid online advertising. Each type of campaign comes with its own benefits, different ad format, and even specific goals it helps businesses achieve. Here’s a list of all types of Google Ads and who they’re perfect for.

1. Google Search Network Ads

Google Search Network Ads are what people most likely think about when they hear the words “Google” and ads. These advertisements leverage your search engine to show up on top of a result page, just before organic results do too.

Search Networks ads can also appear on:

  • Google Play
  • Google Shopping
  • Google Images
  • Google Maps, including the app

The most common types of search ads are:

  • Text ads, to which you can also include ad extensions, such as business address or phone numbers;
  • Dynamic Search Ads – they use website content to target users and add to your keywords for you;
  • Call-only ads – they appear only on devices that can make phone calls

Certain search partners can also host image and video ads as well.

2. Display Network Ads

Display ads can appear on any website or app with the potential for reaching 90% of all internet users.

These are banner ads that need to catch a user’s attention and get them to click while they are technically focused on other content. However, display ads have a more comprehensive targeting procedure, allowing you to target even based on website topic as opposed to just keywords.

Google Display Network ads also come in different formats:

  • Responsive display ads – a partially automated way to create ads for GDN;
  • Uploaded image ads;
  • Engagement ads, which can be image or video;
  • Gmail ads – expandable ads in the Gmail inbox.

3. Shopping Campaign

Shopping campaigns are a great way to promote your business online. They can show up in search engines, but unlike text ads, they’ll also have pictures of the products you’re selling so people who search for what you offer will know which one is right.

When you create a shopping campaign, the ads will appear on relevant search pages and not just in front of keywords. You can submit your data through Merchant Center with all the necessary information for each product so that Google knows how to show them specifically when someone searches for an item they want.

There are three types of shopping ad formats:

  • Product shopping ads – created based on the product data from the Merchant Center.
  • Showcase Shopping ads – a form of ad groups, as you’ll group multiple related products together.
  • Local inventory ads – these ads appear in the Google Display Network.

Other places where these ads can appear include:

  • The Shopping tab on Google Search (feature only available in certain countries).
  • Google search partner websites.

4. Video Campaigns

You may want to promote your product or service through video content. Well, Google can accommodate that too! Video Ads are only available for YouTube and across the Google Display Networks platform (for now). The ad format for video ads is quite diverse and includes:

  • Skippable in-stream ads – they run before, during, or after the video for 5 seconds, and then the user can skip it;
  • Non-skippable in-stream ads – run the same way, but for 15 seconds maximum and the user cannot skip them;
  • Video discovery ads – only appear on YouTube and reach people in places where they are looking for content, such as the suggestion section;
  • Outstream ads – appear on partner sites, and are only available on mobile and tablets;
  • Bumper ads – short, 6 seconds, or fewer ads that are unskippable. They are designed for increasing brand awareness.

5. App Campaign

If you want to get the word out about your app, there are some great options for advertising on Google. You can create a campaign specifically designed just for mobile apps and use their exclusive features that will help reach users in an iPhone or Android environment as well.

App campaigns promote apps across the Search network, Google Play, YouTube, Discover tab, and the Google Display Network. Unlike most Google campaign types, you don’t create individual ads for your campaign. Google will use any text and assets you provide, as well as take inspiration from the store listing to create several ads, with several ad formats.

Google handles the bulk of your campaign settings, like what is a maximum bid or budget. You may still have some say in certain aspects though. For example, if you would rather not share with Google who is bidding on an ad space then that’s possible too.

Which Campaign Type Is for You?

As you can see, there are plenty of ad campaign types to choose from, some with very specific goals in mind (like the app campaigns), others for broader purposes.

It’s important to first consider what your business goals are, and where you’re more likely to get closer to the ideal target audience. Google helps facilitate certain activities such as phone calls or app downloads but most of these gaps have been filled by advertisers themselves.

New to Google Ads? Get started with one campaign type and slowly branch out from there.

We can help you get started. Schedule a free appointment with one of our Google Ads Experts at Australian Internet Advertising to find out more.

Billy P.

About The Author

William Polson founded Australian Internet Advertising in 2013 and has over 12 years of experience immersed in Digital Marketing.

With an in-depth level of digital marketing knowledge, William has been sort after by and worked for, many large national brands including Subaru, Blooms The Chemist, and Nova 96.9.

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