Tag Archives: Google Marketing Platform

New automated bidding solutions in Display & Video 360

Automated bidding in Display & Video 360 helps advertisers respond to what consumers are seeking in the moment by using Google’s advanced machine learning to predict campaign performance and place your bids accordingly. As customer behavior changes, automated bidding adapts and tailors your bids in real time for every auction giving you more flexibility than a fixed bidding approach. Now we are making automated bidding more powerful by introducing Custom Bidding, a new way to incorporate your unique insights about what drives your business into your bidding strategies.

Here’s how it works: first, you identify a key performance indicator (KPI), such as revenue or brand lift, that you want to optimize. Next, you define the proxy signals that help predict success with your KPI. For example, you might select transaction value as a proxy for revenue or creative dimension as a proxy for brand lift -- you can choose as a signal anything that is measurable as a Floodlight activity or a goal in Google Analytics 360. Finally, you build a script that uses these signals to assign scores to ad impressions in order to define how much each impression is worth to you, based on its expected ability to drive your chosen KPI. Once the campaign starts, Display & Video 360 will use the scoring model built on your script to predict the value of each impression and adjust each bid accordingly.

Custom Bidding will be available to all Display & Video 360 accounts in the next few weeks. Support for including Analytics 360 goals as Custom Bidding signals will launch in the next few months.

Office Depot wanted to improve campaign performance by tuning its ads to specifically drive high value purchases, instead of optimizing for total transactions. They turned to their agency partner, Wavemaker, to see how they could tailor their bidding strategy to optimize for revenue and not conversions. Wavemaker recommended using Custom Bidding to inform Google’s machine learning with Office Depot’s transaction values. They then put it to test with the cost per acquisition (CPA) automated bidding strategy and saw an immediate improvement in their return.

By assigning higher value to larger sales, Custom Bidding allowed us to increase our return on ad spend by 30 percent in the test group compared to our previous bidding strategies. Calisha Anderson
Sr. Program Manager, eCommerce - Office Depot

Make better use of your advertising budgets

We’ve also heard from advertisers that they’d like options for buying digital ads that increase their chances of hitting their campaign performance goals. Outcome based buying allows you to only pay for the results that support your campaign goals, so that you can make better use of your advertising budgets. Outcome based buying currently supports performance campaigns by allowing marketers to pay per click for campaigns that use either target cost per acquisition (CPA) or maximize conversions strategies. In the next few months we’ll introduce pay for viewable impressions as measured by Active View both for your display and video campaigns, which will reduce budget waste and increase the impact of your branding campaigns too.

Select outcome based buying when setting up a new insertion order

Joyn, one of the largest digital video streaming services in Germany, used outcome based buying to support the launch of their new subscription service. They wanted to see if paying only for clicks would result in lower cost per acquisition (CPA) compared to their previous auto bidding strategy to minimize CPA. So they ran an A/B test and discovered that outcome based buying delivered a 69 percent lower CPA.

Outcome based buying outperforms our regular bidding strategy by generating more signups for our budget. In just a few weeks we have seen a 225 percent increase in conversions driven by higher click through and conversion rates. Marcus Liprecht
Senior Online Marketing Manager - Joyn

These new bidding features will help you be more responsive to changing consumer behavior by giving you the flexibility and choice you need to make every marketing dollar count across your brand and performance campaigns.

Reach your audience where they are now with Display & Video 360

Media consumption habits are rapidly changing. Planning tools that are tightly connected to your media buying platform can help you reassess your media plans and quickly adjust your ad strategy to reach people where they are now.

We’re expanding the reach forecasting capabilities in Display & Video 360 to offer a deduplicated view of expected campaign reach across open auction display, video and YouTube so that media planners can have a comprehensive and accurate view of their potential audience. And to better support collaboration between planning and buying teams, the planning workspace is now more easily accessible to media planners, thanks to a new dedicated user role.

A deduplicated view of your Display & Video 360 reach 

Media planners aim to get the most comprehensive view of all the media available so they can design relevant and effective plans. In Display & Video 360, you could already forecast the reach of your video campaigns in the plan workspace. For planners to effectively plan across all their programmatic buys, we have added support for display formats.

