From Google AdWords to Google Ads: The Evolution of Google’s Digital Ad Strategy

Kevin Szypula
hand pointing to bar graphs

After 18 years, Google has rebranded its flagship advertising product—AdWords—along with a few other ad offerings.

Here’s what the rebranding entailed:

  • Google AdWords switched to Google Ads.
  • DoubleClick advertiser products and Google Analytics 360 combined under the name Google Marketing Platform.
  • DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange became Google Ad Manager.

It’s fair to say Google’s ad products were due for a rebrand, especially considering that Google launched AdWords all the way back in 2000.

‘Google Ads Have Evolved’

According to Google, the rebranding effort was driven by the search engine’s desire to simplify its brands and product offering for advertisers and publishers. It was additionally an effort to better reflect the many different ways consumers engage with Google ads today.

“Mobile is now a huge part of our everyday lives,” Sridhar Ramaswamy, Senior Vice President of Ads and Commerce at Google, wrote on the search engine’s blog The Keyword“People quickly switch from searching for products, to watching videos, browsing content, playing games and more.

“As a result, marketers have more opportunities to reach consumers across channels, screens and formats,” he continued. “The opportunity has never been more exciting, but it’s also never been more complex. Over the years, Google ads have evolved from helping marketers connect with people on Google Search, to helping them connect at every step of the consumer journey through text, video, display and more.”

Ramaswamy added that the simpler naming of its advertising brands and solutions will help advertisers and publishers big and small choose the best ad options for their businesses. He said it will help those advertisers to create the right experiences for consumers across various devices and channels.

From 2000 to 2018: Growth & Diversification

It’s no big surprise that Google would choose to rebrand.

Just look how far the search engine and its advertising have come over the past 18 years.

Did you Know…?

  • AdWords launched October 23, 2000 with only 350 advertisers. Now, it has millions of advertisers and produces tens of billions of dollars for Google each year.

  • In 2000, Google had approximately 20 million searches a day. Today, that has swelled to over 3 billion searches a day.

  • Google has gone from focusing primarily on paid search text ads to a full scope of advertising options, including search ads, display ads, video ads, audio ads, Gmail ads, Google Maps ads, and more.

And more importantly, the ability to place your ads in front of targeted audiences has never been more powerful.

In July, Google held a “Marketing Live 2018” conference for its partners in San Jose, which Scorpion attended. This particular conference stood out as announcing more innovations of Google Ads than all the previous partner conferences combined (or at least the ones we attended).

It’s clear Google has embraced and figured out programmatic advertising and artificial intelligence—and we’re excited at the deluge of tools, reporting, attribution, and powerful campaign options coming down the pike in the next few months.

As a Google Premier Partner and a back-to-back Google Champion of Customer Satisfaction, Scorpion is already preparing how bring these cutting-edge solutions to our advertisers as they’re announced.

To find out how Scorpion can assist you with your Google Ads campaigns, talk to a member of our team!