October 23 marked the 20th anniversary of the launch of Google AdWords, the search engine marketing leader now rebranded as Google Ads. The platform’s goal, according to the official Google Ads Twitter account, has always been to ‘”make it easy for anyone – even those who have little or no online advertising experience” to promote their business online.’
Over the past two decades, the platform has come to dominate the search engine marketing industry. Its growth has been especially noticeable since 2015: after 15 years, Google AdWords was a $60 billion business; in 2019, it generated roughly $135 billion in revenue.
As Search Engine Land pointed out on Friday, a lot has changed in the past five years. In fall 2015, Google Ads launched Customer Match, its first foray into audience targeting. It has also ramped up automation – today, campaigns can now generate targeting strategies and creative based on a handful of advertiser inputs; responsive ads automatically combine titles and descriptions based on machine learning.
Google Ads now appear across a wider-than-ever selection of Google properties, including Search, Maps, the Display Network, YouTube, Google Play, Gmail, the Discover Feed, Google Shopping, and more. Whatever audience you’re trying to target, Google has a way to reach them.
Of course, Google Ads’ meteoric success has been accompanied by intensifying scrutiny from lawmakers. This month, the United States hit Google with what the Guardian called “the most significant monopoly-related charges to be filed in the US in decades.” The lawsuit accuses Google of “harming competition in internet search and search advertising through distribution agreements.”
In other words, despite Google Ads’ wild success, its future is, for perhaps the first time, unclear. In the meantime, you can rely on GrowthEngine Media to provide every variety of digital marketing services, from search engine marketing to virtual reality. We are a Google Premier Partner with valuable insights into Google preferred practices – reach out today to learn more.