That means that media planners no longer have to rely on reach metrics from past campaigns to guesstimate the reach of their upcoming display ad campaigns. They can now rely on display forecasts that take into account insights that are unique to Display & Video 360 such as brand safety settings and Google audience details. For example, it is now possible to accurately estimate the reach of a display campaign aimed at reaching the Google affinity audience “Aspiring Chefs” as they enjoy content suitable for general audiences.

But the primary objective of media planning is to understand how many people are likely to be exposed to your brand across formats and inventory. So building on Google's Unique Reach methodology, we also enabled fully deduplicated reach forecasts in Display & Video 360 across open auction display, open auction video and YouTube.

Once we commit to a reach objective, neither underachieving nor overachieving is an option. Display & Video 360 gives media planners the accuracy they need to effectively plan across all our programmatic campaigns. Anudeep Pedditi
Programmatic Manager, OMD NZ

With this capability, you can now answer questions such as “how many unique people can I expect to reach with my overall campaign across any open auction display and video inventory as well as YouTube?” In addition to reach, you can also see projections for other important campaign metrics such as frequency, viewability and cost as you plan. And you can see how many people you will reach if you apply Google audience segments or if you choose to use your own audience data.

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Display & Video 360 reach forecasting tool quickly calculating estimated deduplicated reach across YouTube, open auction display and video formats

A dedicated user role for planners

Media planners are increasingly being held accountable for how well an ad campaign actually delivers against the plan that was shared with clients or other teams. As a result, we are seeing stronger collaboration across media planning and buying teams.

To help foster this collaboration, we just introduced a dedicated user role for media planners. For the first time, agencies and advertisers can invite their media planners directly into Display & Video 360. This new role enables access just to the relevant elements of Display & Video 360 for media planners, giving them visibility into the critical media planning information they need to collaborate, learn, iterate and build more impactful media plans.

With the new dedicated role, planners can see cross-channel reach and cost estimates first-hand which facilitates the process of allocating budget and delivers better performance for the client. Azriel Chan
Head of Platforms & Capabilities, OMD NZ

For example, media planners can access accurate forecasts for campaigns bought programmatically in Display & Video 360 and discover new publishers and inventory. With the Partner account owner’s permission, they can also start a negotiation with a publisher or renegotiate an existing deal. This gives them tools to better inform their planning process and freedom to check and update their plans and recommendations whenever they need.

Before launching your next programmatic campaign, give your media planning team access to the Display & Video 360 planning workspace so they can accurately estimate how many people are likely to be exposed to your brand across formats and inventory, and design the best media plan to deliver on your objectives.

It’s faster and easier to use Ads Data Hub

Advertisers tell us that understanding the business impact of their marketing is more important than ever. But they also report that it’s becoming more difficult as the industry—in response to growing concerns about privacy—changes its practices around how data is collected and used. Ads Data Hub enables customized analysis of your Google ad campaigns while protecting user privacy and upholding Google’s high standards of data security.

Today, we’re providing an update on improvements to Ads Data Hub that help you analyze data more quickly and easily, better understand the way that people interact with your ads, and use insights from your data to reach the right customers. With these updates, you can tailor your measurement to your unique business needs, understand how your marketing is performing, and drive the greatest business impact.

Improvements to help you analyze your data faster and easier

Over the past year, we’ve been investing in the infrastructure that underlies Ads Data Hub to make it available to a larger number of customers and simplify the process of writing queries. Over 200 brands, agencies and measurement partners are actively using Ads Data Hub today. And usage continues to increase, with successful queries up over 145 percent in 2019 compared to 2018. But we’ve heard from customers that we need to make it faster and easier to run analysis.

In the coming weeks, we’ll add self-service account linking for Google Ads, Campaign Manager, and Display & Video 360, so you can more easily access your Google ad campaign data across multiple products in a secure, privacy-centric environment. This includes allowing you to create multi-tier account structures, which adds flexibility to how brands and agencies can configure ads data within Ads Data Hub to address unique account hierarchies and user access requirements.

