What’s this about?
Google Chrome to block bad ads
- As discussed in The Week in Search 21st April 2017, Google has confirmed Chrome will start blocking some ads early in 2018.
- The blocked ads (including those served by Google) will be those that are not compliant with the Better Ads Standards, or at least, Google’s Double-Click Ads Best Practice interpretation..
- In line with this, Google has released an Ad Experience Report in Google Search Console, which will show issues with ads on your site and the opportunity to re-review.
- Hooray! (ish).
Actions to take:
- Review the Better Ads Standards to ensure your ads are in compliance with the code.
- Review the DoubleClick Best Practices – there are differences between Desktop and Mobile.
- Test different implementations to discover the alternative ad strategies which work best for you.
- Or, just ignore and accept that Chrome will block these ads.
- Contact me if you would like help reviewing your ad strategy and ways to avoid having your ads blocked.
AdBlocking was a huge topic 6-8 months ago, although it did kind of fade into the background behind the contretemps over iffy programmatic ads and views. It’s good to see Google taking a stance on this pernicious issue.
Most users dislike ads, but the degree to which the ads annoy is very much predicated on the type and style of the ads. Users intensely dislike pop ups on mobile and prestitial ads with countdowns (YouTube anyone?). On desktop they really dislike large sticky bottom ads, and pop-ups with countdown. Google has generally grouped the ads into three broad types: annoying, distracting and cluttering
Oddly there isn’t a direct mention of auto-playing video ads with sound, even though this is commonly one of the most often-mentioned annoying ad types. Let’s hope they get the chop.
The final thing that springs to mind with this is that Google is playing both ends of this game: it’s taking the lion’s share of online ad spend at one end, and at the other, it’s starting to block those ads from being displayed. It’s not a huge jump to imagine there may be antitrust issues somewhere down the track over this, despite Google ostensibly doing it for the user’s benefit.
The State of SEO Mid-2017 Released
- Read The State of SEO in mid-2017.
- Chrome is going to block “bad” ads in 2018. Your definition of bad may vary from theirs.
Thanks for reading. If you would like to discuss what these changes mean for your web property, or would like to know how to implement them, please feel free to contact me.