There has been A LOT of controversy–mostly scrutiny towards Google Ads. When you’re investing a lot of money into your marketing, you want to know it’s worth it. Now the question is…Is it? Google recently admitted openly to quietly adjusting ad prices to meet targets. The search engine “frequently” changes the auctions it uses to sell search ads, increasing the cost of ads by as much as 5% for the average advertiser. For some businesses, it went up by as much as 10%! At SEM we recognize that transparency is everything in a business relationship. It is one of our cornerstone values and why our customers and partners trust us. So in the spirit of remaining transparent, we’re going to break down what’s going on with Google for you and dive into the details of this admission and its implications for advertisers–like us.
In a surprising turn of events, Google has openly admitted to making quiet adjustments to ad prices in order to meet their targets. This revelation comes eight years after Google Ad executive Jerry Dischler denied any manipulation of ad auctions. The admission has sent shockwaves through the pay-per-click (PPC) community and raised concerns about the trustworthiness of Google's advertising platform.
The acknowledgment by Google has left many disheartened. This admission raises concerns about the trustworthiness and credibility of Google's advertising platform. Trust is everything in the world of advertising, and Google's admission undermines this trust. The search giant's pursuit of quarterly targets, aimed at boosting employee morale, comes at the expense of businesses, both small and large, that rely on Google's advertising platform.
This revelation prompts advertisers to reconsider their reliance on Google. While the PPC community had suspicions about these practices, the admission has brought them into the spotlight. Advertisers are now questioning whether Google truly has their best interests at heart or if it's primarily focused on meeting financial goals.
One key issue raised by the industry is Google's lack of transparency. Advertisers expect honesty and openness from the platform they invest in. The recent admission calls into question the validity of Google's claims that it acts in the best interests of advertisers. The perception of Google's actions being driven by profit motives rather than advertiser benefits has left many disillusioned.
Another concern is the use of misleading terminology. Google's practices, presented as auctions with bids and bid strategies, may not accurately represent the reality of how ad prices are adjusted. The use of such terminology can lead to confusion and skepticism among advertisers.
During a federal antitrust trial, Google's Ad executive, Jerry Dischler, revealed the existence of something called RGSP (Ranking by Gross Search Platform). This practice involved switching the auction results to boost Google's revenue, positioning the second-place bidder in the top advertiser slot and the initial winner would be moved to the second position. Advertisers find this approach questionable and question the fairness of such actions.
Now, advertisers may rethink utilizing Google and look into alternatives to Google Ads. The loss of trust and credibility could prompt a migration away from Google's advertising platforms and explore other options, such as auto-applied recommendations, AI-driven solutions, or different advertising platforms altogether.
The admission by Google of quietly adjusting ad prices has ignited a heated debate within the advertising community. It has raised concerns about transparency, trustworthiness, and the accuracy of terminology used by the tech giant. Advertisers are left to ponder whether their reliance on Google Ads remains justified. The repercussions of this admission may well reshape the landscape of digital advertising, as advertisers seek more transparent and trustworthy platforms for their campaigns.
Transparency is at the top of our values as a business. We think it’s important to note the changes in the advertising world so everyone is kept in loop. We continue to monitor Google’s ever-evolving practices to ensure our customers’ and partners’ marketing budgets are spent with the best return on investment and as wisely as possible. As we’ve said before, when you partner with us we become a part of your team. We do everything we can to stay in-the-know to increase your overall revenue and grow your business.
Summer and her team have years of experience in all realms of marketing. Her favorite is Search Engine Optimization and trying to figure out what Google is up to next.