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Link your Google Ads, Campaign Manager, and Display & Video 360 accounts to Ads Data Hub

We’re making it easier to run analysis with a Sandbox environment, which recently rolled out to all customers. This environment includes a test dataset and can be used to experiment with data and query development, which can help make execution faster by giving you a better understanding of the types of queries you can write and insights you can get in Ads Data Hub.

We’ve also launched a new query library that gives you access to over 20 templates for the most common types of analysis run in Ads Data Hub. For example, the All events template can be used to get impressions, clicks, conversions and Active View stats for a specific account. Ads Data Hub users can also suggest new templates directly via the in-product feedback form.

A frequent request we’ve heard from customers is to be able to access and analyze ad data closer to real-time. To address this, we’ve brought latency down from 24-48 hours to 6 hours for display and YouTube ads data from Google Ads, as well as for data from YouTube ads bought via Display & Video 360. That means, if an impression was served at 8am, you can query data associated with that impression from 2pm on the same day.

New ways to understand the consumer journey

Manually stitching together event-level data from Campaign Manager and Display & Video 360 to reconstruct the path to purchase is possible today in Ads Data Hub, but it can be time-consuming and difficult. That’s why we’ve introduced consumer journey paths, a set of pre-processed data that automatically join impression, click, and conversion events together if they’re part of a single journey. This will help advertisers get valuable insights about the consumer journey faster and with higher quality output than manual approaches, and is available to all Ads Data Hub customers that have Campaign Manager and Display & Video 360 data enabled in their account.

To cover more of the ways people interact with media and your brand, we’re expanding beyond computer, mobile and tablet device measurement to include TV screens. This includes coverage for connected TV and gaming consoles. These devices are becoming a bigger part of many media plans, so understanding their role in delivering value for your business is also becoming more important.

Today, Ads Data Hub includes key advertising metrics such as viewability, impressions, clicks, and conversions from display and video ads in Google Ads, Campaign Manager, and Display & Video 360. And in the coming months we’re enabling more measurement use cases by adding advanced Active View metrics for YouTube—including viewability and audibility metrics—that allow you to uncover deep insights into creative performance and user attention.

Reach the right customers with customized audience list creation

Beyond measurement, one of biggest pieces of feedback we’ve heard from customers is that they’d like to take action on the insights they uncover in Ads Data Hub, while protecting user privacy. We’ve begun a test to allow a limited group of customers to build audience lists based on clicks or conversions from Google Ads, Campaign Manager, and Display & Video 360, and use these audience lists to inform who sees display ads in Google Ads and Display & Video 360. For example, you could create an audience list in Ads Data Hub of users that have already purchased your product, then use that as an exclusion list to ensure you don’t continue to show them your ads served via Google Ads and Display & Video 360.

User privacy protections are deeply embedded across all of these features, and—as always—there’s an aggregation requirement of at least 50 users for output of any data from Ads Data Hub. Over time, we'll continue to evolve the capabilities of Ads Data Hub by providing access to additional ads datasets and developing deeper integrations across our ad platforms.

Source: Google Ads

Improved frequency management for Programmatic Guaranteed

Frequency management helps marketers and agency partners deliver a better user experience and reduce budget waste by controlling the number of times people see their ads. That’s why, when we introduced Programmatic Guaranteed in Display & Video 360 a few years ago, we gave you a way to manage ad frequency across these deals and your open auction buys together. Once you reached your frequency goal for a specific user across both buys, the open auction portion of the campaign would stop showing ads to that user. However, Programmatic Guaranteed would continue to serve ads to a user beyond your frequency goal until you reached the total number of impressions secured in the deal, consistent with a traditional reservation deal.

Now we’re improving how frequency management works for Programmatic Guaranteed deals in Display & Video 360. Once your overall campaign frequency goal has been reached for a user, whether via open auction, Programmatic Guaranteed, or a combination of the two, Display & Video 360 will attempt to stop showing more ads to that user from your Programmatic Guaranteed deals while still prioritizing and ensuring that they deliver the agreed number of impressions. This will further reduce overexposure, resulting in an even better experience for users and less waste for advertisers.

