Miss the Google 2016 Performance Summit? We Have Your Recap

If you don’t find yourself in the daily trenches of the digital marketing world—but still want to know what Google is up to—this post is for you. At the recent Google 2016 Performance Summit, Google detailed key changes coming to the world of digital marketing. Highlights from the event include:

How a “mobile-first” world is changing search engine marketing
What micro-moments are and how they affect your digital strategy
How managing paid search ads will be changing

The Evolution of Search Engine Marketing
If you want to play a drinking game at a digital summit, do it with the phrase “mobile-first.” Everyone is looking at their phone – all the time – and the advancement of smartphone technology has led to changes in digital marketing.

As a result of widespread mobile browsing, Google is changing text ads to have longer headlines for search ads, and now introduces the ability to run responsive display ads that automatically adjust to screen size. This may not sound groundbreaking, but to search engine marketers, it is the equivalent of increasing the character limit on Twitter.

Google says that this change will give mobile customers more information before they click, making customers click only on links that they actually need, making more money for both Google and effective advertisers.

Mega Focus on Micro-moments
What’s a micro-moment, you ask? A micro-moment is how we define the instant a person decides to do a (Google) search. The motivation behind that micro-moment can be distilled into one of four categories:

I want to know – When the user is looking for a specific bit of information
I want to go – When the user is looking to reach a particular website. There’s only one likely destination that they’re looking to reach.
I want to do – When the user wants a website with interaction through purchases, downloads, subscriptions, or registrations
I want to buy – When the user is ready to make a purchase

Targeting your ad to one of these wants is a recipe for success – it increases the chances that your target audience comes to you to fulfil their needs.

One of the most effective ways to distill these micro-moments into paid search opportunities is with Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSA)—which have also received a facelift with these updates. Instead of just showing display ads to people who have already visited your website (as seen with traditional remarketing ads), you can actually target previous visitors separately from those who are not yet familiar with your site. You can bid aggressively for return visitors, move them to a page further down the Buyer’s Journey, or even cross-sell different products.

Already selling someone a chromatography column? Consider launching these RLSA ads for related products and continue to expand your business with existing clients.

AdWords Upgrades
You might have overheard your digital team talking about an update to the AdWords platform. Here’s the gist – the platform was redesigned to help streamline three things:

Make it easier for you to identify paid search opportunities
Accomplish more with the opportunities you pursue
Focus on your business by updating design, measurement, and bidding

Essentially, AdWords will look different (new design), speak differently (new measurement), and ask for things in a nicer way (new bidding). Despite the changes, the nuts and bolts are the same – it still has all the capabilities of previous versions, but this way making the most of all of its targeting features is a little easier.

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