Display Vs Search Ads and How Each of Them Works

Online advertising is an ocean of opportunities to choose from and get the best out of the ads. There are many formats of ads, and deciding which one to get can be overwhelming at times. While there are many kinds of ads, the two main ones that most companies and businesses spend their resources on are – display ads and search ads. These two ads are also the most important ones and are essential to master for assured success.

While you can use both to maximise your reach to the audience and generate leads, it is best to know which one to use in each circumstance. If you are looking for the differences between display ads and search ads, keep on reading.

Key Differences between Display Ads and Search Ads

Display Ads and Search Ads

When these two kinds of ads are used together in synergy, they can yield results that you would never expect. While it is great to use them that way, you can only maximise the result if you know how they work individually.

Here’s how each display ads and search ads work:

Search Engine Advertising

Search Engine Advertising

No matter how great your products and services are, no matter how satisfied your customers are with the company, it is impossible to stay on top of your game if you are not ranking high on every search relating to your offer. It is much easier to make constant sales when you are consistently at the top of search results. For your website to rank higher, it needs to be optimised according to the search engines.

When the website is optimised, you show up in the search results of all potential customers much more quickly. Search engine advertising is the most common kind of advertising in today’s world. It is also known as PPC or pay-per-click, as the advertiser has to pay for every click. This is a great way to target your audience through major search engines like google etc.

However complex, it may sound, the process of search engine advertising can be understood in simple terms. Say you have a business of custom notebooks for artists and writers. You want to target it towards your audience at the start of the New Year because people mostly start new notebooks, journals, sketchbooks etc.

If you bid on the keyword “custom notebook” and many customers search it, you have a great chance of being pushed by the search engine algorithm to show in the sponsored section of the results. If you have a great quality website with all the necessary info, call to action, along with impressive pictures of your product, you might even make sales through this.

Advertising your product this way has many benefits. Some of the benefits of search engine advertising are:

  1. A head starts and edge over all your competitors.
  2. The ability to customise the marketing, therefore, affecting its effectiveness.
  3. Allows you to target the audience based on criteria like location and intent.
  4. A feedback system that will quickly let you know if your ads are effective or not.

If you are still not sure if it is the right pick for you, here are some reasons why you could consider choosing it:

  1. Small Budget- If you have restrictions in your budget or if you do not want to spend a lot, Search engine advertising is the way to go for you. It offers maximum results with the efforts you put in. These ads drive direct engagement with the target audience and are much likely to yield results. After you’ve been getting consistent results with this method, then you can delve into the field of display ads, which will increase your reach and give a boost to your visibility.
  2. Not Enough Organic Traffic – This is a great way to drive traffic if your organic traffic is not happening right now. Organic traffic relies more on comparative content, but search ads can bring people directly to your website.
  3. Generate Quality Leads Generating quality leads requires a great quality website. Search engine ads are the best way to convert potential customers who visit the website into buyers.’
  4. Localised Audience –If your business caters to the local audience more, this kind of advertising gives more chances to target them specifically.
  5. Emergency Services – If you provide emergency services such as plumbing, towing, legal help etc., you will not be discovered when someone is scrolling through social media or reading a blog. People search for these services around them, so search ads are the most effective way for them.

Display Advertising

Display Advertising

The Google Display Network Ads operate in the Google Ads platform, but they have nothing to do with the search engine, unlike search ads. The most significant difference between search ads and display ads is that your ads will not be restricted to just the search results with display advertising. Display ads will show up anywhere for a user to see, from a social media website and while browsing through various pages.

Another difference is also the intent of the customer. In search ads, a customer can only find you if they look for a product that you offer. But in display ads, your product is presented to the user regardless of them looking for it or wanting it. This has become one of the most incredible tricks in this capitalistic world where you make the user want your product before they even realise that they need it.

The goal for display ads is different too. They are working to increase brand awareness and visibility. They can appear anywhere while a user is browsing through various web pages such as banners, text, Gmail, and even apps.

It might seem like display ads are like shooting your shot without knowing whether it will yield any calculable results or not. But it is not like that because Google provides many specific targeting options based on the cookies stored on your device, which help them decide a user’s characteristics and interests.

See Also: Best Practices for Creating Successful Text Ads for Google

If you are still not sure, these are some of the reasons why you could consider using display ads for your company:

  1. Building Brand Awareness – Every ad doesn’t need to result in a purchase. Sometimes it is best to make a user aware of your brand while they’re busy doing other things on the internet. Appearing on famous and reputable websites can be great for your brand image and visibility.
  2. No Immediate Sale Product – If your product has a longer sales cycle than most where it requires time to build intent in the customer, multiple touchpoints and retargeting to make sure sales occur, display ads should be your first choice. In such a case, you need to make sure that you are always in the potential customer’s mind to increase the chances of them purchasing with you.
  3. Your Product Is Visual – The great thing about display ads is that you can include pictures in them. Items such as apparel, home decor that require visual demonstration are best advertised with display ads.

Search ads are only displayed to people who are actively looking for your product or service. In contrast, display ads are paid placements that appear to people based on a variety of targeting parameters, such as location or age. Not only are that, unlike search ads, display advertisements not restricted to appearing in a single location.

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Get A Better Return On Investment (ROI)?

Return On Investment ( ROI )

Prime Difference –

Search Network Advertisements: Best for capturing intent

Display Advertisements: Best for building awareness

See Also: How Much Does Google Ads Cost?

The truth is that both display advertisements and search advertisements are effective. In each advertising format, a specific audience with a specific set of intentions is targeted.

It is important to match your advertising platform and creative to the right audience.

In the absence of such a strategy, you risk spending your budget on clicks that will not convert.

The search network is easy! Let’s understand this with an example –

Someone goes to Google and searches for a topic related to a pressing problem or need.

Then they click on the ad and either fill out the form or buy the product.

Say you are looking for an electrician. You went to the search network and looked for one in your neighbourhood.

The search resulted in a slew of businesses that could potentially assist you in solving your problem. One of the results will take you to a landing page. So, when businesses want to capture intent, search ads are the best option.

If you want to get the best return on your investment from your search network ads, you must concentrate on the searchers’ intent. Businesses should retell the story that we just told you.

You were already aware that you need an electrician, and you see an advertisement on a display network. You went to Google and searched for an electrician. That’s where the search networks shine, though.

It thrives on searches that are direct and focused on a specific goal.

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Takeaway

These are some of the key differences between display ads and search ads. Both of them have their benefits and specific uses. One has to be sure of their goals before deciding which advertisement will give intended results. This article touched on many of the advantages of each of them, and we hope that it helps you gain insight!

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