These days, so much of the way Google’s search engine algorithm works is based on contextual information provided by users. It’s not enough to know what someone is looking for in a broad, literal sense. To increase the quality of their results pages, Google has gone to an enormous amount of effort to understand why someone is looking for a particular person, place, or thing.
Many of the announcements that came out of this year’s Google Marketing Live event were centered around audience interaction. Among the many exciting upgrades and enhancements was the brand-new gallery ads feature for search. This innovative ad format is set to roll out to advertisers around the world by the end of the year. Prabhakar Raghavan, SVP of Google Ads and Commerce, bills them as a way to “combin[e] search intent with a more interactive visual format.” Google’s ultimate goal is to make it easier for brands to communicate with the audience members they’ve dedicated themselves to serving.
The Arrival of Google’s Image Gallery Ads: Breaking Things Down
Google’s gallery ads are currently available in beta; however, their official launch is expected to happen later in the year. Here’s what you can expect from the new feature:
- Brands will get a chance to upload between four and eight unique images, along with a 70-character description and up to three distinct headlines to test.
- For right now, the ads will only show up at the top of the Google results page as well as on mobile devices.
- Users can swipe through the images until they find one they like. Then, they can tap on the image to expand it into a vertical view.
- Once users swipe down, a call to action will appear to go directly to the advertiser’s site.
Gallery ads are a new ad format, meaning you don’t have to set up a special campaign type to use them. They’re designed to run in your existing search campaign ad groups along with your standard text ads. Plus, they compete in the same auction against other text-based ads.
As far as payment is concerned, advertisers are charged for gallery ad impressions in one of two ways depending on their preferences. The first is a very traditional cost-per-click basis, where the user clicks on the headline and goes directly to your website. With this payment format, gallery ads are charged just like any normal text ad would be.
The other option involves being charged after a user swipes through at least three of the images in your gallery. This is something to pay attention to, as it indicates a higher level of engagement than a single click.
Why Gallery Ads Matter
It’s no secret that every marketer’s goal is to drive engagement. And if we can learn anything from Google’s latest release, it’s that images are key to accomplishing this goal. In fact, Google reports that ad groups with one or more gallery ads saw interactions rise by about 25 percent during testing.
It’s clear that gallery ads represent Google embracing a new trend in the ways that people interact with their search engines – and marketers everywhere should follow suit.
Drive Conversions with Help from an Expert Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Team
Curious about how Google’s new gallery ads can benefit your business? Reach out to Zero Gravity Marketing. Our knowledgeable PPC team will help you craft effective ad campaigns that drive conversions and increase your return on ad spend (ROAS). For more information, or to set up a consultation, contact us today!