The Google AdWords Re-brand- What Does it Mean?

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Jess Staines's picture
Jess Staines
Digital Communications Executive
Our fabulous Digital Communications Executive Jess is full of hidden talents and skills. From revitalising our marketing materials to analysing our client’s websites, she certainly has hit the ground running.

The Google AdWords Re-brand- What Does it Mean?

When it launched in 2000, Google AdWords was simply a platform for running text ads on desktop search. A lot has changed in the last 18 years; the influence of digital is becoming ever more evident with businesses and for consumers. In June this year, Google announced that AdWords would be re-branded to become Google Ads. The core function of the platform is not changing, however, it is “indicative of where we have been directing products over the last few years” according to Sridhar Ramaswamy, Google’s SVP of ads.

Adwords was Google’s PPC platform, or pay-per-click platform. This allowed businesses to create ads and pay for them to be shown to a relevant audience, based on keywords in their Google search. The re-brand to Google Ads suggests that Google are moving towards a fully keywordless ads experience. The introduction of dynamic search ads in October 2010 was one of the early indicators, as advertisers could serve search ads without keywords, with Google determining whether an advert should display based on the content on the advertisers website. Roughly a month later, Google Shopping ads were introduced where Google determined if an ad would display based on product feed for an advertiser’s website, as opposed to keywords.

Since these changes, Google has begun the process of diluting match types by including plurals as variations of keywords. In 2017, it diluted exact match allowing it to match for close variants, plurals, typos, abbreviations and adverbs. An exact match gave users the option to obtain matches to a very specific keyword or keyword phrase. This gave businesses a lot of control over what searches they were appearing for. Google has gradually been allowing more room for manoeuvre within keyword match types, which has divided opinions from businesses using the platform.  

By phasing out keywords, Google can find additional relevant searchers that advertisers are not appearing for, and show ads to them. This will enable Google to generate more revenue as previously keywords were preventing this. However, having no keywords is not necessarily what all users want. Some advertisers have come up with innovative solutions to reverse some of Google’s changes to gain back additional control.

The new Google Ads platform launched at the end of July 2018. Its modern interface was not too dissimilar from the recent version of Adwords, but differences are noticeable. The re-brand has divided opinion, as some believe the changes to the platform are taking control away from the businesses creating the ads.  Others applaud the new interface and the fact that Google is creating updates that are user friendly. Nonetheless, all businesses are going to have to monitor the changes within Google Ads and adjust their strategy accordingly.

Our digital communications team at MAXX has a lot of experience in creating and monitoring PPC accounts for a range of our clients. If you want to know how the Google Ads changes are affecting your PPC, or you are interested in creating PPC campaigns for your business, get in touch today.