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Types of Display Ads on Google: A Comprehensive Guide Watch Overview

Types of Display Ads on Google: A Comprehensive Guide

We’re all used to seeing display ads around the web as we browse online, most of which appear to be served by Google.

But as advertisers, what types of display ads are there, and how can we start using them to get in front of our target audience?

What Are Display Ads?

You’re no doubt familiar with the type of ads that appear on Google Search.

These are usually text-based (except for the image-laden shopping ads), and are referred to as search ads. Advertisers can use them to target particular keywords.

What are Google's display ads? Display ads show on multiple sites around the web, including Google-owned properties, and millions of independent websites and apps.Click To Tweet

But another main option for Google advertisers is display ads, which have a range of additional targeting options and are shown to users as they traverse the web.

While not shown on Search, they are displayed on multiple other websites within Google’s Display Network, some of them Google-owned properties such as:

  • Gmail
  • YouTube
  • Google Finance
  • Blogger

Also in the Display Network are millions of websites and apps that show ads in return for commissions.

Display ads are just one type of ad you can run through Google Ads

Advertisers placing display ads can choose from a range of targeting options, including:

  • Audience segments—such as people who have previously taken a specific action on their website
  • Demographics—targeting people based on factors such as age, gender and income level
  • Keywords—ads will be shown on websites related to the targeted keywords
  • Topics—ads shown on websites in selected topic areas (based on a predefined list of topics)
  • Placements—this involves specifically indicating the websites, videos or apps the advertiser wants to target
Advertisers placing display ads with Google can choose from a range of targeting options, including audience segments, demographics, keywords, topics and placements.Click To Tweet

Other types of Google ad includes:

  • Shopping ads
  • Video ads
  • Discovery ads

Types of Display Ads on Google

While there used to be different types of display ads available for advertisers to create, there is now only one, Google’s Responsive Display Ads.

(Related: Google Ads: Responsive Search Ads and How to Use Them)

These greatly simplify and shorten the time needed to set up display ads, because advertisers previously needed to set up separate ads for all the different ad sizes Google has available.

Forgetting to create an ad for an available ad size would mean a loss of potential impressions, and therefore potentially impact the outcome of the campaign.

Different types of display ads shown on Google’s Display Network

You’d then need to come back and optimize your campaign against the different ad sizes—so all together, a fairly laborious process.

Responsive Display Ads largely change all of that, because Google takes care of the heavy lifting.

With Google's Responsive Display Ads, Google uses machine learning to automatically optimize your ads for you over time, finding the best combinations of different elements.Click To Tweet

Rather than separate ads, you’re now required to supply Google with the various elements they need to mix and match, and create suitable ads for you.

What’s more, Google uses machine learning to automatically optimize your ads for you over time, finding the best combinations based on the accumulating data, including ad location and who is viewing the ad.

Elements advertisers need to supply include:

  • Images
  • Logos
  • Videos
  • Headlines
  • Descriptions

With Google’s Responsive Display Ads, you supply multiple elements which Google then combines in different ways when the ad is placed

Available Display Ad Sizes

Some of the most popular sizes available for display ads include the following:

  • 728 x 90 — leaderboard
  • 160 x 600 — wide skyscraper
  • 336 x 280 — large rectangle
  • 300 x 250 — medium rectangle
  • 300 x 50 — mobile banner
  • 250 x 250 — square
  • 200 x 200 — small square
  • 120 x 600 — skyscraper

The different types of ad size available for Google’s display ads

An overview of the different ad sizing options can be seen in the following video, or in this guide.

But remember, with Google’s Responsive Display Ads, you no longer need to worry about setting up ads for each size — it’s all automatically taken care of for you.

Google's Responsive Display Ads mean that the appropriately sized ad is automatically created for you for the relevant placement, using the various elements you've provided.Click To Tweet

To Conclude

With the types of display ads on Google now simplified to just their Responsive Display Ad, setting up and then managing a display ad campaign is a whole lot simpler and quicker than it used to be!

Just provide the required elements, and then leave Google to find the best performing combinations for different placements, sizes and audiences.

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Steve Shaw is the founder of EverywhereMarketer, and has ran online businesses for over 20 years, serving over 13,000 customers in 137 countries. EverywhereMarketer helps you grow online visibility, attract more customers and grow your business across multiple channels.

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