Advertising on Google is highly effective and can even significantly increase your organic rankings as well. You don’t need to pour your entire marketing budget into Google Ads for it to work wonders for your business. The biggest advantage of running ads on Google is that you’re reaching millions of people when they’re actively searching for information or when they’re just browsing the web on Google Partner sites. You have access to an extremely large audience right at your fingertips.

It’s important to have a strategy meeting before starting any kind of advertising because you’ll want to make sure you’re reaching customers or potential customers via the right method. Each platform and advertising format is intended for different purposes. All are effective ways to advertise your business, but which avenue you go down depends on your end goal of each campaign. Walk through what your goals are, who you’re trying to reach, and other targeting details, and what assets you have for your campaign (is it something highly visual, or do you need more text to describe it) before starting your advertising campaign.

Aside from the visual differences between display and search advertising, the major difference is that display shows ads to people who aren’t directly searching for your brand, and search ads show to people actively searching specifically for your product or your keywords. Let’s dive into some more of the differences between these two types of Google Ads.

Display Advertising

Display advertising is great for branding and building brand awareness and meeting consumers when they may not be actively looking for your business or product. While Google Display Ads are run through the Google Ads platform, they operate in a very different way than Search Ads. Google Display Ads show up to users within your targeting parameters, across different websites as users are browsing the internet. It’s a much more passive way of advertising and is mostly used when building brand awareness or reminding people about a product or service that you offer. If you have a big campaign that is being rolled out on different platforms and mediums, display advertising is great for reminding people about this campaign that they probably saw elsewhere.

Display advertising is also great for retargeting consumers. When someone purchases something from your site, or even visits and explores your website, you can add them to your retargeting list and ads will show to them on other sites that they browse. Do you know when you look at something briefly online and then see ads for that same product for weeks after you initially saw it? That’s display advertising and remarketing. It’s highly effective because you’re targeting people that you know have visited your site or purchased from your site previously.

This form of digital advertising is not intended for limited time sale products, or for products that aren’t photogenic or aesthetically pleasing. If you’re wanting to build brand awareness, or remind previous customers or site visitors about your brand or product, display advertising is a great way to spend your advertising dollars.

Search Advertising

Search advertising is used to meet customers where they are when they’re looking for something specific. They type in keywords into the Google search engine, your brand bids on those keywords, and your ad shows up when consumers are looking for your business or product, in the moment. Search advertising is one the best ways to gain new customers because you’re reaching them when they’re in need or actively searching for your products, etc. and the Search Network is one of the best places to advertise because of its wide network.

When you need something immediately, you go to Google or another search engine and type in what you’re looking for and results appear instantly with solutions to your problem or question. You don’t have time to wait around for a display ad to show you about a service or product.

It’s important to monitor and optimize your search ads as the campaign runs because you want to make sure your ads are effective and that the clicks you’re receiving are valuable. If your keywords are too vague, you could be spending money when people click on your ad who are looking for something entirely different but with similar keywords. It’s important to consistently review the search terms that users are searching that your ad is showing up for. You have to tweak the keywords to make sure you’re bidding and targeting the right terms, and you have to tweak your text ads to make sure they include some of your keywords and let users know where they will be directed to when they click on the ad.



Display and Search Advertising are very different, but both are very important to get new clients or customers, and building awareness around your brand or products. Next time you go to create your advertising campaigns, step back and think about what the users you’re targeting think and how they act, and what avenue is going to give you the most bang for your buck. If you have any questions about which form of digital advertising to use for your campaign, contact us today.


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