As a Premier Google Partner, Step Change was invited to the recently held Google Partner Summit 2018. Members of our Digital Team attended the event to hear about the latest tech trends, updates to the Google Marketing Platform, and the rebranding of Google Ads.
Here are the key takeaways from the summit and what’s on the horizon in 2019.
It’s All about Machine Learning
Artificial Intelligence, automation, and machine learning are informing all of Google’s latest developments. Google has faith in machine learning’s ability to train computer models so it can more accurately find patterns in data and get better predictions.
Google is constantly using machine learning to make their products more useful, to cater to consumers who have high expectations, help people innovate, and solve the world’s big challenges.
It’s integrating machine learning into its core products such as Search & Shopping, by leveraging signals given by users every time they type a search query into Google. These signals include thousands of data points that are unavailable to us, making predictions about user intent and likelihood to convert.
Technology-Enabled Customised Experience
The old adage of “Fast, cheap, good” no longer exists. The theory was that in general, a company could only ever be two of those three things.
For instance, they could make a product fast and cheap, but it wouldn’t be good. Or to make a good product fast, you would expect that they would need to charge a premium price for it.
But times have changed. A buyer's path to purchase is becoming complex and they expect all three — so for this, we need to leverage machine learning.
Speedy Landing Pages Matter
It’s known that site speed or page speed is one of the essential algorithms used by Google to rank. It is crucial to conversion and overall website performance.
In Google’s latest update, a website’s page speed is now being considered in organic mobile search rankings.
So how do you know if your web page speed meets the criteria?
It would be good to consider that a website with a two-second load time or less had a 15% higher conversion rate.
Check your current website speed and how it may be impacting conversion through your site using the Google Mobile Site Speed Tool.
Landing page experiences also remain key to the buying journey and to business outcomes.
Landing pages with a page load speed of less than 2 seconds also average a 15% higher conversion rate, which is why they introduced AMP in 2016, which loads 85% faster than regular pages.
Google’s Responsive Search Ads
In every interaction with a business, 61% of Australians expect a tailored experience, be it to their history, location, or current circumstances.
For Google Ads, Google has launched Responsive Text Ads (RSAs), which use machine learning to serve the right combination of ad headlines and ad text to each consumer, creating thousands of text ad variations in an instant.
Responsive Search Ads is Google Ads Platform’s newest search ad format, which makes use of machine learning models to optimise ads and promote the right message to searchers based on keywords, browsing habits, the device being used, etc. Early testing has seen a 5–15% click uplift.