Google announced yesterday that they have started putting sponsored images in their Google image search results. By allowing Adwords advertisers to put image ads in the Google image search results, Google says that it is a new way “to be there and be useful for mobile shoppers.”
Google Image Search Ads
In an announcement titled, yes, “New ways to be there and be useful for mobile shoppers“, Google explained that “Whether they’re looking for a new sofa or the perfect pair of earrings, people who search and shop on their smartphones at least once a week say that product images are the shopping feature they turn to most. And it turns out, the top questions Google Images users ask us are ‘What’s the price of this?’ and ‘Where can I buy it?’ That’s why we are introducing Shopping ads on image search. Now your ads for related products will appear as shoppers browse Google Images, so they can easily click through to buy from you.”
Of course, what is really behind this, at least in part, is the stiff competition to capture the hearts, minds, and dollars of mobile shoppers.
Google Image Search Ads on Mobile
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Online mobile shopping is predicted to account for as much as a whopping 42% of all online purchases by the end of 2016. Even back during the 2013 holiday shopping season, mobile purchases accounted for one-third of all online purchases.
Google online shopping competitor Amazon has done a fantastic job of capturing the mobile online shopping market. According to SmartInsights.com, Amazon has attracted a staggering 87% increase in mobile audience in the UK.
And that’s no surprise. Amazon has done a fantastic job of both making sure they show up in your search results, and of making the online mobile shopping experience easy and uncumbersome.
So Google’s new not-so-secret weapon is not hard to explain. By seeding image searches with sponsored image ads, Google is hoping to get ahead of that curve, at least in the image search results area. After all, it’s their image sandbox, so they get to put their toys at the top of the sandbox (to strangle a metaphor).
So what do you think of this development? Do you think you will find it helpful, or intrusive, or perhaps a little of both?