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With a frequency goal of five at the campaign level, both the open auction and Programmatic Guaranteed deal stopped showing ads to a user that had already seen the ad five times.

Keep your campaigns running longer

Managing frequency for your campaigns is especially important when you want to stay visible over an extended period of time. This was the case for Samsung when they launched the new Galaxy A6 in Indonesia. For new mobile phone launches, there may be a lot of initial interest, but it's hard to predict exactly when consumers will be ready to buy, so Samsung needed to stay top of mind for several weeks after launch. With traditional reservation campaigns, they could deliver the booked impressions very quickly, but were reaching some consumers too often, up to eight times per day, wasting budget and potentially harming their brand. When Samsung tested Programmatic Guaranteed with the improved frequency management, they were impressed with the results as they reduced the per-user daily exposure, their ads stayed visible for longer, and their total reach improved significantly.
With Programmatic Guaranteed with frequency management we were able to reach four times more unique consumers than traditional reservations Ratna Kemuning
Media Manager at Samsung Electronics Indonesia

Monitor efficiency gains in real-time

We're also introducing a new dashboard that shows you how many wasted impressions you are avoiding - and budget you are reinvesting to reach new users - for each Programmatic Guaranteed deal using Display & Video 360's frequency management tools. Having a real-time view of budget savings gives marketers and agency partners more control and precision in evaluating their campaign performance.

The new dashboard shows the increased effectiveness of consolidating deals in Display & Video 360. This creates a great opportunity to deliver better user experiences at scale and thus a solid basis for further investments in Programmatic Guaranteed. Sascha Dolling
Managing Partner Data Driven Marketing OMD Hamburg
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Display & Video 360’s new dashboard in the My Inventory tab shows budget savings reinvested and impressions passed due to frequency for each Programmatic Guaranteed deal.

You can also access the same information aggregated across multiple deals, by creating an offline report with the Programmatic Guaranteed savings template in the standard Display & Video 360 reporting.

If you want to get more control over ad frequency, set a frequency goal at the campaign level and all of the campaign’s insertion orders, including the ones with Programmatic Guaranteed deals, will take that goal into account. And once the campaign is running, you can easily see how the new feature is making the most of your budget with the new dashboard.

Get the reach of TV and the relevance of digital with Display & Video 360

Connected TV combines the reach and familiarity of traditional TV with the relevance and measurability of digital. For marketers to get the best of both worlds, we’re investing in connected TV advertising solutions designed to reach households at scale with messages that are relevant to users and respectful of their privacy. 

The reach of TV 

Brands have historically turned to traditional TV to connect at an emotional level with a wide range of people as they watch premium content. But as the media landscape becomes increasingly fragmented, advertisers have been left searching for new ways to engage with viewers at scale and build their brands. Good news - with more and more premium TV content available via streaming and accessible with programmatic technology, achieving reach through connected TV in a high-quality, brand safe environment has never been easier.

To help marketers quantify this opportunity, we retained Comscore to evaluate the reach of Display & Video 360’s connected TV advertising solutions in the US. Comscore’s analysis found that with Display & Video 360 marketers can now reach 76 percent of all connected TV households in the US and 89 percent of ad-supported connected TV households.1 This accounts for more than half of all US Wi-Fi households and this number is expected to increase as connected TV penetration grows. In addition to YouTube, Display & Video 360 provides access to 9 of the top 10 most watched ad supported connected TV apps from cable and broadcast channels in the US.

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Just as connected TVs are becoming mainstream devices in US homes, buying connected TV ads programmatically is also becoming a mainstream way to engage with all sorts of audience groups ranging from cable subscribers to cord-cutters, and from Gen X to more senior viewers. To test this assumption, we looked at the reach of Display & Video 360 across different household types. As it turns out, while Display & Video 360 connected TV ads remain a must-have if you’re after cord-nevers and younger viewers, they are now relevant to your strategy no matter the age and TV subscription status of your core audience.

