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    • thorgalle
      Top reader this weekReading streakScout
      11 months ago

      How effective is online advertising really? Mere clickthrough statistics clearly won't answer that question.

      I'm often puzzled at top search ads promoting the exact same brand name I searched for. Apple's App Store does this too. Apple's motivation to display the ads is obvious, but it's hard to see what the advertiser gets out of it.

      Then again, I do believe advertising works in general, even if I don't like it in most cases. Online advertising should also work in the same way street advertising works. Creating simple awareness, association, or reminding people that a brand exists, seems an important (but hard to measure) role of ads anywhere.

      • KapteinB
        Top reader this weekReading streakScoutScribe
        11 months ago

        I'm often puzzled at top search ads promoting the exact same brand name I searched for. Apple's App Store does this too. Apple's motivation to display the ads is obvious, but it's hard to see what the advertiser gets out of it.

        It does one very important thing: Prevents competitors from buying the top search result.

        About a month ago they gave me a new computer at work. The first thing I did was open Edge and bing my favourite web browser; Firefox. These are the top results. The first two are keyword ads, while the first real search result shows up in the third spot. A trained eye will spot the tiny subtle "Advertisement" disclaimer on the first two results, and longtime Firefox users will roll their eyes and click the third result. But imagine it's my dad binging Firefox, because I mentioned to him that it's my preferred web browser. I wouldn't be surprised if he clicked the top result and ended up installing Opera instead. Firefox is bleeding potential new users to its competitors, because they took eBay's lesson to heart and aren't buying the Firefox keyword in Bing search results.

        Now look closer at the graph halfway through this article. This is what happens if we add the two lines and smooth them into a trend line. eBay is also bleeding potential customers to its competitors after it stopped buying the eBay keyword!

        • thorgalle
          Top reader this weekReading streakScout
          11 months ago

          Smart! I had not considered that strategy. And well-observed with the bleed trend, albeit that it is pretty subtle compared to the “free clicks” jump of the ad stop. In the end, the stop might still have been worth it financially despite the bleed. It depends on how much the ads cost, and how much each visitor is worth.

          Also: interesting to see that Norwegian Bing search! I didn’t know they had an “open link in new tab” switch (power users might Ctrl+click). And Vivaldi still has to invest in localization.

          Also also: I haven’t seen the verb “binging” in use. It’s unfair that “googling” became synonymous with “performing a web search”. “Binging” unfortunately also has other meanings. I’m often struggling myself telling people that I ”duckduckgoed“ something.

          • KapteinB
            Top reader this weekReading streakScoutScribe
            11 months ago

            Bing it!

            Yeah, it never quite caught on. :-p

            I sometimes say I ducked something. Though most often I'll just say I googled it no matter which search engine I really used.