What is the difference between display and search advertising?

DSM Digital School of Marketing- advertising

Beginners and seasoned advertisers alike often struggle with the question of whether to use search ads, display ads, or both when they put together their Google Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising campaigns. There are a number of factors that you need to take into consideration when deciding which type of campaign is right for you. So whether you’re just starting your digital advertising efforts or have years of experience but are still looking for the right direction when it comes to search as opposed to display ads, this article will help.

Display advertising or Search advertising

What is meant by ‘display advertising’?

The term ‘Display Advertising’ refers to banner ads which are either graphics or text based that appear in specifically designated areas of a website or social media platform such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Digital display advertising is presented in a variety of different forms. However, at the heart of it, these formats all are based on the same principle.

Although it is possible to advertise with plain text-based ads and still call it a display campaign, you can get so much more out of your campaigns if you use images, videos, HTML5 animations or any other rich media elements that can assist you with getting your message to your target audience.

What is meant by ‘search advertising’?

Search advertising – which is also known by terms such as sponsored ads, search marketing, search-engine marketing, pay-per-click marketing as well as cost-per-click marketing –  is a method that displays advertisements on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) when someone searches for the services and/or products which are offered by the advertiser. In this way, the advertisement which is displayed perfectly matches each and every single query.

Search advertising is very effective. This is because it is based on the explicit need of the users as opposed to just on implicit information about what they might be looking for. This, naturally, ups the likelihood of people clicking and converting.

Google is the world’s leading provider of search ads. Its service, Google Ads, allows companies which offer products or services to pay for their ads based on the questions Internet users enter into the search box. It works quite simply: when your SEPRs loads there are ad boxes with relevant ads displayed next to organic results.

Not sure which one to choose for your business? Consider these factors before making up your mind.

  1. Search Volume

Display ads use a push approach and search ads use a pull approach. People who see your search ads are already looking for your product but those who usually see display ads were targeted after watching a video, reading emails, or browsing the web. Being aware of the difference between these two approaches can assist you to quickly determine the right strategy.

  1. Brand Awareness

If you are a new business or are selling a product or service that people are not aware of, it may be useful for you to start by concentrating on branding with your display ads. The Google Display Network is a fantastic way to get in front of potential customers who don’t know your brand yet.

  1. Limited Budget

If your budget is not very big, search ads are perhaps the best option to begin with. Developing your brand using display ads will usually require a much larger budget. This process will not likely have a positive ROI as search ads characteristically have higher conversion rates. This will rationalise an increase in budget.

  1. Urgent Services

If you consider your company as providing an “urgent” service, it’s maybe a good idea to start with search ads. A service which is urgent can include a vast array of companies, such as:

  • Locksmiths,
  • Tow trucks,
  • 24-hour veterinarians, and

These are services that a person is not usually going to jump at and pay for if they are scanning the news and happen to see your display ad. However, when someone gets locked out of their home or their car breaks down, they are more likely to search for a service to help.

Get in touch with the Digital School of Marketing

To learn more about how paid advertising works, have a look at the Digital School of Marketing’s Paid Advertising and Web Analytics Course. Follow this link for more information.

DSM Digital School of Marketing Paid advertising and web analyics course registration