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Friday Recap: While Google and Bing add features, YouTube restricts them

October has already seen some exciting changes across search and social. While Google and Bing have added more features for advertisers, YouTube has taken them away. How will this affect the user experience for marketers and their customers? We take a look here.

Google adds to their ads

Aptly named, call-only ads are meant to get people to call your business. Call-only ads only appear on those devices that can make phone calls and when users click on one, their smartphone will be prompted to make a call to the business.

For users, call-only ads are very convenient, and for advertisers hoping to make the lines ring, they’re quite effective. Until recently, however, call-only ads didn’t feature ad extensions, which are available with other Google text ads.

Ad extensions are additional lines of text that are selected by AdWords in response to what people are entering into search. These extra snippets of information about your business are a great way to add to your ads because they tend to give your ad more visibility and more value.

According to Google’s research, adding extensions to call-only ads can up click-through rate by around 10 per cent. With such great results, Google has rolled out the following extensions for call-only ads:

  • Location – If you want to get customers in your door, including information about where you’re located is key.
  • Structured snippets – Adding detailed information about what you do will help you reach customers looking for those specific products and services.
  • Callouts – Do you offer free delivery? What about a 24/7 customer service line? If your business has unique selling points (which we’re sure it does), make sure you highlight it.

YouTube tightens up on external linking in end cards

Friday Friday Recap: While Google and Bing add features, YouTube restricts them

For YouTubers who want to see their viewers take an action (such as, visit a website, buy a product or sign up for a service …) cards are a great tool.

According to YouTube’s Creator Academy, cards are ‘preformatted notifications that appear on desktop or mobile which you can set up to promote your brand and other videos on your channel.’

These are these links that you see pop up throughout a video saying things like ‘Check out my other videos’ or ‘Find out more about this product here’. If, for example, you’re watching a makeup tutorial, the video blogger might place cards throughout when they feature different products.

Cards commonly link to merchandise stores, websites, individual landing pages, product pages and so on. Viewers enjoy cards because they offer more information if it’s desired, but also disappear quickly if a viewer simply wants to get on with the video.

YouTube has added new requirements, however, for who’s allowed to use end cards – those external links that show up after you’ve finished watching a video.

From now on, only those who meet the following requirements will be able to use end cards:

  • They must join the YouTube Partner Program
  • They must have 10,000 or more total public views on their channel

Why the change? YouTube is trying to prevent abuse of end cards and more closely monitor the types of organisations using the cards. By forcing advertisers to sign up for the Partner Program, YouTube will be able to take a look at each account individually and choose whether to grant approval.

Enough about Google, Bing just added three URL tracking parameters

Bing has added three new URL tracking parameters to allow advertisers to learn more about the source of ad clicks.

Friday Friday Recap: While Google and Bing add features, YouTube restricts them

While learning the source of a click can be helpful, if you really want to understand your target audience, you’ll want to know more than that. Gleaning information about who’s clicking on ads can help marketers tailor their campaigns and reach their goals.

Now, advertisers on Bing will be able to see:

  • The geographic location of a click
  • The location of interest that triggered the ad
  • Which ad extension led to a click.

Thanks to these new parameters, advertisers will be able to evaluate useful data to see trends around the location of clicks and the extensions used.

If, for example, users searching in Melbourne are particularly drawn to Review Extensions, you can make sure your Melbourne based campaigns all feature this extension.

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Natalie Fortier About the author