What is AdWords?
Think of Google Adwords as one big auction. In this auction, advertisers bid for clicks, and the highest bid wins. However, there is one little twist to it: money is not the only factor that is being taken into account - your quality score also comes into play.
But before we get into all that, let’s touch on the basics: AdWords is the now redundant name for Google Ads. Hence, when we talk about AdWords, we are more or less talking about Google Ads.
Essentially, Google Ads is a platform that offers pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. Through Ads, advertisers can put their ads on Google’s search engine results page. Its job is to present your ad to your target market, which is determined by keywords you are targeting.
Google Ads is one of the largest, most advanced, and most powerful advertising platforms. It works by connecting businesses, advertisers, marketers, and other corporate professionals with their ideal clients, making Google Ads the ultimate portal for business expansion. The platform has almost unlimited scope for segmentation; from targeting users based on keyword search to reaching out to them on the basis of country and device type, Google Ads covers it all.
The Two Main Ad Networks
Within the platform, there are two main ad networks that can be used by businesses to target customers. These are:
The search network works when advertisers bid on relevant keywords. What this means is that advertisers pick the words they want to be associated with every time a search query is entered on Google. For example, if I own a clothing business in New York, I’d like to place a bid on “clothing store NYC.” If I win the bid, my ad will appear on the top of the search engine result page (SERP)
The display network is considerably more straightforward. It works by giving advertisers the chance to display their ad as a banner on a website that is a part of the Google Network.
Google Adwords - The Digital Auction
Coming back to the analogy mentioned earlier, an auction is the kind of model Google AdWords is based on. The advertiser places a bid on the Adwords algorithm. Whether or not they secure their desired place depends on a combination of factors: the competition, price bid by other advertisers, maximum bid, and quality score.
The last two are particularly important because your actual ad position on SERP is determined by your maximum bid multiplied by your quality score!
By quality score, Google Ads essentially wants to see how well your ad is optimized. It will take into consideration your landing page, click-through rate, and the relevance of your ads in relation to what people are searching for. The sum total of these factors translates into ad rank.
The Change from Google Adwords to Google Ads
For the most part, Google Adwords and Google Ads are the same. They are based on the same model, are used interchangeably (although people rarely use the word “AdWords” now). However, the reason behind Google Adwords being rebranded as Google Ads was to make it easier for small businesses to advertise across all PPC channels. The simpler name is perhaps an indication of the fact that Google Ads is an improved and more user-friendly version of Google AdWords, specially designed to help brick-and-mortar businesses to flourish online.
Google AdWords, now known as Google Ads, is quite possibly the most advanced advertising platform globally. In order for you to gain a corporate competitive advantage, you must learn how to master it!