Paid online advertising, most commonly called Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, has become one of the most mediums and cost-effective in the digital marketing strategist. The Google AdWords platform enables digital marketers with the ability to easily reach hundreds of millions of prospective customers around the world via search and display ads. This gives us digital marketers the opportunity to reach people in multiple countries, multiple languages, and do it from one computer terminal.

Crazy to think that while I was moving into the Marines in 2003, Google was introducing a brand new, never seen before advertising feature called the Google”Screen Network” on its current platform. With the ability to reach millions of new users for a far lower cost than the Google search network, it has instantly become a huge hit with online advertisers.

After launching the AdWords platform for a couple of years, Google noticed that some keywords were quickly overcrowded. Popular keywords such as”insurance” and”mortgages” attracted so much competition that the cost per click quickly reached ridiculous numbers. Interestingly, these early online advertisers were willing to pay these super-inflated rates.

So as to make their advertising platform more rewarding and more powerful for advertisers, Google has chosen to launch its display network. By offering publishers a reduction in average cost per click, publishers are encouraged to run ads on their site, while Google has significantly increased their viewers.

Today, users can sign up for the Google Display Network partnership through what is pretty widely known as the Google AdSense. By meeting certain website criteria, webmasters can begin to post the Google ad on their site in a few days. Currently, the network has more than two million participants and claims 90% of the population on the Internet. If you’re an online advertiser, then you should rub your palms of excitement!

More advertisers were confined to Google search traffic, but they could now target users that had never been on Google. With a lower cost per click and a larger audience, this has enabled more advertisers to struggle for the same keywords without needing to pay the high cost associated with search keywords.

The new advertising format enabled businesses to advertise in a way they had never achieved before. By incorporating a range of amazing features, such as retargeting and graphic designs, online advertisers started to have many advantages to using the display network.

However, as it usually is in life, if it seems to good to be true, it usually is. .

If it’s really like people think, then everybody would surely use it? But this is clearly not true. With some experts telling you to use it and others telling you how to avoid it at all costs, who should you listen to? That’s exactly what we’re going to deep dive here so you can come to your own fact-based conclusion.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Google Display Network Benefits

Expanded hearing

The first and most obvious benefit of the Google Display Network is its massive reach. With over 2 million websites in their screen network, this dramatically increases the exposure and reach of your ads. When you use the standard AdWords platform, ads are shown only to people who visit Google and search for certain keywords. If you use the display system, your ads may show to folks who have never done Google search in their life. This is clearly a massive advantage as it helps to increase your exposure and, ultimately, to see your ads seen by even more people.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Display Ads have a Lower Cost Per Click (CPC)

Compared to the default Google search platform, the cost per click on the display network is almost always cheaper. This means that you can always target users who are interested in your product without having to pay exorbitant fees. With some cost per click on the search network of over £ 10, the display network is a great alternative for advertisers looking to make the most of their money.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Different Pricing Models

Pay Per Click can be the payment model that many advertisers are used to, but with Google’s display network, it’s possible to change it to CPM. Known as cost per mille, CPM can sometimes benefit some advertisers because cost per 1000 views can sometimes be cheaper than cost-per-click. If you pay 90p per click, but the CPM runs at £ 10, you’ll benefit from using the CPM model if you get more than 12 clicks. This is a great way to save money and improve your return on investment with high performing ads.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Visual Announcements

Unlike standard Google search ads, which are fully text-based, the display network allows you to use much more attractive visuals. Not only are these ads visual, but they can also be animated to make them even more effective. When placed on the right website, these visuals can dramatically increase click through rates (CTR) and typically result in higher conversions than text ads.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Retargeting Display Ads

Retargeting ads are among the most effective features of the Google Display Network. When you have never used retargeting ads before, you are absent. Not only do they increase your odds of converting customers, but they are also ridiculously affordable. If a user visits your website via a PPC ad but does not convert it, many advertisers consider it to be a lost track. They’ve already paid the click and haven’t had conversion, so it’s time to proceed to the next user?


With the power of retargeting, you can create a new campaign targeting just those who have visited your site. By using Google’s display network, the website tracks users through cookies and displays their ads after visiting your site. By always reminding them of your product and after it on the web, you greatly improve your chances of getting a conversion.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Google Display Network Disadvantages

The first issue of using the display network is that you don’t really have direct control over which sites your ads are displayed on. Google does its best to place your advertisements on the correct sites, but even that does not always work out the way planned. This simply means that there are times when your advertisements could be placed on a website that isn’t relevant to the topic you’re targeting or that you prefer not to display on.

While it’s always possible to stop certain websites from displaying your advertisements, you may have to manually add them through your AdWords campaign settings. This means that if you don’t want to check something ridiculous like 2 million websites all individually, it might be possible that some of your advertisements will be shown on some undesirable and non-related websites. Not only can this become a public relations fiasco, but it also means you will not obtain the highest quality traffic on the network.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Display Ads Audience Refinement is Impossible

Another issue with Google Display Network (GDN) is that it is more challenging to target certain users. An example is if you sold TVs; it’s most likely that you’ll find the best conversion rate if you were able to concentrate on only those looking to buy TVs as opposed to people looking for information about them.

On Google’s search network, it is as simple as adding the phrase”purchase” to the search term to alter the intent of this keyword search phrase intent. However, in regards to the display network, it’s much more challenging to distinguish between the two and ultimately what the consumer is looking for. This means that your advertisements will probably be broadcast to both types of users, which isn’t the ideal way to maximize your budget.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

Website Announcements might not be Relevant

In addition to being not able to control the exact type websites which your ads are displayed on, there’s also a relevance issue at hand. Google does its best to figure out what a web page is all about and then display a suitable ad based on things such as keywords. However, it does not always go as planned, and there is times that it is going to display something completely random. Unfortunately, there’s no way around this possibility if you don’t manually exclude this specific website from your campaign settings. If you want your display advertisements to be shown on relevant sites, it’s ideal to purchase banners on that specific website, directly from your webmaster or site owner.

Is there Any Value in Using Google Display Ads?

What’s Your Display Ads Goal?

Display ads may or may not be the right selection for your PPC campaign based on your marketing campaign goal. Are you aiming for awareness, nurturing, or lead generation?

  • Awareness: Display ads can be a excellent way to grow awareness and create demand for your product. While it’s always a best practice to get as specific as possible with targeting, display can provide massive reach. Consumer brands or companies that want to drum up awareness fast can gain from display ads.
  • Nurturing: so long as you are using intelligent targeting, display can also help nurture leads and prospects your funnel down. Use strategic targeting such as retargeting, similar audiences, custom viewers, or topic targeting if nurturing is your target, and ensure that your display ads support a larger marketing campaign.
  • Lead generation: Generally, display is a bad way to capture leads or push a specific action from a customer, like filling out a form. If lead generation is your goal, target only the most relevant audience, and use CPC bidding instead of CPM.

Are You Running Google Search Campaigns?

If you are already running Google AdWords search campaigns, bottom-of-the-funnel display ads can be a good complement. First, make certain you feel comfortable with the functionality and profitability of your existing search campaigns, and then add bottom of the funnel display solutions like Retargeting Lists for Search Ads.

Display ads aren’t right for each B2B advertiser, but they can add substantial value in the right situations. Still not sure if display ads are a wise idea for your business? A test never hurts.

Marketing tactics create different results for different companies, so just because something does (or doesn’t) work for one organization does not imply it will (or won’t) for you. When it comes to ads, always trust your own data.