Click Through Reads #26: Google Local Ads Testing, API Messenger for Instagram

Johanna Gumbrill
October 22, 2020

Hello Click-Through-Readers! We want to get you though this week with some news and beautiful Fall foliage. This week we cover Google testing local ads in map search results (some of you might have already seen these in the wild), new messenger API for Instagram message management, fancy new Instagram Collection ads (just in time for the holidays), and we summarize a Google blog to help publishers increase their revenue for the holidays. Sit back with a drink of choice — I’m still on iced coffee due to California weather — and take a break with the news!

Let’s get into it!

Google Tests Local Ads in Maps Search Results

If you type in a general location into Google Maps, such as “Seafood Restaurant” or “Climbing Gym,” you might come across an Ad in the auto-suggest search results.

Google has been testing ads in the app, thinking of new ways to improve the customer experience for both users and advertisers. Currently, these are only being tested possibly as a location extension or through Local campaigns.

Messenger API to Support Instagram

Businesses can now use the Messenger API to manage Instagram messages using their preferred tools and platforms rather than needing to communicate with users directly within the app. This will be especially helpful for bigger brands with large customer service operations. The Messenger API support for Instagram is currently in beta, but businesses can sign up for a waitlist if interested.

Five Ways Publishers Can Drive More Revenue this Holiday Season

Ready or not, the holiday season is right around the corner, and Google is helping marketers get ready with a blog outlining five ways publishers can drive more revenue this holiday season. 

  1. Optimize your site’s user experience

    Some important tools to use include Google’s Web Vitals initiative, which identifies three key aspects of performance: loading, interactivity, and visual stability. Google recommends using some of their most popular tools to identify ways to improve site experience, including Lighthouse, PageSpeed Insights, and Chrome DevTools. Marketers can quickly improve your pagespeed by optimizing your top Google Publisher Tag (GPT) calls, limiting calls to third-party servers, and compressing images. Finally, Google recommends improving site viewability with best practices such as using responsive design, lazy loading and vertical ad units.

  2. Know your audience 

    Reference Google Analytics for deeper audience insights, and easily integrate it with Google Ads to import audiences.

  3. Increase competition for your ad inventory

    Implement new ad types and sizes to increase competition for your inventory. Double check your category settings to make sure you are not limiting yourself.

  4. Monitor floor prices

    And utilize target CPM bidding. When you use target CPM, winning bids can be higher or lower than your target CPM, but the average CPM of your inventory will be equal to or above the target price you enter, maintaining your inventory pricing.

  5. Identify premium ad inventory

    Google recommends using Programmatic Guaranteed to take advantage of high demand seasonality. Our new features allow you to negotiate special sponsorship deals with advertisers for day part or share of voice during high demand periods, such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Instagram Introduces Collection Ads

Previously only available on Facebook, Instagram recently introduced the collection ad format on their platform. Collection ads are a full screen mobile experience that makes it easier for people to discover, browse and purchase products and services directly in an interactive way. Collection ads enable you to showcase your brand and multiple products in both Feed and Stories.