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The relevance and measurability of digital 

What makes connected TV advertising especially powerful is its ability to apply best practices from the digital world. For example, frequency management helps you spend money efficiently and avoid ad fatigue with users.

Last year, we announced that Display & Video 360 was supporting the IAB Tech Lab guidelines and using the Identifier for Advertising (IFA) to effectively manage ad frequency for connected TV. IFA is a standardized identifier that can be disabled or reset by the user. Since then, the industry has widely adopted IFA. In fact, last year alone, Display & Video 360 saw an 88 percent increase in connected TV IFA adoption by publishers on our top five video exchange partners.2 Today, to further extend your frequency management capabilities, we’re working with inventory providers to support IFAs at the exchange and publisher levels. For example, we recently integrated with Telaria’s video management platform, enabling you to control frequency in a user-first way on publishers such as Hulu, Pluto TV or Lifetime.

To help you deliver a more pleasant and personalized viewing experience on connected TV, we have also integrated with audience and measurement partners investing in the IFA standard. Display & Video 360 now supports Comscore’s IFA-based audience segments across connected TV devices.

If you want to explore connected TV ads as a way to recreate your TV reach in 2020, Display & Video 360 will help you connect with a large number of streaming households. And to harness the digital capabilities of connected TV advertising, make sure you use IFA to manage how often viewers should see your spot and what is the most appropriate ad message.

1. Source: Comscore Total Home Panel Custom Report, Sept. 2019, U.S.

2. Internal data, IFA coverage for top exchanges, US, Jan 2020

What’s new in App + Web properties

This July we announceda new property type in Google Analytics that helps you measure across both your app and website in one place. The new App + Web property helps you better understand your customers’ journeys across platforms so you can deliver more unified experiences.

Recently, we’ve introduced enhancements that allow you to measure multiple websites, do even more custom analysis, and get faster insights from your data.

Measure multiple web streams in a single property

App + Web properties now support multiple web streams, including Firebase web apps, in a single property—up to 50 data streams across your apps, websites, and web apps. This allows you to see metrics aggregated across all your related apps and websites, or apply filters to compare them individually. For example, if you were an online retailer with multiple regional stores, you could see your total global sales for the month or compare the sales of each of your regional sites and apps. 

More options for custom analysis

In July we introduced the Analysis module in App + Web properties with five techniques to do cross-platform analysis with more flexibility. Now, we’ve added two more techniques to the mix: cohort analysis and user lifetime, as well as an update to the existing pathing technique and a larger window for historical data.

Cohort analysis helps you compare engagement between groups of similar users with more metric and dimension breakdowns.  For example, you can compare revenue between cohorts of users that were acquired at different times to understand the results of a change in your marketing strategy. 

User lifetime gives you insight into the lifetime activity of a group of users, based on custom dimensions you choose. For example, see how many lifetime in-app purchases were made by users acquired from a holiday promotion you ran.

Backward pathing allows you to work backwards from a conversion or other key event and analyze the differences, trends, or patterns users took to get there. For example, you can start from a purchase event to see how many users that made a purchase entered the funnel from an email campaign to your website, compared to a search ad that deep-links to your app.

Data retention has now expanded to up to 14 months across all techniques within the Analysis module so you can conduct longer term analyses, like year-over-year. Go to data settings in your property admin to increase data retention.

App and web insights at your fingertips

Automated and custom insights, previously available only for web, are now in App + Web properties. 

Automated insights use machine learning to identify key trends and anomalies in your data. For example, if there was an unusual spike in sales yesterday, you will get an alert of the change which you can then investigate. Automated insights get smarter and more relevant to your business over time. 

Custom insights give you the control to tell Analytics what metrics you’d like to be alerted about. For example, if you are a retailer and you’ve just released a new product, you may want to track sales specifically for that SKU.  You can set up a custom insight to alert you if the product’s sales increased by more than 10% week-over-week. These alerts can now be set up to run hourly, and you can receive email notifications within 5 minutes of a triggered alert.

