In April 2018, Google AdWords released Smart Display campaigns which combine machine learning with tradition display adverts. In this post, we’ll run through everything you need to know about these new campaigns.

What are Smart Display campaigns?

As stated by Google, they “offer a simple, intelligent solution to managing the complex variables of display advertising”. In simple terms, display advertising with machine learning algorithms. These new campaigns allow advertisers to show display ads of all sizes to customers in any part of the conversion journey.

Smart Display campaigns use advanced AdWords campaigns to save time for advertisers and get the most out of their ads. These technologies are:

Automated bidding: Smart Bidding automatically adjusts bids based on ad auctions. This means you won’t have to manually change bid prices to get the best results- Google now does it for you. If you’re keen to learn more about Smart Bidding, check out our recent blog post.

Automated targeting: these campaigns will optimise placements to reach the best customers.

Automated ad creation: No, you didn’t read that wrong, Google will automatically put together your display adverts. All you need to do is upload assets, such as images and text, and AdWords creates responsive ads to fit every placement.

trivago smart display ad

Why use Smart Display campaigns?

Besides the benefit of complete automation, leaving time for advertisers to work on strategy, Smart Display campaigns have more benefits. Firstly, you can reach customers in millions of apps and websites. Secondly, you can reach these customers at any point in the buying process; be it at first interactions with your site, to deciding to buy the product.

Google assure that Smart Display campaigns are the way forward, with advertisers seeing a 20% increase in conversions at the same CPA, compared to standard display campaigns. As an example, Trivago, the popular hotel site, saw a 36% increase in conversions with Smart Display campaigns.

Seeing your Smart Display performance

With this new feature that has little manual control, users may be worried about how they can track performance. Google have added a new Smart Display campaign report under Asset Reports. Here, advertisers can see their top performing assets based on conversion data.

How to get started

To build your first Smart Display campaign, simply go to New Campaign -> Display Campaign -> select the Drive Actions goals -> then Smart Display campaign. From here, the setup is similar to the standard Display campaigns.

There you have it, your introduction to Smart Display campaigns. They promise to be highly beneficial to advertisers, whilst combining advances machine learning.