At the annual Google Marketing Livestream, Google announced several new features and broader rollouts of existing tools for advertisers.
We’ve broken the big announcements into six main themes: a focus on privacy, automated solutions, standing out in the SERP, reporting updates, new solutions for retailers, and new solutions for the travel industry. Within each theme, there are new announcements for a total of 19 big announcements that you won’t want to miss!
A Continued Focus on Privacy
FLoC continues to be a major focus for Google. They underscored the importance of creating a privacy-first platform and shared a few audience and tracking updates for advertisers.
Custom Audience Rollout
With the upcoming privacy changes, first-party data has become more valuable than ever.
Because of this, Google has announced that custom audiences will roll out to “nearly all” advertisers as they drop some of the restrictions around who is eligible to utilize custom audiences.
Conversion Tracking Updates
A few weeks ago, Google announced updates to the way that they will track conversions and their plan to model consent-mode data to help alleviate gaps in tracking. Today, they’ve announced that they are adding consent capabilities to Google Tag Manager. Businesses using a consent solution can integrate it with GTM. It also integrates directly with Consent Mode, so you can control tag behavior based on consent without having to add complicated edits to your tagging setup. This setting is available today.
More Automation Solutions
Google highlighted automation as a continued focus. Google noted that over 80% of advertisers use automated bidding to achieve their goals.
Expanding Target ROAS
Because of the success that advertisers have found with the Target ROAS bid strategy, Google is rolling it out to additional channels, including Discovery ads and Video action campaigns.
Expanding Performance Max
Last year, Google announced the Performance Max beta, which is an automated campaign type that drives results across YouTube, Display, Search, and Discover. As of today, Performance Max campaigns are being rolled out to thousands of additional advertisers with a full rollout expected later this year.
For advertisers that have been using Performance Max, they can expect to see new reporting coming. As part of early feedback, Google has heard requests for more transparency so there is a plan to begin to report on top-performing creatives, auction insights, and trending search categories. Advertisers will be able to preview their best ads on each channel.
Standing Out in the SERP
Google announced that image extensions are now out of beta and available globally. Advertisers can now include images with their search ads to help stand out from the competition.
Google Analytics & Reporting Updates
Google announced new reporting solutions to help marketers better understand the customer journey – with a focus on multi-touch marketing ecosystems.
Extending Modeling Capabilities to the Behavioral Report
Google announced that they are rolling out their modeling capabilities to behavioral reporting to help marketers understand insights about the customer journey, even after cookies are not available.
Advertiser Report in Google Analytics
Google also announced the rollout of a new advertiser experience in Google Analytics to present deeper insights into campaign performance such as cross-channel performance, advertising metrics, and recommendations. Google noted that they’re looking for ways to help connect user journeys across the site and app in a privacy-safe manner.
Incorporating YouTube & Display in Attribution Models
As previously announced, Google reiterated that they plan to soon include YouTube and Display in attribution models, including data-driven attribution, which will help advertisers to understand the impact of multi-channel campaigns on their marketing ecosystem.
New Solutions for Retailers
Today is a big day for retail advertisers, as Google has announced a slew of new features and options to help retailers connect with prospects.
New Attribute Tags to Help Consumers Connect with Likeminded Businesses
According to a study by 5WPR, 71% of consumers want to buy from companies that align with their values. As such, Google created a Black-owned business attribute earlier this year. Google plans to launch additional identity attributes, including a women-led attribute, soon.
Using Augmented Reality to Allow Prospects to Try On Makeup & Clothes
Google initially launched a new augmented reality experience to allow people to try on makeup to find a perfect match. Today they announced that they also plan to roll out a new AR experience for folks to visualize how clothing would look on a body similar to their own.
Merchant Loyalty Program Integration
Google is piloting a merchant loyalty program integration to allow customers access to special loyalty pricing and benefits, such as free shipping. If a consumer has an existing loyalty program with a store, they’ll be able to instantly link it. If they don’t have a loyalty program yet, they can easily create an account with a click of a button.
Surfacing Deals for Prospects
Google plans to launch a “deals results page” to make it easier to discover promotions within the search and shopping tab. Google will also be creating deal optimization reporting in Merchant Center.
Advertising Shopping Options
Throughout the past year, store pickup options and consumer preferences have varied widely. Because of that, Google updated local inventory ads to be able to show products that are available for store pickup, curbside pickup, and now: “later pickup”.
Google is also taking this one step further to create a new (free) experience that allows consumers to see any given store’s available shopping options in one place after they discover a product. This could include store pickup, e-commerce shopping, or Google’s native checkout flow.
Curbside pickup and in-store shopping labels are now also extending to YouTube and Maps local ads to help advertisers reach more nearby shoppers.
New Shop Pay Buying Option
Soon, customers will also see “Shop Pay” as a buying option for listings that have “Buy on Google” enabled. This is currently being tested on. the search and shopping. Tabs with the goal of rolling out to YouTube and images later this year.
New eCommerce Integrations
Last week, a new Shopify integration was announced. Today, Google Announced that retailers on WooCommerce, GoDaddy and Square will be able to integrate with Google easily and for free. Google hopes that this open ecosystem means that retailers will have even more ways to get discovered across Google, and shoppers will have more choices.
Connecting Google Merchant Center to Discovery Ads & YouTube Video Action Campaigns
Google’s helping advertisers to connect their product feeds to more advertising placements. Google noted that advertisers that connected product feeds to video action campaigns drove 60% more conversions than those that didn’t. As such, they’re now helping retailers connect their feeds to discovery ads – currently in open beta for advertisers globally and video action campaigns – generally available to all advertisers.
New Solutions for the Travel Industry
Google’s hotel ads appear when a traveler searches on the main SERP or the maps page. Now, Google is announcing three new products to support the travel industry.
Hotel Booking Extensions
Hotel booking extensions are now in open beta for advertisers globally and allow prospects to begin the booking process from the extension.
Vacation rentals will now also begin to be included alongside hotels on the hotel results page.
Enhancing Commisions (Per Stay) Bidding
Google is making it easier for advertisers to find more qualified customers at a lower cost with enhanced ommissions (per stay) bidding.