Instant answers with search

When looking for specific insights in your Web properties you can simply ask a question in the search bar and get a quick answer. Today, we are extending this to App + Web properties, so you can ask questions and get holistic answers across your app and web data. 

Ask questions using keywords, such as “users from organic channel last week,” and a relevant answer will appear in the search dropdown. Be specific about the metric, dimension, and time frame to get the best results.

Automated and custom insights, as well as instant answers from the search dropdown, are available in App + Web properties today in English and will soon be available in all languages supported by Google Analytics. 

Next steps for App + Web properties

Businesses already see the benefits of bringing more of the customer journey into view. TUI group, a leading integrated tourism group based in Europe, is using App + Web properties to close the gap between their app and web data. 

Previously we had been manually stitching together app and web sessions in order to generate customer behaviour insight and value our marketing investments; this release unifies that data to show the full path to conversion. Dan Truman
Global Head of Digital Analytics, TUI Group

If you’re not already using the beta and your business is looking for a more complete view of how your customers engage across app and web, you can get started today by setting up a new property and linking your app and website.

Deliver consistent site experiences with Google Optimize

Consumers expect connected shopping experiences from research to purchase. But their journeys aren’t linear; they move around, visiting—and revisiting—multiple sites and apps, multiple times a day. 

This makes it challenging for businesses to deliver a coordinated site experience, especially if they are running an experiment or personalization on their site. How do they make sure that the version of their site someone saw in the morning is the same version they see in the afternoon? 

Google Optimize can now understand when a customer has returned to a site they visited before and deliver a consistent site experience. Let’s see how this works.

Imagine you’re a hotel business running a marketing campaign that promotes a 20 percent discount for the upcoming holiday season. When people visit your site in response to the campaign, you want to make sure you offer this discount to them throughout their entire booking experience, even if they come back multiple times before they make a reservation.

One part of your marketing campaign is paid media you buy through Google Ads. In this case, you would use Optimize to create a custom web page featuring the discount and then add the Google Ads rule to ensure this page is shown to people who first arrive to your site from your Google Ads campaign. There are likely many people who click on an ad, explore your site, then come back later to complete the reservation. Now, no matter how many other pages on your site people visit, or how many times they return over 24 hours, Optimize will automatically display that custom page to them each time. 

Another way you promote this sale is through email. For this part of your campaign, once you create a custom web page with the discount offer, add a utm_campaign parameter named “holiday-sale” to the URL in the email. Then in Optimize, add a UTM parameter rule for “holiday-sale.” Optimize can now use that parameter to display the correct experience every time people who received the promo email visit your site. In addition to email, you can also use the UTM parameter rule in advertising campaigns managed with Display & Video 360 and Search Ads 360, or any other campaigns you are running that support UTM parameters.


Create a UTM parameter rule to focus your experiment or personalization on a particular marketing campaign.

Royal Bank of Canada is an Optimize 360 customer that has already begun using UTM parameter rules. 

Together with their Google Marketing Platform Partner, Bounteous, they often use Optimize 360 to run personalizations across their entire website. Because most of these personalizations are focused on delivering the right content to the right user from their marketing campaigns, they were excited to start using the UTM parameter rule. 

"The customer journey at the Royal Bank of Canada is rarely linear. We need experiments that can react as customers frequently engage and navigate our website. The UTM parameter rule gives us that flexibility, and it is changing the way we approach our campaigns.” 

- Arnab Tagore, Senior Manager of Digital Analytics, Royal Bank of Canada

Both the Google Ads rule and UTM parameter rule are already available to use in Optimize and Optimize 360. We encourage you to go into your account and check them out and we look forward to sharing more new features that help you better meet your customers’ expectations and get the most out of your website.

A privacy-safe approach to managing ad frequency

At Google, we believe it's possible to improve user privacy while preserving access to the ad-supported web. Back in August, we shared an update on the progress we’re making toward this vision. Chrome put forward a series of proposals inviting the web standards community to start a discussion on how to advance user privacy while meeting the needs of publishers and advertisers. We also shared an initial proposal for practices that we believe would give people more visibility into and control over the data used for advertising.

