The Future of Search Advertising
This year, an estimated 60% of all retail sales will involve the internet.
A few years ago, this number might have jumped out at us a little more than it does now. With Amazon firmly entrenched as the top dog and relative newcomers like Alibaba bursting onto the scene, it’s not easy for small businesses to make a splash in e-commerce sales these days — especially when 55% of customers use Amazon before any other site when searching for products online.
So what do small and mid-size e-commerce companies do to get more visibility?
That’s easy, and it’s one of the main reasons we’re in business today — marketing & advertising.
Between SEO & Pay-Per-Click ads on both search engines & social media, most of the current channels where you’d find digital customers are covered. And for those who abandoned their carts before making a sale? I hope they like seeing those “Last Minute Deal” retargeting ads for the next month!
In all seriousness, it works. And it works well. But there’s a largely untapped market out there just waiting for the right time to strike…
If you’ve been tapped into the search marketing pulse lately, you’ve no doubt heard Google Home reciting a little tidbit that sounds remarkably like an audio ad for Beauty & the Beast.
Listen for yourself:
— brysonmeunier (@brysonmeunier) March 16, 2017
Of course, Google was quick to dismiss this as an advertisement, issuing the following statement:
“This isn’t an ad; the beauty in the Assistant is that it invites our partners to be our guest and share their tales.”
Let’s humor the tech giant for a minute and pretend this is all just one big mix up. It happens, right?
Even so, the potential market for audio advertisements like this is just waiting to be tapped. Voice searches doubled last year, and they’re expected to put up a repeat performance reminiscent of Michael Jordan in the 90s.
Google Home, Amazon Echo (of which I am a proud owner), Siri, Google Assistant, Cortana — the list goes on and on, and it extends to mobile devices and desktops as well, not just novelty home items.
With the newest version of MacOS, users simply have to say the magical words, “Hey, Siri,” and the virtual assistant will spring to life to answer questions, search, and even grab files from the depths of a hard drive.
Don’t be fooled. It’s everywhere… and those few small corners of the world where it isn’t yet, it’ll be there soon.
All of this begs the question, “When will the ads start rolling in?” People didn’t take kindly to the “mistaken” Beauty & the Beast ad, so if it was a test, now is certainly not the time to roll it out yet.
With Google Search ads looking less and less like ads each year, Apple introducing Search Ads to the App Store, and Congress voting to allow ISPs to share consumer data to marketers, angry tweets and Reddit comment threads will only slow the inevitable for so long.
As one coy Redditor wrote, “An ad company putting ads on their products? Blasphemy.”