It is time to think beyond Google Ad words. Yes, that’s right!
Till date Google Ads was ruling the internet until Face book ads came into existence. Now the two indeed have a competitor called programmatic advertising that threatens to take over the digital landscape. This white paper has been created with an aim to give readers useful information related to the all new player in the industry – Programmatic Advertising.
Here we have broken down a few essential parameters into simpler terms for better understanding of programmatic advertising the next level advertising platform that comes with a limitation free and real time bidding formula. On the whole, we aim to deliver a concise comparison between Google Ads and Programmatic Advertising.
Let’s begin with the basics and understand what Programmatic Advertising and Google Advertising are
New in business, programmatic advertising is a platform that allows internet advertisers to buy and sell ad inventory making use of an automatic and data driven method. It includes multiple ad spaces, right from mobile, native, video and display ads. This term more often is used in the digital advertising genre and relates to real-time bidding (RTB) or Open Auctions.
“The concept originally came into picture with growing understanding between advertisers and publishers, post which agencies began lending a helping hand to advertisers to achieve their marketing goals and communicate more effectively to the target audience.”
Google Ads or Advertising
In simple words, Google Ad words popularly known as Google Ads is an online advertising system that allows advertisers to bid based on keywords in order to make their clickable ads visible on Google’s search results.
This platform allows advertisers to create online ads and reach a streamline audience that is interested in the products and services offered. Not just this, but the platform also permits the advertiser to set a budget that is analyzed to measure overall impact of the ad.
Since, a longtime Google Ads had been single-handedly ruling this space, until Facebook ads came into picture. But as technology is upgrading, competition stands sturdy for the online paid advertising platform with the entry of Programmatic Advertising.
Ad network a.k.a advertising network is a company that helps advertisers to connect to websites that are ready to host advertisements. The primary function of these ad network companies is to bring together ad supply from publishers and match it with advertiser demand.
How does the Google Display Network operate?
Google Display Network or GDN works like an interface or mediator connecting the advertiser and publisher. One can use the network to select the target audience based on various criteria such as demographics, age, interest and a lot more. GDN also allows control over ad schedule and ad placement on the website.
Note: A placement can be a specific website, mobile app and specific page or even an individual ad unit.
Similarly, GDN facilitates you to target millions of websites from all over the world. However, ad placements are decided in advance.
How does programmatic advertising work?
Programmatic advertising indeed is a revolution taking over the digital space with immense potential. It is a new age process that utilizes the power of machine intelligence and facilitates buying and placement of ads that are most appropriate for your business. This particular technique also eliminates the need for a mediator or an ad network as ad inventory is sold on ad exchangers.
More about the process
In Programmatic Advertising, ad publishers work on Supply-side platform (SSP), to communicate availability of ads inventory to the ad exchanger. So, when a visitor accesses the website, ad exchangers get information about the user. Here, if the information matches specifications of the target audience, the user automatically enters auction with other advertisers on the platform. Then ad of the highest bid gets displayed on the webpage. All of this takes place automatically in a matter of milliseconds.
*Advertiser with the highest bid is then able to show his ad on the webpage. This is also known as RTB or Real-time bidding.
Now it is time to add few more parameters for clear and profit driven understanding to use the advertising platforms
Designed to find the right audience, GDN is an ad network with millions of websites as ad inventor (The same ones are signed up with Google Ads).
Programmatic advertising is an automated platform for buying from an inexhaustible inventory from a collection of ad network, ad exchangers and direct publisher.
This platform allows real-time biding and streamlines the process by consolidating digital advertising on a single technology platform.
Google Display Network supports basic targeting capabilities, but not as many as compared to programmatic networks.
Whereas, Programmatic Advertising defines detailed target capabilities that are not supported by GDN.
Google Display Network does not provide audience insights in detail.
Programmatic advertising puts forward detailed insights of audience (you can see audience to whom the ads will be served).
Google Display Network is not compatible with every ad format, it also is not customizable.
Programmatic Advertising supports customization and offers in exhaustive inventory to reach media units.
Google Display Network only allows purchase from GDN inventory.
With Programmatic advertising you can buy GDN (AdX) inventory using a variety of DSP (Demand Side Platform).
Google Display Network bid adjustment has a lag of 2-3 hours. But Programmatic advertising platform allows real-time adjustment.
Even though the backend completely depends on impressions, Google Display Network allows CPC, CPA and CPM bidding types. Programmatic advertising exclusively allows CPM bidding
Who provides a better reach?
Google Display Network works on a huge audience base, but is limited to Google or Double click properties. It basically allows access to websites signed up to be Google Partners. Well, this indeed makes around 70% of the web; even then the reach is still less to what a DSP offers.
On the other hand, the RTB environment is exceptional in the online display advertising arena. We say this because, DSP’s have the potential to allow access to GDN inventory and it additionally also gives access to ad exchangers such as Ad scale, Rubicon Project and more, which amounts to more than 95% of the web.
So, if you are looking for a wider reach, Programmatic Advertising indeed is the smart pick.
Let’s check who wins the target game?
Google Display Network and Programmatic Advertising both offer a good amount of target options. A few of them have been outlined below –
- Keyword targeting is a space where keywords that relate to your ad can be selected.
- Topic targeting facilitates selection of topic related to the ad. And in this case the website that relate to your topic will be selected to display your ads.
- Interests targeting here one gets an opportunity to select the interest of their target audience. Demographic targeting, here where you can choose the location, age group, and similar information about your target audience.
However, the primary difference between both methods is the data used for targeting. GDN makes use of Google search data. Well this indeed is a decent option yet not as good as programmatic advertising.
For example – You can target “Vodafone users who ordered KFC last week and also have downloaded Food Panda on their iPhone devices”. This sounds interesting isn’t it? Well this type of functionality is not feasible using the GDN.
Moreover, Programmatic Advertising offers feasibility to use data you have collected in order to better ad targeting.
Note: This type of targeting is not workable with Google Display Network.
Status of video advertising in both – Google Display Network and Programmatic Advertising
And the good news is video advertising is workable in both, Google Display Network and Programmatic Advertising.
However, video advertising in GDN is more or less limited to YouTube, the reason being not many Google partners offer video ad options.
But if you aim at targeting a niche audience on specific websites, programmatic advertising gives you the liberty to do so.
For e.g.: If your business is to sell high-quality fashion products like apparel, it will be a smart move to run your videos on websites such as Vogue rather than YouTube.
But if you don’t have that kind of a budget, you can make the most of YouTube by targeting fashion related challenges. But again, it boils down to money and preference.
Which one is more Cost-Effective?
In Google Display Network, there is no minimum bid criterion. One can begin the process even with a limited budget and then scale it up as per requirement. On the contrary, majority DSP’s need a minimum ad spend budget that amounts to around $4,000 o $10,000 every month to be maintained free of cost. In case, you are not able to spend that much, you will be liable to pay a minimum fee prescribed in your contract.
Note: If you are a beginner, trying out GDN will work as a great move, post which investing on a DSP will prove more profitable.
In this document we have made an effort to bring before you the various differences between programmatic advertising using DSP’s and advertising via GDN.
Although, programmatic shows more potential and added advantage on grounds such as target and more, you need to be clear if you really need these extra features that come at a cost.
Several, advertisers practice a combination of both the GDN and a DSP to manage different kinds of ads in their ad portfolio. You could try it too!