Since then, we’ve engaged with product and engineering experts from across the digital ads ecosystem—including at the IAB Tech Lab’s Innovation Day on Data Responsibility, heard from brand and agency leaders during Advertising Week in New York, and met with our publishing and ad technology partners at the Google Ad Manager Partner Summit. This week, we’ll be holding discussions with our advertising and publishing partners in Europe at a series of events in London.

In all of these forums, the conversations have centered on how to reshape marketing and measurement solutions to be more privacy-forward for users, while ensuring they remain effective for the publishers and marketers that fund and sustain access to ad-supported content on the web.

One example is how advertisers manage the number of times someone sees an ad, a critical step to delivering a better user experience. When third-party cookies are blocked or restricted, advertisers lose the ability to limit the number of times someone sees their ads. This means that users may be bothered with the same ad repeatedly, advertisers may waste spend or decide to exclude certain media altogether, and publishers may earn less revenue as a result.

Using machine learning to manage ad frequency while respecting user privacy

That’s why, in the coming weeks, we’ll be rolling out a feature in Display & Video 360 that uses machine learning to help advertisers manage ad frequency in a way that respects user privacy when third-party cookies are missing. And in the future, we plan to bring this capability to our display offerings in Google Ads.

Using traffic patterns where a third-party cookie is available, and analyzing them at an aggregated level across Google Ad Manager publishers, we can create models to predict traffic patterns when a third-party cookie isn’t present. This allows us to estimate how likely it is for users to visit different publishers who are serving the same ads through Google Ad Manager. Then, when there is no third-party cookie present, we’re able to optimize how often those ads should be shown to users.

Since we aggregate all user data before applying our machine learning models, no user-level information is shared across websites. Instead, this feature relies on a publisher’s first-party data to inform the ad experience for its own site visitors. It’s an approach to managing ad frequency that’s more privacy safe than workarounds such as fingerprinting, which rely on user-level signals like IP address, because it respects a user’s choice to opt out of third-party tracking.

This is a step in the right direction as we work across Google to raise the bar for how our products deliver better user experiences while also respecting user privacy. And this approach to ad frequency management can be a model for how the use case might one day be solved industry wide at the browser level. It’s consistent with Chrome’s explorations of new technology that would advance user privacy, while ensuring that publishers and advertisers can continue to sustain access to content on the open web.

As we continue engaging with users and key industry stakeholder groups, we look forward to sharing more of what we learn. Stay tuned for more updates on our blogs.

Manage tags easily and safely with the new Community Template Gallery

Businesses often work with trusted partners to conduct a variety of important functions on their websites. These partners can help businesses accurately measure their online conversions or determine which product reviews to display. For all this to work  businesses need to implement tags, or code written by their partners, directly on their sites. It’s critical for businesses to trust that these tags are working as intended to protect their customers and brand. 

With that in mind, we’ve created the new Community Template Gallery for Google Tag Manager. Community Template Gallery is an open platform where partners can share their tag templates. Businesses can then customize these templates to easily implement tags on their websites.

Not only does Community Template Gallery help businesses quickly implement and manage tags, but it also provides more transparency into how these tags will behave—making the whole tagging process easier and safer.

Less code is more 

In the past, if your business needed to implement a partner tag that wasn’t already integrated with Tag Manager, getting that tag up and running would take a lot of manual work. You might have to consult with your partner to determine how to correctly customize and place the tag on your website so it was tailored for your business needs. Not only did this take a lot of time, it also required heavy involvement from developers, leaving lots of room for error.

Community Template Gallery reduces the potential for incorrect implementation. Once your partner shares their tag template in the gallery, you can find it and simply enter the required information in an intuitive UI. You do not need to customize any HTML or Javascript.
Businesses can add tag templates to their workspace and then tailor the tag by completing the form.

Businesses can add tag templates to their workspace and then tailor the tag by completing the form.

Community Template Gallery also helps partners keep tag templates up-to-date. Whenever partners make updates to their tag templates, the latest version will quickly become available. And if you’ve already implemented that tag template,  we’ll notify you that there is a new version that you can review before making the update.

Increased transparency 

When you publish a partner’s tag on your website, you need to understand what it does and trust that it won’t do anything unexpected. That’s why we’ve built a permissions system into Community Template Gallery.

Before you implement or update a tag from the gallery, you will now be able to review and approve the actions it will take when it becomes live on your website. This gives you more control and transparency over the tags on your sites.

Businesses can review and approve how a tag will behave when implemented on a website.

Businesses can review and approve how a tag will behave when implemented on a website.

Community Template Gallery is now live in both Tag Manager and Tag Manager 360. You’ll find many tag templates already included and ready to use. If you’re a tag developer, we encourage you to build and submit your template today.

Google Ads auction-time bidding comes to Search Ads 360

Smart Bidding in Google Ads uses machine learning to set bids at auction-time by factoring in a wide range of signals that help predict performance. Now you can take advantage of Google Ads auction-time bidding in your Search Ads 360 bid strategy. By activating auction-time bidding you can enhance your performance when bidding on Google Search, while still maintaining your cross-channel bidding strategy powered by Search Ads 360. During beta testing hundreds of Search Ads 360 advertisers enabled Google Ads auction-time bidding and saw an average lift in conversions of fifteen to thirty percent at the same or better ROI.

Identify more opportunities with auction-time signals

Every day billions of people turn to Google to find answers. While people are often searching for the same things, their searches are unique thanks to their context. This includes their device, browser, language, location, time of day, and other factors. Google Ads auction-time bidding automatically sets bids based on these signal combinations.

For Vodafone, factoring these signals into its bidding strategy was mission critical. Vodafone is one of the world’s largest telecom companies with mobile operations in 25 countries. During the beta period, Vodafone enabled Google Ads auction-time bidding in Search Ads 360 to ensure the right bid was being set for each auction across every location in which they operate. Now the team plans to activate Google Ads auction-time bidding across their Search Ads 360 bid strategies.

Auction-time bidding in Search Ads 360 has enabled us to leverage the full potential of Google’s Smart Bidding technology in combination with Search Ads 360 Floodlights. As a result we have been able to lower our cost-per-conversion by 15%. Samantha Mikula
Marketing Specialist, Vodafone

Reach more customers when they are ready to convert

Google Ads auction-time bidding anticipates when a conversion is likely by analyzing your account history, Floodlight conversions, and exclusive signal combinations. This unique approach improves Search Ads 360 bidding results by helping you reach more customers when they are ready to convert.

Head of Marketing, Jamima White, at Australian energy company AGL, discovered that Google Ads auction-time bidding helped drive results for her business in a competitive environment. With Google Ads auction-time bidding enabled, AGL saw conversion volume increase nineteen percent at the same cost per acquisition.

With Search Ads 360 and Google Ads auction-time bidding we have been able to increase conversions by 19% while maintaining the same cost per acquisition efficiency. Jamima White
Head of Marketing, AGL

Give Smart Bidding time to learn and improve

Google Ads auction-time bidding performance improves over time with more data. When enabling auction-time bidding, plan for a one-week window where Google Ads Smart Bidding learns about your business and doesn’t set auction-time bids. After the initial learning period, Google Ads will begin setting auction-time bids while continuously learning and adapting to changes in your performance. 

How to enable Google Ads auction-time bidding functionality in Search Ads 360

Auction-time bidding in Search Ads 360 is generally available for Google Search campaigns, and launching in open beta for shopping campaigns. If you’d like your shopping campaigns in Google Ads added to the beta, reach out to your account representative.

To get started with Google Search campaigns navigate to an existing bid strategy. Then, under “Engine features”, check the box for “Auction-time bidding.”

bid strategy

Enable Google Ads auction-time bidding with one click

To learn more about Google Ads auction-time bidding in Search Ads 360 visit the Help Center, or contact your account representative.